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sleeping Mo

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9 week old river otter napping today. Today he followed mom into water and dove under on his own first time. See video of learning to swim at oregon zoo's youtube channel.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b4ELyQQp_yU

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beatlecarol

Hi Gail, many animals reject just because they don't understand what it is since we all learn from watching others in the pack. Rose didn't know what Sam was, never having seen a birth, and when he fell, the placenta didn't and she tried to kick it away, not realizing it was a baby. Most times, hearing crying triggers the instinct to care and it did with her. With every bird I've had who hatched babies, first time they heard cries, they fed each other, losing their first born. One ran away when hers hatched - she knew to sit on it but didn't know what was coming next! I once had a young cat reject her first litter until I held her down and she felt them nurse.
Lily's been my avatar since Dec - looking for an old photo of Daffy to scan. I hope you and your cat clan are doing well.

octomom

Hi Carol, instincts are amazing indeed, but I wonder what makes certain animals reject their newborns, even when they're healthy. I know of a lot of breeds that abandon their healthy young, but I've never heard of an elephant having that behavior. I'm glad I didn't see the really scary part. What I saw was alarming enough, even though I know it's necessary. I see you changed your avatar to Lily!

beatlecarol

The video doesn't even show how scary it looked most of the time. She would suddenly grab him and dive deep and keep him under, helpless hanging from her mouth, for the length of the pool. She would let go and he quickly grabbed her tail to get his head out for air and hitch a ride. It took a week, but he learned, and yet, yesterday when he fell off a float she reached in and pulled him back out, always making sure he is safe. Nature's instincts are endlessly amazing.

octomom

Faye, it is a must watch. It looks a little alarming because mom has to drag baby around to teach him to swim and go underwater, but it's not.

Carol, thanks so much for posting this.

gemstone

Otters are such fun. Must watch the video. :)))