Oregon Zoo welcomes pair of river otter pups - KPTV - FOX 12

Oregon Zoo welcomes pair of river otter pups

Posted: Updated: Mar 06, 2017 04:44 PM
Courtesy Oregon Zoo. Courtesy Oregon Zoo.
PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) -

The Oregon Zoo is welcoming a pair of new furry faces – two river otter pups who were born last week.

Tilly the North American river otter gave birth to one male pup and one female pup last Tuesday and is raising the little ones with her naturally high-fat milk. The two siblings have doubled their weight since their birthday, now weighing 8 ounces each.

“Young river otters are extremely dependent on their moms, and Tilly has been very nurturing,” said Julie Christie, senior keeper for the Oregon Zoo’s North America area.

Tilly also gave birth to a third pup in the same litter, but it didn’t survive. 

The two healthy pups don’t have names yet but will likely be named after local rivers or waterways. Their mom Tilly is named after the Tillamook River.

Tilly was born in the wild and found orphaned near Johnson Creek eight years ago. She’s been with the Oregon Zoo ever since and the pups’ father, B.C. (short for Buttercup), was also found orphaned in Arkansas in 2009. He was transferred to the Oregon Zoo in 2010 and has been a companion to Tilly.

The two new pups, Tilly’s third and fourth, mark the first time the mother otter will raise more than one pup at a time.

“It’s exciting that they’ll be growing up together and have the opportunity to play and wrestle with each other," Oregon Zoo curator Amy Cutting said. "Tilly’s always been an extremely attentive mother, so it will be interesting to see what happens when her pups go in two different directions."

For now, Tilly and the two pups are in a private maternity den. Zoo visitors likely won’t be able to see the young otters for a month or two. During that time, the pups are expected to open their eyes and start walking.

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