Photo: In which we swoon for the dainty hands of a muskrat

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Pity the poor, misunderstood muskrat. That their work interferes with ours (as in, they're destructive) makes them not the most beloved of creatures; add to that the fact that their fur has been a target for trappers for ages and they have been given the unfortunate name of, basically, stinky rodent ... well nobody ever said it was easy being a muskrat.

But ... look at those little hands (okay, feet, but still) so delicately holding a bit of greenery! Consider this a reminder that they also happen to be excellent swimmers that can stay submerged for up to 20 minutes at a time, and they can swim forwards and backwards while they are at it. And importantly, they play important roles in certain ecosystems in creating flat nesting areas for birds.

Viva la muskrat!

Thank you to Tony LePrieur for this sweet shot taken in Calgary's Carburn Park.

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