With your help we can use what we've learned about sea otter care and surrogacy to build their numbers, and also the health of California's essential coastal habitats. See the fact file below for more information on the sea otters or alternatively, you can download our 25-page Sea Otter worksheet pack to utilise within the classroom or home environment. We at Sea Otter Savvy believe that most disturbance to sea otters is unintentional, motivated not by the intent to do harm but by lack of awareness. Use less water. One example: Otters eat sea urchins. We’ve teamed up with Adi Barocas in Peru, to understand what’s happening and what we can do to reverse the fortunes of this fantastic, charismatic species. Sea Otters Could Get New Home in San Francisco Bay. They have chemicals that can harm aquatic organisms. Southern sea otters can live to approximately 15 years for males and 16 years for females. … get into streams or lakes, eg., from lotions, perfumes, sunscreens. The mission of the giant otter research team is to understand if and how the demography, behaviour and health of giant otters are affected by the recent changes to their habitat. When sea otters are underwater foraging for food, they make use of the loose skin under their armpits, using the area like pockets to store food as they continue their search. …and speak out, both locally and nationally. Research by Tim and fellow University of California, Santa Cruz scientist Brent Hughes suggests otters can help restore the health and biodiversity of estuaries like Elkhorn Slough, too. Hundreds of thousands of sea otters used to live on the Pacific coast between northern Mexico to Alaska. We can make a difference. 1. But the fur trade, which began in the 1700s, almost wiped out all of them. What We Can Learn about the Coast from Sick Sea Otters A new study finds cat poop parasites in otter brains. Keep informed, and let your legislators know that you support strong protection for the environment. © 2021 Awesome Ocean. Plant native plants appropriate for your garden. Otters are part of the Mustelidae family, which is a family of … (Click on the tab “Sightings Map.”) The red crosses indicate otters hit by cars. If there is not kelp to help reduce levels of carbon dioxide in the ocean, then marine environments are threatened due to the high acidity levels. Despite perils such as oil spills and high-speed ferries, the bay has plenty of safe spots for this charismatic threatened species Have an area in the garage or shed to save them for proper disposal. Sea otters can also drink salt water and thus can remain at sea for several days at a time. Kayakers and beach-goers can get too close and disturb resting or rafting otters, costing them energy. Sea otters are usually solitary but are sometimes seen in groups—gatherings of up to 2,000 have been observed along the coast of Alaska. and disposing properly of their waste helps prevent the spread of disease to sea otter populations. Make your gift today! The same goes for dog waste. Scientists from the Hubbs-SeaWorld Research Institute (HSWRI), in cooperation with other facilities and volunteers, coordinated efforts to rescue and treat sea otters affected by the 1989 oi… Sea otters are downstream from all human activity. The sea mammals vanished from Oregon’s coast long ago, but a technique from human archaeology offers a … Sea otters floating in kelp. But the potential is definitely there.” Their fur actually consists of two layers, an undercoat and longer guard hairs. Sea otters became endangered marine animals in 1972. In the protected environment of a zoological park, scientists can examine aspects of otter biology that are difficult to study in the wild. Sea otters are members of the weasel or mustelid family. Rodenticides not only kill rats and mice by causing catastrophic internal bleeding, but cause secondary poisoning to any other animal that preys on the dying rodent. Grow a garden. If one raft of 200 males were to be caught in an oil spill, this would greatly reduce the fertility of the sea otter population moving forward, and likely have significant population trauma many years into the future (Environment Canada, 2011). Use nontoxic household cleaning products. So yes, we want to save sea otters because they play an essential role in the lives of many animals around them, including humans, but also because no animal deserves to become endangered or extinct due to our impact. Our organization is not affiliated with any other otter-related research group or community outreach organization. It can sometimes be difficult to see how our actions help the planet or its residents but, particularly regarding disturbance to sea otters by our recreation, there are simple things we can do to make their world safer and more peaceful. We HAVE to help! Today, only about 2,000 southern sea otters exist, and they face many dangers—like oil spills, entanglement in fishing gear, diseases and pollution. The mission of the giant otter research team is to understand if and how the demography, behaviour and health of giant otters are affected by the recent changes to their habitat. 3) Use paper over plastic and Styrofoam. (Joan Tisdale — Special to the Herald) Luckily, there are ways to paddle responsibly. That's why keeping cats indoors (or in a catio!) Please Help save the sea Otters How they got endangered References Sea Otters Habitat Sea World Entertainment WWF Mr Google My Brain Dictionary online (Thesaurus) Sea Otters numbers are rapidly decreasing. …and dispose of it properly. But individuals can help sea otters by promoting the respectful sharing of space with our wild neighbors: know, follow and share guidelines for safe viewing of sea otters and all kinds of wildlife, model responsible behavior when you are on the water, and foster an ethic of respect and empathy towards all making a living in our coastal community, human and non-human. Sea otters are usually dark brown, often with lighter guard ha… A home for rescued sea otters. Sea otters can eat 25 to 30 percent of their body weight in one day, which would be equivalent to a 175-pound human eating 45 pounds of food in one day. Learn more about ocean issues and share your knowledge. In order to help save the sea otters and help their survival we need to raise awareness about them. Reduce, reuse, and recycle whenever you can. 5. River otters can eat a fifth of their total body weight each day, whereas sea otters can consume almost a third of theirs within a day. Grow a garden. Describe sea otter characteristics. Thanks to the collaborative efforts of individuals, more has been done for Otters by government agencies around the world as well. That's why keeping cats indoors (or in a catio!) “If sea otters are getting sick by accidentally eating pathogens that come from cat poop, we should all be worried,” Shapiro said. Sea otters are not just cute animals swimming and splashing carefree offshore. Get your car oil changed to prevent leaks. It’s easier, cheaper, and you’ll have a more successful garden. Sea otters today are considered a species that is endangered. Pick up after your pets. 5) File a petition to raise the status of sea otters from threatened to endangered. In theory, yes. Title: Microsoft Word - Document1 Author: Deborah Created Date: 3/28/2009 5:37:32 PM Don’t litter or dump materials into storm drains. Oil Spills. Lastly, and most provocative, is research showing that the presence of otters can help boost the populations of other ocean animals. The animals that they prey on devour kelp forests. It makes its way into waterways and the ocean very quickly. Sea otters are usually solitary but are sometimes seen in groups—gatherings of up to 2,000 have been observed along the coast of Alaska. 7. and disposing properly of their waste helps prevent the spread of disease to sea otter populations. Tips for spotting a sea otter. People can help sea otters by decreasing the amount of pollutants we disperse into their natural habitats. Pay attention to how politicians stand on conservation issues like open space and stream and ocean protections. …and participate in events as a volunteer. When urchin populations spiked in response, the reefs held their ground. We receive no government funding, and depend solely on financial support from our friends. Opinion: Sea otters are the defenders of kelp forests, ecosystems. Although the efforts to protect these animals continues to increase, there are many things you can do to help save the sea otters. …down the drain. Instead, use permeable pavers to allow rainwater to sink into the ground and replenish groundwater. 1. Raptors, pets and even children have been harmed or killed by secondary rodenticide poisoning. In the 1900s, seas otters numbers were down in the 1000s-2000s because of the ongoing fur trade. This is due to them being nearly hunted to extinction by fur traders in “For sea otters to succeed, it’s definitely a challenge. Sea otters were hunted to near extinction during the maritime fur trade of the 1700s and 1800s. River otters and all animals love willow thickets. Identify the location and range of the sea otter in Canada. When the sea otter is trying to lose heat, they extend their feet out underwater to maximize their surface area. Otters have some interesting relatives. Sea otters can sometimes be seen off sandy beaches — and even local harbors. Fewer sea urchins in turn help prevent kelp forests from being overgrazed. Storm drains go directly to streams. Take them to a hazardous waste center. A thick layer of underfur covered by black, pale brown or silver guard hairs traps air for insulation. They were so young that they didn’t know how to eat by themselves or groom themselves yet. You can’t protect what you don’t know. How you can help southern sea otters. Reduce, reuse, and recycle whenever you can. Helping to Save Sea Otters and How They Are Helping to Save Us. To preserve body heat sea otters tend to spread out or fold up their feet. Sea otters floating in kelp. Take a walk, watch birds, find out what animals, plants and other living things live there. Scientist claim that up to 40 percent of these deaths are results of human pollution. was shot near Kyuquot on the west coast of Vancouver Island in 1929. Females otters nature at 3 years of age and males at age 5. …of any kind. …and collecting rainwater in a cistern/rain barrel! Make sure you pick up used fishing line and hooks! These interactions can be positive (harmonious for both human and sea otter) or negative (disturbance to sea otters and/or injury to human). Volunteers work to clean up the waters and to get emergency efforts under way when Otters are in danger due to oil spills or other problems. Sea otters spend all of their time in the ocean, including sleeping. Archaeologists Could Help Bring Otters Back From the Dead. Sea otters are downstream from all human activity. Don’t litter or dump materials into storm drains. The longest recorded sea otter dive was 4 minutes, 2 and the deepest recorded sea otter dive was 318 feet (97 m) deep. There are several ways that YOU can help sea otters, like recycling, using less water, picking up our pet’s waste, etc. Volunteer to help or create a beach clean up. And sea … We’ve teamed up with Adi Barocas in Peru, to understand what’s happening and what we can do to reverse the fortunes of this fantastic, charismatic species. Take shorter showers, turn off water when not in use. When the water temperatures are too cold sea otters reduce heat loss by floating on their backs with their feet out of the water. Along the Pacific coast, sea otters help control the sea urchin population. …your favorite environmental organizations financially, please do! Dedicated staff had to bottle … One way to help is to bag and dispose of cat litter instead of flushing. SeaWorld parks rescue and rehabilitate orphaned, ill, and injured otters. Unlike other marine mammals, sea otters do not have a thick layer of blubber and rely upon their water-resistant fur for insulation. Don’t pour toxic household chemicals down the drain. At night, sea otters may choose either … Sea otters use rocks to crack open their prey as fast as 45 blows in 15 seconds. 1) Reduce the amount of storm drain pollution and kitty litter flushed down toilets 2) Buy environmentally friendly products These aquatic members of the weasel family are often seen floating on their backs. Sea otters became endangered marine animals in 1972. Sea otter exhibit. Purchase sustainable, recycled, biodegradable goods. Sea otters are particularly vulnerable to oil contamination because oiling drastically reduces the insulating and water-repellent properties of their fur. Now that you know how vital a sea otters’ role in the ecosystem is and why they’re threatened we want to let you in on 12 simple steps that will help to maintain and hopefully increase sea otter populations. The last sea otter in B.C. Take them to a hazardous waste center. Instead, use Integrated Pest Management practices (google it and find many excellent, organic suggestions). They are a keystone species, essential to the ecosystem, and they are facing some serious threats! Sea otters can also drink salt water and thus can remain at sea for several days at a time. Dispose of hazardous wastes properly. Food Choices and Location Influence California Sea Otter Exposure to Disease. Sea otters were locally extinct in British Columbian waters in Canada, until a plane containing a romp of otters arrived and set off a population boom – with unintended consequences. VOTE VOTE VOTE. People can help sea otters by decreasing the amount of pollutants we disperse into their natural habitats. Support environmental legislation, such as the EPA, Clean Water and Clean Air Acts. Now that we know we are inadvertently killing them with cars, the next step is to identify sections of road where they are frequently hit and put in wildlife crossing underpasses or post signs to make drivers more aware that otters are in the area. … if you own property along the side of a stream. The sea otter can usually be found in kelp beds, and looks very much like lumps of kelp. By maintaining healthy kelp forests, sea otters also indirectly help to reduce levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide, a prevalent greenhouse gas, as kelp absorbs and sequesters carbon. Unfortunately sea otters are having to fight off more than just predators to survive these days. “ Toxoplasma gondii is a red flag for a much broader problem of pathogens polluting our waterways and ending up in the ocean.” They keep sea urchin populations in check, which allows kelp to flourish and provides habitat for a host of other species. Sea otter pups can become stranded from their mothers when the moms get wounded or the pups wash away in strong currents. Sea otters feed on sea urchins, which allow kelp forests to prosper and in turn diminishes the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. The sea otters at the Vancouver Aquarium were rescued when they were just babies. 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