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Nature's engineer

Cover of At Home with the Beaver: T
A review of At Home with the Beaver: The Story of a Keystone Species by Dorothy Hinshaw Patent, photograghs by Michael Runtz

Warm-weather nature explorations may feel a long way off. But that doesn’t mean that junior naturalists are entirely without opportunities to learn more about the environments around us. At Home with the Beaver brings the wonders of an active beaver pond, with all of the rich diversity of animal and plant life it supports, right into our own homes, with accessible text and photographs featuring an animal that the NRDC calls an “ecosystem engineer.”  Beavers create and maintain a wetland ecosystem that becomes home to creatures as varied as monarch butterflies, leopard frogs, minks, kingfishers, smallmouth bass, red foxes, and white-tailed deer.

Patent and Runtz provide plenty of extra information as well – showing readers how beaver structures are used by other animals, showing an example of a food chain, and providing website listings with more information for curious readers.  


Feb 17, 2021