About the Project

The ZooTrophy Animal-a-Day project began on October 15th, 2013 as illustrator Angela "LemurKat" Oliver began working her way, systematically but selectively, through the alphabet and presenting, via social media, an illustrated animal to the world. Daily.

All pieces are drawn as 2.5 x 3.5 inch collectible cards, using a combination of polychromos and prismacolor pencils, along with other art materials. Many are still available for purchase ($10) or trade, so drop her an email if anything captures your eye or if there is an animal you wish to request.

It is predicted this project will take her at least two years to complete - with approximately 36 animals being drawn for each letter. She has also used the images to create a collectible hardback encyclopedia series, playing cards and a desk calendar, as well as the ZooTrophy collectible trading card game.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Creature Feature #550: Otter

There are thirteen species of Otter, aquatic members of the mustelid Family. They range in size from the Giant Otter, at almost two metres in length, to the diminutive Small-clawed Otter, at 60cm. The other large species, which I have not yet drawn, is the marine Sea Otter.

The Giant Otter (above) is the "wolf of the river", living in social groups consisting of a dominant breeding pair and their offspring - from various years. Older, grown youngsters help raise the new pups. Voracious diurnal fishers, they consume everything from crabs and other invertebrates, catfish and characin, and will even devour small caiman. Growing to almost 2 metres in length, Giant Otters are considered an apex predator of their environment, although youngsters are still vulnerable to predation from jaguars.

The European Otter (below) leads a more solitary lifestyle. He hunts at night, spending the day sleeping in his burrow (known as a "holt"). His territory often encompasses that of a female, but after mating he has nothing to do with raising the pups. Fish form the majority of his diet through the summer and spring months, but during winter he relies more on insects, crustaceans, amphibians and even birds or small aquatic rodents.

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