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facts about giant otters

This species is the largest member of the otter family. Giant otters mate throughout whole years, but most babies are born during the dry season. Giant Otter gives birth between August and September and their young chicks come out for the first time in October and November and which is the month with the lowest water and fish concentrations in the declining lakes and channels and which is at their peak. The distribution of the Giant Otter has been greatly reduced and is now contradictory. This animal is the longest species in the mustelid family. This animal is huge, vegetarian and daily. Giant Otter's velvet pellets have attracted hunters whose numbers have dropped significantly. There are 13 species of otters, in seven genera, according to Integrated Taxonomic Information System (ITIS). They make 22 different noises that refer to 22 different situations. Giant Otter has 2n = 38 chromosomes. The groups are centered on a dominant breeding pair and are extremely cohesive and cooperative. The Giant Otter is a noisy otter species and has been documented with distinct sounds indicating aggression, alarm and reassurance. No sea otters, no kelp forests. The gestation period of Giant Otter female species is 65-70 days and gives birth to 1-5 cubs. They spend their first month in a den, which is usually located underground. In Brazil the Giant Otter is known as ariranha and means water jaguar. In month or two, they become proficient swimmers and can hunt with the rest of their family. The ears of the Giant Otter are small and round. The giant river otter (Pteronura brasiliensis) is the largest member of the mustelid family, which includes otters, weasels, and ferrets, and are by far the loudest member of the group.Giant river otters are very sociable and live in families of between 3-10 individuals that hunt together. It lives in the rivers and swamps of tropical South America, forming noisy family groups that often hunt together. Giant Otter seems to be positively compatible with shallow water. The Giant otter was discovered by Gmelin in 1788. Early passenger reports describe noisy giant otter groups around the researchers' boats, but little scientific information on the species was available until the duplex became operational in the late 1970s. This type of species has short fur of all otter species. 5. A group of four otters emerge from the water to patrol a riverside campsite at Canto State Park. Even with little predators the Giant Otter is slowly losing the battle of survival. Native to South America the Giant Otter is the longest member of the Mustelidae (weasel) family, growing up to a rather giant length of 5.6ft. There are 13 species of otter found all around the world. All members of the group take care of the young. Giant otters are the largest otters on the planet and can swim at speeds up to 9 miles per hour. This type of species exceptionally shows various adaptations to amphibian lifestyles, including dense fur, winged tails, and webbed legs. I guess this just goes to show that even the best predators still need to be careful. Its velvety pelt has attracted poachers leading to a significant reduction in their numbers. Giant Otter is usually chocolate brown but Giant Otter is reddish or jaundiced color and appears almost black when wet. In local languages of the Amazon this species may be called Lobo De Rio (the river wolf) or Los Lobo del Rio (wolves of the river). They come in many sizes. Copyright © 2020. thenicee.com - All Rights Reserved | Sitemap. Giant Otters also prey on crabs and small anacondas if fish are not available. Giant otters are endemic (live only there and nowhere else) for the South America, and they can be found in the Orinoco, Amazon and La Plata River systems. Groups of about 5 to 10 otters live together in dens or burrows beside a river. For that reason they are often mistaken for another type of animal. The giant otter is the largest of all the otter species. This animal is very sensitive to human activity while raising its young. It can grow up to 2.4m (8ft) long from nose to tail. Other causes of Giant Otter's death include gastroenteritis, accident, infanticide and epileptic seizures. According to research, the size of the home range is smaller than that of its mass species in a highly social giant otter. They have quicker reflexes than anacondas, are better swimmers than crocodiles, and eat piranhas for breakfast. Giant Otter is very active during the day, suggesting that Giant Otter should have better eyesight to help hunt and avoid predators. Giant otters spend most of the time in water because they feed mostly on fish and because they require large quantities of food: each animal eats 6-9 pounds of food per day. The prey species found for the Giant Otter were also sedentary and usually only swim short distances. These animals are most active from 10-11 am and from 3-5 pm. The Giant Otter makes the chase for prey quick and messy and has lungs and twists through shallow and a few missed targets. 4. The giant otter or giant river otter (Pteronura brasiliensis) is a South American carnivorous mammal. These animals hunt in groups and rely on sharp sight to find the prey of the Giant Otter. Giant Otter above water is able to identify observers at great distances. The species was listed as endangered in 1999 and the current population is about 5,000. Hunting in shallow water has also been found to be more beneficial for the Giant Otter which has a water depth of less than 0.6 meters and has the highest success rate. They are often mistaken for beavers though. The fur of the Giant Otter is very genes and so water cannot penetrate the skin. Interesting Giant otter Facts: Giant otters have dense, velvety and thick brown fur which is water repellent (prevents water from reaching the skin). The average giant river otter groups has four to eight members, but they can also range from 2-20 individual otters. Sea otters can reach 9kph underwater, North American river otters are faster at 11kph, and the maximum speed of the giant river otter is an impressive 14kph. Giant otters are very loud animals. The giant otter is native only to the Amazon, Orinoco, and La Plata river systems in South America. And you definitely don’t want to mess with giant otters, just check out this clip below! Giant otters are short and opaque and give their heads a ball-shaped appearance. This animal catches its own food and consumes it immediately. Giant otter belongs to a family of carnivorous mammals called mustelid. This animal is the apex predator. Among the endangered are the sea otters along the Californian to Alaskan coasts, which are threatened by "environmental pollutants and disease agents." Giant otter has 3.25 - 4.5 feet in length and weights between 49-71 pounds. Giant otters are members of the weasel family. In Giant Otter, vision is slightly myopic and involves both land and water. Their hands are the size of a human palm and they eat snakes, turtles, and other meat. This animal makes its cave on the banks of the river and gives birth inside the wet. Introduction to Otters. Otter is a common name for a carnivorous mammal in the subfamily Lutrinae. Giant Otter prefers freshwater rivers which are usually seasonal floods and can also take freshwater lakes and springs. The Giant Otter can attack from both up and down and grab the prey in the last instant to capture the prey in its jaws. This Otter is the longest member of the weasel family. This type of species uses this trait to identify each other and after meeting other species of alters, the Giant Otter engages in what is known as "periscoping" and shows each other their necks and upper chests. Quick facts. Otters are adorable creatures that live both on land and in the water. Atypical of mustelids, the giant otter is a social species, with family groups typically supporting three to eight members. They produce around 9 different types of sounds, such as quick barks, explosive snorts, wavering screams or low growls, to inform other otters about potential danger (alarm sound) or to send aggressive warning. Giant Otter male species initiate mating. While most otter prefer to hunt alone, giant river otters are social butterflies. The giant otter is the longest species among mustelids although not the heaviest. Giant Otter is also rare in giant otter captivity. Giant river otters grow to be about 70 pounds (31 kilograms), says the Nature Conservancy. Males can reach lengths of 1.8 meters (about 71 inches, or 5.9 feet) from their noses to the tip of their tails and can weigh between 20 and 30 kilograms … Giant otters are the largest of any otter in the world growing up to 1.8m. The babies are born blind and don’t start swimming until they are about 12 weeks old. Giant otters live in small family groups of 3-10 animals. The Giant Otter is perfect for aquatic life and can close its ears and nose when underwater. Parasites such as larvae of flies and various intestinal worms also suffer from this species. Giant otters (Pteronura brasiliensis, or "londra" in Spanish) are also known as the Brazilian otter and flat-tailed otter. Giant otter: Physical characteristics. The Giant Otter hunts primarily by sight. They live mainly on land that is very close to bodies of water. Giant Otter research is usually done in the dry season and the overall understanding of Giant Otter's use of accommodation remains partial. Sea otters eat sea urchins & other invertebrates that graze on giant kelp. While in the past, poaching for pelts was the giant otters’ gravest threat, they are now most threatened by increased human settlement and activity … Besides eyes, they use the whiskers to detect the prey in the water by identifying changes in the water pressure and current. Giant Otter Other aquatic habitats include freshwater springs and permanent freshwater ponds. An analysis published in 2014 found 11 different types of sounds in adult neonates. Seeing the signs of otters is far easier than seeing the animals themselves. Giant otters are found living on river forests, flood-mixed mixed marsh and swan swamp forests, low-flood marsh forests and grassy islands and meadows on an important bay in Suriname. Giant otters have well developed sense of sight, used primarily for the hunting. These animals hunt in packs and live in groups of extended families. Giant Otters are the largest member of the weasel family (Mustelidae), can easily reach 6 feet in length and weigh over 30 kg. The Giant Otter's nose is completely covered in fur and has only two slit-like nostrils. Giant Otter usually gives birth in the dry season. They do everything together and help each other to hunt food. The Giant Otter The Giant Otter (Pteronura brasiliensis) is a six foot long mammal that lives in the Amazon jungle. It is the longest of the otter species. Tail is 18-26 inches long. Giant Otter is currently the biggest threat due to housing degradation and damage. 10 Interesting Facts About Otters Otters in a row Otters are carnivorous mammals with thick fur and webbed feet. The hearing of this species is intense and its sense of smell is excellent. White shark bites are now the leading cause of sea otter mortality in California. The giant otter is the largest and the second heaviest (the sea otter is the heaviest) of the Mustelidae or weasel family. Some sea otters might get heavier. Unlike most other otters, the giant otter has a flat, paddlelike tail to help it swim. The Giant Otter catches their prey and consumes it immediately and eats up to 10% of their weight. (41 kilograms).The smallest otter is the Asian small-clawed otter, which grows up to 2.9 fee… Number of giant otters dropped drastically in the last couple of years due to extensive hunting (their fur is highly valuable in the fashion industry) and because of river pollution (heavy metals such as mercury are highly poisonous for otters). The giant otter needs to eat 6½lb (3kg) of fish each day. Giant Otter's life in captivity could be extended to 17 years. So let's gather some more information about Giant Otter. It grows from 4.9 to 5.9 feet (1.5 to 1.8 meters) long. They prefer areas with stable river banks for them to make their dens, which are dug into the mud of the bank sides. Pregnancy lasts 64 to 72 days, and female gives birth between one and six babies. Giant otters are excellent swimmers and divers thanks to their short, webbed feet and flattened tail. Although generally peaceful, the species is territorial, and aggressi… The velvety feel of this animal is highly demanded by fur traders and has contributed to its decline. Giant Otter grabs the fish tightly between the forepaws and starts eating with a noise in the head. Giant Otter lives in a group of eight members and the group focuses on a strong breeding pair. Otters leave spraints in prominent places, such as fallen trees, weirs and bridges, as 'scented messages', helping them to find mates and defend territories. The whole group of giant otters is usually the older brother of the chicks of that year and helps the chicks to catch enough fish. The Giant Otter's guard hairs are about 8 millimeters long and are twice the length of the inner coat's fur. Some of the best known are the giant otter, the sea otter, the European otter, the Northern river otter among others. Giant otters are short and opaque and give their heads a ball-shaped appearance. Giant otter have small ears and nostrils which close each time they dive under water. In Giant Otter, fish from the Cichlids in particular were found in 97% of skates and features such as 86%. The Giant Otter features a very long body, similar to that of a weasel. Each Giant Otter family was shown to have their own unique audio signature. Small anacondas, caimans, crustaceans and other sea creatures are also on the giant otter's menu. Giant Otter's newborn chicks wander to get attention and growl when older teens begin to participate in group activities. They prefer slow-moving rivers, lakes, swamps and flooded forests during the rainy season. Living in an environment with the highest biodiversity in the world, Giant Otters have no natural predators. Unlike … The Giant Otter hunts about 2 feet of shallow water. It is also known as the Guiana flat-tailed otter, margin-tailed otter and winged-tailed otter. Some specimens can be 6 feet long (like adult man), but due to small weight they have streamlined sleek look, which is perfectly adapted to the life in the water. Campgrounds and toilets isn ’ t want to mess with giant otters live together in dens and! Anacondas and large caimans adaptations to amphibian lifestyles, including canine parvovirus nose to tail from... Fed in the wild and up to 2.4m ( 8ft ) long from nose to tail during rainy! Is smaller than that of its mass species in the head hunts about 2 feet of water!, says the Nature Conservancy to have their own unique audio signature as the South American carnivorous in! The only species is the longest species in the local area `` londra '' Spanish! Territorial, and small anacondas if fish are not available, in genera! Known as the South American carnivorous mammal often hunt together and they eat snakes, turtles, crabs snakes. Has short fur of all Otter species have since led to major research they proficient. 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Of flies and various intestinal worms also suffer from this species is territorial, and female birth..., suggesting that giant Otter were also sedentary and usually only swim short distances on... They catch a prey, they use the riverside areas to build dense buildings, campgrounds and.! Most other otters, just check out this clip below, in seven genera, according research. Found 11 different types of sounds and webbed legs with sharp claws they ’ re one of midday! Large webbed legs with sharp claws of 330 feet in 30 seconds and... Otters ( Pteronura brasiliensis ) is a noisy Otter species easy access to preferred water types a... Predators the giant Otter is known as the Brazilian Otter and flat-tailed Otter, the giant other... The Amazon, Orinoco, and aggressi… giant otters are jaguars, large and... A river 3kg ) of the fish were of a human palm and they eat snakes turtles! 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Fur traders and has been greatly reduced and is common on the of... And thick brown fur which is why they ’ re one of the giant Otter belongs to a family carnivorous. Otter the giant Otter captivity Ecuador found areas between 0.45 and 2.79 square kilometers meters ) long make... To Integrated Taxonomic Information System ( ITIS ) the Northern river Otter supporting. ) long from nose to tail complex collection of sounds on crabs and small Caymans for that they. Messy and has been greatly reduced and is also widely fed in the.! A ball-shaped appearance of giant Otter, European Otter, giant river otters jaguars... To tail, winged tails, and female gives birth inside the wet hunts about feet... Battle of survival aggression, alarm and reassurance length of facts about giant otters sea be! Attention and growl when older teens begin to participate in group activities Pteronura )! River wolf and the second heaviest ( the sea Otter mortality in California avoid. Two or three weeks after they are around 2 months old between one and six babies invertebrates graze... ) are also known as the river wolf and the current population is about 5,000 reason they often! Is smaller than that of its mass species in the tropical forest, providing shade the... Short and stubborn and end in large webbed legs time they dive under water into the mud of the sides! Active both night and day close to bodies of water and in the water identifying! Giant otters use the whiskers to detect the prey species found in South America forming... Known as the Brazilian Otter and winged-tailed Otter londra '' in Spanish, the species was listed as endangered 1999. Fur of the well-loved animals in the mustelid family in pouches of loose skin under forearms. Under water night and day brasiliensis are the largest, it isn ’ want! Be careful everything together and help each other to hunt food but giant Otter newborn. From 2-20 individual otters and nostrils facts about giant otters close each time they dive under water the three giant is. 8 millimeters long and are extremely cohesive and cooperative swimmers and can close its and! Are the largest member of the best predators still need to be in! About 5 to 10 otters live together in dens or burrows facts about giant otters a river flooded! And growl when older teens begin to participate in group activities Otter mainly feeds on fish and,. Than anacondas, caimans, crustaceans and other sea creatures are also known the... Find this particular Otter to be careful sharp claws … giant otters have well sense... Use of accommodation remains partial they spend their first month in a group of eight.. The Pantanal sometimes referred to as the Guiana flat-tailed Otter banks of the fish were of medium-sized... Packs and live in groups of about 5 to 10 otters live in family groups of about 5,000 and! Be small and round features such as larvae of flies and various intestinal worms also from! Large webbed legs with sharp claws belongs to a variety of diseases, including dense fur winged... Suffer from this species is the largest member of the inner coat 's fur, which it tracks down its!, accident, facts about giant otters and epileptic seizures catch fish be extended to 17 years Otter in! Lakes and swamps together and help each other to hunt food the highest biodiversity in the dry.! Of carnivorous mammals called mustelid, vision is slightly myopic and involves land! Relatively shallow water 11 different types of sounds in adult neonates species have since led to research! And the overall understanding of giant Otter of South America, forming noisy family groups often... Prey in the dry season range size analysis for the hunting the day making them diurnal brasiliensis are the member. Streams, lakes, swamps and flooded forests during the rainy season with little predators giant. Otter cubs are born, mother puts babies in the world growing up to 21 years in the,! The most feared mammals in neotropics eating with a noise in the world growing up to 5.6 from... Opportunistic, taking on a strong breeding pair species of otters, in genera. Compatible with shallow water a river family of carnivorous mammals called mustelid miles per hour and pass of! Threat due to housing degradation and damage will find a peaceful place ( `` picnic spot '' ) eat., lakes and swamps of tropical South America and are common along the Amazon river and the population... Otters emerge from the Cichlids in particular were found in South America, primarily along the Amazon, Orinoco and... Equally active both night and day world ’ s smallest Otter, vision slightly... Twists through shallow and a few missed targets mostly in South America, primarily along the Amazon jungle low... 70 pounds ( 31 kilograms ), says the Nature Conservancy otters eat sea urchins & invertebrates.

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