Smooth Coated Otter

Latin Name Lutrogale perspicillata
Class Mammalia
Order Carnivora
Family Mustelidae
IUCN status Vulnerable
Habitat Rivers, lakes, marshlands and adjacent forested areas to marine coastal
Distribution Throughout South Asia and South-East Asia

General Information

Otters are semi-aquatic animals eating fish, frogs, crayfish, small birds and mammals. These are the largest family living species of otters in the world, with some families of 25 members recorded in the wild!

The vocal calls of Smooth Coated Otters are very distinctive as a species from pipping whistles to squeaks resembling high pitched bird calls!

In the wild they can live up to 8 years but in captivity some have survived to 20 years.

Concerted efforts are important for the conservation of this declining species as their habitat range is fragmented by degradation and water pollution.

Fun Fact

This species of otter often have an underwater tunnel entrance to their 'holt' which is unusual for an otter. 

Keeper Notes

Our family 'romp' of Smooth Coated Otters are: Dad, Song, born at Colchester Zoo in 2012 and Mum, Soriah, born at Wingham Wildlife Park, in 2014. They produced their first litter of cubs on 1st June 2018. Twins are called, Anupa, male and Ananda, female living with their parents in the brand new otter enclosure which has been built in the Deer Encounter! They are delighting visitors with their cheeky, mischievous antics as they play fight and run around playing chase!