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N. Sivasothi,
a.k.a. Otterman,
Raffles Museum of Biodiversity Research, Department of Biological Sciences, National University of Singapore. Since 1998 with origins from OneList.

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Fri 19 Mar 2004

Otter encounter at Kranji mangroves

Category : nature

"Hi Siva,

On the 13th of March last Saturday, I was in Kranji mangroves taking photos and collecting soil-types for my UROPs project [Undergraduate Research Opportunities in Science]. Walking towards the sea at the mouth of the stream, I heard rustling to the right of my position.

Searching for the source I finally fixed on a dark object moving along the mudflats. Instantly (because Siva is Otterman) I recognised IT'S AN OTTER!

Excited, I fumbled for the camera. The otter seemed to have discovered my existence too. After a second or two exchanging looks (during which I took the photo), it sprinted towards the mangroves in great haste. The otter made a large semi-circular detour around me, crossed the stream and disappeared in the direction of the channel between KR4 and Buloh East [towards Sungei Buloh].

Which left me standing there, relishing the moment, for just a little while longer.

Cheers, Fiona"

Otters have been spotted regularly in Sungei Buloh Wetlands Reserve and environs since a pair first appeared in late November 1998. In May 2000, cubss were spotted and made famous by Nick Baker's now famous photographs.

Fiona first saw the Smooth otters at Sungei Buloh five years ago. She was then a JC1 student from SAJC who had come for the 1999 ICCS recce trip. Now a 3rd undergraduate in NUS, she is working on a research project on horseshoe crabs, alongside Yen Ling, who is studying mangrove shrimp. Both are veterans of the International Coastal Cleanup Singapore (ICCS) and the annual Sungei Buloh Anniversary Walk.- Otterman

Posted at 2:34PM UTC by N. Sivasothi | permalink | email | Raffles Museum news