Predators and Competitors of the Giant Otter

The information below comes from Duplaix (1980), Otternet, and the Frankfurt Zoological Society Giant Otter Project


Adult Giant Otters have few predators apart from Man, as they are at the top of the food chain. Jaguars (Panthera onca) and Pumas (Felis concolor) may occasionally take inattentive animals. The altricial young are sometimes taken by the same predators, and may also fall victim to black caiman (Melanosuchus niger ) and anaconda (Eunectes murinus), hence the great care taken of the young by the rest of the group.


The Giant Otter shares its habitat with other large fish-eating predators, such as black caiman, various large piscivorous fish such as the arapaima (Arapaima gigas), and river dolphins (Inia geoffrensis in the Amazon River system and Sotalia fluviatilis in the Amazon and Orinoco), but since the otters seek out habitats with ample food supplies, direct competition is probably minimal.

The Neotropical Otter, Lontra longicaudis, inhabits the same geographical areas, but has a different lifestyle, targeting smaller prey, so they occupy a different ecological niche to their larger cousins.

Giant Otter