Otters in Ratnagiri


Otters are considered Ambassadors of the Wetlands ecosystem and are indicator species and often play an important role in key predator species. In Maharashtra, Otters have been overlooked and have always been a lesser-known species. Growing concerns over forest destruction, shrinking of wetlands, and constant conversion of wetlands into developmental areas have pushed otters on the verge of local extinction

Findings: –

According to the Standard Otter Survey Method used for assessing the estimated proportion of the length of Jog River, Anjarle, and Made River, Made occupied by Smooth-coated Otter was 76.2% and 47.6% respectively.

Objective 2 was the identification of threats associated with the otter population. For otters, the requirement to breed, rest and defecate is vital, this role is played by the mangrove forest offering a place to carry out its activities. Places like sandbanks, soil, or even leaf litter act as grooming and defecation areas for otters present along the river banks. Due to the Conversion of wetlands into agricultural areas, and illegal sand-mining, these areas are shrinking leaving few areas for otters