Scotland is a European stronghold for the otter and they are now widespread over the whole of the country. Historically, pesticide pollution of waterways eliminated otters from most of England and Wales and led to substantial declines in Scotland leaving them largely present in the north and west only.
The population has since recovered and otters can easily be seen in many areas, but particularly on the west coast and the islands.
Disclaimer: Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) has changed its name to NatureScot as of the 24th August 2020.
At the time of publishing, this document may still refer to Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) and include the original branding. It may also contain broken links to the old domain.
If you have any issues accessing this document please contact us via our feedback form.