Satu, (“One” in the Malaysia language) came to IPPL in 2009 from the Monterey Bay Aquarium in California. He had been part of a one-year “Otters of the World” exhibit. Satu is an Asian short-clawed otter. For years, he shared his life at IPPL with Agape, a female, who had been a dentist’s pet – until she wrecked the dentist’s home! Sadly, Agape passed away on 5 December 2016.
Suddenly, Satu was all alone. But something great was about to happen that would change his life! IPPL was selected by the US zoos’ Asian otter plan to receive a female named Daphne. We were thrilled for Satu. Daphne had been living with her two sisters at a zoo in Virginia. She lived in an indoor cage and had never seen a male otter. Two of her caregivers drove to Summerville on 8 March, 2017 to help her settle in. The keepers stayed the night at IPPL’s guest cottage and stayed with Daphne the next day.
At first Daphne, a very small otter, was shy and did not want to leave her shipping crate. But within two hours she emerged, met Satu and they fell in love! He seemed overjoyed to meet her, following her everywhere she went – even sharing his diet of smelt and chicken gizzards. That night he also shared his “dogloo” sleeping box filled with hay and Daphne seemed quite happy with this arrangement.
So, at the beginning of a new year, Satu and Daphne have a new beginning as well. Now inseparable – they are already living their “happily ever after” story!