See the Otters at the Tennessee Aquarium's Revamped Cove Forest Exhibit!
Three river otters scamper in and out of their rocky den, nipping at each other’s cinnamon-colored fur. Soon, a tangle of tails, whiskers and paws is sliding on the slick rock as the playful mammals tussle like puppies and plop into a pool beneath one of five waterfalls in the new River Otter Falls at the Tennessee Aquarium in Chattanooga.
Previously relegated to a smaller spot in the Cove Forest exhibit, the otters now take center stage.
“One thing that otters seem to do is take physical necessities and make a game of it,” says curator of forests Dave Collins. “It’s crazy to watch, but they’re just being otters. We’re happy that we built something that can bring that out.”
The rest of the exhibit has undergone a subtle redesign, but its mission hasn’t changed. “Cove forests are unique to the southern Appalachians. They only exist in a few areas,” says Collins. “We’ve got to preserve them because we’ll never get them back."