The North American beaver is a keystone species, an animal that supports an entire biological community. This often-misunderstood mammal is also the topic of Ben Goldfarb’s award-winning 2018 book “Eager: The Surprising, Secret Life of Beavers and Why They Matter.”
In an online program hosted by Coastal Rivers Conservation Trust at 4 p.m. on Jan. 25, Goldfarb, an environmental journalist, will discuss the history of this world-changing species and reveal how our modern conception of a healthy ecosystem is flawed, distorted by the fur trade that once eliminated millions of beavers from North America’s waterways. He will share how beavers can help fight drought, flooding, wildfire, and climate change, and explore how people can coexist with this challenging but vital rodent.
According to Goldfarb, a growing coalition of “Beaver Believers”— including scientists, ranchers, and passionate citizens — recognizes that ecosystems with beavers are far healthier than those without them. From the Nevada deserts to the Scottish highlands, people are hard at work restoring these industrious rodents to their former haunts.
Ben Goldfarb’s book “Eager: The Surprising, Secret Life of Beavers and Why They Matter” is the winner of the 2019 PEN/E.O. Wilson Literary Science Writing Award. Goldfarb’s work has appeared in publications including the Atlantic, Science, the New York Times, and the Washington Post. His next book, Crossings, on the science of road ecology, will be published by W.W. Norton & Company in 2023.
This program is free of charge, thanks to member support. Registration is required at coastalrivers.org/events. A link will be sent to participants after registration.