As It Happens·Video

How As It Happens 'saved the beaver'

In the 1970s, a U.S. senator moved to make the beaver the national animal of the state of New York, much to the shock of then-As It Happens producer Mark Starowicz.
Former As It Happens producer Mark Starowicz reminisces about the show's weird '70s campaign to have the beaver officially declared Canada's national animal. (Ben Shannon/CBC Radio) 2:20
In the 1970s, a U.S. senator moved to make the beaver the national animal of the state of New York, much to the shock of then- As It Happens producer Mark Starowicz.

"We called him up and said, 'You can't do that. It's the national symbol of Canada," Starowicz said. "And he said, 'Well actually, you folks never registered it.'"

And so began the show's campaign to save the beaver, which resulted in a March 24, 1975, act of Parliament officially recognizing the critter as "a symbol of the sovereignty of Canada."