The river otter is scarce throughout Canada, with the marked exception of the BC coast. This adorable member of the weasel family is amphibious, with a streamlined body and tail, short legs, webbed feet, and dense waterproof fur equipping it to hunt in water. Unlike other fish-eating mammals like seals and whales, otters do not have thick blubber but only a thin layer of fat under its skin. This requires them to get out of frigid waters to rest, find shelter, and travel between different lakes and streams to find food. All of these challenges for an otter are greater during the winter. Otters can only swim for about 100 m from a source of air, and when traveling above ground and across snow-covered land or ice, they must be as efficient as possible to reduce exposure to cold and predators.
Kids who sign up to be Earth Rangers do so because they care about animals and the environment. Your adoption will help Earth Rangers support Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) Canada as they work to investigate the crucial areas of open water and cavities along the Yukon’s lake shore, which provide access beneath the ice. These areas support the majority of the Yukon’s species, but are also where most human development and recreational activities are focused and where there are very few protected areas. By identifying the routes that river otters take between waterways, researchers will be able to produce best management practices for the conservation of otter habitats as well as conserving and connecting wetland ecosystems.
Today’s Activity: One Way, Or an Otter… You’re Gonna Find These Words!
Can you find all the words hidden in the puzzle below? For added challenge, try doing it while you float on your back in the bathtub, just like an otter! You can put it in a page protector, tape it shut and circle the words you find with a whiteboard marker! Getting wet isn’t your style? Try doing it holding hands with a family member on the floor in the living room. Get creative with how you chill out otter style while doing this weaselly word search.
Find word #12 (Otter), move one column to the left and read from top to bottom – this is your code for a special Bonus in the App.
Don’t forget to check us out on Facebook Live today at 2pm!
Which animal ambassador will be get to learn about? Tune in to find out!