LETTER: New role for Canada’s beavers in the conservation of water

Beavers may be a nuisance but they actually conserve water, says Walnut Grove student.

Editor: At one time beavers were emblazoned on our currency, given to the queen as a gift and revered as a founding economy of our country.

But today, beavers are considered a nuisance.

As a secondary school student in Walnut Grove, I studied and wrote an article about the beaver dam on Anderson Creek (Langley).

I was surprised to find more significant facts about beavers that we, as communities, should not forget.

One of the first things I saw when I came to Canada was the stunning art of the Aboriginal people at the airport.

The art included images of all the natural resources they relied on for living and showed how they were closely involved in the natural community.

Last year in Grade 10, I studied about how European settlers in the 1850s started to trade fur with the Aboriginal people and the role of the beaver was highly supported.

Because the beavers provided the trading connection between the Europeans and the Aboriginals, a successful economy developed in Canada.

From our own history, I could see the significant role of the beavers in forming and starting the nation.

Today, Canada is well represented by preserving many Aboriginal cultures and arts used in its tourism economy.

But will the beaver also be respected and preserved regarding its new role in the community?

The beaver dam on Anderson Creek could become a concern for the property owners living in the area if rising flooding interfered with roads and houses.

However, from the biologist’s perspective, beavers are actually conserving water to prepare themselves and the whole community to deal with the problems of hotter and drier weather.

As beavers work hard to make a new wetland and provide healthier environments in B.C. shouldn’t they be highly appreciated, especially, since not many people are conserving water?

Recently developed flow devices are also helping beavers become successful co-habitants with the community.

Therefore, shouldn’t we urge people to not only look at beavers as part of the past but also as a vital part of the future?

Seeone Kim,

Walnut Grove Secondary