Our Moor Otter sculpture in his summer home

Dobhar-ChÙ by Ariyana Ahmad one of 100 Moor Otters

His name is Dobhar-ChÙ, also known as the water hound and like the National Trust he is a protector of rivers, waterways and wetlands. His body is covered in magical scales, which aid him in the protection of his fellow Moor Otters and other Dartmoor wildlife.

Our statue has been uniquely decorated by Dublin artist Ariyana Ahmad and is one of 100 different designs created by local and international artists as well as community groups. The other 99 otters have been placed all over Dartmoor National Park and its gateway towns. At the end of the project the statues will be auctioned to raise valuable funds to enable Dartmoor National Park to continue conserving the landscape for current and future generations to enjoy. In total the project hopes to raise £100,000 to support, conserve and enhance Dartmoor’s wildlife, landscape and accessibility.

Being a river creature we hope that Dobhar-ChÙ will feel at home in the gorge. He has been installed next to a small wildlife pond that is home to frogs, newts and other insect life. Stop for a breather here and see what visits or lives under the water.

Become an otter spotter

See how many you can spot this summer, pick up a spotter guide in our visitor reception. Castle Drogo, Buckland Abbey and Widecombe will also be hosting otters.

A visit to Dobhar-ChÙ can be extended with a walk through the Gorge, the rangers have previously found evidence of Otter activity in the gorge but a sighting would be exceptionally lucky. Easier to spot are river birds like dippers and grey wagtails. Beautiful demoiselle and golden-ringed dragonflies can also be seen flying over the river with brown trout swimming below.

Cream tea time for otters
Moor otters from along the A386 having cream tea together
Cream tea time for otters

Time for a tea party

Dobhar-ChÙ met up with some of his local Moor Otter buddies for a tea party on a wet Wednesday afternoon. They indulged in cream tea and had a good natter about their various holiday homes. All of them are in locations along the A386 and nearby. Ottery St Mary even ventured all the way down from Brentor church, quite a trek for little otter legs. Dobhar-ChÙ thinks he has the best summer home as he gets lots of animal visitors as well as human ones and he has made some lovely new friends at the gorge. He will stay with us until September the 15th and would love to see you all.

Ready for the rain
Moor otter keeping dry in National Trust waterproof
Ready for the rain