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World Otter Day 2024

World Otter Day - 29th May 2024

World Otter Day is celebrated annually on the last Wednesday of May. This global event is a day dedicated to raising awareness about the conservation needs of otters. It highlights the important role these endearing creatures play in the environment and addresses the threats they face, such as habitat destruction, water pollution, and poaching. Read on to learn more about these adorable creatures, their conservation status and ways you can help.


🦦❤️My "Otterly In Love" design is perfect for sharing today, a cute and endearing way of bring nature into the heart of your home, and a reminder to protect our otter species all year round❤️🦦


To celebrate World Otter Day, for every purchase of an "Otterly In Love" print or gift set made today (29th May 2024) I will donate £1 to the International Otter Survival Fund (IOSF)... so, if you have had your eye on this design, now is the time! A great opportunity to treat yourself to some art and support a good cause!



£1 buys a fish for an otter and £5 can feed an otter for a day... so let's make a contribution to feeding these voracious eaters!! Hop to the end of this blog for the direct product links and offer terms and conditions.


 

Nature and wildlife are a constant inspiration for my artwork and, as such, I am passionate about raising awareness. I keep an eye out for "notable days" such as these as an opportunity to research and share what I learn. The sources for this blog are listed at the end, with links, to learn more.

 

Otter Facts


Otters are an integral part of our ecosystem and a “keystone” species, meaning that the wellbeing of otter populations is often an indicator of the health of the entire habitat. By protecting otters, we are also protecting our rivers, wetlands, and the biodiversity of these habitats.


Conservation Status

Otters are an endangered species, with five types listed by the IUCN as Endangered, five as Near Threatened, and two as Vulnerable. Only one, the North American River Otter, is listed as of Least Concern. Threats to their existence include pollution, habitat destruction, overfishing (entanglement with dangerous fishing gear), and oil spills. Oil spills are considered the greatest danger as otter are extremely vulnerable to hypothermia on contact with oil. 


River & Sea Otters

River otters, including the European otter, are smaller than sea otters. River otters mostly live in freshwater and are swift both on land and in water. They swim belly down while they paddle with their webbed feet. 

Sea otters reside almost exclusively in the ocean along coastlines. Unlike river otters, they are haphazard and clumsy on land, and they paddle mostly with their hind feet. Sea otters are much bigger than river otters.


How To Address An Otter

Otters Can Be Described in Many Ways:

  • A group of otters on land is often called a “romp.”

  • A group of otters in the water is commonly called a “raft”

  • Groups can also be called a family, bevy or a lodge

  • Male otters are called boars

  • Female otters are called sows

  • Infant otters are commonly called pups, but they are occasionally called kits and kittens.

So, think carefully the next time you address an otter!!


Holding Hands

Some sea otters hold hands while sleeping or resting. They lie on their backs, floating on water while holding hands. Besides being a cute and endearing image of this wonderful species, it serves an important survival purpose, keeping groups from floating away from one another.


An Otterly Voracious Appetite!

Otters can eat up to a third of their body weight in a day. As a result they often spend up to five hours each day seeking food and will eat virtually anything they can catch, with their diets dependent on their habitats and including fish, crayfish, crabs, frogs, and turtles, snakes, birds, and their eggs.


Thanks to their healthy appetites, sea otters keep the sea urchin population at bay, in turn protecting kelp forests and leading to an indirect reduction in the levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide. 


Speedy Swimmers

Otters have incredible swimming capabilities, with speeds of up to 7 miles per hour, about three times faster than an average human swimmer. Otters can hold their breath for up to 4 minutes and deliberately close their nostrils to keep out water. 


Impressive Fur Coats

Sea otters have 1 million hair follicles per square inch, making their fur 1,000 times thicker and denser than human hair. They hold the record for the thickest fur of all animals! As the only aquatic mammals without blubber layers, the extra fur helps them with insulation as well as trapping much-needed air to help keep their bodies buoyant.


Favourite Rocks

Sea otters often take their favourite rocks foraging, putting these rocks in their body pouches to use to crack open shellfish. Research has shown that otters have a favourite rock that they use for these important expeditions, which is usually stored in the pouch under their left arm.


Motherly Love

In the world of sea otters, mothers often do all the work for their infant pups. Pups cannot swim until at least a month after birth, mothers have to blow air into their coats to make them buoyant and can also spend up to 14 hours a day searching for food for their pups. They do all of this on their own without any assistance from the fathers. The exception is the more chivalrous male Asian small-clawed otters who assist with looking after the young and collecting food for mother and baby.



 

How You Can Help On World Otter Day


Learn and Share

Use World Otter Day to learn more... thank you for reading this blog as a great starting point! Make sure you share this knowledge with others, especially children, to foster a love and respect for these creatures and the environment. Education is a powerful tool in conservation efforts.


Make a Donation

I would be delighted if you want to join in my fundraising efforts today (24th May 2024) by taking advantage of my offer. Or consider making a donation directly to the IOSF, there are even options to Adopt an Otter. Organisations such as these work tirelessly to protect otters and their habitats. and every contribution, no matter how small, can make a difference.


Visit a Local Wetland or Zoo

Go and see otters in action! Find out where there is an opportunity to do this near you via a simple search online. Observing otters in their natural or semi-natural habitat can be a thrilling experience. Remember to respect their space and observe from a distance.


Spread the Word

Use social media and other platforms to raise awareness about World Otter Day. Share facts about otters, their importance, and what can be done to protect them. The more people know about otters and the challenges they face, the more support there will be for their conservation.


Get Creative

Draw, paint, or write about otters. This can be a fun activity for both children and adults, and it’s a great way to express your appreciation for these animals. Creativity is a wonderful way to engage with the subject and spread awareness in a unique and personal way.


 

A Final Word

World Otter Day is more than just a celebration of otters; it’s a reminder of our responsibility to protect and conserve our environment and the creatures that inhabit it. By participating in this day, we can all play a part in ensuring the survival and prosperity of otters and the wider biodiversity of the planet for future generations.


 

My "Otterly In Love" Offer

For every purchase of the following products made on 29th May 2024, a £1 donation will be made to the International Otter Survival Fund:

  • A4 Limited Edition Print

  • A5 Mounted Print

  • A5 Unmounted Print

  • Gift Set (mug, coaster and card combination ONLY)

Offer ends at midnight GMT on 29th May 2024. Valid on sales of the above specified products through my website www.louisebrookcreative.com only.






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