And A River Otter Runs Through It

And A River Otter Runs Through It…

And across it!

With tips from Community members, Island Naturalist finally meets River Otter in our unsuspected Duck Pond. All Drivers please use caution, all pedestrians please respect unique local habitat.

Field Note Update April 6, 2017:

There have been documented sightings and wonderful shared stories of our now local River Otter frequenting pond water habitat between Duck Pond and South Beach Road.

Please use caution when heading west around the Duck Pond and Round House curve – especially during Ferry “rush hours”. Please drive SLOWLY and enjoy our wildlife in “Island time”.

Justine Kibbe

Suitable habitat for river otters is any wetland that provides adjacent bank vegetation, burrow sites, and a food supply. Otters can be found in streams, rivers, ponds, and lakes. During the winter, they may leave ponds and lakes that freeze over for the open water of rivers and streams.

Burrows may be constructed in the bank or in submerged trees. They will also use the abandoned burrows of other animals including beaver lodges. Factors that are considered in a den site location are food availability, cover, water supply, and human activity. Though otters will commonly “scent” or mark their territories, they generally do not fight in defense of this area.

River otters can be seen at any time of day but are considered to be nocturnal, or most active at night. They are not social. A group may be comprised of a female and her young. Generally, the males live separately except during the breeding season.

They are very intelligent and show a great curiosity and playfulness. Excellent swimmers and divers, a common activity is sliding into the water along riverbanks, seemingly just for pleasure.


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