Otter this world: Taronga Western Plains Zoo shows off new arrivals

TWO 11-week-old otter pups at Taronga Western Plains Zoo have a stay-at-den father while their mother is out bringing home the yabbies.

"We've got one food-driven female and one very doting father," keeper Katie Boyer said.

The pups, who each weigh about 700 grams, are keeping close to the den for the time being.

"They are babies and all babies need to sleep a lot," Ms Boyer said.

But father Pocket and mother Emiko take them for swimming lessons when the crowds drift away from the enclosure.

The zoo has been trying to breed oriental small-clawed otters for a decade, with several male-female pairings remaining platonic.

"We've had compatibility issues," Ms Boyer said.

The zoo is not sure yet whether both pups are male.

One is named Kali, the Indonesian word for river, but the other remains unnamed; the zoo is considering suggestions left on its Facebook page.

It will look favourably on names tied to the otter's traditional habitats, which stretch from western Bangladesh to southern China to the islands of the Philippines.

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