A Nanaimo-area beaver had a lot to be thankful for on Thanksgiving weekend after a Shawnigan Lake family rescued it from being trapped in a hole.
Jennifer and Dustin Buck and their kids Brookelyn and Kayleb were out along the Nanaimo River near Cassidy on Oct. 13 when they noticed a bit of a to-do on the rocks by the river.
“We were camping up in Cassidy at the Mountainaire Campground and we decided to go for a walk,” Jennifer Buck explained. “The guys were looking for a place to go fishing and we were on the beach and looked across the water and there was a group of people sticking logs down into this hole.”
The Buck family was curious, so they ventured over.
Other hikers had been offering sticks to the beaver in an attempt to coax it out of the six-foot-deep crevasse in which it was stuck. It was to no avail.
“They thought he would maybe walk up the sticks,” she said.
The beaver didn’t budge.
The other group eventually left but the Bucks hung around for a while longer.
“My husband just decided it was not going to happen. The beaver wasn’t moving. He wasn’t going to climb out,” Jennifer said.
A few test pokes to see if the beaver would attack if touched, and Dustin made the decision to hop into the hole himself.
“He just went down there and pulled him out,” Jennifer said.
The beaver did not struggle.
“We figure he’d been there a few days,” she said. “He probably hadn’t eaten in a few days. He was too weak to even fight back. As soon as we brought him out, he was a little bit out of it. We stayed because he seemed to be heading back toward the hole, or over the edge of the rocks.”
Once he did find his way to the edge of the forest, Jennifer said the little critter right away started eating a maple leaf and other branches.
It was a new experience for her family, and for the Lewis family, who she said was helpful in the rescue as well.
It’s something they weren’t expecting to do on Thanksgiving Sunday, but were happy to be a part of regardless.
“You don’t necessarily ever plan to run into a beaver,” Jennifer said with a laugh.