A couple have been left devastated after an otter devoured £150 of stock from their family business in north Norfolk.

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Graham and Claudia Makepeace have owned Sutton Garden & Aquatic Centre for nearly 60 years and said they were “frightened and angry” after seeing the damage caused by the fish-eating mammal.

Mrs Makepeace, 72, first found evidence of the feast this morning when she came across fish heads and scales on the floor and was shocked to discover an otter had chewed its way through galvanised wire.

“That is somewhat unbelievable,” she said.

“The power they have to do that must be incredible and I don’t think I would like to get too close to an otter.”

The couple protect their three large outside ponds by keeping them in separate bays and putting covers and wire across.

“We get herons as well so have put these measures in place to stop them and the otters getting the fish – but this time the otters have defeated us.”

Around 25 fish were eaten, costing about £6 each.

Mrs Makepeace said she would have to think of new ways to protect the fish and believed the otter would return.

She said: “We are pretty angry and we are going to have to put something fairly substantial over the bays now.”

23 comments

  • "Mrs Makepeace said she would have to think of new ways to protect the fish and believed the otter would return." This sounds like a story I would read my kids. Thing is the otter WILL return, with all its mates AND the Loch Ness monster, armed in a black range rover who will keep guard whilst the otters feast on the free wares. Shortly after this glutinous behaviour the whole, criminal team of otters will then take control of Norfolk. The end.

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    Urbancommander

    Friday, October 12, 2012

  • I am going to have Chicken Tarka for tea tonight, It's a bit like chicken Tikka only 'otter!

    Report this comment

    IT Man

    Friday, October 12, 2012

  • muttley, our Baltic visitors are the real enemy of lake and river fish stocks, plus they feast on the odd swan or two.

    Report this comment

    nrg

    Friday, October 12, 2012

  • this would be the place that spent a lot of time and money digging out the dyke network at the back of the garden center to allow the otter easier access to the food source from the other side of the bypass.

    Report this comment

    greenmanwalking

    Sunday, October 14, 2012

  • What a novel way to gain publicity for their business Such an advertisement would have cost several hundred pounds yet the sum of £150 loss of fish stock is minimal Surely they should be thanking the otter for putting their fish farm on the map No doubt they will carp on about this non event to receive even more free publicity from the national press Incidentally my daughter's goldfish died two weeks ago was found upside down in the fishbowl maybe we should have telephoned the EDP?

    Report this comment

    Claire Voyant

    Friday, October 12, 2012

  • 'Devastated' - really?

    Report this comment

    Thoreauwasright

    Friday, October 12, 2012

  • I agree with Daisy on that..

    Report this comment

    Dave01

    Thursday, October 11, 2012

  • £6 for a goldfish that size is a bit steep as well;you can get them for half that price elsewhere.If it is the retail price what is the price theyd pay for it, that would be a more accurate price, what they have actually lost rather than potential profit !

    Report this comment

    Mr Majika

    Friday, October 12, 2012

  • it amazes me how many do gooders we have in the world.otters might look lovely but they badly affect fish populations and should not of been re introduced to rivers.with out so called do gooders we would have been fine as goes for many other things in life!!

    Report this comment

    kaz

    Friday, October 12, 2012

  • "Mrs Makepeace said she would have to think of new ways to protect the fish and believed the otter would return." This sounds like a story I would read my kids. Thing is the otter WILL return, with all its mates AND the Loch Ness monster, armed in a black range rover who will keep guard whilst the otters feast on the free wares. Shortly after this glutinous behaviour the whole, criminal team of otters will then take control of Norfolk. The end.

    Report this comment

    Urbancommander

    Friday, October 12, 2012

  • And they are sure it was an otter and not a mink? They saw it in action? Otters usually eat fish head first and leave the tails not the heads.

    Report this comment

    Daisy Roots

    Thursday, October 11, 2012

  • My father told me that years ago(not sure how long that is but hes old) they did actually "control" the otter population,by that I assume he was meaning "culling" them.....Not sure if its the right or wrong thing but as will all wildlife they will eventually have their natural level that can survive in that area. They will not and can not over populate as the food stock is not available....apart from "stocked" fishing areas..

    Report this comment

    Sidney

    Friday, October 12, 2012

  • Oh well, never mind.

    Report this comment

    Urbancommander

    Friday, October 12, 2012

  • Must be like the Otters version of Mcdonalds.

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    John L Norton

    Thursday, October 11, 2012

  • Frightened ???? wtf!!!

    Report this comment

    nrg

    Friday, October 12, 2012

  • Big up for the otter if they are the culprit.

    Report this comment

    nrg

    Friday, October 12, 2012

  • EDP should be wary of being involved in an anti otter campaign led by fish farmers who dont want to pay for securing their sites. Otters are a very long way from being anywhere approaching their pre DDT natural population in Norfolk. Farmers have to secure their free range hens from Mr Tod and fence in their livestock, no reason to publicise the loss of a few over priced fish that are not in secure tanks.

    Report this comment

    Daisy Roots

    Friday, October 12, 2012

  • And seals;-) are these people qualified to keep fish when they seem to talk nonsense..????

    Report this comment

    Dave01

    Thursday, October 11, 2012

  • We have seen Otter devestation at the two fishing lakes our angling club uses over the past 6 or 7 years. Fish of 30lb plus taken and eaten and there is absoultely nothing we can do about it as the Otter is protected by law. I believe the Otter trust was mainly at fault, They released too many otters into the wild without thinking about the consequences of their actions. Hundreds of thousands of pounds worth of Carp have been taken from lakes and ponds around the County. A small fishing lake is like a fast food resteraunt to an Otter. A Dog Otter can have a range of upto 30 miles and have as many as 8 dens in that area. A Cull is the only way of keeping these equatic predators in check. I don't agree with wiping them out as they are a beautiful animal (in the right environment), but fishing clubs and lake owners need some way of protecting their stock.

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    muttley

    Friday, October 12, 2012

  • muttley said "I don't agree with wiping them out as they are a beautiful animal (in the right environment)," and the countryside isn't the 'right' environment?! I'm assuming your fish wern't there naturally so you chose to fill the lake up with them!

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    catalonia13

    Friday, October 12, 2012

  • "frightened" oh come on, its an otter (maybe) its not as if it was a lion, oh yeah they are roaming Southend!!

    Report this comment

    ggj666

    Friday, October 12, 2012

  • Good for the otter, Pretty angry, my arse

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    Staffy Boy

    Friday, October 12, 2012

  • and totally agree with both of Daisyroots comments!

    Report this comment

    catalonia13

    Friday, October 12, 2012

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

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