A fisherman in Singapore, angry because he thought the otters were scaring the fish away, was caught on video pelting the little creatures with rocks. The video was posted Sunday on Facebook by Otterwatch.
In the video, the man is standing at the edge of the water fishing, but puts his rod on the sand alongside of his equipment and bends down to pick up a rock that he then hurls at the otters. The animals, first spotted swimming near the shore, quickly swim away as the man tries to pelt them with the rocks. It is not known if any of the animals were injured.
The adorable little animals had been hunted to the edge of extinction by fur traders and continue to be protected by the 1911 International Fur Seal Treaty. Sea otters in the United States are protected by the Marine Mammal Protection Act and the Endangered Species Act.
“There are currently about 60+ wild smooth-coated otters in Singapore, we count every otter because every otter counts,” the organization Otterwatch posted on their Facebook.
Otters use tools – most commonly a rock they employ as a hammer to break open their hard-shelled prey. And as fascinating as their adept use of this tool, the animal has a loose patch of skin under his armpit to store both his food and the rock he uses.
Many animal advocates came down heavily on the fisherman, but questions were repeatedly asked on Facebook why the person filming the disturbing scene didn’t go over and stop the man. According to Otterwatch, there was a barrier between the fisherman and the person videoing the action, however the question remains why couldn’t that person yell for the man to stop, call authorities or get a close up photo of the man and report him for animal cruelty? While it is always a good idea to have overt acts of animal cruelty on video, making sure the offender is brought to justice, is a big part of the solution.
Check out the video here:
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