Wildlife biologist Mike Bottini says that, since 2008, the river otter’s range has doubled in size on Long Island. “I expect to see them on the South Shore [of Fishers Island] within the next couple of years,” he said.
From Mar. 21-23, 2013, Bottini surveyed 57 sites on Fishers Island by foot and kayak. Otter sign was noted at 24 sites, with scent stations (scat) found at 23 sites and otter tracks at one site. Two scent stations also had a den nearby. His survey was funded by a grant from FIConservancy.
These photos from Southold show typical river otter couches excavated amongst cattail reeds, usually in marshy areas. Please remark if you happen upon one this Autumn here on Fishers Island!
From the Field, Field Note by Justine Kibbe, Aug. 29, 2018.