Posted on 07th September 2020 by Media Relations
Taronga Zoo Sydney’s romp of five Asian Small-clawed Otters have celebrated ‘Fishicle Friday’, happily devouring specially made fishicles placed into their exhibit by keepers.
Enticed by the fishy smells, the otters headed straight for the fishicles in attempt to free the tasty fillets, even taking them for a spin underwater and using their dextrous claws to pry at the fish.
In the wild, otters are opportunistic eaters, so keepers at Taronga like to replicate that natural variation with a variety of different food sources, as well as providing new ways for the otters to receive their food.
Enrichment is a really important part of the lives of the animals at Taronga Zoo and gives them an opportunity to display natural behaviours they would use in the wild, whether that is playing or foraging for food.
Fishicles are just one of the special treats provided by the otters by their keepers as part of a 30-day enrichment schedule that allows them to hone natural behaviours.
Asian small-clawed otters are the smallest species of the 13 species of otter, with adults males weighing in around 5kg.
Asian Small-clawed Otters are classified as vulnerable on the IUCN Red List, with wild populations heavily impacted by the illegal pet trade as well as habitat loss.