June 22, 2016 6:55 PM   Subscribe

Some time in the late 1940s, a very patient, elderly beaver called Geronimo was put in a box, flown to an altitude of between 150 and 200 metres, and tossed out the side of an aeroplane. Over and over and over again. See also: Elmo W. Heter, Transplanting Beavers by Airplane and Parachute, Journal of Wildlife Management, 14(2), April 1950, 143-147.
posted by carter (15 comments total) 11 users marked this as a favorite
The operation was also mentioned in this Idaho Fish & Game film from the 50s.
posted by asterisk at 7:09 PM on June 22, 2016 [1 favorite]

“He was sent to his own little piece of paradise, with three lovely young beavers,” Liebenthal told Wright at Boise State Public Radio.

...must have been on one of Boise State Public Radio's wilder late night shows.
posted by fairmettle at 7:19 PM on June 22, 2016 [2 favorites]

I was pretty sure I'd learned about reluctant 1940s Idaho Castoridae paratroopers from the blue, and sure enough.

That's not a complaint. I'm always eager to hear more.
posted by figurant at 7:28 PM on June 22, 2016 [2 favorites]

Ah completely missed that previous post, figurant. Thanks for adding it!
posted by carter at 7:30 PM on June 22, 2016

Curious. When my uncle jumped from a burning airplane, he said "Geronimo". Oddly, this phrase was not taught but most guys yelled it at chute practice.

Airlifting beaver circa 1950.

I'm convinced, a libraries old periodical section will produce more strange truth then fiction.
posted by clavdivs at 7:32 PM on June 22, 2016 [2 favorites]

That's not a complaint. I'm always eager to hear more.

And I just spent a very amusing half an hour going on a favoriting spree through old beaver posts. In a restaurant with the bass up so high you have to communicate with hand signals. Which makes this the best comment ever.
posted by susiswimmer at 9:28 PM on June 22, 2016 [1 favorite]


Does...castor oil come from beavers? *Googles furiously* Yes and no...
posted by zeptoweasel at 9:51 PM on June 22, 2016 [1 favorite]

Aaaah thanks that finally explains 5:39 of "Duck Amuck" to me. Now I can move on.
posted by Namlit at 9:52 PM on June 22, 2016

Oh, man, the poor guy.

I remember tiny McCall in the 60s -- man, I expect they must have gentrified the shit out of Payette Lakes by now.

But I will never forget swimming at the Episcopal church camp at Payette Lakes -- that water was so clear that you could see the bottom 60 feet deep down. It was warm enough for the first 8 inches and then glacial cold the rest of the way down. That was when I learned, nay, experienced, the word thermocline.

There was an bluff of weathered basalt along the beach and it made swimming seem like flying to see it rising from the dark underneath. You could just see forever.

What a beautiful place that was. I only wish I could have appreciated more consciously how precious it was but I was so young. And I appreciated it enough then, I think.
posted by y2karl at 10:27 PM on June 22, 2016 [4 favorites]

Previously. (with video link mentioned above)
posted by HuronBob at 3:29 AM on June 23, 2016 [1 favorite]

Ah completely missed that previous post, figurant. Thanks for adding it!

There are at least two previouslies of this, though for me the idea of air-launched beaver just gets better each time. Extirpating the beaver was probably the worst possible thing we could have done to the western landscape, so while I wish it was possible to get their consent first, I'm willing to consider tossing them out of airplanes if that is what it takes.
posted by Dip Flash at 4:53 AM on June 23, 2016

God as my witness, I thought beavers could fly.
posted by srboisvert at 5:10 AM on June 23, 2016 [5 favorites]

From this same link -The Great Kentucky Meat Shower!!

"If this was a documentary, the words "MEAT SHOWER" would appear on screen right now, with trickles of little red meat flakes falling behind. A few select flakes would fall in front of the words for effect."
posted by TuxHeDoh at 6:21 AM on June 23, 2016

Idaho (and beavers) represent!
I will wave toward McCall when I drive north Sunday.

I imagine the 60s were astounding. I remember when I first saw Payette Lake in the early 80s.... Quite the change, from then to now, and not for the better.
posted by BlueHorse at 2:03 PM on June 23, 2016

I imagine the 60s were astounding.

Bucolic and idyllic. There were summer cabins owned by people from Fruitland, New Plymouth, Payette, Caldwell and Boise and so forth dotting the shoreline around McCall, which had about a couple of thousand year round residents and about twice to thrice that in the summer. I understand it's like Aspen now.
posted by y2karl at 12:39 PM on June 24, 2016

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