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Top 10 Animal Workaholics

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9. The Builders: Beavers

The saying “busy as a beaver” might take on an entirely new meaning when you consider how active beavers truly are. Considered nature’s engineers, these long-toothed mammals are very adept at and diligent about building dams in rivers or streams to create ponds suitable for their lodging needs. Beginning in late summer and into the fall, beavers begin preparing their homes for winter. They gather wood by using their tails to prop them up while they chip away at tree trunks with their teeth. Once a tree has broken off from the trunk, the beaver breaks it down into smaller pieces that are more manageable to carry back to the location they plan to build on. Laying the sticks into the mud, they stack layers of wood until the dam is built. But a beaver’s job isn’t done once the dam is complete. It also works to dig out its living quarters, called a lodge, and stockpiles wood to eat during the long winter months. Although beaver dams are a headache for property owners that don’t want running streams blocked, the beaver does provide a useful service to other creatures like ducks and moose, which use the ponds as a water source.

Related: World’s Largest Beaver Dam Seen on Google Earth

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1:07PM PST on Feb 5, 2013

Czasami wstyd mi za ludzi, w porównaniu z tymi zwierzętami, część z nas to straszne lenie.

9:57PM PST on Feb 4, 2013

Just thought I should mention that the Bower Bird's bower is for attracting and courting a female.
The nest for her eggs and raising their young is built way up in a tall tree :)

2:15PM PST on Feb 4, 2013

Great and humourous list.

1:34PM PST on Nov 22, 2012

Wonderful, thanks for posting.

3:14AM PDT on Apr 4, 2012

Ants are the most awesomeist *sic* creatures on the planet for a plethora of reasons that outshine the most talented at foraging or working. Community minded, caring, policing, saving, and working together as well as sharing the load and the other awesome thing they do is carry a load that is far greater and heavier than WE could carry. These little creatures get a bad rap but if you take the time to watch them do their thing. nah not eat your picnic lunch but out in the garden you will quickly see a different and most awesome side of an Ant. They are my colony Hero's. Brilliant they are. Wish we could take a leaf out of their book and learn to survive and work together in harmony. Like they do. Brilliant.

9:45AM PST on Mar 5, 2012

Emperor penguins are awesome! The males totally deserve the title of "Dad of the Year". They are practically single-parents for four months and endure the worst weather on the planet! That's dedication!


Lara - Termites are Isoptera (recently reclassified "Termitoidae"), not hymenoptera. They are two different groups.

8:47AM PST on Feb 23, 2012

Just continues to show how much us humans can learn from animals. thanks

1:01PM PST on Feb 12, 2012

Interesting. Termites, Ants and Bees are all social hymenopterans (hymenoptera is a very large class of Insects, 130,000 recognized species). The "social" hymenopterans (hymen meaning membrane and ptera meaning "wing") have been around since the Cretacious period so clearly they are doing something right! They even share a hive mind! Very cool!

12:51PM PST on Feb 12, 2012

very interesting...

11:38AM PST on Feb 3, 2012

Very good article, thank you !

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