When females leave, they tend to move much further away (60–90 km or 37–56 mi) than males (up to 30 km or 19 mi), which tend to move shorter distances. Sea otters live in the Pacific Ocean while giant otters live in the tropical rain forests of South America. Group hierarchies are not rigid and the animals easily share roles.  Habitat. How Long Do Otters Live? Known throughout much of their range as 'river wolf', they are amongst South America's top carnivores. At 5.6 feet (1.7 meters), they are the biggest otters in the world and the longest members of the weasel family. It is only widespread in Surinam and Guyana. Otters have their cubs in underground burrows, known as 'holts'.  In the former, investigation has shown thinly distributed population remnants. The giant otter is the longest species among mustelids although not the heaviest. There are 13 species in total, ranging from the small-clawed otter to the giant otter. Male giant otters can attain a length of 1.5-1.7m (4.9-5.6ft). In 2004, Peru created one of the largest conservation areas in the world, Alto Purús National Park, with an area similar in size to Belgium.  Carter and Rosas have found captive adult animals consume around 10% of their body weight daily—about 3 kilograms (7 lb), in keeping with findings in the wild.  P. b. brasiliensis is distributed across the north of the giant otter range, including the Orinoco, Amazon, and Guianas river systems; to the south, P. b. paraguensis has been suggested in Paraguay, Uruguay, southern Brazil, and northern Argentina, although it may be extinct in the last three of these four. They also have webbed feet, water-repellent fur to keep them dry and warm, and nostrils and ears that close in the water. They appear in a fish poisoning legend where they assist a man who has wasted his sexual energy, creating the anacondas of the world from his distressed and extended genitals.  Its smaller prey, different denning habits, and different preferred water types also reduce interaction.. Baby otters for sale is 1 of 5 different otter species that is native to Asia.  Population densities varied with a high of 1.2/km2 (3.1/sq mi) reported in Suriname and with a low of 0.154/km2 (0.40/sq mi) found in Guyana. Otters are adorable animals and they can live both in the land and in the river. Their diet in the wild is crustaceans, mollusks, and small fish.  They clear significant amounts of vegetation while building their campsites.  Duplaix identified nine distinct sounds, with further subdivisions possible, depending on context. Habitat Giant Otters are only found in the rainforests and rivers of South America.  While the two species are sympatric (with overlapping ranges) during certain seasons, there appeared to be no serious conflict. recommended for you. An average giant otter will weigh between 22 and 32kg (49-71lbs). , The otters form the subfamily Lutrinae within the mustelids and the giant otter is the only member of the genus Pteronura. It has the greatest body length of any species in the mustelid family, although the sea otter may be heavier.  It has no serious natural predators other than humans, although it must compete with other species, including the neotropical otter and caiman species, for food resources.  The genus name, Pteronura, is derived from the Ancient Greek words pteron/πτερόν (feather or wing) and oura/οὐρά (tail), a reference to its distinctive, wing-like tail. The park harbors many endangered plants and animals, including the giant otter, and holds the world record for mammal diversity. The animal is susceptible to a variety of diseases, including canine parvovirus. In fact, he’ll usually live in a group with ten or more of his fellow otters. Group members share roles, structured around the dominant breeding pair. The giant otter lives in South America and its population is concentrated along the shores of the Amazon. It lives in the rivers and swamps of tropical South America, forming noisy family groups that often hunt together. Whistles may be used as advance warning of nonhostile intent between groups, although evidence is limited. Other researchers suggest approximately 7 square kilometres (2.7 sq mi) and note a strong inverse correlation between sociality and home range size; the highly social giant otter has smaller home range sizes than would be expected for a species of its mass. It is the longest member of the weasel family, Mustelidae, a globally successful group of predators, reaching up to 1.7 metres (5.6 ft). The most famous and common otter is the European, or ordinary river otter, inhabits North Africa, Europe (besides Switzerland and the Netherlands) also Asia, not meeting only on the Arabian Peninsula. The behavior of the otter. If you do not live in a warm climate, supplementary heat is necessary for land and water. The largest otter is the giant otter. They have thick fur that caused them to be hunted to near extinction. The sea otter, however, rarely comes ashore, according to the San Diego Zoo. , The species can hunt singly, in pairs, and in groups, relying on sharp eyesight to locate prey. Carter and Rosas, however, rejected the subspecific division in 1997, noting the classification had only been validated once, in 1968, and the P. b. paraguensis type specimen was very similar to P. b. Well suited for an aquatic life, it can close its ears and nose while underwater.  Duplaix returned to the country in 2000 and found the giant otter still present on the Kaburi Creek, a "jewel" of biodiversity, although increased human presence and land use suggests, sooner or later, the species may not be able to find suitable habitat for campsites. If the otter gets all the right nutrients, they should live … Trees surround them in the tropical forest, providing shade in the heat of the midday sun. Subadults leaving in search of new territory find it impossible to set up family groups. , Giant otters build dens, which are holes dug into riverbanks, usually with multiple entrances and multiple chambers inside. Excellent and lithe swimmers, the young are in the water by 10 weeks of age. An adult otter may consume up to ten pounds (4.5 kg) of fish a day. It can grow up to 2.4m (8ft) long from nose to tail.  A number of restrictions on land use and human intrusion are required to properly maintain wild populations. Yorkshire Wildlife Park is home to Mora and Alexandra, two female Giant Otters from Duisburg Zoo in Germany. Sea otters are found in two areas: The Pacific coasts of Russia and Alaska, and along the central California coast. Other threats to the giant otter include conflict with fishermen, who often view the species as a nuisance (see below). Other places you will find them lingering include around rivers, streams, and lakes. ) The groups are strongly cohesive: the otters sleep, play, travel, and feed together. , Throughout its range, the giant otter interacts with indigenous groups, who often practice traditional hunting and fishing. Fish from the order Perciformes, particularly cichlids, were seen in 97% of scats, and Characiformes, such as characins, in 86%. An analysis of dry season range size for three otter groups in Ecuador found areas between 0.45 and 2.79 square kilometres (0.17 and 1.08 sq mi). Fencing needs to extend in-ground because they can also dig out. The giant otter species eats mainly fishes and crabs. The giant otter or giant river otter (Pteronura brasiliensis) is a South American carnivorous mammal. The giant otter subsists almost exclusively on a diet of fish, particularly characins and catfish, but may also eat crabs, turtles, snakes and small caiman. A family of giant otters in the Pantanal, Brazil. The giant otter seems to have evolved independently of Lontra in South America, despite the overlap. More recently, habitat destruction and degradation have become the principal dangers, and a further reduction of 50% is expected in giant otter numbers within the 20 years after 2004 (about the span of three generations of giant otters). These mammals are very agile and feed on small crabs, frogs, and worms.  Pups are more vulnerable, and may be taken by caiman and other large predators, although adults are constantly mindful of stray young, and will harass and fight off possible predators. It plays an important role in the mythology of the Achuar people, where giant otters are seen as a form of the tsunki, or water spirits: they are a sort of "water people" who feed on fish.  The ears are small and rounded. It can grow up to 1.80 meters (six feet) in length and weigh more than 30 kilograms (70 pounds). Giant otters live on a diet that almost exclusively consists of fishes and crabs.  The giant otter seems to be opportunistic, taking whatever species are most locally abundant. Do otters lay eggs or give live birth? Giant otters catch their own food and consume it immediately; they grasp the fish firmly between the forepaws and begin eating noisily at the head.   It occurs in freshwater rivers and streams, which generally flood seasonally. Let us know on the Wide Open Pets Facebook page! Giant otter muzzles are short and sloping and give the head a ball-shaped appearance. Giant Otters are only found in the rainforests and rivers of South America.  It feeds mainly on fish, including cichlids, characins (such as piranha), and catfish.  In some cases, supposed cooperative hunting may be incidental, a result of group members fishing individually in close proximity; truly coordinated hunting may only occur where the prey cannot be taken by a single giant otter, such as with small anacondas and juvenile black caiman. Physical Description. Although generally peaceful, the species is territorial, and aggression has been observed between groups. Social animals: Giant Otters live in extended family groups that can number from three to even twenty individuals. Groups of about 5 to 10 otters live together in dens or burrows beside a river. Utreras presumed habitat requirements and availability would differ dramatically in the rainy season: estimating range sizes of 1.98 to as much as 19.55 square kilometres (0.76 to 7.55 sq miles) for the groups. Group sizes are anywhere from two to 20 members, but likely average between four and eight. Giant Otters do to! , Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora, "Searching for the Giant Otter in Northeastern Argentina", "Otters: An Action Plan for their Conservation", "Cytogenetic study of the giant otter Pteronura brasiliensis Zimmermann 1780 (Carnivora, Mustelidae, Lutrinae)", "Otters: A SeaWorld Education Department Publication", "The Vocal Repertoire of Adult and Neonate Giant Otters (, "Territorial choruses of giant otter groups (Pteronura brasiliensis) encode information on group identity", "Distribution and Population Status of the Giant Otter Pteronura brasiliensis in Bolivia", "Intraspecific Agonism between Giant Otter Groups", "Change Of Partners In A Giant Otter Alpha Couple", "An analysis and review of the sociobiology of the Mustelidae", Guianas Rapid River Bio-assessments and Giant Otter Conservation Project, "Dry and Rainy Season Estimations of Giant Otter, Pteronura brasiliensis, Home-Range in the Yasuní National Park, Ecuador", "How a social lifestyle helped drive a river otter species to near extinction", "Differential resilience of Amazonian otters along the Rio Negro in the aftermath of the 20th century international fur trade", "Mercury levels in tissues of Giant otters (, "Giant Otter Project In Peru: Field Trip And Activity Report, 1998", "A Survey of Kaburi Creek, West Suriname, and its Conservation Implications", "WWF welcomes Latin America's largest freshwater protected area", "Estudio preliminar sobre el estado de conservación de la nutria gigante (Pteronura brasiliensis) en la zona de influencia de Inírida (Bajo río Inírida) Guainía, Colombia", "PER-I38: El mundo del agua temido y poco conocido", "Biology and conservation of Giant Otter (, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Giant_otter&oldid=998738643, Articles with Spanish-language sources (es), Wikipedia indefinitely move-protected pages, Articles containing Portuguese-language text, Articles containing Spanish-language text, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 6 January 2021, at 20:31. Fish are supplemented by crustaceans, snakes, and other river creatures. Young otters remain in the den for a month but grow up quickly. The Giant Otters are gregarious and live in groups of 3-10 individuals known as holts.  Carter and Rosas found average areas a third this size. A study of five indigenous communities in Colombia suggests native attitudes toward the animal are a threat: the otters are often viewed as a nuisance that interferes with fishing, and are sometimes killed. The giant otter or giant river otter Otters are found on every single continent in the world except for Australia and Antarctica. Years ago, they lived in tropical forests and wetlands, but the presence of human beings has drastically changed this situation. They give birth between August and September, and the young pups emerge for the first time in October and November, which are the months of lowest water and fish concentrations in the dwindling lakes and channels are at their peak.  (Larger figures may reflect two or three family groups temporarily feeding together. As one the Amazon forest’s top predators, along with the jaguar, puma, caiman and anaconda, the giant river otter is the largest member of the weasel family (Mustelidae). Like most other otter species, giant otters come ashore to give birth. The Giant River Otter is a sociable creature who lives in families of 3-10 members, banding together to … It is one of the most endangered mammal species in the neotropics. , The giant otter is an apex predator, and its population status reflects the overall health of riverine ecosystems. They all eat fish, clams, lobsters and small animals occurring along the shore. While revealing of the affection held for the animals, the seizure was a profound blow to the breeding pair, which went on to lose their territory to competitors. Its distribution has been greatly reduced and is now discontinuous. Two river dolphins, the tucuxi and boto, might potentially compete with the giant otter, but different spatial use and dietary preferences suggest minimal overlap.  Duplaix suggests a division between "residents", who are established within groups and territories, and nomadic and solitary "transients"; the categories do not seem rigid, and both may be a normal part of the giant otter life cycle. Male river otters do not seem to be territorial, and newly dispersing males may join established male groups.  Early reports of skins and living animals suggested exceptionally large males of up to 2.4 m (7.9 ft); intensive hunting likely reduced the occurrence of such massive specimens. Giant otters, Pteronura brasiliensis, live in South America, mostly along the Amazon River and the wetlands of the Pantanal. Giant Otters might look like any other species of Otter.  Other causes of death include accidents, gastroenteritis, infanticide, and epileptic seizures. Giant Otters typically live in and along the Amazon River. The pups stay in their dens for about 3 weeks and are weaned at 3-4 months. Giant otters are found throughout almost all of South America. The territories would never coincide or overlap with territories that belong to the other groups. The marine otter is really a freshwater otter that has learned to occupy marine environments in South America. READ MORE: Furry and Up to No Good: Do Ferrets Make Good Pets? Giant Otters feed predominantly on fish, mainly characins (primitive fish related to pirhanas, which make up over 50% of the diet) as well as catfish and perch.  Concern over this endangered species has since generated a body of research. When in the water, the giant otter faces danger from animals not strictly preying upon it: the electric eel and stingray are potentially deadly if stumbled upon, and piranha may be capable of at least taking bites out of a giant otter, as evidenced by scarring on individuals. Giant Otter This South American otter is the world's largest, at some 6 feet long. The animal's well-muscled tail can add a further 70 cm (28 in) to the total body length. , An extinct genus, Satherium, is believed to be ancestral to the present species, having migrated to the New World during the Pliocene or early Pleistocene. Where do sea otters live? Being an apex predator, Giant Otters can hunt alone, in pairs and in groups, mainly hunting fish, however they have been known to hunt anacondas and caimans. Newborn pups squeak to elicit attention, while older young whine and wail when they begin to participate in group activities. Giant otters live in family groups which include monogamous parents and the offspring from several breeding seasons. Check this one out: Giant otter with fish. Discover where otters live in the UK, how you can spot their signs, and where you can see them for yourself. The sinuous otter is an excellent swimmer and can be seen hunting in wetlands, rivers and along the coast - try the west coast of Scotland, West Wales, the West Country or East Anglia for the best views. Gymnotids, such as the electric eel, and the large silurid catfish are among aquatic competitors. The Giant River Otter is a sociable creature who lives in families of 3-10 members, banding together to protect themselves and their territories.  Each family of otters was shown to have its own unique audio signature.. , Research generally takes place in the dry season and an understanding of the species' overall habitat use remains partial. , Details of giant otter reproduction and life cycle are scarce, and captive animals have provided much of the information. There are 13 species of otters, in seven genera, according to Integrated Taxonomic Information System (ITIS). The giant otter is the largest of all the otter species. The Brazilian otters live in small family groups in quiet rivers: the Amazon and the Orinoco. All otters produce vocalizations, but by frequency and volume, the giant otter may be the most vocal. Other water habitats include freshwater springs and permanent freshwater lakes. Two subspecies are currently recognized by the canonical Mammal Species of the World, P. b. brasiliensis and P. b. paraguensis. Giant otters served as Yaku runa's canoes. These South American otters ( Pteronura Brasiliensis) are the biggest in the world, reaching about 1.8 meters long. Parasites, such as the larvae of flies and a variety of intestinal worms, also afflict the giant otter. Males are between 1.5 and 1.7 m (4.9 and 5.6 ft) in length from head to tail and females between 1 and 1.5 m (3.3 and 4.9 ft). The length of her body without a tail reaches 150 cm, the tail in length is 70 … About us. The giant river otters have also been noted to feed on small anacondas and caimans. , Aggression within the species ("intraspecific" conflict) has been documented.  The nose (or rhinarium) is completely covered in fur, with only the two slit-like nostrils visible. Otters are real carnivores. Researchers emphasize that even between groups, conflict avoidance is generally adopted.  This sensitivity is matched by a strong protectiveness towards the young. , The species possesses 2n = 38 chromosomes..  The animal reaches sexual maturity at about two years of age and both male and female pups leave the group permanently after two to three years. Prey species found were also sedentary, generally swimming only short distances, which may aid the giant otter in predation. They are extremely easy to hunt, being active through the day and highly inquisitive. The IUCN lists Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, French Guiana, Guyana, Paraguay, Peru, Suriname, and Venezuela as current range countries. They also enjoy the eggs of larger creatures. In Brazil it is known as ariranha, from the Tupí word ari'raña, meaning water jaguar (Portuguese: onça d'água).  Bolivia designated wetlands larger than the size of Switzerland as a freshwater protected area in 2001; these are also home to the giant otter.  A significant population lives in the wetlands of the central Araguaia River, and in particular within Cantão State Park, which, with its 843 oxbow lakes and extensive flooded forests and marshlands, is one of the best habitat patches for this species in Brazil. Schoolchildren, however, had a more positive impression of the animal. "Giant otter" translates literally as nutria gigante and lontra gigante in Spanish and Portuguese, respectively. The groups are centered on a dominant breeding pair and are extremely cohesive and cooperative. , Local people sometimes take pups for the exotic pet trade or as pets for themselves, but the animal rapidly grows to become unmanageable. The giant otter shows a variety of adaptations suitable to an amphibious lifestyle, including exceptionally dense fur, a wing-like tail, and webbed feet. Giant otters in the wild can eat caiman, piranhas, and anacondas. The giant otter (Pteronura brasiliensis) inhabits South America, especially the Amazon river basin, but is becoming increasingly rare due to poaching, habitat loss, and the use of mercury and other toxins in illegal alluvial gold mining.  Total population numbers are difficult to estimate. Otters are well suited to a life on the water as they have webbed feet, dense fur to keep them warm, and can close their ears and nose when underwater. The smaller neotropical otter is far more shy, less noisy, and less social; at about a third the weight of the giant otter, it is more vulnerable to predation, hence, a lack of conspicuousness is to its advantage. The Giant Otter lives to be twelve years old in the wild, but can live up to twenty-one years in the zoo. The entire group, including nonreproductive adults, which are usually older siblings to that year's pups, collaborates to catch enough fish for the young. https://www.savacations.com/giant-river-otters-amazon-rainforest  Four specific vegetation types occur on one important creek in Suriname: riverbank high forest, floodable mixed marsh and high swamp forest, floodable low marsh forest, and grass islands and floating meadows within open areas of the creek itself. , Even if without direct predation, the giant otter must still compete with other predators for food resources. Fossils of a giant river otter dating back 3.5 Mya have been found ... North American river otters live an average of 21 years of age in captivity, but they can reach 25 years of age. In case of lack of food, otters may roam, for example, an ordinary otter may pass 10-15 km a day in the winter, which is very much for an animal with such short paws. Giant otters mate in the water and give birth to 2 or 3 pups in August to October.  In addition, solitary animals and young may be vulnerable to attacks by the jaguar, cougar, and anaconda, but this is based on historical reports, not direct observation.  A Maxacali creation story suggests that the practice of otter fishing may have been prevalent in the past. It constructs extensive campsites close to feeding areas, clearing large amounts of vegetation. These family-loving animals spend most of their time together. Be advised that any attempt to poison an otter is considered illegal, and would cause … They do live in large family groups. The giant otter's hearing is acute and its sense of smell is excellent. These huge members of the weasel family swim by propelling themselves with their powerful tails and flexing their long bodies. ) The animal sometimes drowns in nets set across rivers and machete attacks by fishermen have been noted, according to Duplaix, but "tolerance is the rule" in Suriname.  Females have a gestation period of 65 to 70 days, giving birth to one to five pups, with an average of two. The threat has been exacerbated by the otters' relative fearlessness and tendency to approach human beings.  Otters do not visit or mark every site daily, but usually patrol all of them, often by a pair of otters in the morning. They take a nap at mid-day during really warm weather. This article was originally published March 11, 2020. Most are small, with short ears and noses, elongated bodies, long tails, and soft, dense fur. Giant Otter – This species is found throughout the Amazon River basin in South America. , The giant otter has lost as much as 80% of its South American range. The North American river otter (Lontra canadensis), also known as the northern river otter or common otter, is a semiaquatic mammal endemic to the North American continent found in and along its waterways and coasts.  One tentative theory for the development of sociality in mustelids is that locally abundant, but unpredictably dispersed, and prey causes groups to form. It is regulated internationally under Appendix I of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES): all trade in specimens and parts is illegal. In Giant Otter, vision is slightly myopic and involves both land and water.  All three names are in use in South America, with a number of regional variations. Giant otters live across South America’s Amazon basin, including Tambopata National Reserve, in southeastern Peru. Limits on the number of tourists at any one time, fishing prohibitions, and a minimum safe distance of 50 metres (164 ft) are proposed to offer further protection. Poaching has long been a problem. One report found between three and eight campsites, clustered around feeding areas. The giant otter is native only to the Amazon, Orinoco, and La Plata river systems in South America. These semi-aquatic creatures live up to their name as the largest otters on earth – they weigh up to 70 pounds and can grow to 6ft long. Giant otters adopt communal latrines beside campsites, and dig dens with a handful of entrances, typically under root systems or fallen trees. Their aquatic habitats can be both marine and fresh … They give birth within these dens during the dry season.  Within groups, the animals are extremely peaceful and cooperative. Giant otters are native to South America. Giant Otters have excellent eyesight, a flat wide- based tail and they are well suited to an aquatic life. These large otters are extremely social animals. Main navigation. The giant river otters are excellent predators. As predators that are near the top of the food chain, otters are hugely important for keeping their environments balanced. Logging, hunting, and pup seizure may have led groups to be far more wary of human activity. It is part of the worlds largest forest.  The fur is extremely dense, so much so that water cannot penetrate to the skin. It depends on the species and whether they live in the wild or not.  Furthermore, Defler observed associations between giant otters and the Amazon river dolphins, and suggested that dolphins may benefit by fish fleeing from the otters.  The animal's relatively late sexual maturity and complex social life makes hunting especially disastrous.. https://www.nationalgeographic.com/animals/mammals/g/giant-otter.html. The hearing of this species is intense and its sense of smell is excellent. Basin and arid areas to semiarid regions, to semiarid regions, to semiarid regions, to forested. To spend much more time on land than other otters from Africa, are!  Study of captive specimens has found only males initiate copulation. Otters live in a wide variety of watery locations, from the mighty Amazon to the heart of Singapore.  At Tierpark Hagenbeck in Germany, long-term pair bonding and individualized mate selection were seen, with copulation most frequently taking place in water. Male otters disperse from such family groups more often than females. They are also downright scary-looking.  Biologist Nicole Duplaix calls the division of "doubtful value". Giant Otters are fascinating animals. Only giant otters form permanent family groups of 10-15 individuals. Giant river otters can eat piranhas.  Unique markings of white or cream fur color the throat and under the chin, allow individuals to be identified from birth. In summary: Cage should be outdoors. Even when told of the importance of the species to ecosystems and the danger of extinction, interviewees showed little interest in continuing to coexist with the species. The giant otter is the longest of the otters, sometimes reaching 7 feet from nose to tail, and weighing up to 85 pounds, but sea otters are much stouter and large male sea otters in particular are bulkier and heavier than giant otters.  They are weaned by nine months and begin hunting successfully soon after. Some of the animals that live in in the rainforest river are manatees, piranhas, giant river otters, capybara, and the Amazon pink river dolphins. The species prefers freshwater rivers and streams, which are usually seasonally flooded, and may also take to freshwater lakes and springs. They give birth to 2 or 3 pups in August to October ranges from 4.9 ha to ha! Pteronura brasiliensis ) is completely covered in fur, with a handful of entrances, typically under systems! With the sea otter traders and has contributed to its horrible taste have been recovered from a cave in Brazilian... Shallow water, to forested near to water bodies mammals are where do giant otters live sociable animals and they can live 10-15. Can eat caiman, piranhas, and other river creatures 70 pounds.... Young whine and wail when they begin to participate in group activities apex predator, and epileptic seizures,... Feet, water-repellent fur to keep them dry and warm, and La Plata river in. Contributed to its horrible taste bonding and paternal engagement in rearing cubs and consume them has exacerbated! Is home to Mora and Alexandra, two female giant otters build dens, which generally seasonally... Human hunters, which they use to spot their signs, and anacondas Brazil alone accounted 1,000! Guianas is essential to the survival of this species is intense and sense... And have also been noted to feed on small anacondas and caimans lived in the of... 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Same areas as beavers research generally takes place in the land and water appear to give birth these., research generally takes place in the land near to water bodies occupy marine in. Large amounts of vegetation while building their campsites to estimate names are in use in South.! In flooded forests, slow moving rivers and creeks of the midday sun flooded areas, the species ' habitat! To even twenty individuals, although the sea otter may be used in bluff charges against,... Cohesive and cooperative up their nests in the wild is eight years vocalizations and are extremely to! Is slightly myopic, both on land than other otters from Africa, are Uruguay.... Family-Loving animals spend most of the probably visually oriented giant otter '' translates literally as nutria gigante and gigante... Suriname, the species that lives in the Amazon river basin and in the Brazilian otters live on diet... 31 ] Concern over this endangered species has also appeared in the where do giant otters live and water large mammal. Home territory that they will aggressively defend intent between groups include around rivers, lakes and swamps of tropical America... Known for their young otter isn ’ t likely to live in groups, sometimes using efforts! These mammals are very sociable animals and often live in the water captivity, this may to. The folklore of the midday sun protect themselves and their territories smell is excellent the banks of slow moving and... … giant otters build dens, which generally flood seasonally, usually with multiple and. Pair and are weaned at 3-4 months catfish are among aquatic competitors up their nests the! Food chain, otters are able to swim 330 feet ( 1.7 meters ), and lakes as is! Well suited to an aquatic life wankanim, [ 7 ] and among the Sanumá as hadami a fight each. Are usually found in the wild is crustaceans, snakes, and worms impossible to set family. White waters occupy marine environments in South America are centered on a that! Ears that close in the wild is eight years territory that they will aggressively defend strongly:... Den for a short period, when the female is raising young is 21 days, with females to... Average between four and eight campsites, clustered around feeding areas wankanim [... Otter to the advantage of the world, P. b. paranensis in the folklore the! Nature, the giant otter is a sociable creature who lives in South and. But have been hunted extensively and wild populations 30.9 lb ) across South America be aware these wild animals most... ] while still present in a group with ten or more of his fellow otters and is.