Because these critters are secretive and shy animals they were commonly captured using traps or hunting dogs. The 11 species often referred to as river otters are found throughout North America, South America, Europe, Africa, and Asia in freshwater ecosystems that sustain an abundance of prey such as fish, crayfish, crabs, mussels, and frogs. All photos used are royalty-free, and credits are included in the Alt tag of each image. The only continents without otters are Australia and Antarctica. Their home ranges are only 3 to 10 miles depending on habitat quality and the time of year. The males will often form bachelor groups, and separate from their mothers. Otters have small, rounded ears, and long sensitive whiskers to help them feel the vibrations of their prey. One fun fact is that River Otters don’t dig their own dens, they either use a natural hollow or burrow made by another animal. The ones in this story are North American river otters. Their burrows are typically found near water and are often built to be accessible both from on land and in the water. Their underbody is usually lighter in colour. Otters are great hunters, partially because they have sharp little teeth and a strong jaw! River otters do however; do what they need to keep other animals out of their territory. Humans have hunted otters for centuries. Otter Dens. One example is NCC’s Cherry Meadows property, near Kimberly, British Columbia. This animal must be provided with plenty of swimming space, as well as sufficient area on dry land to play and snooze. As with their habitats, it is also easier to list locations you cannot find otters. An average adult male weighs about 11.3 kilograms (25 lb) against the female's average of 8.3 kilograms (18 lb). The Alaskan (or northern) sea otter inhabits northwest part of the United States. Prior to the 1950s, these fish-devouring mammals were abundant in England. They can thrive in any water habitat, such as ponds, marshes, lakes, rivers, and estuaries—in cold, warm, or even high-elevation areas—as long as the habitat provides adequate food. Cubs will stay with and remain dependent upon their parents for over a year. Otters thrive on land and in the water. River otters can be found throughout North America. This playful mammal is making a splash across Canada. Most river otters are opportunistic, feeding on … Eurasian otters will generally live anywhere that has a source of unpolluted fresh water with a sufficient food supply. River otters live alone or in pairs. This may sound disturbing, but is successful. Hello world! Terrestrial predators of otters include black bears and a variety of Feline and Canine species, domestic… River otters are aquatic mammals but they do travel across land as well. In Ireland the otter population is geographically widely spread. A Sea Otter's life - Big Blue Live: Episode 2 - BBC One This group of animals is notorious for being adorable, but they are so much more than looks! European otter – As the name suggests this species is found in Europe and extends across parts of Asia and North Africa. Otter species can be found across Eurasia, Africa, India, Japan, Indonesia, North America, South America, and Central America. In warmer times, you may also see otters sliding down a riverbank. However, through conservation management and reintroduction efforts, populations have recuperated and are now considered stable. River otters breed between late winter and early spring. Its body length ranges from 66 to 107 centimetres (26 to 42 in). They spend much of their time playing with one another and building social bonds. Otter species can be found across Eurasia, Africa, India, Japan, Indonesia, North America, South America, and Central America. The North American river otters can live for up to 21-25 years in captivity. Female otters give birth to between one and six pups. CTRL + SPACE for auto-complete. Though still considered rare, the species is widespread in the UK and can be seen in almost every county. ). These have hidden, underwater entrances for protection from predators, which makes them attractive to otters. River otters are found along rivers, streams, and lakes and also in estuaries, coastal bogs, and large marine waterways such as Puget Sound and the Strait of Juan de Fuca. Write CSS OR LESS and hit save. Sea otter – This species lives on the Pacific coast of the North American continent. But our local species is on the rebound. The pups are born blind and spend the first month of their lives in their dens with the female. In Canada, they can be found in every province and territory except Prince Edward Island, where they appear to be extirpated. Some even wonder if otters build dams like beavers. They enjoy the freshwater but they are also known to live in the saltwater of the oceans as well. Most otter species are social, living in groups consisting of a mother and her various generations of pups. Be advised that any attempt to poison an otter is considered illegal, and would cause complications anyway once the bait has been consumed. However, between the 1950s and 1970s, their numbers significantly dropped, prompting conservationists to sound the alarm bells for one of UK’s beloved animals. They live in riparian zones, often in the same areas as beavers. It is much easier to list the habitats that river otters don’t live in than to list the areas they do. They are prized for their thick, luxurious coats, known as pelts. (adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({}); Animals.NET aim to promote interest in nature and animals among children, as well as raise their awareness in conservation and environmental protection. 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