Last week we introduced you to some of the sights Species Protection Officers are treated to on our nightshift, and now we’d like to show you some exciting activity we’ve observed over the past weeks from some of our most elusive residents – our otters.
In the first week of Osprey Watch we were lucky enough to see two otters scampering past one of our cameras. This pair are different sizes and seem to be an adult female with her cub from last year – otters remain with their parents for just over a year, learning to swim and hunt and frequently playing with their parents.
Later the same night we thought our eyes were playing tricks on us when we saw a pair of small lights shining from underwater, but it was one of our otters silently gliding back the way they came.
Eurasian otters are largely solitary (males do not help to raise their young) and so it is a rare treat to see a mother and cub together like this. Otters usually hunt at night and this pair seemed to be very comfortable in the area we observed, so we had hopes that we would see them again soon. We were not disappointed and last week were thrilled to capture this footage of the pair splashing around in the water.
Our otters are very infrequently seen, preferring a quiet life, and so it is a real pleasure to have captured this lovely footage of a mother and cub at play. We hope to see them again soon.
Lynsey – Species Protection Officer
Did you know? Although many otters in Scotland live in coastal areas and fish in the sea, they are in fact the same species as those that live in rivers and lochs, and also require regular access to freshwater in order to maintain their waterproof coat. (Scottish Natural Heritage factsheet)