DENVER (CBS4) – An Asian small-clawed otter born this summer will soon greet visitors in the otters’ exhibit.

Jilin, a male born on Aug. 26, has been looked after by his parents and will soon venture out into public viewing spaces. The zoo said viewing of the pup may be limited over the next few weeks, but they expect him to be out during Zoo Lights.

(courtesy of Denver Zoo)

(courtesy of Denver Zoo)

Jilin’s mother and father, Asha and Bugsy, were born in 2005 and arrived in Denver in 2012 and 2013. They are both first-time parents.

Asian small-claw otters possess very short claws that don’t extend beyond the pads of their paws. They are the smallest of all 13 otter species, growing upward of three feet long from head to tail and weighing six to 12 pounds. They are found in southeast Asian countries, and are most common in Thailand and Malaysia.

The species is classified as vulnerable by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. Their biggest threat is the human-caused destruction of their habitat and hunting.


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