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Sea otter or River otter?

Know the differences between otter species

Sea otters live in the North Pacific Ocean (North of the Tropic of Cancer).  River otters live in rivers and spend their time along the accompanying riverbanks.

There are 13 species of otter throughout the world; 12 are river otters; 1 is the sea otter. 

sea otter for differences post
Sea otter in the Pacific Ocean
North American river otter - differences post
A North American river otter

Sea otters tend to swim on their backs while river otters tend to swim on their stomachs. 

Sea otters eat foods found in the Pacific Ocean like sea urchins, crabs, sea stars, clams, mussels & shrimp.  River otters eat foods found in their river habitats such as fish, crayfish, shrimp, crabs, and even frogs.  

2019 Grant Awards – You Made It Happen

We are proud to announce our 2019 funding grant award recipients:

The Marine Mammal Center – purchase of a sea otter life-history tag
Oregon Zoo – purchase of a scientific laboratory oven for drying sea otter samples
Sealife Response, Rehabilitation & Research – purchase of equipment to rescue Washington coast stranded sea otters
• Research studies from graduate & undergraduate students:

o Draven Hawk, University of California Santa Cruz: studying mercury contamination in southern sea otters
o Richard Grewelle, Stanford University Hopkins Marine Station: development of a scientific assay testing for a new pathogen in the southern sea otter population

• Zoological Facilities: Reimbursement for one staff member from each facility to attend the Otter Keeper Workshop

  • Audubon Aquarium of the Americas (New Orleans, LA, USA)
  • Shedd Aquarium (Chicago, IL, USA)

What does giving mean to you?

Give to sea otters

We know that the holidays bring about a time of giving.  

What does giving mean to you?

• Does it involve volunteering at an animal shelter, a wildlife rehabilitation center or a nonprofit organization whose mission you strongly support?
• Does it involve listening to a friend and empathizing with their plight?
• Does it involve giving a gift to someone who might be cheered by your thoughtful kindness?
• Does it involve making a donation to your favorite charity and learning about how your gift made all the difference?

For us at the Sea Otter Foundation & Trust, giving involves all of these ideas and…so much more.

We have been sparked by sea otters – and the mission of our organization, the Sea Otter Foundation & Trust to make a difference for sea otters in a completely new way – has been a guiding light for this organization.

Our funding grants have made impacts to:
• The Elkhorn Slough Foundation’s OtterCams – both increasing their streaming capacity and playing an integral role in adding sound to OtterCam1
• Seattle Aquarium’s investigation of toxicity levels in their resident sea otters as well as the Washington state wild sea otter population
• Graduate-level university research regarding:

*end-lactation syndrome in female (mother) sea otters
*nasal mites that contribute to respiratory disease – and what that might mean for humans
*the prominence of peptic ulcers in sea otters
*The ability of zoos, aquariums & other nonprofit organizations to impact the rehabilitation of non-releasable sea otter pups.

There is still work to be done for sea otters – we need you to continue our mission of ensuring the survival and recovery of sea otters in their habitats by building funds to support sea otter research, conservation & education.

Please donate today.

We thank you on behalf of sea otters and our mission.