Friday, March 23, 2007

First Otter of the Year!

This morning around 8:30 as Holly and I were riding our bikes to work we noticed some strange movement under the surface of Amazon Creek. We were on the Fern Ridge Bike Path crossing underneath W. 11th. We knew immediately that it wasn't just another nutria-whatever it was was fully submerged and swimming away from us, upstream. We followed it upstream until it poked its head out of the water...sure enough it was a river otter! Charlie Quinn, who works for The Nature Conservancy, happened to be riding by and joined us as we watched for another glimpse. Otters are smart, and pretty skittish, so once it saw and heard us it was reluctant to show its head again. But we waited it out and sure enough got another couple quick glances.

As we had to get to work, we continued downstream, where the otter was now headed. We eventually got far ahead of it, but looked back in time to see several mallards fly quickly out of the creek corridor-no doubt alarmed by the predator heading their way.

Several folks from WREN were seeing otters regularly last summer and fall, but this was the first sighting in several months! What a great way to start the day!

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