real headache for the residents of the southernmost end of Argentina, the North American beaver is a semi-aquatic rodent that measures no more than 12 inches high (30 cm) and 30 long (75 cm). Today it is considered a real plague in Tierra del Fuego Province.
Introduced at that point of the country in 1946 on an Air Force device chartered especially for such move, the beaver arrived as an attempt to generate a fur industry in Patagonia which never flourished.
It happens that although its body is characterized by being covered with a long fur, the specimens brought to Argentina developed a leather of lesser thickness and thus their quality was rejected by the international market.
This mammal with shades of profuse brown quickly multiplied its first population of 25 specimens, since besides the commercial endeavor, it has never been taken into account that the species lacked in the local environment those predators which control the number of beavers in North America.
Without the threat of bears and wolves, beavers dispersed in a few years to start building dams with branches that flooded low-lying areas, affecting much of the forests of Tierra del Fuego. An adult specimen of this species is able to cut a tree up to 12 inches thick (30 cm) in just 15 minutes thanks to a hard teeth formed by four sharp incisors.
Since these teeth never stop growing, beavers feed using them all the time in plants of their environment.
Through their engineering of trunks and mud, these herbivore animals build dams in watercourses, and true food reservoirs from which they feed in the colder seasons.
With a great ability to swim, beavers carry wood and stones for their buildings, while also generating water sources always liquid dint of branches in constant motion.
This Canadian flagship can live up to 20 years and females of the species give birth once every 12 months with litters averaging four offspring. As territorial animals, they have a pair of glands producing a substance similar to musk, which they use to delimit their range of movement.
The beaver is also considered a pest on the other side of the Andes: in Chile is taken for granted that the species entered the country via migrations carried out by the Strait of Magellan. Currently the rodent population is estimated to exceed 70 000 specimens counting both countries.