Recently Kim Ribeiro took a walk around Jamaica Pond and look who she saw swimming -- a muskrat. Muskrats are native to North America, but aren't commonly seen. Their tails are actually covered in scales, not fur, and they can swim underwater up to 17 minutes, according to wikipedia. Muskrats probably get their name comes from a word of Algonquian (possibly Powhatan) origin, literally means "it is red", or from the Abenaki native word mòskwas, which is in the archaic English name for the animal, musquash, according to wikipedia. The name stuck because of its musky odor, which the muskrat uses to mark its territory.