I had missed this article when it came out in June of 2014. It was particularly startling because there is no mention of the beaver having rabies. The animal literally jumped out of the water, grabbed the kayaker by the arm, and pulled him from the boat. From wtvr.com:
“It’s just a freak thing. This beaver was upset about something and went after him,” kayaking trainer Nate Reynolds said. “I heard him yell my name, so I come running out. 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 Mike’s arm after it flipped him out of the kayak. That’s when Nate came down with the paddle. He hit the beaver with so much force it knocked the blade off the shaft.
The beaver, presumably the one who attacked, was later found, dead in the water. Humans are much deadlier than beavers. But as I started looking to see if there were any other beaver attacks on record, it became clear that there were several in the last three years. In April, 2013 a man was reported killed by a beaver in Belarus. From USAtoday:
A fisherman in Belarus was bitten to death by a beaver, and all he was doing was trying to take its picture, Sky News reports. The man spotted the beaver while fishing with friends at Lake Shestakov, but as he approached to take a photograph, the beaver bit him on the thigh. The animal managed to sever an artery, and his friends couldn’t stop the blood flow.