The main reason we chose to visit the Chestnut Centre last Sunday was that we had found out that our friends Manoki and Panambi (the giant otters) had had two cubs in the summer and that they were now old enough to have visits from the public.
The giant otters were nowhere to be seen when we arrived, but we had lots of fun with a pair of North American river otters while we waited for them to come out. Their favourite game was swimming under the ice for as long as they could hold their breath and then popping out into the water and rolling around, but they also enjoyed sliding down the snowy slopes on their bellies.
At one point they seemed to think we might have some food and came right up to us to check
Eventually the giant otters came first to their indoor enclosure behind glass (as opposed to another indoor one where they're not bothered by the public)
and then wandered outside. They spent all their time in the river so we weren't able to get any photos up close, but it was wonderful watching the entire family playing together
Ian took lots of videos of them playing so I shall post one here when he's had a chance to edit them.