Stomper Casey was taking a walk with his granddaughter at noon on August 17 when he happened upon a family of otters at Gardens by the Bay in Singapore. Though a regular at the park, this was the first time he had encountered otters.
The journalist shared a video of the otters as they fought over fish and played in the grass. "My granddaughter was very happy and shocked when she saw the otters. There were 10 otters, I counted,” Casey said. "I saw them catching fish, swimming, and frolicking on the grass. I also saw them fighting over a fish, it was amazing. They stayed for about an hour.”
"No one disturbed them but a guy tried feeding them bread and I stopped him because otters eat fish, where got eat bread?” he added. "And I was also afraid that the otters might leave if he went to disturb them."
Gardens by the Bay, a nature park that stretches over 250 acres of reclaimed land in the Central Region of Singapore, is adjacent to the Marina Reservoir. The park has three waterfront gardens and is part of a government initiative to transform Singapore from a Garden City to a City in a Garden by enhancing green spaces and flora in the metropolis in order to increase the quality of life.
Though cute to look at, otters can also be defensive creatures. Last year, a five-year-old girl was bitten by an otter at Gardens by the Bay. Her wound required surgery. OtterWatch, a group that tracks otters in Singapore, was at the gardens at the time of the attack.
Goh Mei Woon, one of the members, said, "People saw the otters in the pond and they got very excited. Lots of families and children were crowding around." She estimated that roughly 20 people crowded around the otters. "I was going around telling people to give the otters space. Some were standing so close, they were within touching distance of the otters. While I was still telling people to stand back, I heard a scream and saw a girl crying because she had been nipped in the foot."
Gardens by the Bay has won numerous awards including the World Building of the Year in 2012, the President’s Design Award in 2013, the Outstanding Achievement Award by the Themed Entertainment Association in 2014, and the Largest Glass Greenhouse in the Guinness World Records for 2015.