We humans love to indulge on Thanksgiving, and often joke about eating our weight in turkey, potatoes and green bean casserole on that special Thursday in November.
But otters — like Cooper and Watson at the Shedd Aquarium — like to enjoy a large Thanksgiving meal too, and actually do eat 25% of their body weight every day.
Unlike humans, they have a good reason for eating so much: otters quickly burn off those calories to stay warm in freezing cold water.
In honor of the holiday, trainers at the Shedd spent eight hours creating a classic holiday meal for the otters, with staples like mashed potatoes, carrots and green beans. But the reason why it took so long is because they used some nontraditional ingredients, molding frozen kill, clam, fish, squid and shrimp to look like dishes from a typical Thanksgiving dinner.
This year is the first Thanksgiving Cooper and Watson are spending at the Shedd after they were rescued off the coast of California earlier this year. They shared their feast with four other otters, who ate some and stashed the rest in their natural pockets to snack on later.