Team Otter vs. Team Koi: Vancouver residents pick sides as otter evades capture

Vancouver residents have begun to declare themselves “Team Otter” or “Team Koi” as an elusive otter feasting on expensive carp in a tranquil garden pond continues to evade capture.

The otter mysteriously made its way to the Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden last week and has gobbled up seven decorative koi, many of which have been there for decades.

Parks Director Howard Normann says a wildlife relocation expert started work yesterday and set three new traps containing rainbow trout and an oil mixture, but as of this morning the critter is still on the lam.

He says garden staff are discussing options to remove the koi from the pond to keep them safe, but he says it’s not as easy as it sounds because they’re sensitive fish and it’s pretty tricky to do.

In the meantime, the story has captivated people in Vancouver and beyond, with social media users joining #TeamOtter or #TeamKoi — though one #TeamKoi member points out, ”this is bad for the otter, so removing him is in everyone’s best interest.”

Local group Chinatown Today has even made a batch of buttons bearing adorable cartoon otters and koi, which it is selling for $2 each with proceeds going to the classical garden.

The Canadian Press

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