DistributionRead full entry
Range DescriptionSpotted-necked Otters are found in lakes and larger rivers throughout much of Africa south of 10N. They are common in Lake Victoria and across Zambia, but for some unexplained reason often are absent from what appear to be suitable habitats, such as the lakes and rivers, of East Africa and the Zambezi below Victoria Falls (Estes 1992). It is likely to be present throughout most of its historic range albeit, in reduced numbers due to habitat degradation, civil strife, polluted waterways, increasing human animosity towards this species, and use as a meat source (Reed-Smith 2010).
However, due to the paucity of current information their continued presence in Angola, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Chad, Cte d'Ivoire, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Guinea, Liberia, Mali, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, and Sudan is presumed. The species is believed to be extinct in Burundi, Ghana, Lesotho, and Togo (Reed-Smith et al. 2014).
Current reports indicate the Spotted-necked Otter is present in reduced numbers in Benin, Botswana, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Congo, The Democratic Republic of the Congo, Gabon, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Niger, Rwanda, South Africa, United Republic of Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, and Zimbabwe (Reed-Smith et al. 2014). The large lakes of Central and East Africa and possibly the larger river systems are important sites for the conservation of this species.