Otterman speaks... (2003-2007)
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Otterman speaks...

Cycling, macintosh, natural history and life in Singapore - Archives

List of Categories : travel * museum * cycling * Singapore Naturalist * science * kakis * mangroves * movies * mac and the internet * meow * NUS * life in Singapore * lit * world *

Tue 30 Mar 2004

Ottermen speak...

Category : Singapore Naturalist

Yesterday, Hiroshi Sasaki from Japan stopped by for day in Singapore. He examined hairy-nosed otter (Lutra sumatrana) specimens at the Raffles Museum and later we went to Sungei Buloh Wetlands Reserve (SBWR). He is one of the Asian Otter Specialist Group members and had started out on otters the same time as I did, in 1990.

His beginning was ironic for the Japanese government asked him to look for the Japanse otter which turned out to be extinct. Mine was similarly ironic, though happier. When I finished my otter thesis in 1996, the Asian network finally became active - I met Sasaki only that year. And otters started returning to Singapore thereafter. A pair would settle down in late 1998 and the family is doing well in SBWR.

As I participated in the Asian otter network meetings in Thailand (1996, 1997), Taiwan (1999) and India (2002), the group's focus changed to one of public education - you see, habitats were disappearing too fast for research alone to be meaningful.

My role at meetings was of a facilitator, editor or reporter. And to advise rare new students. Getting information between meetings was difficult, and the struggling newsletter suffered. It is slowly getting revived at the Asian Otter Newsletter webpage. It has been steadily improving as I gradually learn webpage skills. Next to put up a pdf resource for literature.

Eventually though, I want to revive the Asian Otter Newsletter. Print works best in Asia right now and grabs your attention so effectively. The first issue I did was cloaked in a bright orangee cover!

Posted at 6:08AM UTC by N. Sivasothi | permalink | , .