Winter Food Habits Of River Otters From Alabama And Georgia

Food habits of river otters (Lutra canadensis) in Alabama and Georgia were studied using 315 digestive tracts from otters taken by trappers during the 1973-74 through 1976-77 trapping seasons. Additionally, 12 scats were collected during and immediately following the 1975-76 trapping season. Fish occurred in 83.2% of the digestive tracts and in 91.7% of the scats. Fishes of the following families were found in the frequency percentages indicated; Centrarchidae, 53.6%; Castomidae, 12.1%; Ictaluridae, 10.5%; Amiidae and Aphredoderidae, 8.2%; Cyprinidae, 6.3%; Esocidae, 5.1 %; Clupeidae, 1.6%; Cyprinodontidae, Poeciliidae, and Percidae, 0.6%; Hiodontidae, 0.3%; and unclassified fish 3.2%. Crayfish were recovered from 62.5% of the digestive tracts and from 7 of 12 (58.3%) scats. FTogs and a salamander together made up 5.1% of the food remains.

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