The Beaver and the Logger- both misunderstood by urban dwellers

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THUNDER BAY – I read an article by the Globe and Mail’s Erin Anderssen over the weekend and I couldn’t help chuckle to myself how this person, of course an urban dweller; found that the Canadian Beaver is very much misunderstood and a victim of bad press. I found it humorous in the fact that our Canadian Loggers are also misunderstood however as the Beaver is a furry little animal; well it is okay to live with what the Beaver brings to the table.

As typical, the urban dweller rarely interacts with the Beaver let alone a Logger, and doesn’t truly grasp what the reality is on our landscape.

Mr. Anderssen goes on in his article to point out the many benefits of the Beaver. A Beaver he goes on to say is in reality a “hard-working specimen, an eco-saviour” is how the Beaver is portrayed.

Well, like I stated I find that there are many similarities to the benefits of the Beaver species when compared to the human species of Logger.

Now don’t get me wrong, I am not advocating for a “slamming” of the Beaver, in favour of a Logger and I get it that a Logger will never be recognized on the nickel or ever on a stamp although without our Loggers where would we be? Maybe it is time for our Loggers to be recognized for their contribution to the building of Canada.

Why is it that a Toronto journalist can be so overwhelmed by the attributes of a Beaver, but the moment that someone tries to stick up for the Logger, well you know what happens. I do intend to send a letter to the editor to respond to his article supporting our Loggers however it will never be printed as Toronto doesn’t want to hear about our hard-working human “eco-saviours”.

Our Loggers make a difference in the Forest with every move they make. Unfortunately they are not furry little animals, some are furry but not to the extent of the Beaver.

Our Loggers make a positive impact to the environment everyday. The Logger improves the Forest and creates renewal that benefits the complete natural cycle from the various wildlife health improvements from having new growth to consume, to improved health of the various tree species, and they add value to the economy, working as busy farmers by harvesting a renewable resource.

Beavers and Loggers actually work together as the Beavers can damn-up water not wanted crossing a road, however they do have a tendency to plug culverts, and when mother nature decides to drench the damns, the flooding can cause havoc. This Beaver flooding was not noted by this journalist coincidently.

Our Loggers are the first on the scene to extinguish a mother nature-caused forest fire, and if there is a Beaver –caused damn in the vicinity of this fire, the Logger can use it to extinguish this fire, so another example of this symbiotic relationship-humans working with other species.

Beavers clear-cut, as do some Loggers. Beavers do not perform select logging however where Loggers do; whereas Loggers respect areas of importance, and water body reserves while Beavers cut right down to the shoreline, in a “drag the tops out of the water” form of harvesting. Maybe the Beaver should get the bad rap!

Would Mr. Anderssen consider drafting his next article to consider the plight of the misunderstood Logger? Highly unlikely as we know, as he is an urban dweller. The urban dweller uses wood products not knowing where they come from and without having proper knowledge of the reality of working and living with nature; he will not see the similarities of the Logger and the Beaver. We get it, we understand the necessity and the benefits the Logger provides to the environment, and our prosperity.

Is it time to champion a new Canadian stamp depicting the Logger? Shouldn’t the Logger be considered iconic just like the Beaver? The Logger has as much of an important role in the shaping of Canada, and still does today.

At the end of the day, the Beaver and the Logger log, however one is a rodent and one is a human being. Why are these humans so misunderstood? Time for the Logger to hire a new agent.

Mike Shusterman

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