what eats river otters

At 8kg, it is our second-largest mustelid and is becoming increasingly common in our rivers and lakes as its numbers rebound … It's really common to watch someone point at a river otter and say, … Japanese River Otters. This page was last edited on 4 December 2020, at 19:57. Facts about River Otters talk about an animal, which can be found on the coasts or waterways of North America. There is always at least one tunnel opening that allows the otters to enter and exit the water. One of the most surprising river otter facts is that these otters don’t dig their own dens. They like to forage near shorelines, overhanging banks, and areas where fish are found. They feed primarily on fish and create their dens in natural hollows or burrows made by other animals. However, these games are not undertaken purely for enjoyment. Spraint smearing most likely facilitates social ties among group members and is associated with territorial marking displays. River otters are most commonly heard emitting a low frequency chuckling. Part II – Mammals", "Stronger International Regulations and Increased Enforcement Effort is needed to end the Illegal Trade in Otters in Asia", "CITES CoP 2019: Otters given highest protection from trade", "Ban on endangered otter trade to take effect amid pet boom in Japan", https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Asian_small-clawed_otter&oldid=992346682, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License. [26] North American river otters get their boundless energy from their very high metabolism, which also requires that they eat a great deal during the day. They will also consume lizards and other items they can find on land when they need to. [29], In Europe, Zoo Basel keeps Asian small-clawed otters together with Indian rhinoceros. River otters can be found in Canada, the Pacific North West, the Atlantic States, and the Gulf of Mexico. River otters' main source of food is fish, but otters are opportunists by nature and will eat a wide variety of foods. Although their range is decreasing as their habitat is being threatened, they are not currently endangered. [23], The Asian small-clawed otter is threatened by poaching for its fur, loss and destruction of habitats such as hill streams, peat swamp forests and mangroves for aquaculture projects. Its underfur is lighter near the base. They hunt food by using their vibrissae to detect movements of prey in the water. In western Java, it inhabits areas along slow-flowing irrigation channels, pond areas and rice fields surrounded by vegetation that offers shelter. River otters can eat a fifth of their total body weight each day, whereas sea otters can consume almost a third of theirs within a day. It does not have upper premolars and only four postcanine teeth above. They hunt singly or in pairs and although otters generally forage in water, they are equally at home on land, sometimes traveling between 10 and 18 miles (16 and 29 kilometers) in search of food. Across the world, there are thirteen known species of otter. The species of fish will vary depending on the location and habitat. [1] Its paws are narrow with short digits that are webbed to the last joint. Its eyes are located toward the front of the head. As aquatic mammals, otters spend most of their time in the water. Otters need about 3 square miles to find all of this food. River otters, like all otters, are carnivorous. They live in dens along the water’s edge. The river otter is protected and insulated by a thick, water-repellent coat of fur. River otters eat virtually anything that you can find near lakes or streams. Gestation lasts 62 to 86 days. [23] The four-lobed plantar pads are longer than wide. Outside of fish, river otters will also eat crustaceans, insects, birds, oysters, shellfish, turtles and a number of other aquatic life. Threats in India include deforestation, conversion of natural habitat for tea and coffee plantations, overfishing of rivers and water pollution through pesticides. Examples of natural hollows include those in riverbanks, under logs, hollow trees and logs, rock formations, undercut banks, flood debris, and backwater sloughs. Do giant otters live in a group? Therefore, it should not come as a surprise that they indulge in food that can be found in and around rivers. Lutra cinerea was the scientific name proposed by Johann Karl Wilhelm Illiger in 1815 for an otter collected in Batavia. They are great swimmers, and on land, they can run at speeds of 15 miles an hour. River otters are playful creatures found throughout aquatic habitats in North America. Its skull is short, and the naked rhinarium rounded above. In addition to fish and crayfish, river otters will … 40 Devils Tower Facts That Will Make You Want To Visit, 50 Interesting Carrot Facts That You Never Knew About, 100 Interesting Facts That Will Boggle Your Mind, 300 Random Facts No One Knows What To Do With, 100 Nutrition Facts To An Easier And Healthier Lifestyle, 100 Amazing Facts That Will Blow Your Mind, 300 WTF Facts That Will Make You Question Everything, 300 Weird Facts That Will Confuse And Amaze You At The Same Time, 100 Did You Know Facts Most People Have Never Heard About, Weight: 11 to 31 pounds (5 to 14 kilograms), Length: 26 to 42 inches (66 to 107 centimeters), Lifespan: 8 to 9 years (21 years in captivity), Aquatic Predators: Alligator, American crocodile, killer whales, sharks, Terrestrial Predators: Coyote, bobcat, lynx, wolf, mountain lion, black bear, domestic dogs, Human-related Mortality: Trapping, illegal shooting, road kill, accidental captures, Conservation: Bioindicator in aquatic ecosystems, Location: River Otters Live on the Water’s Edge, Name: The “River Otter” Actually Lives in a Variety of Habitats, Habitat: River Otters Are Found in Aquatic Habitats throughout North America, Homes: River Otters Are Opportunistic When Selecting Dens, Anatomy: Physical Adaptations Make River Otters Aquatic Masters, River Otters Are Near-Sighted but Can See Well Underwater, River Otters May Be Marine Animals but They Are Also Night Owls, River Otters’ Play Teaches Them Survival Skills, Does Something Smell Fishy? [11], The Asian small-clawed otter has deep brown fur with some rufous tinge on the back, but paler below. The resulting offspring and their descendants bred back into the smooth-coated otter population, but maintained the genes of their small-clawed otter ancestors. With the ability to smell concentrations of fish and their high metabolisms, otters spend most of their time hunting for their next meal. [24] The river otter had almost been moved out of the Smokies altogether and then in the early 1990s, the Park Service began to reintroduce otters to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Before much of Arkansas’s mussel population was depleted during the pearl rush, they were also a favorite meal. Read also: 30 Strange Flamingo Facts That You Never Knew About. Their range has actually decreased over the years due to urbanization and pollution. It inhabits freshwater wetlands such as swamps, meandering rivers, irrigated rice fields as well as estuaries, coastal lagoons and tidal pools. The only predator that they have to worry about is the killer whale. They eat a variety of animals, including fish, crustaceans, amphibians, snakes, water insects, snails, worms, small mammals, birds, eggs, frogs, turtles, and any aquatic invertebrates. This allows them to feed even in murky waters. Newborn pups weigh between 45.6 and 62.5 g (1.61 and 2.20 oz) and reach a weight of 410–988 g (14.5–34.9 oz) after 60 days. River otters have also been known to utilize the burrows made by red foxes, woodchucks, beavers, nutria, and muskrats. Volunteers and DEC staff live-trapped otter primarily in the Adirondacks (DEC Regions 5 and 6), but some otter from the Catskills and Hudson Valley (DEC Regions 3 … River otters don’t breed until they’re at least five years old. them to open. The hindmost upper teeth (pm4 and m3) are broad and robust and are specialized for crushing the exoskeletons of crabs and other hard shelled prey. The Asian small-clawed otter (Aonyx cinereus), also known as the oriental small-clawed otter or simply small-clawed otter, is a semiaquatic mammal native to South and Southeast Asia. These skills include hunting and fighting. The size of crabs found in spraints in Huai Kha Khaeng Wildlife Sanctuary ranged in carapace width from 10 to 44 cm (3.9 to 17.3 in). The predators that Otters will encounter depend on where they happen to live. For example the Alaskan Otter is protected so humans aren’t really a treat to it. This includes frogs, crayfish, and even crabs. At about three months, they enter and paddle in shallow water under the guidance of the mother. Eurasian otters will generally live anywhere that has a source of unpolluted fresh water with a sufficient food supply. If an area is polluted, the river otter will move to a new place that isn’t tainted. What Do River Otters Eat | River Otter Facts. These names are: river otter, North American river otter, northern river otter, common otter, American otter, Canada otter, Canadian otter, fish otter, land otter, nearctic river otter, and the Prince of Wales otter. Once you locate otters, take note of behaviour, weather and river conditions, numbers, and other general details of what you saw, along with times and dates. In addition to fish and crayfish, river otters will feed on other readily available prey. This semiaquatic mammal has the weight of 11 to 30.9 lb or 5 to 14 kilograms. Some otters, such as the River Otter, are mostly solitary. Today, a population of at least 60 hybrid otters exist in Singapore. The river otter food chain consists mostly of fish. You can expect Arkansas otters to dine on fish, turtles and crayfish at some of the state’s best fishing spots: Little Red River, Bull Shoals Lake and fishing holes in the northwest region. [19], The Asian small-clawed otter feeds mainly on crabs, mudskippers and Trichogaster fish. Otters are eaten by large predators, such as great white sharks, killer whales, bears, sea lions, eagles and coyotes, depending on their geographical location. Humans also kill sea otters when they use fishing gear that traps the otter or hit the otter with boats. During these seasons, river otters tend to be most active during crepuscular hours and at night. The river otter food web plays a crucial role in the environments the river otter calls home. Their favorites are fish such as suckers, minnows, sunfish, bass, and minnows. Crayfish are the second most common prey of river otters. Intergroup communication generally occurs in the form of scent marking. [14], The Asian small-clawed otter is the smallest otter species in Asia. River otters primarily feed on fish with the size ranges from 2 – 50 cm (0.79 – 20 inches) which is really necessary since fish is a great source for gaining calories. River otters are predators; they avoid feeding on carrion. The North American River Otter is an animal with a very high metabolism, so it must eat quite often. Your email address will not be published. [15] The river otter food chain also consists of mussels, bivalves, snails, cr… [9] Results of a molecular study published in 2008 showed that the Asian small-clawed otter is a sister taxon of Lutrogale, lending support to retaining the genus Amblonyx or expanding Aonyx to make it monophyletic. Adult captive otters range in weight from 2.7 to 3.5 kg (6.0 to 7.7 lb). They are well adapted to swimming and hunting. That way, they consume the meat without having to crush the shells.[14]. [14] When disturbed, they scream to rally the help of others. These creatures inhabit a wide range of aquatic habitats. Between December 2015 and October 2018, 49 Asian small-clawed otters were confiscated from wildlife traffickers in Thailand, Vietnam and Japan; 35 of them were bound for sale in Japan. Please pass this on to an otter group in that area, so they can add the information to their database for monitoring and survey purposes. The muzzle has long coarse vibrissae on either side. [16], The Asian small-clawed otter is distributed from India to Southeast Asia including the islands of Sumatra, Java, Borneo and Palawan. River otters are known to be very playful creatures. Otters are meat eaters. [1], It is the most sought after otter species for the illegal pet trade in Asia. The characteristics that create the streamlined profile of a river otter include small ears, a neck that has the same diameter as the head, short powerful legs, webbed toes, and a tapered tail that constitutes one-third of the otter’s length. Usually, mating takes place in the water. How to Get Rid of Otters in the River Otters are a playful bunch, enjoying social interactions and daily routines with obvious glee. Due to ongoing habitat loss, pollution, and hunting in some areas, it is listed as Vulnerable on the IUCN Red List.[1]. River otters can live in a variety of elevations and temperatures as long as they have easy access to water and a steady food supply. It is known as the common otter or northern river otter. Pups are born with closed eyes, which open in the fifth week. Bobcats, alligators, coyotes, raptors, and other large predators will sometimes prey on North American river otters. This can be explained by the fact that river otters are among the most energetic animals in their niches. The claws are short, almost erect, and in some individuals even absent. However, the name “river otter” is misleading. Giant river otters: One of the Amazon forest's top predators 04 November 2016 (5425 visits). They use grassy or sandy banks for resting, sun bathing and grooming. River otters are particularly streamlined in water. About two weeks before parturition, both female and male engage in building a nest. The habits and methods of eating differ by species as well. Their eyes are protected while they are swimming thanks to transparent nictitating membranes, which act like swimming goggles. River otters are semi-aquatic mammals. These include game fishes, bass (Centrarchidae) suckers (Catostomidae), and shiners. Otters are adapted to life on both land and in water. Because river otters spend so much time in the water, and hunt for food in this environment, their eyesight is adapted for underwater vision. However, otters differ from similar species like beavers, muskrats, and nutria that feed on plants. They genetically diverged about 1.5 million years ago. The Asian small-clawed otter (Aonyx cinereus), also known as the oriental small-clawed otter or simply small-clawed otter, is a semiaquatic mammal native to South and Southeast Asia. However, these whales find Otters to be a great meal. Required fields are marked *, 30 Strange Flamingo Facts That You Never Knew About. [1][2] This species is a member of the otter subfamily (Lutrinae) of the weasel family (Mustelidae), and is the smallest otter species in the world. River otters can smell concentrations of fish in upstream ponds that drain into small, slow moving streams and will follow that smell to its origin, even in urban areas. Interval between births is at least eight months. These can include rivers, lakes, marshes, estuaries, inland wetlands and coastal shorelines. They inhabit both coastal regions and inland waterways. These otters were placed in areas where the rangers knew they would find plenty of food and have the best chance for reproducing and growing their numbers. A Field Guide to the Mammals of Borneo. What Do Otters Eat Regularly? One of the more intriguing river otter facts is that these animals largely communicate using auditory and olfactory signals. River otters prefer larger fish due to ease of capture; larger prey gives river otters more energy as well. River Otters Communicate Using Sounds and Smells, River Otters Are Threatened by Habitat Loss. Captive otters swim at speeds of 0.7–1.2 m/s (2.3–3.9 ft/s). Humans do not usually eat sea otters and generally kill them by accident. Other sounds include a hissing bark, snarling growl, shrill whistle, explosive snort, birdlike chirp and even low purring grunts. A Sea Otter's Diet. Group members communicate using 12 or more distinct calls, and utter a variety of yelps and whimpers. A river otter’s diet consists largely of fish. What do otters eat? Asian small-clawed otters use their forepaws rather than their mouth to locate and capture food items. Giant ottters are very sociable animals and often live in groups of up … Their habitat has been suffering from a negative impact since North America was colonized by Europe. They will line the nest chamber with soft natural materials such as hair, leaves, moss, grass and bark. In southern India, it occurs along shallow mountain creeks in hill ranges up to an elevation of 2,000 m (6,600 ft) in Karnataka, Nilgiri and Palni hills in Tamil Nadu. In marshes, they use mostly islands. When and where available, it also catches snakes, frogs, insects, rats and rice field fish like catfish, Anabas testudineus and Channa striata. Information about the Asian small-clawed otter's mating and breeding behaviour has been studied in captive environments. Would you give this recipe from tradgang.com a try? Otters eat from 15% to 25% of their body weight each day. They are carnivorous, and most species eat a variety of fish, amphibians, shellfish, crabs, and other aquatic creatures. 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