River Otters

North American River Otters
 
Located outside at the head of the Marsh Walk, the River Otter habitat is sure to please. Watch how otters frolic and engage in playing with their favorite enrichment item. You may find one diving into the 8,000 gallon freshwater pool or taking an afternoon nap beneath a favorite hollowed out log. River otters are well suited for life in and around the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries, though often go unnoticed. In the wild, they tend to be more active during the dusk and dawn hours, their dark fur blending seamlessly into the background. During the day, river otters are often sleeping in their den or mud-bank cave. Healthy otters will generally avoid humans. In nature, otters are atop the food web with few predators. They will eat most anything including fish, insects, birds, reptiles, amphibians, crustaceans and even other mammals. "Squeak" does not have to bother with hunting as all of his food is provided for him. Fish, shrimp, hard-boiled eggs, carrots and various fruits round out their main diet.

Come before 4:00 p.m. to view the otter outside. Afterwards, the otter is brought into its holding area and can be seen through the window at the end of the Eco-Invaders exhibit. During warmer months, our river otters are given free access to the backup area allowing them to choose whether to come in or stay outside.