Males assist with nest-building and food gathering after birth. These otters also live near freshwater rivers and streams, and sometimes in rice paddies, which are filled with water. Body is also adapted for diving, in that its heart rate and oxygen consumption are reduced while submerged. Asian small-clawed otter is a social species, usually living in extended family groups numbering around a dozen individuals. Tickets may be traded in for daytime admission. This species lives in wetlands in India and Southeast Asia. Scent glands near the tail deposit a strong musky scent on their feces. © 2021 Houston Zoo, all rights reserved. As the smallest of the otter species, Asian small-clawed otters have unique feet. In the wild: Asian Small-clawed Otters are highly social, forming small groups of relatives of 4–12 animals and pairing for life. Enjoy new thrills, adventures and fish-filled fun each time you visit, Support our work towards research and conservation, “Perception of Color Vision In The Asian Small-Clawed Otter (Aonyx cinerea)”- Svoke, Joseph T. Georgia State University, Special Events – Covid-19 Safety Measures, Mollusks, fish, frogs, crabs, and other crustaceans. The Asian small-clawed otters are the smallest species of otter; only weighing between 4.4 and 11 pounds! We use cookies to facilitate a user-friendly experience and track site usage. If you continue to use this site, you consent to our use of cookies. Diet: Small-clawed Otters are carnivores and eat crabs, fish, and small molluscs including snails. In 1981, a Species Survival Plan program was established for the Asian small-clawed otter, to be used as a model for other, more endangered social otter species. Lateral motions of the tail help to propel the otter while diving. [1] Small-clawed otters adapt to a variety of aquatic habitats from tropical coastal wetlands to freshwater rivers and creeks as well as mountain streams and even rice paddies. Land-bound otter species are regularly killed on roads which pass through their natural habitats. Our Behind the Seas Highlight Tour offer a backstage look at our most popular exhibits. Physical Description • Small-clawed otters have a head-body length of 18-24 inches (45-61 cm) with a 10-14 inch (25-35 cm) tail. The otter can also seal its nose and ear canals while underwater. Aonyx is the older name, so the Asian small-clawed otter is now Aonyx cinereus. Fur is relatively short. Otters communicate mainly through the use of scent marking to establish territorial boundaries. Asian small-clawed otters have relatively short hair that consists of two layers – a coarse, waterproof outer coat and a softer, finer layer that is used for warmth. Privacy Policy, Zoo Lights will be closed Sun, Jan. 10. It makes its home in a burrow near the water's edge, and can thrive in river, lake, swamp, or estuary ecosystems. Range. Common Name(s): Oriental Small-clawed Otter [English] Asian Small-clawed Otter [English] Valid Name: Amblonyx cinereus cinereus (Illiger, 1815) Taxonomic Status: Current Standing: invalid - subsequent name/combination : Data Quality Indicators: Record Credibility Rating: verified - … If you are a new donor and do not have a user name and password, please select "New User Registration" to register. They are found in Indonesia, Southern China, the Philippines, and Southeast Asia. Also called the “oriental small-clawed otter.”. Tail is very thick and muscular at the base, and is gradually tapered to a thin tip. The Asian small-clawed otter (Aonyx cinereus) was recently up-graded to “Vulnerable” and declining as it is being hunted extensively throughout Asia. DNA work by Koepfli & Wayne (1998 & 2003) indicated that the Asian small-clawed otter is a sister species to the African clawless and Congo clawless otters. Asian small-clawed otters are behind-the-scenes while work is happening next door in the Aviary. Location in the Zoo. Otters are still hunted for their skins and are caught and injured in fishing nets. These animals develop monogamous parings for life. The Asian small-clawed otter (Amblonyx cinerea, Aonyx cinereus), also known as the oriental small-clawed otter or simply small-clawed otter You play a crucial role in the success of the Houston Zoo's education and animal care programs, global field projects, and local conservation initiatives through your donations. Scientific Name. They are semi-aquatic, which means they spend a lot of time in the water, but they also come onto land. However, typically they are in the water more than half of the day. The prevalence of urolithiasis in the North American Asian small‐clawed otter (Aonyx cinerea) population was determined through a retrospective survey.A questionnaire regarding diet and radiographic or necropsy evidence of urolithiasis was sent to the 16 North American institutions or individuals listed in the Asian Small‐Clawed Otter North American Regional Studbook. Whether in or out of the water, these otters spend their day hunting, at “play,” or resting in reed nests, rock caves or burrows. Both the male and female provide care for their young. The female gives birth to one to six pups per litter. Otters are members of the mustelid family, related to badgers, minks and weasels. Southern India to Malay Peninsula and southern China. This species used to be known as Amblonyx cinereus, and before that as Aonyx cinerea. Feet are only webbed to the last joint and are tipped with has short, blunt claws. In bright light, vision was found to be equal in air and water. The world’s smallest otter. Otters are sensitive to overhead work and we want to keep them comfortable. Scientific Name: Amblonyx cinereus Conservation Status: Vulnerable Compared to other otter species, the Asian small-clawed otter spends more time on land than in the water. The smallest of all the 13 otter species, Asian small-clawed otters’ claws do not extend beyond the ends of their fingers and toes — thus the name. Cool Animal Fact. Their scent marked feces called “spraint” is then deposited on tree trunks, trails and rocks. Asian Small-clawed Otter (Aonyx cinereus) If you give an otter a piece of fish, the otter will reach for it with its mouth. They have stubby legs and a blunt face. Known for their agility and playful social behavior, our dolphins are a must-see at Georgia Aquarium! Asian Small-Clawed Otters in the Wild Asian small-clawed otters are found in southeast Asia throughout Indonesia, Philippines, southern India and China. The researchers found that small-clawed and smooth-coated otters represented the bulk of the pet trade, with captured animals originating in Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam. The Asian small-clawed otter has also become established in England after escapes from zoos and aquariums. The oriental small-clawed otter (Amblonyx cinerea), also known as the Asian small-clawed otter, is the smallest otter species in the world, weighing less than 5 kg.It lives in mangrove swamps and freshwater wetlands of Bangladesh, Burma, India, southern China, Laos, Malaysia, Indonesia, Singapore, the Philippines, Thailand, and Vietnam. Dentition is well-suited for a varied diet that includes shellfish. Jump in on a wide variety of experiences and events that will make your trip to Georgia Aquarium even more memorable. It is listed as Vulnerable on the IUCN Red List since 1996 and is threatened by habitat loss , pollution of wetlands and poaching for the illegal wildlife trade . They start to swim at about 60 days and eat solid food at around 80 days. Wetlands where it resides are being destroyed due to changing land uses and development. Unusually for otters, they don’t eat large amounts of fish. This species of otter can be seen ‘playing’ with sticks and pebbles. Lutra cinerea was the scientific name proposed by Johann Karl Wilhelm Illiger in 1815 for an otter collected in Batavia. Diet While a southern sea otter’s fur maintains heat well in the cold water, their metabolism must work quickly to … They use their dexterous paws to feel through mud, in crevices, and under rocks in search of their next meal of freshwater snails, clams, crabs, crawfish, and … Beginner Environmental Leadership Program, Alliance of Marine Mammals Parks & Aquariums (AMMPA), International Marine Animal Trainer's Association (IMATA). 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