This is a series of photographs about the naughty actions of a River Otter at JCNP, which left us surprised and grinning. As promised, this is the documentation of one of the most hilarious incidents in Jungle till now.
On a cloudy grey evening, me alongwith two of my colleagues and friends was standing at the high view point of Crocodile Point near Gairal FRH of Jim Corbett National Park. This place is a high river bank which gives us a very high view point. The river bed is about 200 feet below. Since it was a light drizzle and weather was cold and pleasant, we were enjoying the weather and breeze and taking in the sights. We saw a young crocodile sleeping in the sand. We clicked its picture and waited simply for something interesting to happen. Little did we know what was in store for us. After few minutes we saw this cute young male river otter strolling in the river bed. It looked like, this small young male otter was going back to its group of Otters.
All of a sudden, this cute little River Otter saw something close by and it stood on its hind legs to have a better view, it was a crocodile who was dozing off in the sand just a little away from water of the river.
We could not click it but the otter seemed to have smiled and then slowly walked towards the sleeping crocodile. He had an excellent idea brewing in his little naughty mind.
The otter slowly walked towards the sleeping crocodile. We were clicking pictures from the high river bank about 200 feet above the riverbed and we did not expect what was about to come - else we all would have shifted our DSLRs to video mode.
My and friends' interest rose slightly as the otter ventured closer to the crocodile. We were watching it intently through the view finders of our cameras. The crocodile was still asleep and the otter was going closer to it.
Our excitement and interest rose further as the cute little otter slowed down and ventured closer to the hind end of the crocodile. We were half expecting the crocodile to be acting as asleep and were waiting for it to pounce on the otter to catch it in its sharp and menacing deadly teeth.
To our astonishment, the crocodile was still asleep and the naughty otter went closer and touched its tail with its mouth and then dug its teeth in the hard scales of the tail of this large crocodile. We went berserk with excitement and the forefinger of all three of us (me,Raminder Singh and Prem Sharma) remained pressed on the shutter button of our cameras. We were smiling and talking about what was happening and clicking.
The poor crocodile woke up with a start and tried to shake its tail due to pain and he had no idea as to what in world was causing the pain in his tail. The Cute otter stood its ground and kept the teeth dug in the scale of crocodile’s tail. During the tussle, sand flew around, but the otter did not budge from its decision.
Now the poor crocodile turned around to see what was attached to its tail that was causing the pain. And perhaps he was also as shocked as us to see the little otter digging its teeth further in his tail. On the other hand the otter was determined to give crocodile a hard time and stood its ground. We all were gleefully clicking continuously.
The tussle continued for some more time. The crocodile was in obvious physical pain and also perhaps feeling pain due to his ego being hurt so brutally by such a small creature taking a dig at his tail. The otter was obviously enjoying it and was in no mood to concede any ground. He was not leaving the tail of a creature which was at least 10 times larger than it.
By now the crocodile was obviously very angry due to his pride being bitten to badly and his tail paining due to sharp teeth of otter. It jerked its tail and turned sharply towards the otter. The otter still stood its ground although now his teeth were not embedded in the tail of poor crocodile. We were mesmerized and glued to the spot with huge grins on our faces due to this courageous and naughty act by the cute otter. Our hands were focusing and clicking on reflex throughout the incident.
The otter stood its ground for a few seconds than walked away slowly and casually.