When they’re not herding cows or getting stuck in fences, beavers tend to live quiet lives. They sleep, work on their lodges, and spend time with their families. But there’s one part of the day that’s always worth getting excited about: dinner.
Beavers are talented eaters. Thanks to unique bacteria in their digestive systems, they can digest bark and wood, and they’re also happy to eat leaves, buds, and aquatic vegetation like cattails. And now, thanks to nature photographer Arielle DeMerchant, we can see the feasting first-hand.
DeMerchant lives in New Brunswick, where she captured this video of a beaver family eating water plants and reeds together. First one beaver pops up and starts eating, then the whole family converges on a group of plants and quickly begins consuming them (with audible munching). At the video’s end, one of the beavers grabs a large wooden branch and begins swimming away with it, presumably to keep as a snack for later.
This intimate portrait of a family dinner isn’t the first time DeMerchant has filmed beavers chowing down. She once also caught a beaver having a midnight snack of apples, thanks to a remote camera she’d set up. Clearly, beavers are quite the gourmands.
So check it out, but be warned: after you watch these videos, you may find yourself craving a crunchy snack.