On Saturday, a pregnant wild sea otter swam from the ocean into the Great Tide Pool area at the Monterey Bay Aquarium in California, where she chose to settle upon a rock, giving researchers and visitors alike a rare, front-row look at the birth of an endangered species.
Immediately after the baby otter was born, the mother wasted no time in grooming her pup. The Monterey Bay Aquarium explained that a mother licking her pup helps the baby stay warm and buoyant in the water. Grooming also helps gear up the young otter's blood circulation and other internal systems, showing just how vital it is for a pup to be near his or her mother after birth.
This bit of fabulous news comes shortly after the Monterey Bay Aquarium rescued an orphaned baby otter and gave the pup, unable to care for herself, a new home at the Shedd Aquarium in Chicago, Illinois.