Beavers Are Back In The Big Apple

A female groundhog, enjoys a banana break at the Howell Conference and Nature Center in Howell, Mich., Jan. 25, 2007. This groundhog is named Woody - a nod to another popular name for the animal: woodchuck. (AP Photo/Detroit Free Press, Mary Schroeder)
AP/Detroit Free Press
This column was written by CBS News Early Show co-anchor Harry Smith.

We in the news business often get complaints that we don't report enough good news. So today, I'm trumpeting my favorite story of the day — and the news is good indeed.

For the first time in about 200 years, a beaver is making its home in New York City, on the recently cleaned-up and much-improved Bronx River. A dam has been spotted, and now there are pictures, too.

I have seen this sort of thing happen with increasing frequency. Students started cleaning up streams in Northern California, only to find salmon there a few seasons later. America is brimming with bald eagles and other predatory birds since DDT was banned some years ago.

The Earth is a very forgiving place. Clean it up, stop destroying it, and it shows remarkable resilience.

And now we have a beaver in the Bronx. We should be proud, and impressed. I'll bet that's one tough beaver.

Harry's daily commentary can be heard on many CBS Radio News affiliates across the country.