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24 April 2018 - Uisge on the move

Submitted by: Grace

This morning Uisge moved up to one of the croft pens. He is a very big boy now and really needed more space and a decent pool.

As you can see he quickly began exploring his new home and was quick to investigate the pool.

Uisge move

Uisge in water

This afternoon we have to clean out his outside nursery pen and then Mel can move in there.

16 April 2018 - Last day of the Laos workshop

Submitted by: Grace

Today is our first day back in the office after the Laos otter training workshop. We are delighted to say that it was a great success.

All of the participants were very keen to learn more about otters - their ecology, conservation, and threats, including, of course, the illegal wildlife trade. And there was a unanimous vote to set up a Laos Otter Network with Mr Chipasong Senthammavong, from the Wildlife Management Division of the General department of Forestry, as the coordinator.

Agreeing to network
© Jung-Tai Chao

All participants were awarded certificates to demonstrate their commitment to the Network and the future of otter conservation.


Paul and I stayed on for a few days but before we left for home on Saturday morning we met again with Mr Asoka Rasphone, Director of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. He was a major aide in helping to get the workshop going right from the beginning and ironed out many wrinkles of bureaucracy on our behalf! We had met up with him on the afternoon before the workshop to give him the final plans and so he wanted an update on how things actually went. He was delighted to hear of the progress and the new network and he is very enthusiastic to help wherever he can.

This was a great end to the workshop but we are all confident that otter conservation in this beautiful country will now go forwards.

As one participant put it as we closed the session, "This is not the end - it is the beginning".

The full report will be out in due course.

11 April 2018 - Meet Mel from the Scottish Borders

Submitted by: Helen

Towards the end of March we were contacted by Shona from Arthurshiel Rescue Centre at St Boswells in the Scottish Borders.

A young otter cub had been found alone and crying in the garden of a house near Duns. It was left for most of the day in the hope that the mother would return for it, but eventually had to be picked up and was taken to Shona to be cared for. She did a wonderful job and soon the little animal, now named Mel, was strong enough to be transferred to IOSF on Skye for long-term care.

As luck would have it, Janet was actually visiting the Borders so was able to bring the cub back up to Skye with her. Mel has now settled into one of our cub units and has a very good appetite and a bit of a temper!

You can adopt Mel, or one of the other otters we care for, at the Otter Shop by clicking here

06 April 2018 - Laos Workshop - Day Three

Submitted by: Ben

This morning we have been discussing in small groups how we can go further with otter conservation in Laos.

Laos Day 3

05 April 2018 - Laos Workshop - Day Two

Submitted by: Ben

Day 2 arrived as headed off by boat into the field at Nakai to look for signs of otters. It is a very beautiful place and we managed to find signs of Eurasian Otters.

Laos Day 2

04 April 2018 - Our latest e-update is online

Submitted by: Ben

Find out all the information on IOSF and otters here

Find out the latest from the otter hospital, such as the arrival of otter number 6. There is good and bad news surrounding Sea Otter laws from the U.S and some very important information on how to watch otters from a safe distance. Plus much more.

04 April 2018 - Laos Workshop - Day One

Submitted by: Ben

First full day of the otter training workshop in Nakai, Laos. We know that very little work has been done in the country but we have discovered that one of the participants has just returned from the National Park and has video of otters. We are very excited to see this.
Laos Day 1

01 April 2018 - Happy Easter

Submitted by: Ben

Everyone at IOSF would like to wish you all a Happy Easter!

01 April 2018 - IOSF World Otter Day Grants Result

Submitted by: Helen

2018 World Otter Day

We offered the opportunity to win a £100 grant towards the cost of putting on an event or carrying out education work, as part of World Otter Day. The response has been fantastic, with applications from all over the world and an interesting variety of projects and ideas. We want to thank everyone who has submitted an application and appreciate their support.

So, the task to choose three winners has not been easy, but after much consideration, we are please to announce the following are to receive £100 from the IOSF World Otter Day grants:

• Ninoslav Đurović, Montenegro -
With children, we will be raising awareness of the importance of otter and identifying otter signs in the field, on an island at Skadar Lake. This event will be recorded and broadcast on TV. A trail camera trap will also be sited on the island and positive results shared on social media.

• The Cardiff University Otter Project, Wales –
Live streaming of otter post mortem to provide a detailed insight into the research undertaken on otters in the UK and why we do post-mortems.

• Godfrey Lubanga, Uganda
To carry out a 10km survey on the Nile, east of Karuma, over a 10 day period. Members of the local community will be involved, and there will be discussion with local fishermen to educate them on the value and importance of otters in the environment.