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It happened a lot to Sutro Sam, a famous San Francsico river otter that lived in a fresh water pond directly next to the ocean's crashing waves. So a hefty appetite is a welcome attribute in a sea otter! The giant otter can grow to as long as 6 feet and weigh as much as 75 pounds (sea otters can weigh nearly 100 pounds). What makes the sea otter able to sleep in water? As recently as the mid-1980s, more than 30,000 pelts were harvested annually. It all comes down to nature. Only around 86 or so hairy-nosed otters are thought to still live in southeast Asia.

I wanted to find out why they sleep holding hands with other otters, and how they choose which otters to hold hands with. A River Otter’s Typical Day. They always do this while sleeping and resting, and is to keep families from drifting apart. When sea otters are sleeping, eating or resting they form floating groups called rafts. Sea otters holding hands isn't that common in the wild, according to the Seattle Aquarium. Most otters have sharp claws at the end of each toe, which help them to grab prey. River Otters are almost completely submerged and swim with their back up. They have the densest fur of all of the animals in the world, with about 250,000 to one million hairs per square inch. Gym Equipment You May Need When working out At Home. Paw holding is most likely a learned behavior specific to certain individual sea otters, who may find it comforting! Sea otters also hold onto kelp that grows from the floor of the sea for the same purpose. Adopt a red panda to give the perfect gift to the conservationist in your life — even if that conservationist is you! Otters have a fear of losing their family members while they are sleeping or relaxing. Their fur helps them to stay buoyant in the water, and so they must keep their fur clean to give them this natural buoyancy. Otters utilize kelp by wrapping themselves in long strands of kelp which grows from the seafloor up to the surface of the water. Their aquatic habitats can be both marine and fresh water: streams, rivers, lakes, ponds and marshes.

According to Defenders of Wildlife, "River otters primarily eat fish. (adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({});

The other otter species don’t have adaptations to enable them to be able to float on their backs in the water.eval(ez_write_tag([[300,250],'northamericannature_com-large-mobile-banner-2','ezslot_8',112,'0','0'])); The sea otter has several adaptations that help them to sleep in the water. Sea otters holding hands while sleeping. They weigh about 4 to 6 ounces (113 to 170 grams) at birth and measure 8 to 11 inches (20 to 28 centimeters). A third eyelid, or nictitating membrane, protects the eye and allows the otter to see when swimming underwater. 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. Sea otters play a key role in the coastal ocean ecosystem. Otters act as ecological early warning systems, Photo: worldswildlifewonders/Shutterstock, River Otters: Hardest-Working Clowns in the Water, 10 Magical Places Saved by Endangered Species, Fun Facts About 21 of N. America's Coolest Critters, Sea Otters Are Helping Save Their Own Habitat, A Rescued Sea Otter Pup Is Swimming in Cute at the Vancouver Aquarium, Big Predators Are Showing Up in Surprising Places More Often. River otters have been blamed for decimating game fish populations and are seen as a pest to eradicate by many game fishermen. Sea otters will not sleep without checking they have their pups on their chest above the water.

She is the mother to three pups, all born right here at the Seattle Aquarium: Yaku, a male born in 2000, who is currently residing at the Shedd Aquarium in Chicago; Alki, a male born in 2005, who now resides at the Pittsburgh Zoo and PPG Aquarium; and Aniak, a female born in 2002, who still lives here with us. River Otters sleep exclusively on land while the Sea Otter sleeps in the water in short bursts, this is where the hand holding comes in to keep them from drifting apart while sleeping. This applies to every species of otter, in every nation.". Otters protect their pups while sleeping.

FacebookTwitter, Your email address will not be published. Despite being born in the water, they still need to be taught to swim by mom.

Otters can hold their breath for 3-4 minutes at a time while they swim, and can swim at speeds of 6.8 miles per hour. Are you a hunter?
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