“If you know anything about beavers, it’s probably that they build dams. These giant structures made of sticks, stones, and mud can reach heights up to 10 feet (3 meters) and lengths averaging 20 feet (6 meters) — though the biggest one ever found was significantly larger and could be seen from space. Dams completely alter the surrounding landscape, flooding the surrounding area and creating wetlands. It’s one reason beavers have often been considered pests that can cause serious damage when they build dams too close to homes or roads.”
“But scientists have also understood beavers’ importance as ‘ecosystem engineers‘ for decades. And as the climate crisis continues to worsen, newer studies are finding that beavers play a vital role in dampening its effects — especially in areas prone to fire, drought, and even heat waves. To build a more resilient future, it might be best to look to the beavers.”
Why do beavers matter as the planet heats up? Learn more about these heat wave heroes and their super wild, messy, essential habitats with Vox video journalist Kim Mas and ecohydrologist Dr. Emily Fairfax.
Fairfax also created this wonderful stop-motion demonstration about beaver dams and wildfire.
Plus, more beavers on TKSST, including:
• What happens when beavers are reintroduced to England?
• How do living things change their environments?
• Beavers Maple and Filbert build dams together
This Webby award-winning video collection exists to help teachers, librarians, and families spark kid wonder and curiosity. TKSST features smarter, more meaningful content than what's usually served up by YouTube's algorithms, and amplifies the creators who make that content.
Curated, kid-friendly, independently-published. Support this mission by becoming a sustaining member today.