Asian small-clawed otters, smooth otters, and hairy-nosed otters all are found in Southeast Asia, to the Malay Peninsula. This range decreased significantly during the fur trade during the 18th and 19th centuries, with excessive hunting nearly driving the species into extinction by the early 1900s. Oil spills. Giant otters (genus Pteronura) are found mainly in slow-moving rivers and creeks within forests, swamps, and marshes. Trade in the animal has no significant adverse effect on the wild population of the animal in any of its natural habitats. A male's range often overlaps that of one or more females. They are not at the top of the food web, however, and are eaten by orcas, great white sharks and other large predators. Saltwater otters Two otter species are strictly marine: the sea otter (Enhydra lutris) of the Pacific Coast of North America and the much smaller marine otter (Lontra felina) from the coast of Peru and Chile. A raft is usually comprised of single-sex sea otters that can range from 10 to a hundred individuals. covered beaches, small icebergs or AN OTTER IS SOMETIMES ONLY AS GOOD AS HIS TOOLS. diverse. Go behind-the-scenes to see how our trainers care for and interact with these amazing animals, and get up close with some finned, flippered, or feathered friends. Sea Otters favor confined areas, such as bays and The late great Nyac, a survivor of the Exxon Valdez. Otters love to eat shelled animals, … The sea otter, however, rarely comes ashore, according to the San Diego Zoo. Even Alaska otters, which spend a considerable amount of time on land, generally eat all their food in the water. What’s more, these coastal otters live their lives according to the tides, while river otters are usually most active at night. They use kelp beds to wrap themselves or tie Otters are found almost all over the world and in many wet habitats, such freshwater rivers, lakes, oceans, coastlines and marshes. Sea otters once ranged from Mexico to Alaska and Japan. Fun Facts for Kids. River otters (genus Lutra) inhabit all types of inland waterways, as well as estuaries and marine coves. San Francisco Bay could become the new home to extinction-threatened sea otters, according to a recent report published in PeerJ. Eurasian otters are found throughout most of Europe, Asia, and North Africa (Morocco, Algeria, and Tunisia). Sea otters are known to wrap their pups and themselves in kelp to keep from drifting out to sea. Otters are usually found no more than a few hundred meters from water. The sea otter has made many adaptations to survive better in its habitat. Sea otter moms typically only give birth to 1 pup. Males weigh 22-45 kg and are 1.2-1.5 m in length. Sea otters (genus Enhydra) are found in coastal waters of the North Pacific, rarely more than 1 km (0.6 mi.) shorelines, where marine communities are extremely for females. Giant otters are found throughout almost all of South America. winter. Besides burrows, many river otters establish and use a variety of land "facilities" for a number of their daily activities. They are capable of spending their entire life at sea, but sometimes rest on rocky shores. Most species are entirely dependent on aquatic habitats for food. Sea otters live in shallow coastal waters in the northern Pacific. Currently, the California population of about 3,300 individuals range from Half Moon Bay to Point Conception. out by waters near shore or kelp beds and where Sea Otters Could Get New Home in San Francisco Bay. Since they must sleep at the surface, they often wrap themselves in giant kelp to keep from floating away. Find quick information and fun facts with these 1-page easy resources about animals from A to Z. females in a group and males in another group. Pups begin to dive and forage at about 2 months. Other places you will find them lingering include around rivers, streams, and lakes. In soft-bottom habitats, the sea otter  Many sea otters live near rocky sea bottoms and The sea otter is the largest member of the weasel family and the smallest marine mammal. Spot-necked otters are found throughout Africa in all countries south of the Sahara. In North America, there are two distinct sea otter subspecies, the northern sea otter (E. l. kenyoni) and the southern sea otter (E. l. nereis). Despite perils such as oil spills and high-speed ferries, the bay has plenty of safe spots for this charismatic threatened species. Currently, the California population numbers around 3,300 and is found from Half Moon Bay to Point Conception. The Alaska otter has a greater tendency to haul out (come to shore) than the California otter. Most otters have widespread distributions, but relatively sparse populations. They enjoy the freshwater but they are also known to live in the saltwater of the oceans as well. Cape clawless otters do not dig burrows. Spraint stations are areas designated by otters for routine, systematic defecation. North American river otters are found throughout the United States and Canada. Sea Otters River otters (genus Lutra) inhabit all types of inland waterways, as well as estuaries and marine coves. Sea Otters Known as a sprawling and energetic “celebration of cycling,” Sea Otter is cycling’s North American season opener. For one of the smallest marine mammals on Earth (yet the largest member of the weasel family), the sea otter has racked up quite a few superlatives: 10. They are frequently found in protected harbors, barrier reefs, and kelp forests that offer shelter from wind and waves. Historically, sea otters occupied a contiguous range from northern Japan, across the North Pacific, and down to Baja California, Mexico. A sea otter eats in the water, lying on its back, with its food on its chest. The sea otter is an important part of both of these habitats — It’s a keystone species, which means that the health of sea otters is a good indication of the health of other species and ecosystems nearby. © 2021 SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Sea otters often float at the water's surface in forests of kelp, or giant seaweed, and entangle themselves to keep from moving in the rolling sea. Many sea otters live near rocky sea bottoms and shorelines, where marine communities are extremely diverse. Otter Habitat and Distribution Otters are found on every single continent in the world except for Australia and Antarctica. Habitat. They live in offshore forests of giant kelp (Macrocystis pyrifera), and spend most of their active time foraging below the canopy. urchins, and abalone. Rolling places are bare patches of ground where otters roll and groom. In some areas, a female Alaska sea otter's home range may include 8 to 16 km (5-10 mi.) To ensure that they stay dry they must spend… This keeps them near both kelp forests, which provide them with food, and the shore which allows them to occasionally exit the water to rest, socialize, and escape dangerous ocean conditions or predators. Take a closer look at these encyclopedia books including information about animal habitats, behavior, and scientific classification. food in an area and kelp. The sea otter keeps their fur very clean and can usually withstand all temperatures. It establishes a burrow close to the water's edge in river, lake, swamp, coastal shoreline, tidal flat, or estuary ecosystems. The decline in more typical killer whale prey species has led some killer whales to switch to feeding on sea otters. Most species are entirely dependent on aquatic habitats for food. Otter watching involves perseverance. Sea otters, Enhydra lutris (Linnaeus, 1758), are the largest member of the Family Mustelidae (70 species of river otters, skunks, weasels, badgers, etc.) Their teeth are strong enough to crunch open a clam shell or bite through a sea urchin's spines. congregate in groups of gender such as: the pups and and sometimes in the winter go on sandy, cobble, snow First, the sea otter uses their feet to reduce or maximize heat loss when water temperatures are too hot or too cold.  migrate , it is due to the abundance of then it is a longer dive for them to catch their food.  north to the hang in groups called rafts; they usually hang Neotropical otters range from Uruguay north to Central America and Mexico. Sea Otters and the Endangered Species Act . for males and about 7 km (4.3 mi.) Runways are well-defined land paths that link waterways and other facilities. (See also Reproduction). Cape clawless otters are found in widely varying habitats, from dense rainforest to open coastal plain and semi-arid zones. Our overarching zoological mission is to foster conservation awareness and to impart action on our park guests to preserve wild animals and wild places. A sea otter may remove an abalone by repeatedly hitting it with a rock. Nearly all otter populations have been impacted to some extent by human activities. They prefer waterways that have gently sloping banks and good cover. In southern Chile the marine otter is found almost exclusively along exposed rocky seashores; farther north it may inhabit estuaries and fresh water. Sea otters inhabit temperate coastal waters with rocky or soft sediment ocean bottom. Habitat & Population Status. Otters are widely distributed. Habitat In the Monterey Bay, the sea otter lives in kelp forest and estuary habitats. coast of the Kamchatka Peninsula, then from Alaska down themselves up in and to find food. while they are out hunting and searching for food. out by waters near shore or kelp beds and where They typically … When the water temperatures are too cold sea otters reduce heat loss by floating … is during mating. Sea otters prefer coastal habitats within a mile of the shoreline. have very distinct habitats. Currently the southern sea otter population is estimated at just above 3,000 animals. That’s a sea otter, yo. interact with smaller animals such as Pismo clams, They are thought to be more terrestrial in nature than other otter species. Sea Otters sporadically go onto shore to rest It prohibits commercial harvest of sea otters, and allows Alaska natives to hunt sea otters for subsistence and creation of handicrafts. Sea Otter Facts: Habitat: Northern and eastern North Pacific Ocean. Can otters use tools? Download free teacher guides to keep students learning in a hands-on way: includes vocabulary, classroom activities, goals and objectives. shellfish are plentiful. Their nickname is the “sea beaver.” Because of the activity in the sea will never ends because many people rely their life on it … Territories differ from home ranges. A 3-4 week clerkship for veterinary students wanting to augment their knowledge and experience in non-domestic animal medicine. Sea otters live in several regions of the Pacific: along the Commander and Kuril Islands off the coast of Russia, along the Aleutian Islands and Alaska Peninsula south of the Bering Sea, off the Alaskan Peninsula to Vancouver Island, and on the central California coast from Point Sur to Ano Nuevo. Current IUCN Conservation Status of Sea Otters|Conservation Evidence|NOAA UNEP World Conservation Monitoring Centre: Sea Otters|Check the Seafood Watch List for this species Two hundred years ago, a million sea otters may have ranged along the 9,650km of Pacific coastline from northern Japan, through the Aleutian Islands of Alaska, down the coast of California to Baja Mexico. Newborn sea otter pups are so buoyant they can’t immediately dive for food. California’s southern sea otter has been listed as a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act since 1977. Sea otters (scientific name: Enhydra lutris) can be found in shallow water areas in the North Pacific Ocean. The kelp acts as an anchor that the sea otters use to wrap themselves in when they are resting. Under their arms, Sea otters have built in pockets. A home range is the portion of land and water that an animal frequently visits during its daily and seasonal activities. An otter is one of the few species that use tools. 2014 “Sea otter restricted habitat use; further support for the sequential megafaunal collapse theory”, Environmental Studies Invited Speaker, Amherst College, Amherst, MA 2013 “Implications of an ice-free Kotzebue Sound on ringed seal ( Phoca hispida ) habitat selection”, It also uses a flat rock to break open the shells of crustaceans and mollusks. Ninety percent of the world’s sea otters live in coastal Alaska. A 2004 survey determined the California sea otter population to be more than 2,800 animals. of coastline. when population density is high. Are you wild about whales? In the Monterey Bay, the sea otter lives in kelp forest and estuary habitats. Clawless otter (genus Aonyx) habitats vary greatly among the species and between individuals. Hear animal sounds for animals like anteaters, dolphins, frogs and more. Learn more about the Seasonal Camp Counselor program at SeaWorld. Browse our extensive collection of zoological career infobooks including animal training, animal rescue and rehabilitation and zoo careers. Fish & Wildlife Service listed the southwest Alaska Distinct Population Segment (DPS) of the northern sea otter (Enhydra lutris kenyoni) as threatened under the Endangered Species Act (ESA).For access to all Federal Register notices regarding this listed species, visit our national web site. The sea otters usually live near the shore waters Sea otters are found in two areas: The Pacific coasts of Russia and Alaska, and along the central California coast. coat of fur. from shore. Sea otters inhabit shallow coastal areas and prefer places with kelp. Taken with tigers? Not all otters use tools, but sea otters use them all the time. Southern river otters are found in Argentina and Chile. 9. Cape clawless otters inhabit the southern two-thirds of the African continent. California sea otters are found off the coast of central California; between Half Moon Bay and Pt. To learn how the sea otter deep, but travel through much deeper water. Most seem to prefer quiet ponds and sluggish streams. (See Conception. By. Mothers tend to leave their pups in the kelp beds They eat, rest, and groom themselves at the water surface. The key features needed for a conducive sea otter habitat include shallow water with saline marshes. California. Crazy about roller coasters? Sea otters are commonly spotted on WWF’s Alaska tours. At SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment, we extend our commitment to the environment beyond our company by supporting a variety of conservation groups and programs. Sea otters use the kelp to wrap themselves in when they are resting. Sea Otter. Lifespan: 10-15 years on average, but some have lived to be 20. Sea otters use rocks to remove prey from their shells. Giant otters (genus Pteronura) are found mainly in slow-moving rivers and creeks within forests, swamps, and mars… River otters dig their own burrows. The current range extends along the California coast from Half Moon Bay in the north to Santa Barbara in the south, though individuals are occasionally seen outside these limits. Slides offer quick access to water or other facilities. California otters often prefer kelp beds, probably because of the protection and food resources they provide. In southern Chile the marine otter is found almost exclusively along exposed rocky seashores; farther north it may inhabit estuaries and fresh water. To catch their food, which primarily lives on the seafloor near kelp forests, sea otters will close their nostrils and ears to dive down, grab … Otters have been seen along the streams, and vernal pools provide habitat for many animals and plants. Burrows, many river otters ( scientific name: Enhydra lutris ) can be sloping riverbanks, travel... 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