They will also wrap themselves in seaweed for the same reason. eval(ez_write_tag([[250,250],'northamericannature_com-leader-1','ezslot_7',110,'0','0'])); Otters live in dens, but they do not build these themselves. We’re lucky to count otters among the Potomac’s native animals. Otters protect their pups while sleeping. Otters always wash themselves after every meal. The most popular color? River otters are especially playful, gamboling on land and splashing into rivers and streams. River otter populations declined significantly throughout the late 1800s due to over-harvesting and water pollution. They have long, narrow bodies, with long tails and short legs. Thank you! ... River Otters Drawing... 300x239 1 0. YouTube / Oregon Zoo. River otters are predators; they avoid feeding on carrion. Unfortunately, 12 of those 13 species of otters are declining in population, and five are considered endangered. I wanted to find out why they sleep holding hands with other otters, and how they choose which otters to hold hands with. A family of river otters at night. They use the kelp as an anchor so they can sleep without any fear of floating out to the open ocean. They have webbed feet and water repellent fur to keep them dry and warm. I am a proud member of the American Society of Mammalogists. Find out more. P.S. But your walls are better. North American Nature is compensated for referring traffic and business to these companies. Photo COurtesy of Canopic/Flickr. They learn to swim when they are about two months old, when their mother pushes them into the water. I wanted to write this article to let you know why otters hold hands and to answer some other questions about their sleeping habitseval(ez_write_tag([[336,280],'northamericannature_com-medrectangle-3','ezslot_3',105,'0','0'])); Otters can sleep on land and in the water. Sea otters hold hands when they sleep. If you or someone you know loves otters check out some of my favorite otter gifts on Amazon. Being social creatures, they understand the habit of holding hands has mutual benefit. For @Mitzi Peterson The North America river otter lives in a holt or den. Crayfish are the second most common prey of river otters. When they hold hands with another otter, they can remain away from land, making it harder for hunters to kill them.eval(ez_write_tag([[300,250],'northamericannature_com-box-4','ezslot_8',107,'0','0'])); The fur of an otter is thick, and as the otter sheds, it is replaced gradually rather than in a specific molting season. They’re buoyant, so they don’t drown in the water, but they have to learn to swim from their moms, just like us! Sea can dive up to 330 feet for food. There is high competition between male otters when it comes to finding a mate, and for a male to mate, they have to keep the female near. The river otter lives in dens, where it is not easy to make observations, and research is unable to answer these questions. Photo Courtesy of Tim Brown. The other reason they hold hands is as a way of protecting themselves from predators and hunters. These are constructed by other animals and can be under a log or in the river bank. The region’s leading clean water advocate, fighting to ensure the Potomac River boasts clean drinking water, healthy lands, and connected communities. Contrary to popular belief that all otters hold hands while in the water, only Sea Otters hold hands and swim belly up with most of their body out of the water. When a baby sea otter is too small to hold hands, they ride on top of their mother. Otters do not have a specific place where they live. Unlike sea otters -- the ones that hold hands when sleeping -- river otters sleep on land, both above ground and in underground dens. River otters are incredible swimmers. Otters are beautiful and cute animals. When the female parent has to hunt, they wrap their pups in seaweed. ... sea otters hold hands while they sleep to avoid drifting apart. They will either sleep in dens, or above the ground. Why does densely populated DC have so much wildlife. Find out here. Otters sometimes float in forests of kelp, or giant seaweed, in which they entangle themselves to provide anchorage in the sea. Well you're in luck, because here they come. The otter is the largest member of the weasel family. Otters do more than sleep while floating on their backs. eval(ez_write_tag([[300,250],'northamericannature_com-large-mobile-banner-1','ezslot_6',111,'0','0'])); Sea otters live and sleep in the water, rarely getting out onto dry land. While it may appear to be adorable, sea otters hold hands for a practical purpose. You wouldn’t know it from the abundance of adorable gifs, but otters are actually quite shy. But they aren’t born with those skills. Thank you! The river otter lives in dens, where it is not easy to make observations, and research is unable to answer these questions. © 2020, Potomac Conservancy, Silver Spring, MD. Fun fact for the superstar readers that make it to the bottom: Did you know giant otters are a thing? They can hold their breath for up to eight minutes. PHoto Courtesy of GollyGFORCE VIA FLICKR. Perhaps the cutest form of this behavior is when two sea otters appear to hold hands while floating on their backs, which they will do to prevent losing each other while sleeping. In warmer times, you may also see otters sliding down a riverbank. River Otters are almost completely submerged and swim with their back up. River otters generally live alone or in small social groups. The use of a den as a resting site is chiefly opportunistic, although locations that provide protection and seclusion are preferred. Do all types of otters hold hands whilst sleeping? I’m just going to say it. They do this so as not to drift apart while they are asleep. Otters utilize kelp by wrapping themselves in long strands of kelp which grows from the seafloor up to the surface of the water. Hunting and trapping nearly eradicated river otters in the mid-western and eastern United States in the 19th and 20th centuries, but better wildlife management practices are changing that. And, whilst they are rafting, it is well known that they will all hold hands to stay together in their group. When sleeping in the sea, otters will usually sleep in strands of kelp, which keeps them from drifting too far. Did you know that beavers are good for the environment? These dens are located into the ground that has many inner chambers. How Baby River Otters Learn to Swim. A river otter in NEwport News, VA. Photo COurtesy of the Chesapeake Bay Program. This entails cleaning the fur, untangling knots, removing any loose hair, rubbing the coat to squeeze out any excess water. "Otters Holding Hands" is a YouTube video that appeared in 2007. Like JPG. The Potomac Conservancy’s efforts to protect upstream forests and local volunteers’ work to fight pollution and restore riverbanks help otters and other local critters thrive. People also call it North American river otter. They also introduce air into the fur by blowing air directly into their coat. Otters understand their fur must be kept clean, and they invest a lot of their time to be able to float in the water. Bryan has spent his whole life around animals. Otter pups aren’t born with swimming skills, they learn from their mothers. North America river otters may also use hollow trees or logs, undercut banks, rock formations, backwater sloughs, and flood debris. River otters sleep specifically on land while the sea otter sleeps in the water. Not even close. Keep our River clean for OTTER pups! Photo Courtesy of Jon Nelson. We are taught from an early age that bears do hibernate, but scientists are still not sure if bears do fully hibernate through the winter. You've probably seen the image macros floating around Facebook, exclaiming over how they hold hands while they sleep to make sure they don't drift apart. Here you are! Sea Otters Holding H... 800x1000 1 0. If you were to rank the world’s cutest animals, these guys would definitely make the list. What are the Otter’s Behavior Whilst Sleeping? Mother otters spend many hours a day grooming herself and baby so they both can keep a layer of warm, dry air. The most common otters holding hands material is metal. Volunteer with us at our next river clean-up at Jones Point Park in Virginia on September 7th. A raft of otters can be anything from two otters to hundreds! Printed on 100% cotton watercolour textured paper, Art Prints would be at home in any gallery. They can dive up to 60 feet and stay underwater for as long as four minutes. Though river otters are not strictly nocturnal, they are generally more active at night, particularly in the spring, summer, and fall. While loving all animals, Bryan is especially fond of mammals and has studied and worked with them around the world. Baby otters are called pups. They eat plenty of fish and other water critters, such as crayfish, so you’ll spot bones, scales, and shells. LIMITED OFFER: Get 10 free Shutterstock images - PICK10FREE. Facts about River Otters talk about an animal, which can be found on the coasts or waterways of North America. In fact, baby river otters, or pups, can’t swim at all. They aren’t too picky about their sleeping situation, and researchers have found individual otters often have a number of different resting places. The otters are very agile in … River otters are able to hold their breath underwater for up to eight minutes. They can be nearly six feet long! It is unclear if the river otter does hold hands while sleeping. North American Nature may also participate in other affiliate programs. Sea otters holding hands isn't that common in the wild, according to the Seattle Aquarium. Whether it’s a lake, river, swamp or estuary, otters like a mix of land and water. There are 268 otters holding hands for sale on Etsy, and they cost $12.49 on average. They do not sleep in water like the sea otter. If you are trying to spot otters while out on a hike around the Potomac, your best chance is at sunrise or sunset. Another likely reason as to why otters hold hands may be due to fear of losing their female partner to another male. They use the dens from other animals that have built them, invading them to make them their own. Otters also hold hands with each other and form what is called a raft. eval(ez_write_tag([[300,250],'northamericannature_com-leader-2','ezslot_11',113,'0','0'])); All otter daily grooming activities aim at helping keep them buoyant. North American river otters, also called Canadian otters, have long, muscular, streamlined bodies with short legs and fully webbed feet bearing non-retractable claws. What is an otter? They can be aquatic semi-marine, basically meaning they can be broad of two kinds: river otter and sea otter. I often see photos of otters holding hands while sleeping in the water and have often wondered why. River otters also reach sexual maturity earlier and are typically able to reproduce sooner than sea otters. A North American River Otter in WInter. The video is of two resting otters, Nyac and Milo, that appear to be holding hands while floating in the water (which is actually a natural instinct called "rafting" that keeps otters from floating away from each other in rough waters). There are only 106,000 sea otters worldwide. By wrapping them in seaweed, the pups do not float away. The video itself was shot in 2002 at the Vancouver Aquarium by a vistor by the name of Cynthia Holmes. You can register for free today. River otter slides are usually about six inches wide and two-to-three feet long. Sea otters often float on the water’s surface, lying on their back to sleep. You may also come across an otter slide, a portion of river bank that’s been packed down to allow otters to slip into the water. Did you know that beavers are good for the environment? They will pick an otter from their family or their mate. SO CUTE. If you spot an otter locally, it’s a North American river otter (Lontra canadensis), one of 13 species of otters around the world. Otter fur is expensive, and the animal is often hunted. The video soon went viral and with… Otters can be found in almost all parts of North America where there are wet habitats such as rivers, lakes, oceans, coastlines, and marshes. They aren’t too picky about their sleeping situation, and researchers have found individual otters often have a number of different resting places. Otters have a fear of losing their family members while they are sleeping or relaxing. Their place of living has an entrance which may be underwater or above ground, which leads to a nest chamber lined with leaves, grass, moss, bark, and hair. Also, the sea otter will use sea plants that grow from the ocean floor which they will wrap themselves up … They're fluffy and love to swim. They are famous for their adorable appeal to some cute habits. eval(ez_write_tag([[300,250],'northamericannature_com-large-leaderboard-2','ezslot_4',109,'0','0'])); Otters have no particular place where they sleep, but will always look for somewhere with less disturbance. To tell if you’re near a place that’s home to otters, keep an eye out for otter scat, tracks, and slides. Otters can be found throughout the region, but are tricky to spot. River otters can dive to a depth of 60 feet. The North American river otter is the only otter species not facing population decline on a large scale. They do this while asleep in the water. River otters as a whole look quite similar to weasels. In fact, some areas in the Chesapeake Bay region are actually seeing increases in their otter populations thanks to conservation and reintroduction programs. They are well adapted for swimming, with their streamline bodies and valved ears and nose. Otters Sea otters are awful. They are occasionally seen with a clam, mussel or a rock that they have taken from the sea. Here’s why we want to bring them back. This in turn, apparently makes them the most innocent animal on the planet. Otters create latrines for themselves, so if you see a lot of otter scat- you’re likely near their home. What makes the sea otter able to sleep in water? It seems an odd question, but do bears hibernate? They can live eight to nine years in the wild but have lived up to 21 years in captivity. You guessed it: brown. Their most noticeable ability is swimming. There is very little evidence online or in the scientific community on whether coyotes can swim.... Hi, I’m Bryan, the one on the right. North American river otters are not documented as displaying this behavior, as land and the family den is usually nearby. You’ll receive our next monthly River Update email with river news, wildlife stories, and fun- and usually free- outdoor events. Sea Otters Holding H... 570x570 1 0. Northern River Otters are born with many innate behaviors. Sea otters are the second smallest marine mammals. Furry, playful and very, very smart, otters are beloved for their adorable antics and sweet appearance. Dinner time. They found that otters closer to the oil sites had flimsier phalluses. We’ll keep you updated on local river news, wildlife, and fun outdoor events. If you or someone you know loves otters check out some of my favorite otter gifts on Amazon.eval(ez_write_tag([[300,250],'northamericannature_com-medrectangle-4','ezslot_2',106,'0','0'])); You may have seen photos of otters, or even seen otters in the wild holding hands. This site is owned and operated by North American Nature. The other otter species don’t have adaptations to enable them to be able to float on their backs in the water. If you’re looking for tips on how to view them in the wild and trivia to take your river knowledge to the next level, read on. There are several differences between Sea Otters and River Otters, including their swimming styles. This habit of the sea otter sleeping holding hands is a rare adaptation in mammals. Otter populations thanks to clean water advocate, fighting to ensure the Potomac though ) times, you also. Protection and seclusion are preferred Cynthia Holmes keep an eye out for otter scat,,! 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