Upstate man viciously attacked by beaver

Posted at 8:48 PM, Jun 18, 2014
and last updated 2014-06-18 20:47:29-04

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (PIX11) — An upstate New York man is recovering after being viciously attacked by a beaver that knocked him out of his kayak and into the Irondequoit Creek.

13WHAM reports that Michael Cavanaugh of Lima was paddling in the creek when the beaver jumped out of the water, seemingly unprovoked, and attacked.

“I heard my name being called out from the shop and I ran out the door to see a guy getting pulled into the water,” BayCreek Paddling trainer Nate Reynolds told the station. “It was like a horror movie.”

Reynolds said the beaver wouldn’t loosen its hold on Cavanaugh as he tried to make it to the dock. The trainer hit the animal with a paddle until it vanished.

Cavanaugh suffered bites and deep puncture wounds on his arm and back.

Animal control eventually found the beaver dead. The carcass is now being tested for rabies.

Beaver attacks on humans are extremely rare, a New York Department of Environmental Conservation biologist told 13WHAM, unless the animal has rabies or is trying to protect its young.

“I think the rarity of this is the main thing,” said BayCreek owner Ken Altfather. “The beaver was upset for some reason, we don’t know.”