One of Canada’s longest docks is back in business after being closed.
Repairs to the beaver chewed wharf in the Village of Fraser Lake were completed earlier this month.
Problems by the thick furred semi-aquatic critter began several years ago when the summer was dry, and the water was low, and they chewed 22 of the wooden pilings holding up the 137-metre or 450-foot long pier.
“We were concerned about structural stability,” said chief administrative officer Rod Holland.
“So those issues have been repaired, and we installed steel pilings instead of wooden pilings, and we’re hoping that we don’t have a repeat of those problems with rodents.”
Construction launched late winter early spring this year and carried into mid-June after being delayed by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The $170,000-project was supported by the B.C. Government’s Northern Capital and Planning Grant, which provides funding for infrastructure and long-term planning.
“For a small community like Fraser Lake, it was an expensive project, but it’s one of our amenities that people enjoy, and so it’s important to have in place,” Holland said.
“It’s a nice place to go, and there’s a lot of bird life, so it’s a great place to go see birds, and of course, the notorious beavers swim by.”
Although the healthy beaver population had shuttered the wharf for two years and has made it difficult for the Village of Fraser Lake to maintain greenery along the waterfront, local residents and visitors have grown fond of them.
Chicken wire has been placed around undamaged trees to prevent beavers from cutting the trees down.
“Years ago, the beaver population was managed by trapping,” Holland said, noting how he and his wife watched a beaver swim by their home overlooking the lake in which four others would follow.
“But that’s not an active activity on the lake at this point, so we have what we have.”