3 Otters, 3 Weeks. All dead.

It is a bit weird, uploading a photo of a dead animal to my blog.

But I found this sight profoundly depressing.

In the last three weeks I have seen three otters, each of them lying beside the road, the victim of road-kill.

Yesterday, we finished our regular yoga class and I started the fifty mile ride home. Ten miles in, found this.

It quite upset my karma. I can't explain why, but the dead otter dominated my thoughts for the remainer of the ride. What sort of life had it had? It was large and clearly well fed. Would there be a family wondering where it was?

Seeing three of them in three weeks might be coincidence. Most likely, it's a 'reporting' issue.

I'm doing more road cycling, so I am inevitably going to notice more things by the side of the road. Usually it's Irn Bru and Red Bull cans (there's a survey to be done there - counting which can / bottle is jetissoned most).

I didn't photograph the other two as that also seemed a bit weird. But this one I wanted to record. Even now I still can't help thinking about this creature and the life it lived.


Anonymous said...

Thats pretty grim Simon,

Did you find the bodies in the same or nearby locations?
It may indeed be worth reporting it to the local SNH officer and the council.
Ive seen a few otter crossing warning signs before-(have even seen a toad crossing warning sign). Could help to alert drivers.

This all could however be a reflection of the overall health of the otter population- more around therefore more getting run over. Ive certainly seen alot more of them on the sea in last 5-6 year- still its horrible to see a healthy wild animal killed by a car.

Simon said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Simon said...

Hi Tony,
I wondered about reporting them, but could only find a reporting scheme in England. The locations were a long way apart.

I think you're right about the general health of the population though. On Monday The One Show (guilty pleasure) reported an otter caught on CCTV strolling through Durham City after dark, and made the point;

more rain = higher rivers = more fish = more otters.

Not entirely sure the equation stacks up, but it's good to know most are doing well.

Cheerier stuff tomorrow!


Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

Maybe IOSF (linked above) would be a worthy pod-cast, given how mesmerised most paddlers are when seeing an otter. They would obviously possibly benefit from the publicity and paddlers reporting sightings.