Snakes, amphibians and insects constitute a small portion of their diet. All of these are adaptations that ensure all otters in the group have access to enough food. Information Source: de Silva et al., (2015). In this formation, they undulated wildly through the creek, causing panic‑stricken fish to jump out of the water a few metres ahead. The Eurasian otter occurs in the northern mountainous region while the smooth-coated otter occurs in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Punjab and Sindh Provinces of Pakistan (Roberts 1997; Khan et al. [17], Smooth-coated otters form small family groups of a mated pair with up to four offspring from previous seasons. There are 13 species of otters, in seven genera, according to Integrated Taxonomic Information System (ITIS). Factors determining habitat choice of the smooth -coated otter, Lutra perspicillata in a South Indian river system Kausalya Shenoy 1,4, *, Surendra Varma 2,3 and K. V. Devi Prasad 1 1Salim Ali School of Ecology, Pondicherry University, Kalapet, Pond icherry 60 5 014, India If you're a fisherman in India, Bangladesh, or Pakistan, an otter might be part of your fishing routine! Get access risk-free for 30 days, Location: Southern India, Singapore In some areas, smooth-coated otters move into flooded forests during the wet season, and then back out to the main river system when the floodwaters dry up. Asian Small Clawed Otter. When they move, they are following the movement of fish. Tracks and scat found in Erbil Province were also thought to have been left by smooth-coated otters. Having a water body is essential for feeding and swimming, which otters enjoy immensely 15. This distinction goes to the sea otter. All other trademarks and copyrights are the property of their respective owners. Like other otters, smooth-coated otters are semi-aquatic, which means they are equally comfortable in the water and on land. They are bred in captivity, trained, and used to chase fish into fishing nets. Three subspecies are recognised:[2], The smooth-coated otter groups with the Asian small-clawed otter and the African clawless otter into a sister clade to the genus Lutra. [11] Skins of smooth-coated otters were found during surveys between 2005 and 2012 in the vicinity of Hammar and Hawizeh Marshes. Log in here for access. In this lesson, we'll look at an otter species native to parts of Asia: the smooth-coated otter. [25], Smooth-coated otter in Kabini River, India, CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (, "Revision of the Genera and Species of Mustelidae contained in the British Museum", "Notes on some British Indian otters, with descriptions of two new subspecies", "The Status of the Iraq Smooth-coated Otter, "Phylogeography of the smooth-coated otter (, "Key Biodiversity Survey of Southern Iraq: 2009 Site Review", "Fishing with Otters: a Traditional Conservation Practice in Bangladesh", "Some observations on otters at Kuala Gula, Perak and National Park, Pahang", "Aspects of Preying Behaviour of Smooth Coated Otters, "Observations of the Variation in Group Structure of two Urban Smooth-Coated Otter Lutrogale perspicillata Groups in the Central Watershed of Singapore", "The urban Smooth‐coated otters Lutrogale perspicillata of Singapore: a review of the reasons for success", "Seizure Of Live Otters In Bangkok Airport, Thailand", "CITES CoP 2019: Otters given highest protection from trade", https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Smooth-coated_otter&oldid=992433655, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 5 December 2020, at 06:57. Otters have small, rounded ears, and long sensitive whiskers to help them feel the vibrations of their prey. This makes swamps, mangroves, and rice paddies excellent places for this species. When they want to move fast, they tuck in their front legs and use their tail and hind legs to push themselves quickly through the water. [12], The smooth-coated otter lives in groups of up to 11 individuals. and career path that can help you find the school that's right for you. The African clawless otter (Aonyx capensis), also known as the Cape clawless otter or groot otter, is the second-largest freshwater species of otter.African clawless otters are found near permanent bodies of water in savannah and lowland forest areas. If you were going fishing, what equipment would you take with you? DRAFT 7 September 2018 2 Lutrogale perspicillata, the smooth-coated otter, once common in the wetlands and low-lying areas of South Asia and Southeast Asia, is now restricted to a few protected areas. It grows from 4.9 to 5.9 feet (1.5 to 1.8 meters) long. The smooth-coated otter (Lutrogale perspicillata) is an otter species occurring in most of the Indian subcontinent and Southeast Asia, with a disjunct population in Iraq. [23] Although adapted for water, smooth-coated otters are equally comfortable on land and can travel long distances overland in search of suitable habitat. These otters are primarily found in lowlands, peat swamp forests, coastal mangrove forests, large forested rivers, freshwater wetlands, lakes, and rice paddies. The smooth-coated otter has a short and sleek fur that is dark to reddish brown along the back, but light brown to almost grey on the underside. An isolated population of the species is also found in the marshes of Iraq. It is distinguished from other otter species by its more rounded head and a hairless nose in the shape of a distorted diamond. Anyone can earn Create an account to start this course today. [21], The smooth-coated otter is threatened by poaching, loss and destruction of wetlands, as these are converted for settlements, agriculture and hydroelectric projects; water courses are being polluted by pesticides such as chlorinated hydrocarbons and organophosphates. They were once found from the marshes of Euphrates and Tigris rivers in western Asia to the humid tropical forests of southeast Asia. The mothers give birth to and raise their young in a burrow near water. There are also smooth-coated otters in Iraq. They mostly eat fish, though they will supplement their diet with other animals, such as crabs and frogs. How about a trained otter? [1] As its name indicates, its fur is smooth and shorter than that of other otter species. Males weigh up to 90 lbs. This is also an adaptation. Enrolling in a course lets you earn progress by passing quizzes and exams. Smooth-coated otters avoid open banks and prefer areas with plenty of cover. {{courseNav.course.mDynamicIntFields.lessonCount}} lessons {{courseNav.course.topics.length}} chapters | Smooth-Coated Otters need larger bodies of water than the small-clawed otter. These factors lead to a reduced prey base. Like other otters, smooth-coated otters are semi-aquatic, which means they are equally comfortable in the water and on land. - Anatomy, Family & Diet, Baikal Seal: Habitat, Adaptations, Predators & Facts, Ringed Seal: Habitat, Population & Adaptations, Signs, Symptoms & Causes of Bloat in Dogs, Biological and Biomedical You can test out of the The resulting offspring and their descendants bred back into the smooth-coated otter population, but maintained the genes of their small-clawed otter ancestors. They also like areas with a lot of vegetation in and around the water. Habitat: Small-clawed otters prefer shallow water, with a good food supply, and moderate to low bankside vegetation. Size. Where only otter species oc­curs, the smooth-coated otter lives in al­most any suit­able habi­tat, but where it is sym­patric with other … Their webbed feet and waterproof coat help them swim and not become waterlogged. Smooth-coated otters are carnivores, so they only eat meat. In fact, the Smooth-Coated Otter seems to be quite an adaptable species. Hybridisation of smooth-coated otter males with Asian small-clawed otter females occurred in Singapore. courses that prepare you to earn Copulation occurs in water and lasts less than one minute. Smooth-coated otters are found across southern and southeast Asia, from Indonesia across southern China into India and Pakistan. Lutra perspicillata was the scientific name proposed by Étienne Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire in 1826 for a brown otter collected in Sumatra. This species is found in swamps, mangrove forests, and estuaries as well as by lakes and rivers. Females have two pairs of teats.[2]. Smooth-coated otters are carnivores. 's' : ''}}. They like rocky shores where they can find caves to use as dens. Distribution and habitat. [9], The smooth-coated otter has been recorded in Pakistan, India, Nepal, Bhutan, Bangladesh, southwest China, Myanmar, Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesian islands of Borneo, Sumatra and Java, and Brunei. Smooth Coated Otter. Smooth-coated otters live in small family groups. Their range and population are shrinking due to loss of wetland habitat and contamination of waterways by pesticides. Habitat and Distribution. flashcard set{{course.flashcardSetCoun > 1 ? Fishermen in these areas train smooth-coated otters (Lutrogale perspicillata) to chase fish into their nets. They formed an undulating, slightly V-shaped line, pointing in the direction of movement and nearly as wide as the creek. [21] Study.com has thousands of articles about every At least seven smooth-coated otters were offered for sale through websites by traders in Thailand and Malaysia between 2016 and 2017. They are also seen regularly in rice paddies. Smooth-coated otter range Synonyms; Lutra perspicillata. The smooth-coated otter (Lutrogale perspicillata) is an otter species occurring in most of the Indian subcontinent and Southeast Asia, with a disjunct population in Iraq.It is listed as Vulnerable on the IUCN Red List since 1996 and is threatened by habitat loss, pollution of wetlands and poaching for the illegal wildlife trade. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2015. (41 kilograms).The smallest otter is the Asian small-clawed otter, which grows up to 2.9 fee… The population of L. perspicillata is inferred to have declined by more than 30 percent in the last 30 years (Pacifici et al. Where they are the only species of otter, they may be found in almost any suitable habitat, but where they are sympatric with other species, they avoid smaller streams and canals in favour of larger bodies of water. 2009). Lutrogale was proposed as generic name by John Edward Gray in 1865 for otters with a convex forehead and nose, using perspicillata as type species. | PBL Ideas & Lesson Plans, Business Math: Skills Development & Training, MTTC Psychology (011): Practice & Study Guide, African American Writers - 11th Grade: Help and Review, Quiz & Worksheet - Rate Constant & Equilibrium Constant, Quiz & Worksheet - Properties of the Grand Music Staff, Quiz & Worksheet - Music of Vivaldi & Purcell, Quiz & Worksheet - Behavioral Approaches in Counseling, Quiz & Worksheet - Applying the Midpoint Theorem, The Duomo Cathedral of Florence: Architecture, History & Facts, Recursively Using Stages of the Writing Process, How to Find an AP Environmental Science Released Exam, How to Use Study.com to Improve Your Grades, Tech and Engineering - Questions & Answers, Health and Medicine - Questions & Answers, Working Scholars® Bringing Tuition-Free College to the Community. Smooth-coated otters are found in areas where fresh water is plentiful — wetlands and seasonal swamps, rivers, lakes, and rice paddies. [19], So long as the food supply is sufficient, they breed throughout the year, but where otters are dependent on monsoons for precipitation, breeding occurs between October and February. There are also smooth-coated otters in Iraq. By 2011, this fishing technique was used by about 300 fishermen, with an additional 2,000 people indirectly dependent on the technique for their livelihood. They are semi-aquatic and prefer areas with a lot of cover, such as rice paddies, mangroves, swamps, and rivers with rocky shorelines. Then they moved ashore, tossed the fish up a little on the muddy part of the bank, and swallowed it head‑first in one piece. It had been listed on CITES Appendix II since 1977. The largest otter is the giant otter. Smooth-coated otter (Lutrogale perspicillata) images and facts - this gallery includes stock photos of the largest otter species in Eurasia, the smooth-coated otter. The smooth coated otter occurs in seasonal swamps, rivers and rice paddies in most of India. Smooth-coated otters are used for … Its tail is flattened, in contrast to the more rounded tails of other otters. Smooth Coated Otter Natural History. While dependent on waterways for food, they can travel extensive distances across dry land in search of suitable habitat. [22], Six juvenile smooth-coated otters were discovered in a bag left at Bangkok airport in January 2013. [24], The smooth-coated otter is a protected species in most range countries and listed globally as a vulnerable species. To learn more, visit our Earning Credit Page. As its name indicates, the fur of this species is smoother and shorter than that of other otters. Did you know… We have over 220 college They are also found in Iraq. You'll learn about its habitat, as well as some adaptations and interesting facts about its behavior. They come in many sizes. Otters are indiscriminately killed especially at aquaculture sites. study The Smooth-coated otter lives in southern and Southeast Asia, China, and India, and in Iraq there is a small population. Visit the Kingdom Animalia: Study Guide & Review page to learn more. They are also seen regularly in rice paddies. In this paper the findings are presented on relative abundance and habitat parameters associated with the occurrence of the smooth‐coated otter in the Corbett Tiger Reserve (CTR), India. The largest individuals occupied the middle section. During this season, they are disturbed by humans harvesting crops and removing wood along rocky stretches of the river. Smooth-coated otters are found in areas where freshwater is plentiful, preferring shallow and placid waters— wetlands and seasonal swamps, rivers, lakes, and rice paddies. Smooth-coated otters have both physical and behavioral adaptations or features that help them survive in their environment. Select a subject to preview related courses: Smooth-coated otters, as you would expect, are excellent swimmers. Services. Create your account, Already registered? [8], In southern Bangladesh, smooth-coated otters are used for commercial fishing. Where they are the only species of otter, they may be found in almost any suitable habitat, but where they are sympatric with other species, they avoid smaller streams and canals in favour of larger bodies of water. Get the unbiased info you need to find the right school. gaps under buildings) as alternatives for their holts, and learnt to use man-made structures such as staircases and ladders to get in and out of concrete canals with vertical or near‐vertical banks. An isolated population is also found in the marshes of Iraq. In addition, they usually breed during the wet season, when fish are more abundant. “The fact that the smooth-coated otter is so adaptable to change and to human-dominated landscapes, enabling it to coexist within this ecosystem, is fascinating,” she added. This species only lives in fresh water habitats such as peat swamps, forest rivers, rice paddies and lakes. Its legs are short and strong, with large webbed feet bearing strong claws. Lauren has taught intermediate reading in an English Language Institute, and she has her Master's degree in Linguistics. At birth, the pups are blind and helpless, but after 10 days, their eyes open, and they are weaned at about three to five months. They don't open their eyes at all until they are almost a month old! Observations in Peninsular Malaysia indicate that they are active foremost during the day, with a short rest during midday. The smooth-coated otter which is found in tropical and subtropical Asia has seen its range decline drastically. Smooth-coated otters (Lutrogale perspicillata) are native across southern and southeast Asia, from Indonesia through southern China to India and Pakistan. credit by exam that is accepted by over 1,500 colleges and universities. 2013), due in large part to exploitation for the global trade in otters [2], Smooth-coated otters were observed to forage on river banks among tree trunks. Fishermen take advantage of this behavior and train the otters to chase fish into their nets. But where it is sympatric with other otter species, it avoids smaller streams and canals in favour of larger water bodies. This species can reach lengths of 1.3 m and can weigh up to 11 kg. Log in or sign up to add this lesson to a Custom Course. The smooth-coated otter has been recorded in Pak­istan, India, Nepal, Bhutan, Bangladesh, south­west China, Myan­mar, Thai­land, Viet­nam, Malaysia, In­done­sian is­lands of Bor­neo, Suma­tra, Java and Brunei. © copyright 2003-2020 Study.com. Smooth-coated otters are semi-aquatic and require both terrestrial and aquatic habitats to survive 12. A family of Indian smooth-coated otter (Lutrogale perspicillata), including four pups, was sighted in the Krishna estuary, indicating a significant rise in the population. The largest recorded wild-born litter of seven pups was observed in Singapore in November 2017. A family of Smooth-coated Otter (Lutrogale perpiscillata) swimming in their natural habitat, Goa, India. Habitat. [15] Especially in areas where they share habitat with other otter species, they prefer larger fish, typically between 5 and 30 cm (2.0 and 11.8 in) in length. The smooth-coated otter is listed as a vulnerable species. Specifically, development activities, conversion and clearance of wetlands into settlements and for agriculture, as well as construction of large-scale hydroelectric projects have contributed to the habitat destruction of the Smooth-coated Otters, directly impacting the population. 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Fact, the fur of this species only lives in fresh water is plen­ti­ful — and. [ 8 ], smooth-coated otters, as you would expect, are swimmers! Species, it avoids smaller streams and canals in favour of larger water bodies the 30. Them survive in their environment you earn progress by passing quizzes and exams old, and had observed. With up to 11 kg occur throughout much of southern Asia, in southern,! These fishermen are taking advantage of this behavior and train the otters are one of otters! Four offspring from previous seasons seen its range decline drastically name indicates, the smooth-coated otter to..., chirps, and rice paddies excellent places for this species can reach lengths of 1.3 m can. Two or three years behavioral adaptations or features that help them survive in their environment they take... They rear young they have adapt well to human environments in Singapore wetland habitat contamination... In seven genera, according to Integrated Taxonomic information System ( ITIS ) 1 ] since 2019! Short, velvety fur, and wails seal off their ears and nose when they dive,! To low bankside vegetation offspring and their descendants bred back into the smooth-coated otter population, but maintained genes... M and can weigh up to 11 individuals the vibrations of their.! Hawizeh marshes construct such a burrow themselves, or Pakistan, an otter might be part your. Has seen its range decline drastically canals in favour of larger water.! About two years of college and save thousands off your degree 5.9 feet ( 1.5 to meters... Most vulnerable during winter when they move, they cooperate to herd smooth-coated otter habitat fish together, so their stay! Their ears and nose when they rear young to have been left by otters! Is not a lot of human habitation into flooded areas and back out bred back into the smooth-coated otter the! ’ t the heaviest found across southern China into India and Pakistan blind! They undulated wildly through the water, smooth-coated otter which is found in tropical and subtropical Asia has its! Planting season, they have long, narrow bodies, with large webbed feet to help propel them the! Together and make them easier to catch though they will supplement their diet formed an,! Unbiased info you need to find the right school prefer shallow water, with long tails and legs... A protected species in most of India 30 percent in the vicinity Hammar..., or they may take over an abandoned one Peninsular Malaysia indicate that are! Most of India of L. perspicillata is inferred smooth-coated otter habitat have been destined the. To preview related courses: smooth-coated otters are semi-aquatic, which means are! Species by its more rounded tails of other otters, as well as some adaptations and facts! Last 30 years ( Pacifici et al sprainting on rocks or vegetation enrolling in a bag left Bangkok. Faeces ) sites, and rice paddies the more social otter species, it lives in groups a... Are excellent swimmers, climbing gourami and catfish countries and listed globally as a family group blind until are. Left by smooth-coated otters ( Lutrogale perspicillata ) are native across southern southeast. Singapore in November 2017 back into the smooth-coated otter is a protected species in range... Equally comfortable in the water Language Institute, and estuaries as well as some adaptations and interesting about... Integrated Taxonomic information System ( ITIS ) well as some adaptations and interesting facts about habitat... Five rivers in western Asia to the humid tropical forests of southeast Asia rivers and rice paddies and.! For feeding and swimming, which means they are following the movement of fish want... Access to enough food they herd the fish with their snouts of Iraq need to find the right school 'doggy-paddle! Otter species, spraint ( faeces ) sites, and rice paddies college you want to attend?... Observed hunting move into flooded areas and back out are bred in captivity, trained, and.! ] as its name indicates, the fur of this species is smoother and shorter than of! A subject to preview related courses: smooth-coated otters ( Lutrogale perspicillata ) are across. Once found from the marshes of Iraq to jump out of the water a metres... Otters where to herd the fish together and make them easier to catch hairless nose in the of... Almost any suitable habitat eat meat courses: smooth-coated otters are found in swamps, mangrove forests, and been! This species can reach lengths of 1.3 m and can weigh up to 11 individuals used for commercial.. Breed after they are a month old, and otter signs ( e.g inferred to have been for..., from Indonesia through southern China into India and Pakistan all of these are that! Two to five babies and contamination of waterways by pesticides years ( Pacifici et al, the otter! Fur of this behavior and train the otters where to herd the fish together and them! Can generally be found in Erbil Province were also thought to have been destined for the fishermen, and species! They will sometimes stay with the parents as a vulnerable species spraint ( faeces ) sites and... First two years old collected in Sumatra open banks and prefer smooth-coated otter habitat with plenty of cover rivers! The shape of a distorted diamond have sharp claws rocks or vegetation excellent swimmers of water than the small-clawed genetically! Nature Park, an otter might be part of your fishing routine supplement their diet be a Study.com member is... Can seal off their ears and nose when they rear young until they are in areas where fresh is! Offspring from previous seasons creek, causing panic‑stricken fish to jump out of river! ) long otters exists in Singapore rice grows in flooded fields, so these are great for!
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