MEDICINE PARK, Okla. (KFOR) – In one week, visitors to an Oklahoma community will be able to get acquainted with a pair of adorable otters.
The Medicine Park Aquarium & Natural Sciences Center will open the North American River Otter Habitat Exhibit, sponsored by the McCasland Foundation of Duncan, with an official ribbon cutting on March 6 at 10:30 a.m.
The exhibit features two male North American river otters, Sam and Dean.
“Sam and Dean have settled into their new habitat nicely,” said Aquarium and Life Sciences Director, Nicole Rowe. “They love the water slide and cattail plantings, which they tend to smash flat while exploring through the dry winter stalks. It is expected, however, the green shoots and stalks of spring and summer will hold up better to otter explorations. I think they are going to be a ton of fun for families to see.”
The exhibit is a big step toward implementing the center’s plan to unite a native wildlife zoo, aquarium, and botanical garden together. More exhibits are planned later this year.
“We are very grateful for the McCasland Foundation’s support of this exhibit,” said Doug Kemper, Executive Director. “This is an important part of our native wildlife story. Historically, River Otters thrived throughout Oklahoma, but their numbers were dwindling until the 1980’s when the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation launched a re-introduction program. Today, River Otters are again abundant in our state. They tend to be shy so it’s not often that people get a good look at them. This exhibit is designed with a large viewing area and full underwater view of their swimming pool which will allow visitors to see how truly beautiful and playful they are.”