River Otter

River Otter

River Otter
Lontra canadensis


CLASS
Mammalia
ORDER
Carnivora
FAMILY
Mustelidae

Range

Alaska, Canada and the contiguous United States


Habitat

Streams, rivers, lakes and marshes


Diet

Fish, frogs, crawfish, mollusks, other invertebrates, and small mammals

Weight

10 - 30 pounds

Head to Tail

2.5 - 5 ft

Gestation

60 - 63 days

Young

Avg. 2 - 3 pups

IUCN Status

Least Concern

Facts

  • Their favorite activity is body-sledding down a muddy or snowy slope and plunging into the water with a belly-flop. Their playful behavior strengthens social bonds and practices hunting techniques.
  • River otters can stay underwater up to 4 minutes.
  • River otters have a streamlined body, webbed feet, powerful tail, and water repellent fur, which make them specially adapted to life in water.
  • Otters have an accelerated metabolism that gives them seemingly endless energy, but it also means that they must hunt and feed frequently.
  • Although gestation takes only 60 - 63 days, the total period of pregnancy can vary from 245 - 380 days.
  • Pups nurse for three to four months, and begin to swim two months after birth.

 

Conservation

Although the North American river otter is not an endangered species, its population has been severely reduced or eliminated from much of its range. Otters face threats from water pollution and habitat destruction.

Least Concern

Open Daily 9 am - 5 pm

Closed only Thanksgiving, Christmas, & New Year's Day

Address

Alexandria Zoo
3016 Masonic Drive
Alexandria, LA 71301
P: (318) 441-6810

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