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We have a resident muskrat (unless someone can identify what else it might be) that lives across the pond from me.
According to a website:
*** They're pond mammals. They can hold their breath for up to 15 minutes and they have webbed feet so it makes it easier to live at the pond.
*** Muskrats build dens in the water with an underwater entrance. They make these dens by burrowing. Their dens are made out of packed mud and twigs. Inside it is dry and has nesting supplies. They are small mammals, their length ranges around 27-37 inches and weight ranges around 1-4 pounds. But they have big heads, small ears, and short legs.
*** It's bad for predators to eat them, because they carry rabies.
*** They eat many things like roots, crayfish, frogs, snails, cattails, bulrush, and many others.
I will try to get a picture of him/her one day. My only issue is that it carries rabies.....
There's several more with dens up by Richards.
More on Joe....
The Muskrat (Ondatra zibethicus), although small, can cause extensive damage to pond dams, reservoirs and shoreline landscaping with their extensive burrowing. They can also be extremely destructive to landscaping plants, both aquatic and terrestrial. Muskrats have also been known to damage pond liners in backyard water gardens, costing homeowners thousands of dollars in replacement costs.
Damage and Damage Identification
Damage caused by muskrats is primarily due to their burrowing activity. Burrowing may not be readily evident until serious damage has occurred. One way to observe early burrowing in farm ponds or reservoirs is to walk along the edge of the dam or shorelines when the water is clear and look for “runs” or trails from just below the normal water surface to as deep as 3 feet (91 cm). If no burrow entrances are observed, look for droppings along the bank or on logs or structures a muskrat can easily climb upon. If the pond can be drawn down from 1 1/2 to 3 feet (46 to 91 cm) each winter, muskrat burrows will be exposed, just as they would during extended drought periods. Any burrows found in the dam should be filled, tamped in, and covered with rock to avoid possible
Where damage is occurring to a crop, plant cutting is generally evident. In aquaculture reservoirs generally maintained without lush aquatic vegetation, muskrat runs and burrows or remains of mussels, crayfish, or fish along with other muskrat signs (tracks or droppings) are generally easy to observe.(Source: Prevention and Control of Wildlife Damage, 1994)
Well that thing can get fat dumb and happy on all the snails in cedar.
i dont know if they are muskrats or otters, but i see more on ashburn than i ever have before,=
they are busy fellows, often swimming the shoreline with a great mouthful of greenery
The Conservation Police believe they are muskrats and should be removed as these fellas (musktarts) will do lots of damage to the shore line.
Saw one in Alder yesterday as I was dredging up dead grass. Alder and Beech are tough to fish now because even a weedless presentation hauls grass strands.