The kayaker’s arms and back were bandaged after a beaver leaped out of the water just as he was getting in for a kayak lesson. (Source: WHAM/CNN)
ROCHESTER, NY (WHAM/CNN) - A beaver attacked a man who was getting a kayaking lesson.
Mike Cavanaugh's arms and back were bandaged after a beaver leaped out of the water just as Cavanaugh was getting in for a kayak lesson.
"It's just a freak thing. This beaver was upset about something and went after him," said Nate Reynolds, a kayak instructor who saw part of the attack happen.
"I heard him yell my name, so I come running out," he said. "As soon as I came out, I see the boat flip over, so the beaver had actually jumped up, grabbed his arm and pulled him right out of his kayak."
The beaver was still attached to Cavanaugh's arm after it flipped him out of the kayak. That's when Reynolds came down with the paddle. He hit the beaver with so much force it knocked the blade off the shaft.
"Nate's a pretty strong individual, and he must have hit directly, broke a paddle over it, so we were pretty sure it was injured," said Ken Altfather, owner of Baycreek Paddling. "But coming out of abundance of caution, we cancelled everything."
Altfather says the beaver's carcass was spotted a few days later and was taken by animal control.
In his 22 years as owner of the paddling company, he's never seen a beaver attack, and he said he hopes this will be his last.
"I think the rarity of it is the main thing," Altfather said. "This beaver was apparently upset for some reason that we don't know."