John Ross Ferrara / Wednesday, July 31 @ 2:55 p.m. / Animals, Oregon, Wildlife
(VIDEO) Orphaned Otter Pup Rescued From Gold Beach Construction Site Finds New Family at Oregon Zoo
Videos of Flora and Hobson provided by the Oregon Zoo.
An orphaned otter pup that was discovered wandering a construction site near Gold Beach in May seems to have found a happy home at the Oregon Zoo in Portland.
The otter was first picked up by Oregon State Police before she was taken to the Wildlife Images Rehabilitation & Education Center in Jospehine County, where she was determied to be about 6 weeks old and weigh 3.5 pounds.
The otter, now named Flora, was then transfered to the Oregon Zoo where she was paired with a male orphaned otter pup named Hobson.
"They started playing as soon as we introduced them," Oregon Zoo veterinarian Kelly Flaminio was quoted as saying in a press release. "The smaller pup ate like a champ, and is more interested in solid foods than formula. The female only wanted to play."
While the zoo hoped it could one day release the otters back into the wild, zoo employee Amy Cutting says that is no longer an option.
"Our preference for them would have been rehab and release," Cutting said. "However, wildlife officials said that was not possible so we're happy we could give them a second chance. We have a good track record with orphaned otters. Our adult otter, Tilly, was also rescued as a pup, and she's helped raise an orphan as well."
After receiving care at the zoo's veterinary center, the pups were placed in the zoo's Cascade Stream and Pond area with Tilly last week, where the former orphans are repotedly getting along swimingly.
"The pups started following Tilly around right away," Oregon Zoo senior otter keeper Julie Christie said. "It's wonderful for them to have her as a mentor. She's been showing them the ropes and the three of them are having so much fun."