smooth-coated otter predators

Udgivet den:11 januar 2021
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The reptile is famous in the area and the residents have given it the name “Tailless.” Otters are territorial and not averse to taking on predators bigger than themselves. The otters are protected in India under the Wildlife Act, 1972. Smooth-coated otters don’t see very well in the dark, and most peninsular Indian rivers have murky waters. Their eyes and ears are small, the tail is flattened, limbs are short, strong, and the fore and hind paws are large and well-webbed. That first sighting of the smooth-coated otters was enough to kindle my fascination. Large predators are absent, leopards having been deliberately exterminated by 1964, but small carnivores include Bengal fox, jackal, striped hyena, common palm civet, small Indian civet, Indian grey mongoose (Herpestes edwardsi), fishing cat, leopard cat, jungle cat and smooth-coated otter. I first saw smooth-coated otters in the summer of 2007 along the Kabini river in Bandipur Tiger Reserve, Karnataka. It is here they scent-mark, play, and socialise. The other interesting fact about otters is that a single romp can have a large home range (what we now term an ‘otter corridor’). This is popularly known as “elephant country” and in summer, hundreds congregate along the backwaters of the Kabini reservoir. Home is a den in the river bank. In some areas, smooth-coated otters are perceived as predators of domestic animals, although no evidence from scats supports this (Foster-Turley 1992). Enabling Holistic Wellbeing & Meaningful Living, Enabling Wholistic Wellbeing & Meaningful Living, PRIVACY POLICY The researchers found that the otters solved puzzles 69% faster on average the second time—suggesting a … These otters have generally been described as fish specialist. Unlike the exploitation that Cauvery has witnessed, the Kabini (though it has one large dam) thrives with diverse mammalian fauna. Smooth-coated otters are agile in the water and on land and use their sensitive whiskers to detect water disturbances. This is how demand for sand in a city can alter the relationship between otters and fishermen along the river. 1756 114th AVE SE Even in turbid The smooth-coated otter is listed as a vulnerable species. Eurasian Otter mainly chooses sites near the water's edge, the Smooth-Coat prefers large, flat rocks in very If you were going fishing, what equipment would you take with you? the Smooth-Coat mainly large fish (>15cm), and the Eurasian Otter smaller fish and amphibians. Peninsular India might be their last wild stronghold. Cover Photo: Dhritiman Mukherjee. The Cauvery Wildlife Sanctuary along the river arguably has India’s finest riparian forest, and this 110 km stretch of river is free of human pressures — sand mining, fishing, pollution and diversion. A family of smooth-coated otters confronted a crocodile with no tail. The smooth-coated otter, which is found in India, Bangladesh, Nepal and several other Asian countries, is increasingly being poached from the wild to become a social media accessory. Smooth-coated otters hunt in groups, and they herd the fi… Other potential predators are medium-sized cat species and large birds of prey (primarily on young otters). Subspecies Subspecies of the Smooth-Coated Otter include: Lutrogale perspicillata perspicillata Lutrogale perspicillata sindica Interesting Facts The Smooth-Coated Otter is also known as: Smooth Otter Asian River Otter Indian Smooth Otter Indian Smooth-Coated Otter Smooth-coated otters are used for … They would tell me that otters were active at night, something that published literature did not indicate. Where the first three species are sympatric, they partition resources between them: the Small-Claw eats mainly crabs, It is an exceptional swimmer, sleek and aerodynamic in the water, and a carnivorous hunter, eating other animals, such as frogs and fish. Unlike some carnivores such as wolves, tigers, or snow leopards where individuals live in large territories, smooth-coated otters live together in large groups, in extremely productive tropical and subtropical rivers and water bodies, where prey is plenty. The otters I encountered were shy but not terribly bothered by the presence of people. (Amblonyx cinereus), the Eurasian Otter (Lutra lutra) and the Hairy-Nosed Otter (Lutra sumatrana). +91-11 39585644 Here, otters live the way they must have for thousands of years unlike the river in the plains where they deal with enormous pressures from fishermen and sand miners in addition to diversion, dams and pollution. waters, otters would detect approach by predators using their whiskers to monitor water currents. “The fact that the smooth-coated otter is so adaptable to change and to human-dominated landscapes, enabling it to coexist within this ecosystem, is fascinating,” she added. Mohali – 160062, Punjab, United States prominant positions, high up, and the Small-Claw prefers flat rocks high up, but in less prominent positions. Smooth -coated otters in Singapore are found in Bishan-Ang Mo Kio … they use the habitat differently - the Small-Claw keeps to the shallows and riverbanks, the Smooth-Coat preferring An ecological study of the fish distribution and their predators particularly the smooth coated otter Lutrogale perspicillata. gaps under buildings) as alternatives for their holts, and learnt to use man-made structures such as staircases and ladders to get in and out of concrete canals with vertical or near‐vertical banks. Bellevue, WA 98004. fellow otters, and presumably determining some kind of resource and territorial information from them; Kruuk doesn't African clawless otters don’t have many predators since they are quick in the water and have burrows on land making them hard to catch. Smooth-coated otter is sympatric with the gharial and Mugger crocodile, two other top predators in the freshwater ecosystem of the Karnali and Babai rivers. IT C-7 KMG Tower How about a trained otter? Not long after my first sighting along the Kabini, I started studying otters along one of India’s finest otter rivers — the Cauvery. They have adapt well to human environments in Singapore, and had been observed to use urban structures (e.g. After all, they would see fishermen setting up nets every day. With great enthusiasm, and a little naivete, I decided to study the river system through otters, as a sort-of mascot for the freshwater ecosystems they inhabited. Their smooth, warm fur is highly sought after and fetches a high price in parts of southeast Asia and Tibet where they are fashioned into coats and caps. As its name indicates, the fur of this species is smoother and shorter than that of other otters. Illegal sand mining has come to occupy a disproportionately large area along the river, resulting in the displacing both, fishermen and otters to smaller stretches. They are almost exclusively carnivorous — most eat fish, though crustaceans also form a part of their diet. Actually, these fishermen are taking advantage of the otters' natural behavior. As its name indicates, the fur of this species is smoother and shorter than that of other otters. ), Their major threats are pythons and crocodiles (that can lay in lure near the water) together with eagles and human activities. More than a decade later, I am still trying to study otters but I know the link between them and rivers is not as simple as I thought. Wright and has no affiliation deep water, and the Eurasian Otter something in between. We observed large group of L. perspicillata comprising of 12 individuals chasing around an adult Mugger crocodile in Teen kune ( Figure 3 ). Flanked by protected areas on both sides, fishing is not allowed and watching elephants swim from Bandipur to Nagarahole National Park and vice-versa is not uncommon. Otters, A Close Encounter with the Otters of Sungei Buloh. But this is also otter territory. The smooth-coated otters had learned to adapt to fishing practices where gill nets were left out all night as catch was thought to be better between sundown and sunrise. The information below comes mainly from Kruuk (1995), Kruuk, Kanchanasaka et al (1994) and A Close Encounter with the Otters of Sungei Buloh. Zoo Yb. Vibrissae (sensitive hair or whiskers) around the mouth play a role in locating fish under these circumstances. These animals are too small to interest the top range Smooth-coated otters are territorial and can often be seen driving even muggers away from their favourite sand banks and spots along the river. In … Saltwater crocodiles and other crocodile species are the most likely predators of smooth-coated otters. I first saw smooth-coated otters in the summer of 2007 along the Kabini river in Bandipur Tiger Reserve, Karnataka. Meet the Wetland Ambassadors – the Smooth-coated Otters. Kruuk (1995), Specifically, development activities, conversion and clearance of wetlands into settlements and for agriculture, as well as construction of large-scale hydroelectric projects have contributed to the habitat destruction of the Smooth-coated Otters, directly impacting the population. The smooth-coated otter which is found in tropical and subtropical Asia has seen its range decline drastically. Kruuk, Kanchanasaka et al (1994) and They are strong swimmers and hunt in groups. Otters belong to the family Mustelidae which also includes weasels and martens. Smooth-coated Otters are the largest otter species […] Few recognised that commercial fishing was affecting the otters’ lifestyle in a riverscape that was witnessing drastic transformations. Estuarine (Salt-Water) crocodiles are the only likely predator. Fairly big groups of otters, sometimes of up to 15 individuals, inhabit about 15-20 km of river length. Photos: Nisarg Prakash. Other competitors for fish include the Mugger Crocodile (Crocodylus palustris), the Indian Gharial The Smooth-Coated Otter is a hefty fishing otter. The river in the plains is usually very productive and can support fairly high otter densities when there is no overfishing or sand mining. The top carnivores in the terrestrial ecosystem are tiger Panthera tigris and wild dog Cuon alpinus while in the aquatic ecosystem it is the smooth-coated otter. Eagles can be a problem too for the smaller Otters and the young. Their range and population are shrinking due to loss of wetland habitat and contamination of waterways by pesticides. In 1998, the otters Int. Photo: Sourabh Bharti/Shutterstock Sand banks along rivers are an important element of the otter’s habitat. Illegal sand mining in the Cauvery basin has compromised the landscape, affecting the health of the river, and the lives of all creatures, big and small, that depend on it. All three have been seen to regularly visit and sniff each other's spraint sites, evidently recognising them as of Most fishermen believed that their nets offered the otters an easy meal, and hence deserved their wrath. Here, otters coexist with muggers that have largely disappeared outside the sanctuary and, fish eagles soar overhead with their mournful calls echoing along the river. Lutrogale perspicillata shares its range with combinations of three other otter species: the Small-Clawed Otter The only Smooth-coated otters are also found outside the sanctuary in heavily modified riverscapes due to their ability to adapt. Fishermen in these areas train smooth-coated otters (Lutrogale perspicillata) to chase fish into their nets. Some of them are on land while others will try to feed on them in the water. whether they do or not. Found mainly in the slow flowing waters typical of rice paddies and floodplains, they may use large rivers in some regions. But unless we can stop further degradation of their habitats, smooth-coated otters will face a long, downward slide towards extinction with or without the threat of poaching. But several threats along the Cauvery loom large. Smooth-coated otters form large, vocal, family groups, preying together on fish, shrimps, frogs, crabs, insects, birds. Smooth-coated otter are widely distributed in Southeast Asia but very little information is available on the status of Smooth-coated otter populations in Gujarat state as well as India, although there seems to have been a rapid decline due to loss of habitat and intensive poaching (Hussain et al., 2008). Smooth-coated otter is characterized by a very smooth, sleek pelage. The smooth-coated otter (Lutrogale perspicillata) is a species of otter, the only extant representative of the genus Lutrogale.The species is found in most of the Indian Subcontinent and eastwards to Southeast Asia, with a disjunct population in Iraq. They spraint in different kinds of places too - the As a result, fishermen incur both competition and monetary loss. ... survival information regarding new foods and predators through wild otter … Predators and Competitors of the Smooth-Coated Otter. The Smooth-coated Otter (Lutra perspicillata) was the subject of a four month field study between November, 1904 and February, 1985 within the Royal Chitwan National Park, Nepal. Photo: Chinmayisk- CC BY-SA 3.0. Almost all of the sand that Bangalore and other major towns consume comes from the Cauvery basin. SMOOTH-COATED OTTERS IN URBAN SINGAPORE The Smooth-coated otters were absent from Singapore in the 1960s through to the 1990s because of the heavy urbanization during that period, such as rivers being canalized, coastal areas reclaimed and coastal development intensified (Theng & Sivasothi, 2016). This proved my initial belief wrong — that otters only lived in places that were “less disturbed” by people. 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