beaver toronto

Beaver finds its way into TTC station and interrupts Toronto's morning commute

Transitgoers in Toronto are used to the regular snafus of construction on major lines, shuttle buses, overcrowding, and unanticipated technical issues with resulting delays, but it's safe to assume that no one was prepared for the latest TTC snag: a partial station closure due to a wild beaver.

Residents at Royal York Station had to do a double take early Thursday morning when they spotted the critter, who was clearly out of its element, wandering the mezzanine level of the stop on Line 2 Bloor-Danforth.

The amphibious rodent was seen hanging out near the top of the stairs to the subway platform around 7 a.m., and was unfortunately unable to provide an explanation as to how he got there or where he was headed.

Royal York is uniquely sandwiched between Mimico Creek and the Humber River, the latter of which is just one station eastward, near Old Mill.

Some on the scene speculated that he or she may have somehow come in from one of those sources through the subway tunnel, luckily evading injury during rush hour along the way.

The TTC closed the Grenview entrance to the west end station as a result, citing an "animal in distress" as staff waited for the appropriate wildlife authorities to arrive.

The commission named its new friend Rascal in the meantime, and a supervisor was put on babysitting duty until the creature was safely removed by Toronto Animal Services and taken to a nearby water source to be released into the wild around 9 a.m.

Based on video footage captured by local news outlets, Rascal was elated to be free and outdoors once again after the hours-long ordeal.

Though riders of the rocket are used to the odd pigeon perched on a seat beside them, a beaver on the premises was definitely something new and equally shocking for all parties involved.

TTC Spokesperson Stuart Green clarified in a tweet that the beaver was "believed to have entered through the Grenview Blvd auto entrance," indeed coming from a nearby waterway, and that the station was abl eto fully reopen around 8:20 a.m.

"Trespassing critters are not uncommon on the TTC," he continued. "While no one recalls a beaver sighting in recent history, we've had raccoons, deer, escaped dogs, pigeons, opossums and even crabs find their way into the system."

Rascal may have fared better had he visited the flooded Scarborough Centre Station late last month rather than Royal York today, but the fact that he's safe and sound now is all that matters.

Lead photo by

Jenn Abbott

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