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Wild About Otters Exhibition Launches
February 2007Few animals convey a sense of joy and spontaneity like otters. To celebrate this fact, the Monterey Bay Aquarium launches a new special exhibit called Wild About Otters. The $3.6 million exhibit marks the first time the Aquarium has shown freshwater mammals. Two freshwater African spotted-necked otter pups, born behind-the-scenes, join their parents and six other freshwater otters as the stars of the exhibit.
In September, a third otter is born and the Aquarium launches an online naming contest for the pup that results in more than 5,000 votes. Shani, (SHAH-NEE) a Swahili word that means "curiosity" or "adventure," is the winner with 62 percent of the total online votes. The adult otters in this special exhibit came from the San Diego Zoo as part of the Association of Zoos & Aquariums' Species Survival Plan, a cooperative effort to ensure the survival of threatened and endangered wildlife.