A beaver walked into a hardware store, and we’re completely serious.
A Lowe’s home improvement store in Fairbanks, Alaska, had a busy customer visit last Friday. A beaver strolled through the parking lot and through the automatic doors of the hardware store early in the morning.
If you think the punchline of this story is that the beaver went to find lumber at Lowe’s, you’d be wrong. The hardware store’s assistant manager, Adam Vanhoveln, claims the beaver never even made it back to the lumber section. According to Fairbanks Daily News-Miner, the beaver went straight to the plumbing section.
After all, what does a beaver want with lumber anyway? He probably already has a ton of the stuff.
Once in the plumbing section, helpful Lowe’s employees asked the beaver if it needed help finding anything. The beaver calmly wandered around, and one hardware store employee noticed the beaver appeared to be injured.
An Alaska Department of Fish and Game technician eventually arrived on scene to find the beaver under a cardboard box which someone had placed on it to keep it from going anywhere else in the store. After the beaver was removed from the store, it was turned over to wildlife biologist Tony Hollis.
Hollis is used to calls about all sorts of animals, but usually doesn’t get many about beavers wandering into hardware stores.
“Oftentimes it’s usually something like there’s a bear in town or an ornery moose or something, but this was a little different.”
According to the Associated Press, Hollis took the beaver to the Tanana River, which is far enough away from Fairbanks that the beaver shouldn’t return to it.
Hollis thinks the beaver might have been looking for a place to build its own home, and ironically found Lowe’s.
“I’m not really sure what he was thinking, but he was the age class that’s dispersing out of the house,” Hollis said. “Whether he got confused or who knows what happened in his mind that he ended up at Lowe’s.”
Hollis is not sure where the beaver could have come from, since the hardware store isn’t near any open water sources. He guessed it could have come from the wetlands nearby.
This is the first time a beaver or any type of animal has wandered into the hardware store in Fairbanks, according to the Lowe’s manager.
[Photo by Angelesa Ward]