Otter

Catherine Hamilton-Veal  ©

Dawlish, United Kingdom

  • Available
    Products
    12
  • Artist
    Notes
  • Artwork Comments 99

Cases & Skins

Wall Art

Home Decor

Bags

Stationery

Artist's Description

BEST VIEWED LARGER
I took this delightful little otter at the Butterfly Farm and Otter Sanctuary at Buckfastleigh Devon UK.
Otters are semi-aquatic (or in one case aquatic) fish-eating mammals. The otter subfamily Lutrinae forms part of the family Mustelidae, which also includes weasels, polecats, badgers, as well as others. With twelve species in seven genera, otters have an almost worldwide distribution. They mainly eat aquatic animals, predominantly fish and shellfish, but also other invertebrates, amphibians, birds and small mammals.
An otter’s den is called a holt or couch. A male otter is a dog, a female a bitch, and a baby a whelp, kit, or pup.The collective nouns for otters are bevy, family, lodge or romp, being descriptive of their often playful nature, or when in water raft.
The time of gestation in otters is about 60 to 86 days. The newborn baby is taken care of by the mother, the father, and all the other offspring. Female otters reach sexual maturity at approximately 2 years of age, while males can produce offspring at approximately 3 years of age. After one month, the young otter can come out of the cave, and after 2 months it is able to swim. It lives with its family for about one year so that it can learn and be kept safe until maturity. Otters live up to 16 years.
Otters have long, slim bodies and relatively short limbs, with webbed paws. Most have sharp claws on their feet, and all except the sea otter have long muscular tails. The twelve species range in adult size from 0.7 to 1.8 metres (2 to 6 feet) in length and 5 to 45 kilograms (2.7 to 100 pounds) in weight.
They have a very soft, insulated underfur which is protected by their outer layer of long guard hair. This traps a layer of air, and keeps them dry and warm under water.
Many otters live in cold waters and have very high metabolic rates to help keep them warm. Eurasian otters must eat 15% of their body-weight a day, and sea otters 20 to 25%, depending on the temperature. In water as warm as 10°C (50°F) an otter needs to catch 100 grams (3 oz) of fish per hour to survive. Most species hunt for 3 to 5 hours a day, and nursing mothers up to 8 hours a day.
For most otters, fish is the primary staple of their diet. This is often supplemented by frogs, crayfish and crabs.Some otters are expert at opening shellfish, and others will feed on available small mammals or birds. Prey-dependence leaves otters very vulnerable to prey depletion.
Otters are very active, chasing prey in the water or searching the beds of rivers, lakes or the seas. Most species live beside water, entering it mainly to hunt or travel, otherwise spending much of their time on land to avoid their fur becoming waterlogged. The sea otter does live in the sea for most of its life.
Otters are playful animals and appear to engage in various behaviors for sheer enjoyment. Different species vary in their social structure, with some being largely solitary, while others live in groups, in a few species these groups may be fairly large.
Edited from RAW in CS3 added two textures by
Lenabem
Thank you Anna.
and
Jerry Jones
Thank you Jerry.
And finished off in Picasa3
Camera used Pentax K200D
Thank you for viewing.

Artwork Comments

  • Catherine Hamilton-Veal  ©
  • Lynda Heins
  • Catherine Hamilton-Veal  ©
  • Trudi's Images
  • Catherine Hamilton-Veal  ©
  • Christine Annas
  • Catherine Hamilton-Veal  ©
  • Carol Knudsen
  • Catherine Hamilton-Veal  ©
  • Irene  Burdell
  • Catherine Hamilton-Veal  ©
  • naturelover
  • Catherine Hamilton-Veal  ©
  • missmoneypenny
  • Catherine Hamilton-Veal  ©
  • Karen  Betts
  • Catherine Hamilton-Veal  ©
  • swaby
  • Catherine Hamilton-Veal  ©
desktop tablet-landscape content-width tablet-portrait workstream-4-across phone-landscape phone-portrait
desktop tablet-landscape content-width tablet-portrait workstream-4-across phone-landscape phone-portrait

10% off

for joining the Redbubble mailing list

Receive exclusive deals and awesome artist news and content right to your inbox. Free for your convenience.