This is sure to brighten up anyone’s day!
Smooth-coated otters, one of the four species of otters that can be found in Malaysia, were found in one of the lakes at Subang Ria Park in Subang Jaya.
Photo: Malay Mail
SJ Echo, a community webpage for the people of Subang Jaya, reported that residents who jog around the lake area were delighted at the sight of the otters swimming and feeding in the freshwater lake over the last few months.
The website also interviewed Prof Shahrul Anuar of USM School of Biological Sciences, who explained the reasons behind the arrival of otters, which he says may be attributed to the robust environment and the readily available food source around the lake area as they need clean water and enough food to survive.
According to Dr. Shahrul, otters are protected under the Wildlife Conservation Act 2010 in Malaysia, which means that hunting or keeping of otters as pets without permits is punishable by a maximum fine of RM100,000 and/or a maximum jail sentence of three years in Peninsular Malaysia.
“Don’t disturb them. Don’t try and feed them especially with human food. Just observe them from a distance and enjoy their presence,” he said.
Previously, the Malay Mail had also reported a few sightings of otters around Klang Valley.
Last year, otters were also spotted at a lake at the Taman Tasik Metropolitan Kajang in Kuala Lumpur, believed to also be of the same species of otters found in Subang.
Malaysia Airport Holdings Berhad (MAHB) also revealed that a plane spotter had sighted otters near Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) in Sepang, Selangor last October while just last month a jogger spotted two smooth-coated otters at the Taman Tasik Perdana or Perdana Botanical Garden in Kuala Lumpur.
Source: Malay Mail
As for otters in Subang, Dr. Shahrul praised the park owners for making the park habitable by otters as he reminded the public to keep the lake clean and to not attempt to feed the others.
Hopefully, if we follow his advice, more adorable otters can be found in our lakes!
By: Siti Farhana Sheikh Yahya