Meet Freyja, our newest North American female otter

January 16, 2013

Freyja, our newest North American female otter, is estimated to be about 8 months old. She was found near a Florida road and taken to The Emerald Coast Wildlife Refuge after efforts to locate her family yielded no results. While at the center, she became imprinted on humans and was unable to be released back into the wild.Freyja, named after the Norse goddess of fertility, came to the Pueblo Zoo in November. She was introduced to our three other otters - Odin, Thor and Thelma - and quickly became a member of the family. According to our animal care coordinator, Melanie Pococke, it’s very rare that two unrelated female otters get along.Our oldest female otter, Thelma, immediately bonded with Freyja and has been teaching her everything. Since Freyja was just a baby when she was found, she never learned to be an otter. Thelma has been teaching her to swim and how to interact with the other otters. In the wild, mother otters teach their pups everything from swimming to hunting to having babies of their own.Otters have a breeding season that is dependent on the region from which they live. Males and females must be on the same breeding cycle to have any kind of successful breeding. Keepers are hopeful that Freyja and the males will have similar breeding seasons, since she came from the same southern region.

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