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The Beaver Symbol

The Native Beaver Symbol or Totem Beaver, in Native American tradition, teaches people to have the ability to be productive in all ways and not to limit their options. He teaches to be persistent and to use available resources. The Beaver helps people to understand the dynamics of team work and to appreciate each individual’s talents and contributions in order to accomplish anything. He is a determined, builder of the mind, body and soul and symbolises creativity, creation, cooperation, persistence and harmony. The Beaver also is a serious, hard worker and will not quit his job until he is done.

Beaver Symbol and First Nations

A Haida legend says that a great hunter who lived along a River, traveled away in search of new hunting land with his wife. After days of traveling the hunter decided to build a home for himself and his wife. After the home was built the hunter said to his wife that he would leave for two days and one night, he would be back before the second night. After the two days he came back and was very happy with his wife. Eventually he left again this time for a longer periode. While the hunter was away the wife would occupy herself by swimming in the nearby stream. When the hunter came back the couple would enjoy each other’s company. One day the hunter decided that his now pregnant wife was used to being alone and that he could go on a longer hunting trip. While he was gone his wife would spend her time in the creek, it wasn’t a very deep creek so she decided to build a dam out of leftover wood from their house. Eventually the dam created a lake, where she could swim all day. She then build a room in the dam so she could rest during the day and at night she would go back in the house. The hunter’s child was due any day so he came home from his trip, as he looked around for his wife she was nowhere to be seen. The hunter circled the lake and walked up and down the creek in hopes of finding his wife. Suddenly a figure emerged from the lake. It was a strange animal, in its mouth a stick which it was gnawing. On each side of the animal were two smaller ones, also gnawing sticks. Then the largest figure, spoke. "Don't be sad! It is I, your wife, and your two children. We have returned to our home in the water. Now that you have seen me, you will use me as a crest.”

Native Art - The Beaver Symbol

Spirits of the West Coast Native Art Gallery sells Beaver Symbol prints, Native American Jewelry, Beaver Native carvings, Beaver ceremonial masks, gold and silver bracelets and bentwood boxes, all inspired by the Beaver Symbol.


If you have any further information or stories with or about this Native American Symbol or totem and you would like to share them with our readers, please feel free to email them to us. If they are appropriate we will add them to this page. Thank you!