For the first time in more than 150 years, a family of beavers has been spotted living along the Guadalupe River as it winds through downtown San Jose.
And yes, they are busy.
After scoping out a tell-tale gnawed tree trunk a few weeks ago, nature photographer Gregory Kerekes trained his cameras equipped with night vision along the river’s banks.
Kerekes’ footage reveals a colony of beavers at work, swimming, foraging and carrying sticks in their mouths — even passing them between each other — as they scurry around throughout the night.
The video also captures a whimsical slice of urban wildlife, as a raccoon can be seen darting across the frame at the 1:00 mark.
Though the river is too deep for the beavers to dam where they’re living, the family — including a pregnant mama beaver — is likely shoring up the lodge they’re calling home these days.
With the last beaver reported in Santa Clara County in 1855, Leslee Hamilton with the Guadalupe River Park Conservancy told KGO-TV she hopes to see other species return to the river:
“We’re hoping that we can co-exist and that we can use them to illustrate how healthy our watershed is becoming and use this time as a benchmark to see what other species come back.”