CREATURE FEATURE: Eurasian Otter

The Eurasian Otter (Lutra lutra) is a semi-aquatic mammal in the Mustelidae family of weasels and otters. It is also known as the European Otter, Common Otter, Old World Otter, and Eurasian River Otter.

The Eurasian Otter has a streamlined, elongated body, and a long, strong, flat tail. It has two layers of dense brown water-repellent fur, and a cream underbelly. It has a short neck, small dark eyes, a black nose, long white whiskers, and small rounded ears. It has five long toes and webbed feet to swim in water, but it needs air to breathe.

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South American Fur Seal

The South American Fur Seal (Arctocephalus australis) is an aquatic marine (saltwater) mammal in the Pinnipedia clade and Otariidae family of sea lions and fur seals. It is a pinniped (fin-footed) and an otariid (eared seal).

The South American Fur Seal has dark-grey or brown fur. The male has a mane of hair around its neck. It has a thick neck, broad chest, broad shoulders, and an upturned nose. It has white whiskers on its chin called vibrissae. It does not have external ear flaps.

It has flippers for swimming. Its movement in water is called aquatic locomotion. Its body is streamlined with oily fur for swimming fast underwater. It has a fatty body, called blubber, which keeps it warm and buoyant. It has a flexible spine (backbone). It has short fins, and on land, it has difficulty walking, so it crawls.

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South American Sea Lion

The South American Sea Lion (Otaria flavescens) is a marine (saltwater) mammal in the Otariidae family of sea lions and fur seals. It is an otariid, which is an eared sea lion. It is also known as the Southern Sea Lion and the Patagonian Sea Lion.

The South American Sea Lion has orange to brown fur. The male has a very large mane of hair on its back, like other sea lions. It has a sleek, slender build with a thick neck, broad chest, broad shoulders, and a long, protruding face and upturned nose. It has white whiskers on its chin called vibrissae. It has small external ears on the sides of its face. 

It has flippers for swimming. Its movement in water is called aquatic locomotion. Its body is streamlined with oily fur for swimming fast underwater. Its fatty body has blubber, which keeps it warm and buoyant. It has a flexible spine (backbone). On land, it walks on its foreflippers (front flippers). 

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North American River Otter

The North American River Otter (Lontra canadensis) is a freshwater, semi-aquatic mammal in the Lutrinae sub-family of the Mustelidae family of weasels. It is a mustelid. It is also known as the Northern River Otter or the Common Otter.

The North American River Otter has a long, slender body, which is streamlined for swimming. Its fur is short, thick and water-repellent. It has short legs with webbed feet for swimming, but it can also walk on land. It varies in colour from light-brown to black, with a greyish chest, neck, and throat. It has a short nose, flat head, round ears, and a nose pad (like a dog). It has long whiskers, called vibrissae. It has a long, tapered tail.

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CREATURE FEATURE: Barred Catfish

The Barred Catfish (Pseudoplatystoma fasciatum) is a large freshwater fish in the Pimelodidae family of long-whiskered catfish. It is also called the Barred Sorubim. It is related to the Tiger Shovelnose Catfish. 

The Barred Catfish is dark-grey with black loop-like stripes and spots. Its head is depressed with a wide mouth and long whiskers, called barbels. Its eyes and teeth are small. 

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CREATURE FEATURE: Antillean Manatee

The Antillean Manatee (Trichechus manatus manatus) is an aquatic, marine (saltwater) mammal in the Sirenia order of dugongs. It is also known as a Sea Cow, West Indian Manatee, or Caribbean Manatee. It is not a seal. It is related to the dugong and the elephant. 

The Antillean Manatee looks like a large, grey seal with flippers and a paddle tail. It has lungs, not gills, because it is a mammal, and therefore it needs to come to the surface to breathe. It has a prehensile snout (nose), like an elephant, so that it can grab water plants and bring them to its mouth. It has 6-8 teeth in each jaw. It has short, sparse, sensitive hairs called vibrissae. Each individual hair is called a vibrissal. The vibrissae around its mouth are like whiskers.

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Spotted-Necked Otter

The Spotted-Necked Otter (Hydrictis maculicollis) is a freshwater semi-aquatic mammal. It lives on water and on land.

The Spotted-Necked Otter has a long, slender body with short, chocolate-brown to reddish-brown water-repellent fur, with white spots on its chest, neck, and throat. It has a short nose, round ears, and a nose pad (like a dog). It has short legs with webbed feet for swimming, but it also walks on land.  It has long whiskers, called vibrissae. It has a long, tapered tail.

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