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Saturday, 01 November 2014

Otterly amazing for Lakes Aquarium’s visitors

VISITORS to a Lake District tourist attraction can now watch furry creatures swim over their heads.

Otters Mia and Smudge – long-established residents of the Lakes Aquarium, near Newby Bridge – have been joined by two more short-clawed Asian otters.

And the otters’ Asian-themed living quarters have been linked to the attraction’s lake tunnel so they can go for a deep-water swim whenever the mood takes them.

It also gives visitors the chance to see them up close and personal – but from under the water.

Staff at the aquarium said seven-year-old Mia and 13-year-old Smudge helped christen the 160,000-litre, 3.2-metre deep enclosure, eagerly accompanied by the two young otters, both eight months old.

Talks team leader at the aquarium, Dave Conway, said: “The first people to have witnessed the otters swimming past their eyes were simply blown away by it and that is the reaction that everyone has experienced since.

“We believe there is nowhere else in the country where you can see a spectacle of this kind and we are sure we will be pulling in the crowds once word gets around.”

Cathy Burrows, Lakes Aquarium marketing manager, said: “This new feature is incredible as it is about watching the otters have fun in its purest form.

“Their manoeuvres are breathtaking and we have had many people comment about how much joy it has given them.

“Many fell in love with otters thanks to the iconic film, Ring of Bright Water, and we think we are providing the essence of that film – the beauty of otters and their unique qualities – through this new experience.”

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