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Giant Otter

Giant Otter
Photo Information
Copyright: Peter van Zoest (PeterZ) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5137 W: 166 N: 13121] (49139)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2013-09-20
Categories: Mammals
Camera: Nikon D90, Sigma 135-400mm f/4.5-5.6 APO, Digital RAW
Exposure: f/5.6, 1/1000 seconds
Details: Tripod: Yes
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version, Workshop
Theme(s): CeltickRanger's favorite wild animal photos 3 [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2013-10-10 4:40
Viewed: 1930
Points: 48
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
During our boat trips in the Pantanal a few times we saw Giant Otters. We had fish on board and after several ‘otter calls’ a big one came swimming towards us. He picked up a fish and went off.
The first photo of a Giant Otter in the wild on TN.

The giant otter (Pteronura brasiliensis) is a South American carnivorous mammal. It is the longest member of the Mustelidae, or weasel family, a globally successful group of predators, reaching up to 1.7 m. Atypical of mustelids, the giant otter is a social species, with family groups typically supporting three to eight members. The groups are centered on a dominant breeding pair and are extremely cohesive and cooperative. Although generally peaceful, the species is territorial, and aggression has been observed between groups. The giant otter is diurnal, being active exclusively during daylight hours. It is the noisiest otter species, and distinct vocalizations have been documented that indicate alarm, aggressiveness, and reassurance.

The giant otter ranges across north-central South America; it lives mostly in and along the Amazon River and in the Pantanal.

Its distribution has been greatly reduced and is now discontinuous. Decades of poaching for its velvety pelt, peaking in the 1950s and 1960s, considerably diminished population numbers. The species was listed as endangered in 1999 and wild population estimates are typically below 5,000. It is one of the most endangered mammal species in the neotropics. Habitat degradation and loss is the greatest current threat.

The giant otter shows a variety of adaptations suitable to an amphibious lifestyle, including exceptionally dense fur, a wing-like tail, and webbed feet. The species prefers freshwater rivers and streams, which are usually seasonally flooded, and may also take to freshwater lakes and springs. It constructs extensive campsites close to feeding areas, clearing large amounts of vegetation. The giant otter largely subsists on a diet of fish, particularly characins and catfish, and may also eat crabs. It has no serious natural predators other than humans, although it must compete with other species, including the neotropical otter and caiman species, for food resources.

Source: Wikipedia

Hotelcalifornia, Maynayquan, ramthakur, maaciejka, kinglove, anel, Ishi, CeltickRanger has marked this note useful
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Critiques [Translate]

Hello Mr.Peter,
Truly beautiful and well detailed picture.I like its eye contact with you.Nice colour and well sharpness.Beautiful reflection too.
Thanks for sharing,
Regards and have a nice time,

  • Great 
  • siggi Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3097 W: 109 N: 12399] (52850)
  • [2013-10-10 6:17]

Hello Peter,
Great shot, I like it! Lightning and details are amazing.Very good contrast, POV and DOF.Superb reflection and Colors. Congratulations, regards Siggi

Hi Peter,
Amazing Capture of this Giant Otter! Perfect DOF, POV, composition, clarity, details, and colors. I like the reflection and his sharp teeth. Very well done, my friend, and have a nice day!

Both my neighbours on the gallery today -- you and Chris from Cyprus -- have posted maiden pictures of their subjects on TN today. I feel honoured!
A brilliant capture of a Giant Otter from Brazil looking so very natural in its wild natural habitat. Use of tripod has resulted in an image that looks class apart.
Thanks for sharing this first-ever picture of a Giant Otter and best regards.

Hello Peter
An amazing close-up! Excellent composition and detail. Good eye contact too.
regards yiannis

Hi Petter,
really nice portrait in the water. Excellent sharpness and details. Perfect presentation.
Thanks for sharing,

  • Great 
  • lousat Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 6595 W: 89 N: 15659] (65489)
  • [2013-10-10 11:00]

Hi Peter,it's another great spectacle what you show us today! Magnificenrt face to face whit very bright reflections and the best details and colors,very well done! Have a nice evening and thanks,luciano

Hello Peter
照的很清晰 很可愛的鏡頭 色彩漂亮
構圖美麗 有創意

Amazing animal and amazing photo Peter! Excellent POV, very good composition, fantastic colours and impressive sharpness!

  • Great 
  • anel Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 3053 W: 3 N: 8715] (40574)
  • [2013-10-11 0:44]

hello Peter,
Another interesting creature from Brazil. Well composed shot, love the reflection and the vivid eye of the Otter. Luminous atmosphere and fine colours.

Thanks for showing this rarely seen other. Lovely capture! I took the liberty of using the the Shadows and Highlights option of Photoshop to bring out a bit more the upper part of the head and the lovely eyes of the animal; see WS.

All the best,


  • Great 
  • nagraj Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1618 W: 106 N: 3208] (15166)
  • [2013-10-11 1:01]

Interesting viewpoint and lighting for this otter swimming here..lovely image. tfs.

Hi Peter,
a great close-up of this fascinating animal. Well done

Bravissimo Peter

Ciao Peter. Impressive/espressive face to face indeed. Stunning details best light. Amazing reflections.


Ciao Peter, great portrait of lovely otter, fascinating reflection, excellent clarity, wonderful colors and splendid light, very well done, my friend, have a good week end, ciao Silvio

Hello Peter.
What a marvelous picture.
Good light,colour and detail.
superb picture.
best wishes,

  • Great 
  • iti Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 577 W: 0 N: 650] (7939)
  • [2013-10-12 10:16]

Hi Peter,
Very nice shot of this otters with good
reflection the bird in the water.
Excellent detail and focus with nice colours.
Have a good weekend
Regards Jiri.

Hallo Peter,
Veels geluk met jou eerste hier op TN. En wat 'n goeie beeld van 'n reuse otter is dit nie! Ek kan net hoop dat hierdie spesie gaan oorleef. Hoe tragies dat ons so sonder nadenke uitroei. Beste groete.

  • Great 
  • Nilson Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 488 W: 0 N: 566] (4423)
  • [2013-10-15 16:55]

Bela foto Peter com nitidez muito boa e composição também meus parabéns.

hallo Peter
Bedankt voor je berichtje

Deze is ook zeer goed ,wat een enge kop heeft deze otter
je ziet ook dat die groot is
super scherp en mooie kleuren
prachtig dat hij zo naar je toe komt
Je hebt toch weer heel wat aparte foto's zo weer bij elkaar

gr lou

Hi again Peter
Superb close with fantastic colours and reflections.Great moment,even with fish as bait... :) Must be of course.Thanks.
Good evening

  • Great 
  • Tina Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 60 W: 0 N: 132] (1427)
  • [2013-10-22 4:26]

Hi Peter,
Great details, clarity and really appealing reflection ! TFS Tina

Hello Peter

WOW ! great close-up photo of the Giant Otter swimming and its reflection
on the water, great low POV at its level obtaining its eye-contact with you,
beautiful warm light and color tones, great focus, sharpness, and details, TFS


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