Do Beavers Eat Fish: Interesting Facts About Beavers

Do beavers eat fish? No, they are primary vegetarians and their diet consists entirely of plants. They feed on aquatic plants, grasses, herbs, and shrubs in summer, while woody shrubs, barks, and twigs make their easy cache away for winter.

Let’s dive into more interesting facts about one of the world’s largest rodent animals

Beavers Are Purely Herbivores

Beavers Are Purely Herbivores

Beavers have wholly adapted herbivores. Yes, it’s a fact that the semi-aquatic rodents have plenty of fish at their disposal, but they will never prey on fish. Let us all unlearn the misconception that beavers spending the most time in the water next to fish make them carnivores. 

Beavers consume cellulose as a key component in their diet, which mammals cannot digest. The symbiotic bacteria present in a beaver’s cecum makes it possible to digest barks, buds, leaves, twigs, roots, aquatic plants, and cambium-the softer tissue found beneath the bark of trees where new wood and bark grow from. 

Beavers Have Preferences Too

You will be surprised that beavers don’t feed on any tree, but they have preferences. Beavers are predominantly large consumers of plant-based foods, and their favorites include maple, poplar, willow, rowan, hazel, birch, alder, beech, and aspen trees.

Conifers trees are the last option that beavers eat; their bark doesn’t taste good; hence beavers would instead use conifers as building materials for their lodge. As much as beavers have a pretty strict and specialized diet, they also consume fruits, vegetables, fungi, and grains, depending on food availability.

Beavers Can Consume Beans

Yes, beavers can eat beans. With their precise diet, beavers do not limit their taste buds to their to-go aspen and poplar trees. These rodents also enjoy tasty soft plants like water lily tubers, ferns, cattails, mushrooms, and cloves. Beavers may also resort to feeding on human crops such as beans and corn in adverse seasons where food is scarce. 

As you might have thought, this could occasionally pause danger if a colony of beavers resides near an orchard or farm, more so during the drought seasons. Being the rodents they are, you can imagine the loss they can generate.

Beavers Are Semi-Aquatic Animals

Beavers spend most of their time in the water, making them semi-aquatic animals. According to National Geography, beavers can stay underwater for around 15 minutes at a time. They have even adapted to eating aquatic plants, with aspen and poplar being their favorite delicious trees. These trees grow widespread near water sources in most habitats where beavers establish their lodges and colonies.

These large rodents consume aquatic plants more in the summer than in the winter seasons. Beavers are faster underwater, which explains why they move with an ungainly waddle on land but are graceful in the water. 

These rodents are adapted where they use their large, webbed rear feet like swimming fins and their paddle-shaped tails like rudders. Beavers are protective of their colonies. They will slap their tails against the water to make an alarming noise that warns family members of danger.

Beavers Are Primarily Crepuscular 

Beavers rarely see during the day, as their vision is not acute, like that of flies. It makes sense that they are usually more active at dusk and dawn. Thanks to their transparent eyelids that help them see well underwater and make them excellent divers to reach plants growing under the water surface.


Beavers are primarily herbivores. Despite living in a conducive environment with plenty of fish as a food source, beavers don’t eat fish. Rather, they enjoy feasting on shrubs, twigs, and barks from their delicious cup of tea – aspen and poplar, to be more precise. In extreme drought periods, beavers opt to take human crops like beans and corn.


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