Monday, 4 May 2015

5 Fun Facts About Otters

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1. Otters are a sub-branch of the weasel family and are found in all parts of the world, except Antarctica and Australia. Probably because Antarctica is too cold with all that snow and ice, and Australia has way too many spiders for a smart Otter to want to visit. There are thirteen species of otter. Some spend most of their time in the water, while other are mostly land based. There are, of course, certain Otters who spend most of their time in bed, or the living room colouring books. Wonder what would happen if an Otter went into space?

Image result for otters2. Otters can be as small as 2ft in length, weighing in at only a couple of pounds. Sea otters and the large Giant otter can reach up to 6ft in length and tops the scales at almost 100lbs. Must be all the fresh fish, frogs, crayfish and crabs they eat. Yep, otters are carnivores, meaning they mainly eat meat. And mostly sea creatures. But some otters have been known to pop down to the local takeaway for a nice cheese burger.

3. Otters are very playful creatures, especially river otters. Playtime often involves wrestling with each other, just for fun of course, they'd never enter any contests like WWE. They also like somersaulting, flopping around and nipping down the park to have a go on the swings and roundabouts. In fact, their favourite apparatus at the park is the slide. They love sliding along on their bellies. They can't get enough of it. After that, they enjoy a dip in the pool, or river, or sea, whatever is closer. Sometimes even a puddle will do. They are brilliant swimmers and can hold their breath underwater for up to eight minutes. Most humans can only manage about one.

Image result for otters4. Otters are covered in fur. It's extraordinary. And so soft. The Sea Otter has the thickest fur of any mammal on the planet. Even thicker than your granddad's chest hair and your grandmother's moustache. Yep, that thick. In fact, it can have as much as a million hairs per square inch. Now that's a lot of fur.

5. Otters are portrayed as smart, cunning and sneaky in Japanese folklore. They had the ability to shape-shift into humans and play tricks on them. Some would change into small children wearing checker-patterned clothes and get up to mischief. Others would change into beautiful women and lure men into the river, where they would cook them dinner. Aww, how sweet of the otters. They're so nice.

The second book in the "I am Otter" series, by Sam Garton, called Otter In Space, comes out tomorrow (May 5th 2015). It's worth checking out.

That little Otter gets up to some wild adventures.

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