A holiday trip to the Gardens by the Bay ended on an unpleasant note for a family when their little girl got bitten by otter.
5-year-old bitten by otter
According to Channel NewsAsia, the incident happened on Dec 30, at around 12:15 pm. The French family, who are here in Singapore on a 2 week holiday, were going to a bridge at Satay by the Bay.
They noticed that some tourists were really excited about having spotted an otter family with pups.
The daddy, Mr Julien le Tourneur D’Ison, told Channel NewsAsia, “We saw a bunch of otters swimming towards us. We were about 1 metre away and an otter jumped out and bit my daughter’s foot.”
The poor little girl, Tess, started screaming and crying and her dad reveals her foot “bled for about five minutes”.
Thankfully, passersby rushed to help, “A lot of people came from the food court with a first aid kit.”
The girl was rushed to KK Hospital, and doctors had to do a little surgery, with the help of local anaesthesia.
PHOTO: SCREENGRAB CNA VIDEO
Mr. Le Tourneur told CNA, “An X-ray showed that fortunately the teeth did not touch her bone but the wound is deep enough that they have to perform a little surgery.”
Reflecting on the incident he said that they had got “really unlucky.” His wife and two other children, a 6-year-old boy and 5-month-old baby were also there with him.
“The Gardens by the Bay is such a lovely place. I would recommend anyone to visit.”
“But if you see an otter swimming towards you, go the other way.”
Bitten by otter incident: What we need to remember
According to experts, here is what we need to remember to avoid such accidents in future:
- Don’t get too close to otters or other wild animals
Otters are cute and may appear tame, but they are after all wild animals. It is best not to get too close, or attempt to touch them.
A spokesman for the Gardens by the Bay says, “Otters are often spotted at Gardens by the Bay along the promenade area facing Marina Bay.”
“While they may appear tame, they are nonetheless wild animals and may react if visitors get too close.”
“As such, there is signage along the promenade to advise visitors not to approach them, and instead observe them from a distance.”
We understand that spotting wildlife unexpectedly can be quite exciting, but it might end up stressing and provoking them.
Deputy chief executive Anbarasi Boopa of Animal Concerns and Research Education Society (ACRES) says, “Wild animals, just like us, will defend themselves and their family.”
“In this case, there were pups – if they feel threatened or cornered, and this has resulted in this unfortunate incident.”
- Do not attempt to feed wildlife
- Do not talk loudly or use flash photography when you encounter otters. This is because noise and light may scare and provoke otters.
Also READ: Sleeping Malaysian toddler bitten by deadly cobra
(Source: Channel NewsAsia, The Straits Times)