Otter newborns take swimming lessons, struggle to take the plunge

Nobody said it was easy.

Zhangxin Zheng | April 16, 2017 @ 06:28 pm

As the Marina otters settle down by the Singapore River, the parent otters have grown into their nurturing roles, teaching their pups necessary life skills, such as swimming and hunting.

Smooth-coated otters begin to learn to swim at around six weeks old. Before that, adult otters will have to carry the young pups in their mouths as they move around in the nature.

Like this:

It takes a while for swimming to become second nature to otters.

On Apr. 10, a member of Nature Society (Singapore) Facebook, Lai Ah-Eng, captured and posted this moment online. A lonely hesitant otter pup was left by the edge of the river, staring at the body of water, unsure of itself:

It was seen cautiously inching closer to the edge, before accidentally doing a back-flip as it fell into the water.

The other otters were seen cheering it on and quickly swam towards to rescue the pup in the water.

OtterWatch also posted similar footage which showed some 6-weeks old otter pups making their first attempt getting into the water.

One of them also did not muster enough courage to take the leap of faith so an adult otter had to return and bring it back to their holt.

Well, learning to swim is quite an achievement, even for us. There’s the challenge of learning how to breathe to overcome the fear of water, and also learning the strokes to move around. So the struggle is real and we feel you too, baby otter.

All the best, lil one!

Top photo from screenshot of Lai Ah-Eng’s video

Related articles:

Marina otters move to Singapore River after losing their original home to rival Bishan family

10 photos of Bishan otter family pups are exactly what you need to end your week

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About Zhangxin Zheng

Zhangxin’s favourite pastime is singing Mulan’s soundtrack in the mangrove forests. She hopes to perfect the art of napping in a hammock in the mangroves without being drowned by rising sea levels.

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