The West

Otters make a splash
Baby otters get their health check at the Perth Zoo this morning. Picture: Lincoln Baker/The West Australian

Four new members of the world’s smallest otter species have made their public debut at Perth Zoo.

The Asian small-clawed otter pups are part of an Australasian breeding program.

Today the pups had their first medical check where they were weighed, sexed, microchipped and vaccinated.

The vets identified two females and two males ranging in size from 520g to 560g.

Asian small-clawed otters are native to parts of India, southern China, Malaysia and Indonesia and weigh just 3.5kg when fully grown.

“The otters at Perth Zoo have now had 16 otter pups which is four litters in the past two years," Perth Zoo chief executive Susan Hunt said.

“These latest pups are the third litter for parents Asia and Tuan.”

Asian small-clawed otters are highly social animals who pair for life.

Males play a critical role rearing the pups, including nest building, swimming lessons and supplying food.

Older siblings also help take care of the pups and two older sisters are currently helping rear the new babies.

The four pups were born on December 27 and recently started swimming lessons.

The West Australian

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