Adventurer Jin returns
10 July 2006
Adventurer Jin returns
Thanks to the fantastic efforts of Department of Conservation (DOC) staff and some accurate otter spotting from members of the public, four-year-old female otter Jin is now back home at Auckland Zoo.
Jin, who has been on the loose for almost a month, was late yesterday morning spotted by a member of the public grooming herself and then diving under rocks at Islington Bay, on Rangitoto Island (northern side of the causeway). Jin had previously been sighted on Rangitoto on 25 June, and then at Motutapu Island on 29 June.
DOC ranger Rodway Puleosi from the Rangitoto Field Centre caught sight of Jin again at 4.30pm. Traps were then set in this area, and fresh mutton meat from the local farmer was placed around and in the trap, to help lure her in. It proved very effective, and Jin was found in the trap around 7am this morning.
Despite losing almost a third of her body weight, Jin is in remarkably good condition says Auckland Zoo senior veterinarian Dr Richard Jakob-Hoff,
“We’re naturally very pleased to see her back and although she has lost quite a lot of weight, and has a few scratches and bruises, we expect her to fully recover once she has had plenty of R and R. She was pretty well hydrated so had obviously been able to get enough fresh water from the food she was eating,” says Dr Jakob-Hoff.
Jin will be kept in quarantine for the next month, both to ensure a smooth recovery and to enable vet staff to carry out necessary tests.
“Auckland Zoo is extremely appreciative of all that DOC staff have done, and we’ve been very impressed by their ability to track and ultimately catch Jin,” says Auckland Zoo Director Glen Holland.
“Keeping staff work extremely closely with DOC on a wide range of native species conservation programmes, and our vets are involved in many research projects and field work for native species, involving DOC. The collaborative effort to find Jin is just another example of the great partnership we have with DOC.
“We’d also like to say a huge thank you to all those members of the public who contacted us over sightings – from the locals of Devonport to boaties out in the gulf. The support and interest from the public has been fantastic and without those individuals coming forward with sightings, DOC and the zoo would not have achieved this successful outcome. We’re also very grateful to the media who helped immensely in enabling us to communicate to the public,” says Mr Holland.
“The DOC Auckland area office has been pleased to have been of assistance to the zoo and we are happy to see a successful conclusion to the operation,” says Beau Fraser, DOC’s Auckland Area Manager.