Two otters found dead within 72 hours as warning issued to motorists

Otter deaths have occurred before when visibility is low, but it had not been the case over the weekend.

Two otters found dead on Isle of Tiree after warning issued to motorists Tiree Ranger Service

Two otters were found dead after appearing to have been hit by cars on an Inner Hebridean island.

Isle of Tiree’s ranger Hayley Douglas said she was “absolutely scunnered” at the discovery of a male and a female otter from the same family within 72 hours of each other.

The discoveries came after a warning was issued to motorists about running over lambs on the road.

The young female dog otter, measuring 99cm long and weighing 7.3kg, had been reported at around 9pm on Saturday, March 30, while a larger adult male, the female’s father, which was 113cm long and weighed 10.1kg, was discovered on Tuesday morning at Balephetrish.

She told STV News: “This is the first time that two have died in the same spot, it’s a family practically lost – an adult male and a young one – and for otters coming into the area it will cause disruption.

“Both would have been in the dark, when the clocks change it always makes the animals more vulnerable, and they are low animals which are dark-coloured, so people don’t look out for them the same way as sheep or cows.”

The two otters were found on the same road within 72 hours of each other.Tiree Ranger Service

The deaths of the animals came after a warning was issued on the Tiree Ranger Service page about being aware of livestock and wildlife being on the road amid lambing season.

The post, along with a photo, read: “Be livestock and wildlife aware whilst driving around Tiree this Easter.  

“With lambing in full swing, please be extra cautious when out in your car or camper as not all the lambs are in fields.  

“The roads are a favourite places for lambs to lie on and soak up the heat, which is what these two were up to when I spotted them on the way home from checking my own lambs.”

But just a day later, another plea was made by Hayley for motorists to be cautious following the otter discovery.

The warning came just a day after making people aware of lambs in the road.Tiree Ranger Service

She said: “Following on from my previous post about looking out for lambs on the road this has absolutely scunnered me this morning.  

“Two otters hit by cars on the same spot of road within 72 hours.  

“One is a young female and the other is a male, possibly the female’s dad. Not what I wanted to find on the early morning lambing checks on Sunday and today. 

“Traffic has increased during the holidays and it would be great if folk kept their eyes open for lambs, otters, folk’s cats, other wildlife and livestock while travelling around Tiree.”

There is a healthy otter population on Tiree, but deaths have usually occurred before when visibility is low in bad weather, which had not been the case over the weekend.

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