Among fluffy kittens and big eyed puppies, one of Earth's cutest animals is often said to be the cuddly little otter. But don't be fooled by the hand holding and cheek rubbing seen in pictures used for memes, posters, and throw pillows because the truth about otters may shock you. In reality, otters are dangerous, mean, and have some seriously disturbing behaviors.
Otters can be found living on almost every continent on Earth and these mean otter facts apply to all 13 species, including sea otters and river otters. In addition to their adorable appearance, the playfulness and energetic antics of otters often wins them many human fans. While they slide down hills, wrestle with each other, and engage in other cute human hobbies that animals like, people can easily overlook the horrors otters inflict on the members of their own species as well as others. Are otters mean? Turns out yes they are, and it gets a whole lot worse.
They Have Teeth Like Knives And Jaws That Can Crush Bone
All otters are carnivorous and since those that live in the river feed mostly on fish with the occasional frog, bird, or lizard, they need teeth that can bite and tear at their prey. In addition to super sharp canine teeth, their molars are also pointed to help crush the bones of their meal. Their powerful jaws are used to crack shells while the canines are also helpful in grabbing prey in order to drag it out of the water to consume. Cute and cuddly sea otters eat more shelled creatures than fish and have less sharp teeth, however their teeth are still twice as tough as those of a human in order to break through shells and suck out the meat. Go ahead and pet a fluffy little otter, but don't be surprised if you wind up with a bloody crushed hand.
Mating Is So Hardcore, It Often Kills The Females
Hidden beneath those button noses and fluffy fur lies a very kinky creature with some really disturbing mating habits. During sex, male otters grab onto the female and bite her nose, sometimes hard enough to draw blood and cause deep wounds. The act sometimes entails the male holding the female's head underwater and as the two spin and writhe under the surface, a good number of the females drown in the process. Others die from injuries sustained during their violent sexual romp. To make their sicko tendencies worse, male otters have been observed continuing the mating process even after the female is dead. Too bad the otter kingdom doesn't include restraining orders.
Males Sometimes Hold The Babies Hostage In Order To Get Food
Sometimes food is scarce and otters will do whatever it takes to get food, even if that includes threatening their own family. Male otters have been observed stealing babies away from the females and essentially holding the poor kids hostage (sometimes underwater) until the female brings him some food. But don't feel too sorry for the females since they've also been spotted stealing food from other females. The pups aren't in the clear either and sometimes act like thieves themselves. In addition to sick fetishes, otters also apparently enjoy engaging in a little domestic abuse.
Otters Have Been Known To Rape Baby Seals, Often To Death
The California Department of Fish and Game regularly watches otters and discovered something terrifying happening. During a two year study of otters in Monterey Bay, males were observed forcibly mating with young harbor seals, and not just once, but 19 times. They grabbed the seals as they would a female otter and held it under the water. 15 of these poor 19 seals died either from drowning or their injuries but the male otters didn't really seem to mind. In some cases, they continued to mate with the seal after it had died, and sometimes for several days after. Scientists believe the male otters were engaging in such creepy behavior due to a lack of female otters and the males' subsequent need to hump something.