World Otter Day is celebrated on the last Wednesday of May every year. In 2022, the celebrations fall on May 25.
This day is celebrated to observe the existence of otters.
Well, did you know that India is home to three of thirteen otter species found globally?
Otters are found in water bodies that have plenty of prey and clean water. Indeed, otters are indicators of the health of the waterway.
Otters have the densest fur of any animal, which is waterproof and keeps them warm.
Unfortunately, they are often hunted for their soft and lustrous fur - just to make hats, mittens, scarves and other clothing. They also find their way into the illegal pet trade.
The International Otter Survival Fund (IOSF) founded World Otter Day in 2016.
The day started as Otterly Mad Week in 2009.
It became International Otter Awareness Day in 2014.
Otters are found on every continent except Australia and Antarctica.
While most species live in freshwater rivers, lakes, and wetlands; the sea otter and the smaller marine otter are found in the Pacific Ocean.
Their webbed feet and powerful tails act like rudders in the water making them strong swimmers.
There are 13 species of this weasel, the smallest species small-clawed otter weighs 3 kg, while the largest species giant otter weighs 45 kg.
When they are in the water, their nostrils and ears close to keep water out.
While most otter species come ashore to give birth, sea otters are an exception, giving birth in water.
When it is time to nap, sea otters entangle themselves in kelp or sometimes intertwine their feet with other sea otters so they don’t float away.
Otters are expert hunters that eat fish, crustaceans, and other critters.
To open shellfish, sea otters float on their back and place a rock on their chest, then smash the mollusc down on it until it breaks open.
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