During the night of 25 - 26 January, we had eight different visits by the otters, from 19:30 in the evening (still broad daylight) until just before 06:00. There was much territory marking, shown by the hip-swinging dance and much sniffing out. Perhaps it was more than one group having a turf war.
The first visit was a group of three who spent a lot of time marking the bare patch next to the steps by doing their dance
The second visit occurred about an hour later. A single individual had a good sniff and then proceeded to make its own mark.
There were another two visits by individual, perhaps the same one,. The behaviour was very similar in all three visits. Then at 23:30 there were three otters again. It seemed that they were re-establishing the property rights against the intruder(s).
After midnight there were another two individual visitors and then finally as dawn was breaking (in fact the camera switched from night to day viewing during the sequence, there was a final visit.
What a treat!
In the middle of the night, three otters can be seen marking their territory. The following morning, all the dogs who came down for their beach walk were intensely interested in the area.
These are Photos of the Otters on 2nd and 3rd July - looking from the otters on the cameras highlighted how popular the Nature Reserve is:
"We didn't realise how popular the Rooiels Nature Reserve was until we installed a trap camera next to the Otter Pool. We have had to sift through hundreds of interested, curious, puzzled and even a few voyeuristic people peering into the camera box."