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Otter Family Have a Check-Up at Adelaide Zoo

Posted By : The Animal Facts Editorial Team

Date: August 6, 2021 1:45 am

Otter Family Health Check Adelaide Zoo

An Asian small-clawed otter is pictured undergoing an x-ray during its health check at the Adelaide Zoo veterinary clinic.

Photo Credit: Zoos SA

Adelaide Zoo have undertaken a health check on its six strong otter romp (family). They each took turns to visit the Animal Health Centre where they were looked over by veterinarian David McLelland.

Each of the group underwent a thorough exam with no major issues found. "We took the opportunity to carry out general health checks, including a blood tests, a dental exam, and x-rays," said David. They also received vaccinations and contraceptive implants.

Otter Family Health Check Adelaide Zoo

One of the Asian small-clawed otters during its health check at Adelaide Zoo

Photo Credit: Zoos SA

David added, “The first on the table was Kalaya, mum to four offspring at Adelaide Zoo. The six year old was in good condition but a few of her teeth needed a descaling to prevent them from decaying.


Otters love to eat fish and use their claws to help clean their teeth. While Kalaya had done a great job of caring for her teeth she had missed a bit, so we helped her out,” finished David.

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Adelaide Zoo provide a home for six Asian small-clawed otters. This includes parents Kalaya and Bao. In February 2019 they welcomed their first two pups, Rama and Mali followed by Riaan and Mani in March 2020.

Asian small-clawed otters are the world's smallest species of otter. They move with ease between water and land and spend their time hunting for crustaceans or molluscs.

An otter family, or romp as they are known will communicate using 12 distinct calls.

Otter Family Health Check Adelaide Zoo

One of the latest otter pups is pictured in its enclosure at Adelaide Zoo

Photo Credit: Zoos SA

The Asian small-clawed otter is considered vulnerable in the wild. They are threatened by destruction of their habitat which is being converted for aquaculture. Humans also persecute them due to a perception they steal prawns from farmers.

Learn more about Small-Clawed Otters here – Small-Clawed Otter Fact File | The Animal Facts

Learn more about the Adelaide Zoo on their website – Adelaide Zoo

Otter Family Health Check Adelaide Zoo

One of the Asian small-clawed otters during its health check at Adelaide Zoo

Photo Credit: Zoos SA

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