Ahead of World Otter Day (Wednesday 29 May 2019), the Lake District Wildlife Park has introduced its new otter pairing to visitors for the first time.
9-year-old ‘Cogee’ – an Asian Short-Clawed Otter – joined the Park’s resident female Amber from Blair Drummond Safari Park in Scotland, after her previous partner passed away in 2018. The new pair are now living in a newly renovated enclosure at the attraction near Keswick.
It comes as the Lake District Wildlife Park prepares to mark World Otter Day with a series of activities to celebrate the playful personalities and behaviours of these popular and photogenic creatures. That includes quizzes and information about all 13 species of otters worldwide, as well as the usual daily otter feeding and talk.
“Cogee is adapting into his new surroundings very well,” says Lauren Pickthall, the Park’s Carnivore Keeper. “He took his bedding and moved in with Amber straightaway, so they immediately struck up a good rapport and we are hopeful they will mate in the future.
“It is great timing as otters continue to be one of the most asked-about animals at the Park, which is no surprise as they are very intelligent and always up to mischief!
“Introducing a new otter in the run-up to World Otter Day gives us a great opportunity to help people to better understand their natural habitats, the threats they face in the wild and importantly, the positive news about the recent recovery of otter populations in the UK.”
Short-Clawed Otters are sociable animals which live in family groups consisting of a single breeding pair and up to 12-13 youngsters. It is important that these inquisitive animals are encouraged to display their natural behaviours, which includes playing with small pebbles and stones, and mimicking what they do in the wild. They are fed five times a day at the Lake District Wildlife Park to help maintain their energy levels.