Via James Brooks
[Kodiak, Alaska, U.S.]
In October we told you about Vancouver Aquarium’s efforts to save a sea otter with gunshot wounds; we’re happy to report that the otter, now named Walter, has continued to recover — and has an appropriately voracious appetite!
The aquarium writes:
This is Walter, a sea otter with a hearty appetite. He was rescued in Tofino, British Columbia in October 2013 after being shot. Walter currently resides at the Vancouver Aquarium Marine Mammal Rescue Centre where he is undergoing rehabilitation.
Here, he’s getting fed clams and shrimp. They also eat mussels, chitons, snails, prawns, crabs, abalone, sea urchins, squid, sea star arms and sometimes fishes.
Walter is not unique in using touch to sense where the food is — sea otters feel for food along the ocean bottom with their sensitive front paws. But this sense is especially important for Walter because he is now blind due to his injury.
Sea otters, unlike other marine mammals, don’t have a layer of blubber. Instead, they have dense fur and eat up to 30% of their body weight in food every day just to create energy to keep warm.
With that said, bon appétit!
Via Monterey Bay Aquarium, photo © Margaret Cheng