SINGAPORE - An otter pup has been spotted at Pasir Ris Park with a deep cut on its torso from what appears to be a wire around its body, with the Otter Working Group planning an intervention this week.
A photo of the otter, with what seems to be a metal wire around its body, was posted on the OtterWatch Facebook page by Abel Yeo on Monday (Oct 30).
The area around the wound showed pink, exposed flesh.
Mr Yeo said he watched the pup for half an hour and it was still swimming and eating well.
Veteran otter watcher Jeffery Teo, who is part of the Otter Working Group, told The Straits Times that the group received reports of sightings of this injured pup about two weeks ago, but this was the first up-close look.
Along with the Animal Concerns Research & Education Society (Acres) and other agencies, the group plans to track the otter and intervene this week.
Mr Teo did not elaborate on what actions would be taken, as the group is still making plans.
The pup, which was born around February or March this year, is part of a family of nine or 10 that is known as the Changi family. They frequent areas such as Pasir Ris and Lorong Halus and are more wary of humans compared with the popular Bishan family.
On Facebook, some speculated the wire seen around the pup's body could be a fishing line, but Mr Teo said: "We don't know what it is. It looks like a metal wire."
Fellow otter watcher Nick Soo shared the post on Facebook, asking for information.
A veterinary pathologist at Wildlife Reserves Singapore, Mr Chia-Da Hsu, left a comment saying the pup could "die due to septicemia (a bloodstream infection) or the band cut into the belly".
However, he added that it would be dangerous to remove the pup from the group, and it would be hard to return him to the family.
The Otter Working Group is a volunteer group set up with several government agencies including the National Parks Board, the Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority and PUB last year.
In June this year, a dead otter was found in a cage along the Marina Promenade, and a man was caught setting traps in the area that same day.