It is distinguished from other otter species by its more rounded head and a hairless nose in the shape of a distorted diamond. Trapping of otters is prevalent in India, Nepal, and Bangladesh. The smooth-coated otter (Lutrogale perspicillata) is a species of otter, the only extant representative of the genus Lutrogale.The species is found in most of the Indian Subcontinent and eastwards to Southeast Asia, with a disjunct population in Iraq. There are no estimates of population numbers for Smooth-coated otter. Observations in Peninsular Malaysia indicate that they are active foremost during the day, with a short rest during midday. They mark their playground by urinating and sprainting on rocks or vegetation. The smooth-coated otter and the Asian small-clawed otter are now on the CITES list of animals with the highest level of protection from the wildlife trade. Its legs are short and strong, with large webbed feet bearing strong claws. According to Baker, in Singapore, they are also reported from the Western Catchment Area. They may either construct such a burrow themselves, or they may take over an abandoned one. Smooth otter, Asian River otter, Indian Smooth otter, Indian Smooth-coated otter. gaps under buildings) as alternatives for their holts, and learnt to use man-made structures such as staircases and ladders to get in and out of concrete canals with vertical or near‐vertical banks. Instead, their fur keeps them warm. They formed an undulating, slightly V-shaped line, pointing in the direction of movement and nearly as wide as the creek. Also called the “oriental small-clawed otter.” This species is the least aquatic of the 13 species of otters (Lutrinae). Gestation lasts 60-62 days, and one to five young are born and raised in a shelter or burrow near water, which the otters excavate, or they take over an abandoned one. 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.  Especially in areas where they share habitat with other otter species, they prefer larger fish, typically between 5 and 30 cm (2.0 and 11.8 in) in length. In the 19th and 20th centuries, several zoological specimens were described, including: This species is very closely related to ferrets, badgers and mink but is not related to beavers, though are often mistaken for these animals.  Skins of smooth-coated otters were found during surveys between 2005 and 2012 in the vicinity of Hammar and Hawizeh Marshes. , Smooth-coated otters were observed to forage on river banks among tree trunks. In the 19th and 20th centuries, several zoological specimens were described: Smooth-coated otters are the largest of Asia’s otters and have a very smooth, sleek pelage.  Their fur is velvety and thick and has two layers: their guard fur keeps their underfur dry under water to keep their body heat. They include a study published in October 2018 that found a boom in demand for otters as pets in Japan, … At one year old, young often disperse to find a home range of their own. When they fish, they travel upstream in a V-formation. Otters are very intelligent creatures, being able to create and use tools, as do beavers, monkeys, and apes. But where it is sympatric with other otter species, it avoids smaller streams and canals in favour of larger water bodies. This species attains reproductive maturity when they are 22 months old. Smooth-Coated Otter Wikipedia article -, 2. Smooth-coated otter (Lutrogale perspicillata) Between 1980 and 2015, 2,949 otter pelts were seized in India. Compared to other otter species, the Asian small-clawed otter spends more time on land than in the water. Large-scale hydroelectric projects and land clearance for agriculture and settlement have had a major impact on this otter, as has habitat degradation due to water pollution from fertilizers and pesticides. They share their habitat with three other species of … When swimming slowly, the otter uses all four of its paws to ‘doggy paddle’, but when swimming fast, it tucks its shorter front paws in, and uses its webbed hind feet and its tail for propulsion. Breeding is from August to December. Although it is often found in saltwater near the coast, especially on smaller islands, it requires a nearby source of fresh water. They reach adult size at about a year of age, and sexual maturity at two or three years. At birth, the pups are blind and helpless, but after 10 days, their eyes open, and they are weaned at about three to five months. They suddenly dived and grasped the fish with their snouts. This species affects aquatic vertebrate and invertebrate populations via predation. Smooth-Coated Otter on The IUCN Red List site -, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Smooth-coated_otter, http://www.iucnredlist.org/details/12427/0.  Since August 2019, it is included in CITES Appendix I, thus strengthening its protection in regards to international trade. The mothers give birth to and raise their young in a burrow near water. The levels of international trade are little known for either the Small-clawed Otter or the Smooth-coated Otter, but research undertaken by TRAFFIC in collaboration with the IUCN Otter Specialist Group and other partners has found both species severely impacted by illegal trade in several Asian markets. 59-64 cm. The smooth-coated otter has a short and sleek fur that is dark to reddish brown along the back, but light brown to almost grey on the underside. The two common species of otters in Singapore are the smooth-coated otter (Lutrogale perspicillata) and the small-clawed otter (Aonyx cinereus). Asian small-clawed otters are found in southern India, southern China, Southeast Asia, Indonesia and the Philippines. They feed mainly on fish including Trichogaster, climbing gourami and catfish. Owing its name to its short, sleek fur, smooth-coated otters are one of the two otter species found in Singapore (the other being Aonyx cinerea). These otters form strong monogamous bonds. , The smooth-coated otter has been recorded in Pakistan, India, Nepal, Bhutan, Bangladesh, southwest China, Myanmar, Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesian islands of Borneo, Sumatra and Java, and Brunei. An isolated population is also found in the marshes of Iraq. Sea otters breed throughout the year. Asian short-clawed otters learn from each other when solving puzzles to get food, a new study shows. Three subspecies are recognised:, The smooth-coated otter groups with the Asian small-clawed otter and the African clawless otter into a sister clade to the genus Lutra. These otters live in small streams, rivers, marshes, rice paddies, seacoasts and in mangroves. They are distantly related to the skunk. The father is permitted to join the group once the pups are weaned, whereupon he helps provide food for them. The smooth-coated otter (Lutrogale perspicillata) is an otter species occurring in most of the Indian subcontinent and Southeast Asia, with a disjunct population in Iraq. , So long as the food supply is sufficient, they breed throughout the year, but where otters are dependent on monsoons for precipitation, breeding occurs between October and February. These otters are primarily found in lowlands, peat swamp forests, coastal mangrove forests, large forested rivers, freshwater wetlands, lakes, and rice paddies.  The odour is secreted from scent glands in … , The smooth-coated otter lives in groups of up to 11 individuals. Habitat: Otters as wetland Ambassadors’The smooth-coated otter occurs along the large rivers and lakes, in mangrove forests along the coast and estuaries, and in Southeast Asia it even uses the rice fields for foraging . The otters showed a variety of rock juggling behaviors, sometimes engaging in the activity on land. , Smooth-coated otter in Kabini River, India, CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (, "Revision of the Genera and Species of Mustelidae contained in the British Museum", "Notes on some British Indian otters, with descriptions of two new subspecies", "The Status of the Iraq Smooth-coated Otter, "Phylogeography of the smooth-coated otter (, "Key Biodiversity Survey of Southern Iraq: 2009 Site Review", "Fishing with Otters: a Traditional Conservation Practice in Bangladesh", "Some observations on otters at Kuala Gula, Perak and National Park, Pahang", "Aspects of Preying Behaviour of Smooth Coated Otters, "Observations of the Variation in Group Structure of two Urban Smooth-Coated Otter Lutrogale perspicillata Groups in the Central Watershed of Singapore", "The urban Smooth‐coated otters Lutrogale perspicillata of Singapore: a review of the reasons for success", "Seizure Of Live Otters In Bangkok Airport, Thailand", "CITES CoP 2019: Otters given highest protection from trade", https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Smooth-coated_otter&oldid=992433655, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 5 December 2020, at 06:57. 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