The otter cheek! Infra-red footage reveals an otter frolicking in garden pond after Koi Carp owners set up camera to see what’s attacking their prized fish at night
- David Latta, 62, with his wife Julia, 52, run a cattery near Colchester in Essex
- Their Koi Carp, worth thousands of pounds, had their fins and tails nibbled
- CCTV revealed the culprit was an otter which was diving into their pond at night
When David Latta and his wife Julie noticed the tails and fins of their Koi Carp worth thousands of pounds had apparently been nibbled, they set out to catch the culprit.
The couple, who run a cattery near Colchester, Essex, said: ‘We knew the fish hadn’t been attacked by a cat because they are all kept inside. We believed that a heron was the most likely predator.’
The couple initially put chicken wire around the pond to deter the would-be diner but as the days passed, more of the fish had nibbled fins and tails so Mr Latta, 62, set up an infra-red camera.
The otter pokes its head above the pond in Colchester, Essex, as the animal is caught it the act of nibbling the Koi Carp
Julie and David Latta initially put chicken wire around their ornamental pond in the hope it would deter the culprit
Initial observation of the footage showed a security light coming on just after midnight as a fox entered the garden.
‘We assumed the fox could be the culprit,’ said Mrs Latta, ‘and we continued to view the footage from the next five nights.’
‘To our astonishment we then realised it wasn’t a fox or heron but an otter who was filmed brazenly swimming around our ornamental pond ducking and diving for the fish.
The otter enters the garden on the far left and makes its way into the pond to find its next meal
The cheeky otter climbs onto rockery before launching itself at the camera in the early hours
David Latta fixed the wire around the pond however the otter managed to outsmart the fence
‘The thing we find so extraordinary is the fact that we live about half a mile from the nearest brook and the extremely busy A12 dual carriageway cuts it in half.’ said Mr Latta.
‘So this must be one very determined otter to make the nightly trips for it’s expensive nibbles.’
With advice given by the otter trust they have also now installed an electric fence to hopefully persuade the midnight diner to seek food elsewhere.
The prized Koi Carp owned by David and Julie Latta which are worth thousands of pounds
A Koi Carp in the ornamental pond showing its tail nibbled from the otter which was entering the garden at night