Thinking Like an Ocean

Recovery of Southern sea otters requires more than rescuing the species from the brink of extinction—recovery is also about the restoration of ecological relationships. In his famous essay, “Thinking like a Mountain,” Aldo Leopold recounts an epiphany he experienced while watching the “fierce green fire” fade from the eyes of a dying wolf: “I thought [...]

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California Man Sentenced for Harassing Federally Threatened Southern Sea Otter, Violating Endangered Species Act

NEWS RELEASE: November 12, 2015 Media Contact: Ashley Spratt, 805-644-1766 ext. 369 A California man has been sentenced to 150 hours of community service, a $500 fine, and six months of probation, following intentional harassment of a southern sea otter in Moss Landing, California. Richard Niswonger, 71, of Moss Landing, California pleaded guilty and [...]


Numbers Encouraging, but Shark Bites Still Problematic for Sea Otter Recovery

SANTA CRUZ, Calif. — The recovery of southern sea otters appears to have taken an upturn, according to results from the annual California sea otter survey released by the U.S. Geological Survey today. Yet despite an overall increase in sea otter abundance, sharks have been “taking a bite” out of the portion of the population [...]

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Raft of sea otters, Monterey Bay, CA

Major Victory for California’s Threatened Sea Otters: Court Upholds USFWS Decision To End “No-Otter Zone”

Los Angeles, CA – In a major victory for threatened southern sea otters, U.S. District Court Judge John F. Walter on Friday issued a ruling denying a challenge by some fishing organizations to a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) decision that has restored protections for sea otters in Southern California.  Environmental Defense Center, The [...]

sea otter

Governor Brown signs legislation to help sea otters

Great news to share! Governor Brown signs legislation to extend the California Sea Otter Fund, one of the most critical funding sources for sea otter research, conservation and education. The sunset date of the California Sea Otter Fund has been extended until 2021. About the California Sea Otter Fund The CA Sea Otter Fund supports [...]

Otter mom and pup

California’s Sea Otter Numbers Holding Steady

U.S. Geological Survey has just released the Spring 2014 California Sea Otter Census Results. The official range-wide southern sea otter abundance index, calculated from both the California mainland range and San Nicolas Island population, is 2,944. The 5-year average growth rate for the overall population is 0.7%.  For more info, check out this USGS blog [...]

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About is an education and outreach initiative dedicated to raising awareness about California's threatened sea otters and the role research plays in the species recovery and conservation. It's a collaboration of the Monterey Bay Aquarium, U.C. Santa Cruz, U.C. Davis, U.S. Geological Survey, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, California Department of Fish and Wildlife, among others. We're #WildforOtters! Are you?