Thursday, June 4, 2009

Otters @ Chek Jawa at Ubin on 4 June 2007

Ninety Sixth Discovery Posting:

Let's jump into the most interesting thing for this posting quickly.

Today, I finally gotten to see otters! I was together with a group of staff of Coral Secondary School on the board walk near to the coastal forest when two heads suddenly 'popped' out of the water. And for one moment, I was wondering and pondering if they could be otters and didn't moved. But at the comment of one of the participants, "Could they be otters?", I decided to make a dash on the boardwalk towards them and upon coming closer to them, I saw two of them (otters) swimming around the waters below the boardwalk! Finally! I got to see otters in the wild!

Here's one of the two (picture below). Not really a clear photo, but you can make out the head.
And as I was photographing away at the pair of otters, my group shouted again to say that there were another group of otters! WOW! I turned around and looked. There was a family of them near the CJ front beacon!

Can you spot their heads? (picture below)Here's a cropped version of the same photo above to better show you where they were (picture below).It was a pity that they didn't got close enough for me to get a decent photo. Well, my camera isn't exactly top-notch too, just a water and shock proof camera with 3 x optical zoom. Nevertheless, I'm happy enough just to have caught a sight of probably 2 families of otters. =D

Discovery Note:
1. Judging from their appearance, it is highly possible that I have seen smooth otters today.
2. They are RARE in Singapore. So it is ALWAYS a joy to see them. =D
3. They are the largest otters you can find in Southeast Asia. And like other otters, they have shorter tightly packed underfur and longer guard hair which are water repellent.
4. Otters are very lean, their fur helps to keep them warm and provides a streamline surface.
5. Like other otters, they are excellent divers and swimmers and are able to swim for long distances and stay underwater for 6-8 minutes with a single breath.
6. It is interesting to note that when they swim, they close their ears and nostrils.
7. They like to eat fish but their diet also consist of things like crabs, frogs, water rats, etc.
8. They may hunt for food in their family groups, working together and using teamwork to catch their prey.
9. There are much more things about them which i didn't list here, if you are interested to find out more and view up close photos of smooth otters, visit

Oh, what a great day!!!

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