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Friendly otter jumps onto kayak, joins birthday celebration

Posted 9:50 p.m. Wednesday
Updated 7:45 a.m. Thursday

This Monday, Nov. 28, 2016 photo provided by Heather VanNes shows a friendly sea otter after it jumped aboard a kayak piloted by her husband John Koester while both were kayaking in a slough near Moss Landing, Calif. The couple was celebrating a birthday when the animal jumped into one of their kayaks and made itself at home. (Heather VanNes via AP)

— A friendly otter joined a couple celebrating a birthday in Northern California by jumping into one of their kayaks and making itself at home, rolling around and even nibbling on some shoes.

Heather VanNes said Wednesday she and her husband, John Koester, were celebrating his birthday Monday in a slough near Moss Landing and had just gotten in the water when they spotted a raft of otters.

They went by to watch them from a distance of at least 50 feet when one of the otters began swimming toward her husband's kayak and jumped right onto it.

Koester says the otter plopped into the front of the boat, rolled around, scratched his belly and ears and nibbled on rope and his shoes.

He says it appeared the otter "was having a good time."

Koester says the otter was at least 80 pounds and stayed on the kayak for at least 10 minutes until. After he started paddling, the otter jumped back into the water.

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