Genus Enhydra (sea otter) This species is much more agile in water than on land. This small (3–6 kg [6.6–13.2 pounds]) otter occurs on the Pacific coast from Peru through Chile and Tierra del Fuego in Argentina. Marine otters are most likely monogamous, which means that one male mates with one female exclusively. The name for a group of these animals is a 'romp,’ ‘bevy,’ ‘family,’ ‘lodge,’ or ‘raft'. Activity is usually diurnal, with peaks of activity occurring during early mornings, mid-afternoon, and evenings. They have furry bodies, whiskered faces, and a propensity to lay on their backs and float on the water, a behavior that humans perceive as evidence of fun-loving. Such competitions often involve fighting, biting, and high-pitched squeaks, resulting in bleeding wounds. Unfortunately, their fur also nearly led to this species demise. It's really common to watch someone point at a river otter and say, … North American river otters are playful furballs that live near ponds, streams, lakes and rivers. An adult North American river otter can weigh between 5.0 and 14 kg (11.0 and 30.9 lb). It has been hunted for its pelt over many centuries, used mainly for footwear. For more information on these species click hereAll are declining in number except the North American river otter which is regarded as stable. When otters dive, they are able to seal their nose and ears. The river otter is protected and insulated by a thick, water-repellent coat of fur. Most otters live in dens — built by other animals, such as beavers — that are dug into the ground that have many channels and dry inner chambers. The marine otter is really a freshwater otter that has learned to occupy marine environments in South America. When hunting for prey, Marine otters will dive as deep as 30 to 40 m. A baby marine otter is a 'pup’ or ‘whelp'. It is unique among the mustelids in not making dens or burrows, in having no functional anal scent glands, and in being able to live its entire life without leaving the water. The only member of the genus Enhydra, the sea otter is so different from other mustelid species that, as recently … Sea otters are found in two areas: The Pacific coasts of Russia and Alaska, and along the central California coast. It lives along South America’s Pacific coast. Sea Otter Savvy In spring of 2014, at the Southern Sea Otter Research Update Meeting in Santa Cruz, some of the most influential sea otter agency and organization representatives convened a special working group to address the increasing frequency of disturbance to sea otters by human marine recreation activities. Age at sexual maturity is 3-4 years in females and is probably 7-8 years in males. In southern Chile the marine otter is found almost exclusively along exposed rocky seashores; farther north it may inhabit estuaries and fresh water. Can otters use tools? Their aquatic habitats can be both marine and fresh water: streams, rivers, lakes, ponds and marshes. Mating typically takes place during December or January. The geographic range is also constricted compared to pre-hunting times, and it may still disappear from some places, as poaching continues to b… They are most commonly found in coral reefs and rocky coastlines. Unlike most marine mammals that rely on a thick layer of blubber to insulate them from cold ocean waters, marine otters rely on their extremely thick fur. River otters (genus Lutra) inhabit all types of inland waterways, as well as estuaries and marine coves. Sea otters (Enhydra lutris) are an easily recognized and beloved marine mammal. River otters as a whole look quite similar to weasels. Otters prefer to live in marshes and along wooded rivers and streams with pools and overhanging rocky banks. Otters have small, rounded ears, and long sensitive whiskers to help them feel the vibrations of their prey. http://ow.ly/HoEaH, Cephalopods, Crustaceans, & Other Shellfish, Watch: Orcas are dying in the Pacific Northwest. In the 18th and 19th centuries, sea otter pelts were highly valued for their use in making coats and other outerwear, and the s… Excessive hunting reduced the numbers of marine otters significantly and now the species is endangered (highly vulnerable to extinction). In the past there have been many problems including hunting for fur and pollution. They typically use … They live in riparian zones, often in the same areas as beavers. The geographic range is also constricted compared to pre-hunting times, and it may still disappear from some places, as poaching continues to be a problem. These furry marine mammals are one of only a few marine animals known to use tools to obtain their food. Did you just call me a sea otter? Northern sea otters are found along the coast of Alaska and Washington, and Russian otters are found in the Pacific Ocean off Russia and Japan. Some are almost exclusively aquatic, like the sea otters that live in the Pacific ocean, and some spend more than half their time on land, like the giant otter that lives in the tropical rain-forests of South America. 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).Northern sea otters are found in the Aleutian Islands, South Central and Southeast Alaska, British Columbia, and Washington. When not breeding, these otters mostly live a solitary life. Their appetite for these invertebrate species exerts a strong influence on prey size and number and how they live and move in their habitat. Th… That’s why you may occasionally see, for example, a fur seal or harbor seal in the sea otter exhibit. They have long, narrow bodies, with long tails and short legs. 4 There are 13 species of otter in the world and they are all in the Red List of Threatened Species. Unlike most marine mammals that rely on a thick layer of blubber to insulate them from cold ocean waters, sea otters rely on their extremely thick fur the thickest of all animals. The Marine otter is the smallest of the otters of the New World otters. Sea otters live in shallow coastal waters in the northern Pacific. According to the IUCN Red List, the total Marine otter population size is around 800 to 2,000 individuals. River otters are found throughout most of North America from the Rio Grande to Canada and Alaska, except for in arid deserts and the treeless Arctic. Small prey is eaten in the water, while larger prey is brought ashore. 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