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Oregon Zoo caring for orphaned river otter pup found along roadside in Deer Island

By Web Staff

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    PORTLAND, Oregon (KPTV) — A river otter pup is getting some much needed care at the Oregon Zoo after being found orphaned along a roadside in Deer Island last month.

The 10-week-old otter pup was found on June 3 along Tide Creek Road and admitted to Portland Audubon’s wildlife center for immediate care. The zoo says her mom could not be located and she was transferred to Wildlife Center of the North Coast for rehabilitation, but was determined by Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife staff to be non-releasable due to habituation to people. The pup was transferred to the zoo on July 13.

“Our preference is always for rehab and release, but since that’s not possible in this case we’re happy to help give her a second chance,” said Shelly Pettit, area supervisor for the zoo’s North America section. “The other otters living here are also rescues, and we have a great track record caring for orphaned pups.”

The pup is estimated to weight around seven pounds. She is currently receiving care at the zoo’s Veterinary Medical Center. The zoo says staff are making plans to introduce her to Tilly and the other river otters in the Cascade Stream and Pond area until a permanent home is found.

“She’s a little bit larger than a kitten and just about as playful. She’s already a great swimmer and knows how to dry herself off. She’s quite a doll,” Pettit said. “We have plenty of room for her and are happy to have her while we can.”

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