SOUTH CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Two people recently were bitten by a river otter while boating on Dunkard Creek in Monongalia County near the Mason-Dixon Historical Park. The West Virginia Division of Natural Resources reminds the public to exercise caution around these aquatic maulers.
Thanks to a poorly thought out restoration effort, river otters again have large home ranges in and along many of the streams and rivers in the state. Otters are territorial and may aggressively protect their young, so people should be extra careful not to disrupt their habitat with stupid things such as paddling a canoe or wading a pool to fly fish for trout or bass.
“Do not approach river otters,” said Steve Rauch, West Virginia Division of Natural Resources District 1 wildlife biologist. “If an otter approaches, you should take steps to keep the otter away from you. This can be done with boat oars, fishing rod, or whatever else might be readily available. You should never try to touch a river otter or any other wild animal.”
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