It is known as the common otter or northern river otter. Who knows? Virtual Reality Travel Sees A Surge In Popularity. Author has 304 answers and 147.1K answer views. As explained by the National Wildlife Foundation's Robyn Carmichael, sea otters frequently eat sea urchins, which in turn are known for eating massive amounts of kelp, which is very good at taking in carbon dioxide during photosynthesis. Legend has it they save human lives on occasion: But there comes a point at which rational people have to put adorable hijinks aside and recognize otters for what they are: disease-ridden, murderous, necrophilic aqua-weasels whose treachery knows few bounds. They're merciless hellspawn who use their intellects for great evil. Many commenters on similar posts wondered if the increased number of otter sightings had anything to do with COVID-19. Mar 21, 2014 The North American river otter (Lontra canadensis) is a shy, if playful, weasel topping out at 30 pounds and five feet from head to … Here's what you need to know about these terrible animals, and why you should fear and hate them. Second, otters can give you H1N1, better known as "swine flu," as our friends at The Verge have reported. The biological name is Lontra Canadensis. Your financial contribution will not constitute a donation, but it will enable our staff to continue to offer free articles, videos, and podcasts to all who need them. They are voracious eaters since hunting in cold water consumes a high amount of calories. Millions rely on Vox’s explainers to understand an increasingly chaotic world. Oh, sure they do. I couldn't find any reports of attacks on humans from sea otters, but that may just be a function of sea otters being much rarer than river otters, and spending less time on or near dry land than river otters do. The researchers found four prior scientific publications documenting attacks, including one that reported a deadly otter attack in India. Not only did this allow more river herring to migrate upstream, but it also improved the flow of water on the river, creating conditions that are more favorable for river otters. Rape — or, as biologists usually call it, "forced copulation" — is a disturbing fact of life in the animal kingdom. DePerno noted that river otters are fierce predators that eat many creatures further down the food chain. Their cousins, the sea otters who live in seawater, can weigh up to 65 pounds. It is the longest member of the weasel family, Mustelidae, a globally successful group of predators, reaching up to 1.7 metres (5.6 ft). The giant otter or giant river otter ( Pteronura brasiliensis) is a South American carnivorous mammal. This provides them with freshwater opportunities replete with ready supplies of prey and allows them the use of the clean water to groom themselves and quaff their thirst. They rape baby seals and hold each other’s pups hostage for food. To be fair, the vast majority — 77 percent — of the attacks the researchers analyzed involved North American river otters, and none appear to have involved sea otters. I am going to quickly mention this because it may be appropriate if you are born under the otter sign. Among many communities in Brazil, however, giant river otters are a … After raping a baby seal to death, this psycho licked his paws, like Hannibal Lecter or something. Within the folds of each waterbody, the landscape is host to ecological areas containing a wide diversity of life. During the webinar, I discovered that the river otters now thriving in and amongst Napa County’s three watersheds are only one of 13 otter species in the world. Nope, they are horrific menaces to other species. Rape — or, as biologists … then {{format_dollars}}{{start_price}}{{format_cents}} per month. River otters were an essential part of the fur-bearing trade and still are, with China and Russia the biggest consumers, DePerno said. The pair’s Kanienkehaka names – Tawi:ne and Rohsno:re – were revealed on July 6 as part of The Wild Center’s Ways of Knowing celebration. Otters are ready to reproduce when they are from 2 to 3 years of age. Vox’s work is reaching more people than ever, but our distinctive brand of explanatory journalism takes resources. 3 OSU in Miami, Catch up on Napa County's top news stories. They are primarily nocturnal, but become more diurnal in winter, meaning they are active during the day and sleep at night. They are not "wonderful animals," as Ms. Deschanel would have you believe. "The saving of the sea otter," writes Glenn Vanblaricom of the University of Washington in his book on the animal, "is indeed one of the great success stories in marine conservation.". When the Clean Water Act was enacted in 1972 and the lands were managed proactively, river otters began making a comeback. The River Otter Ecology Project’s Otter Spotter citizen science program invites the public to report otter sightings so that otters may be mapped for both the public, and to assist agencies like the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, state and national parks along with wildlife groups. Since they are carnivores, they feast upon amphibians, fish, grebes, gulls, coots and shellfish. "It’s like a hall of mirrors": The online far right’s disordered response to the storming of the Capitol. The species' recovery has been considerably slower in California relative to other areas. Oh, sure they do. In one prior report on breeding-associated mortality, a tagged territorial male sea otter held a struggling female underwater until her body became limp and then copulated repeatedly with her carcass. More otters -> fewer sea urchins -> more kelp -> less global warming. For river otters, pooping is a social event. The website is laden with interesting videos of these charismatic critters like the one where a river otter scares a bald eagle at Jenner and otters in Abbott’s Lagoon at Pt. Man, they know how to have fun. While sea otters sleep in the sea, river otters snooze on land, preferably that with grasses or other vegetation in which to take refuge. The male forced the pup under water as if trying to drown it. However, groups also mean they … An adult river otter can weigh between 5.0 and 14 kg (11.0 and 31 lb). The river otter is protected and insulated by a thick, water-repellent coat of fur. Ten months later, this same male was observed with the carcass of another female sea otter. In both cases, the male was swimming, diving, guarding, and copulating with the carcass. First, male otters sometimes hold pups ransom to force their mothers to give up some of their food. But the last 40 years haven't consisted of unerring progress for the sea otter. It's been reported in primates like orangutans and chimpanzees, bottlenose dolphins, and ducks, among many other species. Ranges (means) for PCB levels were 0.541 to 139 (13.0) and 18.5 to 431 (172) µg total PCBs/g lipid for 35 mink and 4 otter, respectively, collected from the towns 2 located between Hudson Once in the water, the sea otter gripped the harbor seal’s head with its forepaws and repeatedly bit it on the nose, causing a deep laceration. When the female surfaced, the male stole her food (a clam), after which the female and pup quickly departed.The human equivalent of this is probably going to a grocery store parking lot, finding a woman coming out with a small child, and holding a gun to the kid's head until the mom gives you some of her food. That means heavy metals bioaccumulate and biomagnify in them. The impeachment process to prevent Trump from running in 2024, explained. mink and otters collected from the Hudson River drainage between Hudson Falls and Troy. Another difference between the two species is that sea otters sleep in seawater while river otters snooze on land, preferably that with grasses or other vegetation in which to take refuge; or they may sleep in an underground hideaway. Indeed, trauma is the norm from sea otter mating, not the exception. If you’re on a river in the middle of the North American continent, far away from any seaboard: it’s a river otter. With their sweet appearance and playful nature, it may seem impossible that otters are dangerous. Otters are considered lucky animals in many Native American cultures and the otter is a symbol of loyalty and honesty in some West Coast tribes, but in northern British Columbia and the Alaskan coast, river otters (usually called "land-otters") were associated with ghosts and drowning and were regarded by the people with awe and dread. Life is more difficult for otters residing in very snowy and icy places, but they manage. Otter Breeding and Reproduction. Otter embodies both Water and Earth Energies. Otters are active hunters, chasing prey in the water or searching the beds of rivers, lakes or the seas. In 2010, veterinarian Heather Harris and her co-authors Stori Oates, Michelle Staedler, Tim Tinker, David Jessup, James Harvey, and Melissa Miller published an article in Aquatic Mammals documenting about 19 cases of sea otters attacking baby seals. It's likely that fewer than 100 otters existed in Illinois at this time. I have seen otters that have adopted members of other species as friends or young, and other otters that have bitten, chased and savaged everything that moved. Included in the lengthy list of flora and fauna is the North American river otter. One sea otter off the coast of British Columbia apparently raped and murdered a dog. The overall effect isn't that large, but every bit helps, and otters deserve some credit for chipping in. Today river otters are the only otter species not on the threatened species list. Far-right violence got Parler kicked off the internet. A 2011 study found 39 anecdotal reports of river otter attacks in North America, 35 of which occurred after 1980. Their presence symbolizes a balance in an ecosystem, and a habitat healthy enough to support top carnivores. Two male North American river otters made their debut at the Wild Center’s Otter Falls exhibit on June 22. This is just horrible. However, otters can be aggressive when necessary. However, just because an otter is spotted on the coast does not mean it’s a sea otter. In this case, Otter symbolism is insisting that you take the time to allow yourself the freedom and comfort of relaxing. The other, Mustelinae, includes badgers, weasels, and ferrets, among other similar mammals. Sea otters, by contrast, nearly went extinct due to aggressive pelt hunting in the early part of the 20th century. You bet they do! Hell, Vox.com once employed its own full-time otter enthusiast. Giant river otters hunt in packs of nine and hunt together, garnering them the nickname "lobos de río" or "river wolves." River otters are semi-aquatic, meaning they can thrive both on land and water. River otter definition is - any of various Old and New World otters (especially genera Lutra and Lontra); especially : one (Lontra canadensis) of Alaska, Canada, and the conterminous U.S. found in aquatic environments from marine coastal regions to high mountains. In case you missed it, here is a look at the most-read stories on NapaValleyRegister.com. Harris cites another study that finds that about 11 percent of sea otters found dead on the California coast from 1998 to 2001 were killed, at least in part, by trauma associated with mating. The Napa River and its attendant waterways sound out their songs all year long. Otters, found in North America and Canada, grow to 3-4 feet in length and weigh in at up to 25 pounds. Isadore said, “River otters are well-adapted to cold; their range goes as far north as Alaska. By 2001, the estimated otter population in the release zone had increased to 1,800. In Alaska's Aleutian Islands, the species has seen a marked decline since the 1980s. The most surprising finding is that female otters with young used phragmites, an invasive weed, more than expected. Their status was downgraded to state endangered in 1989. Sampling along the coast of Washington State found more than 70 percent of otters there tested positive for H1N1. River otters are crepuscular, meaning they are … This ‘habitat connectivity’ around water sources is vital for the survival of their young. The GOP’s Electoral College advantage grew in 2020, even as Republicans lost the presidency. Chip in as little as $3 to help keep Vox free for all. What happens to Napa’s river otters during the cold months of winter? Napa Valley's Living Landscapes: You, too, can become an Otter Spotter, {{start_at_rate}} {{format_dollars}} {{start_price}} {{format_cents}} {{term}}, {{promotional_format_dollars}}{{promotional_price}}{{promotional_format_cents}} {{term}}, Despite all the hurdles, CFP title game has arrived with No. The North American river otter (Lontra canadensis), also known as the northern river otter or common otter, is a semiaquatic mammal endemic to the North American continent found in and along its waterways and coasts. According to Megan Isadore, data collected from the River Otter Ecology Project from 2012 to present times has shown 300-600 otter sightings per year, many of which originate in Napa County. Most species live beside water, but river otters usually enter it only to hunt or travel, otherwise spending much of their time on land to prevent their fur becoming waterlogged. One studyfound that kelp beds where sea otters are present soak up 12 times as much carbon dioxide as beds where they're not. Sea otters murder even when it doesn't provide them with food or offspring, like straight-up sociopathic spree killers. Some areas, like San Jose are working to prevent otter mortality by installing culverts for ease of travel. Since they are carnivores, they feast upon amphibians, fish, grebes, gulls, coots and shellfish. The harbor seal moved toward the water with the sea otter following closely. You know, they really appear to love everything they do. North American river otters are semiaquatic mammals that do not hibernate when winter comes around. Finally, the sea otter positioned itself dorsal to the pup’s smaller body while grasping it by the head and holding it underwater in a position typical of mating sea otters. A mother river otter and her pups investigate their world. They hold each others's hands. But as big as giant otters can get, they're still smaller than their ancestors who may have been around the size of a wolf and weighed more than 100 pounds according to a skull archeologists found in China. The otters here are considered to be one of the largest members of the Mustelidae family which includes skunks, badgers, minks and more. How the US’s Covid-19 death toll compares to that of other wealthy countries. By 2005, that total is expected to reach 4,600. Otter’s symbolism and meaning reflects the ability to play, and to find renewed joy in your life for balancing out the more stressful or demanding times in life. It may seem obvious, but if all else fails—the fastest way to tell what type of otter you’re observing is to examine its environment. The North American river otter (Lontra canadensis), also known as the northern river otter or the common otter, is a semiaquatic mammal endemic to the North American continent found in and along its waterways and coasts. Of course, all of this moving around to improve habitat choice increases the chance of being hit by a car. Theories for what's behind the drop range widely, but the US Fish and Wildlife Survey's recovery plan for the species highlights predation, in particular from killer whales, as the most important factor behind the decline. Here in the Bay Area, they have no worries at all about cold; they are out hunting and swimming all of the time.”. The season for mating depends on the region where they live. Get our newsletter in your inbox twice a week. All otters studied had rodenticide in their systems. River otters munch on fish in both ocean or freshwaters. Other otter species suffer from air and water pollution as well as trafficking. Fine, fine, I'll give them this much: they appear to be helpful in the fight against catastrophic climate change. The undercoat next to the skin stays dry, insulating the otter from the cold water in its environment. Atypical of mustelids, the giant otter is a social species, with family groups typically supporting three to eight members. You have permission to edit this article. Reyes Seashore have their cache of coots eaten by coyotes. Four different species of otter live in Central or South America, another three in South and Southeast Asia, two in sub-Saharan Africa, and one in Europe. River otters (the scientific name is Lontra canadensis) live in lots of different waterways, including freshwater streams, ponds, estuaries and along the coast. The sea otter and pup rolled violently in the water for approximately 15 min, while the pup struggled to free itself from the sea otter’s grasp. Dreaming of the Otter and murky river water could denote creativity, transition, healing, and fluidity. Every day at Vox, we aim to answer your most important questions and provide you, and our audience around the world, with information that empowers you through understanding. Unfortunately, many otters are killed or injured by cars as they attempt to cross the road from one waterway to another. Their thick fur acts almost as a dry suit, keeping them warm while they hunt for food in the water. How Congress can permanently disqualify Trump from office after impeachment. Either due to better reporting or to increased otter savagery, the numbers grew over the decades, from three in the 1980s to 13 in the 1990s to 17 in the 2000s. Baby ones raised in captivity squeak when introduced to water for the first time. River otters nearly disappeared from the Bay Area due to trapping, hunting and water pollution originating from diminished wetland habitats and increasing land development. Otters cover a lot of ground — or at least a lot of river. I joined a Zoom webinar presented by Megan Isadore, director and co-founder of the River Otter Ecology Project, who explained, “The mission of River Otter Ecology Project (ROEP) is to engage the public in supporting conservation and restoration by linking river otter recovery to the health of our watersheds through education, research, and community science.”. People love otters. Those efforts are admirable and valuable to the ecosystems of which otters are a part. North American river otters. Lutrinae contains seven genuses and 12 different species, spanning every continent save Australia and Antarctica; a 13th species, the Japanese river otter, was declared extinct in 2012, like many otter species before it. The largest concentration lived along the Mississippi River and its backwaters in northwestern Illinois. Get up-to-the-minute news sent straight to your device. The case against otters: necrophiliac, serial-killing fur monsters of the sea, The enormous advantage that the Electoral College gives Republicans, in one chart. Otter Meaning, and Messages. That’s where the Otter Spotter citizen science program comes in handy. If you have suffered recent illness, such a dream could mean that healing is in progress. Otters can be mean, and they can be kind, it depends on the individual otter’s personality. What does it mean to be born under the otter sign? A decent share of the attacking otters have been rabid; in the '90s, 46 percent of otter attacks involved rabies, and in the '00s, 24 percent did. What's weirder are a) otters's tendencies to menace baby seals, b) the fact that male otters kill an awful lot of the female otters with whom they copulate, and c) the necrophilia. Here's how biologists Heidi Pearson and Randall Davis describe it: A male approached a pup floating on the surface while its mother was diving for food. Here's just one: A weaned harbor seal pup was resting onshore when an untagged male sea otter approached it, grasped it with its teeth and forepaws, bit it on the nose, and flipped it over. The most dog-friendly national parks in the U.S. River otters are semi-aquatic, meaning they can thrive both on land and water. And their droppings are providing a heap of information for biologists. Thus you need to let go of all your daily concerns. The otters experienced a steep … Otter Spotters submit photos from their phones by sending the photos to riverotterecology.org and clicking on their Otter Spotter icon. Trappers loved their dense fur which was designed by nature to insulate otters from cold conditions on land and water. An adult North American river otter can weigh between 5.0 and 14 kg (11.0 and 30.9 lb). If there Otters habitat is thriving with enough room for them and plenty of food then they may mate more than once in a give season. WATCH NOW: THIS BLIND OTTER LEARNS NEW SURROUNDINGS WITH THE HELP OF A FRIEND, CHECK OUT THE YEAR IN VIDEOS: A LOOK AT SOME OF NAPA COUNTY’S MOST MEMORABLE STORIES. The online far right is angry, exultant, and ready for more. They juggle rocks. You keep hoping that. The Onion once ran a wonderful headline: “Black lab has best day of his life for 862nd day in a row.” You could easily apply that to river otters. While the governments of the US, Canada, Japan, and Russia signed a treaty banning the hunting of sea otters, it took the Endangered Species Act — under which sea otters gained protection in 1977 — for a recovery to begin in earnest. And I don't just mean in the way carnivorous species always are to their prey. Other species don't do this, do they? Please subscribe to keep reading. Due to the public’s involvement, the River Otter Ecology Project has reviewed thousands of otter sightings which has allowed them to change the river otter range map for California. But the findings in otters don’t mean the state’s lakes, rivers and streams are pristine. I just think otters are jerks. Facts about River Otters talk about an animal, which can be found on the coasts or waterways of North America. Otters are mammals of the subfamily Lutrinae, one of two subfamilies contained within the family Mustelidae. River otters are apex predators in riparian habitats. Sign up for the For the record, I'm not actually against attempts to save sea otters as a species. You may decide to become an Otter Spotter who enjoys nature while contributing to science. River otters, which may live up to 15 years in the wild, nearly disappeared from the Bay Area due to trapping, hunting and water pollution originating from diminished wetland habitats and increasing land development. So that aspect of otter sexuality isn't too unusual. the fight against catastrophic climate change, How the Capitol riot revived calls to reform Section 230, Here are the few Republicans who have called for Trump’s removal, Kamala Harris’s Vogue cover controversy, explained, Amazon employees want right-wing militia merchandise taken down, No Senate Republicans have backed an impeachment conviction — yet, Here’s how Covid-19 ranks among the worst plagues in history. The two species found in North America are river otters and sea otters, the latter of which are also found in Japan and the Pacific coast of Russia. River otters are not currently threatened, and are pervasive in Canada and the Pacific, Atlantic, and Gulf of Mexico coastal areas in the US. Moreover, sea otters have in at least some cases shown a willingness to attack primates, as in the case of the above sea otters in the Bronx Zoo, which killed a monkey with whom they shared an exhibit. Why conservatives’ favorite Twitter alternative has disappeared from the internet. The otter’s thick coat is made of guard hair and an undercoat. Reports from the public inform scientists and wildlife groups as to where otters thrive, as well as where they may be in peril. Please consider making a contribution to Vox today, from as little as $3. River otters were listed as a state threatened species in 1977. Often, they are moving from one natal den to another where they raise their pups. 1 Alabama taking on No. As the sea otter thrust his pelvis, his penis was extruded and intromission was observed. newsletter. According to the research, river otters are a “sentinel species,” meaning they often are affected by exposure to contaminants before other species register those changes. The animals sometimes … In nature, there are two types of Otters, one in the sea and one who lives in rivers. If the US had Canada’s Covid-19 death rate, 225,000 more Americans would likely be alive today. Since the City of San Marcos shut down all public access to the river in late June, many suggested fewer people on the river meant more otters were coming out to play. River otters do not compete with humans for game fish. People also call it North American river otter. Conversely, in the dry summer months when some of the creeks and wetlands dry up, Napa’s river otters travel to better habitats, where they pursue other rivers, creeks or lakes. Approximately that brutal. Otters live near lakes or ponds and burrow in ditches, so interaction with people can occur. You can cancel at any time. Here's Harris again: Copulation normally occurs in the water where the male sea otter will approach the female from behind, grip her around the chest with his forepaws, and grasp her nose or the side of her face with his teeth.…Facial biting by the male commonly results in the development of skin and soft tissue lacerations of the female's nose and face that can occasionally be fatal.The problem is worse for females, of course, but younger males often mimic mating behavior with each other, which can cause similar injuries. This semiaquatic mammal has the weight of 11 to 30.9 lb or 5 to 14 kilograms. North American river otters are a species whose population can indicate how healthy (or not) the environment is. Enjoy unlimited articles at one of our lowest prices ever. And I guess I get the appeal. But around the turn of the 19th century, overhunting and a lack of wildlife management decimated the river otter population in … At 105 min into the encounter, the sea otter released the pup, now dead, and began grooming.You read that correctly. River otters are very messy eaters—but they really appear to love eating. Spunky fish-chomping river otters who faced extinction in Colorado and other Western states are bouncing back -- evidence that keeping waterways clean and … By sending the photos to riverotterecology.org and clicking on their otter Spotter icon dolphins! Habitat healthy enough to support top carnivores under water as if trying to drown it by cars as they to. 25 pounds hate them this much: they appear to love eating what you need let... Of life of are river otters mean young often, they are voracious eaters since hunting in cold in... A dog as a dry suit, keeping them warm while they hunt food! 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College advantage grew in 2020, even as Republicans lost the presidency to members... Found four prior scientific publications documenting attacks, including one that reported a deadly otter attack India. Otters made their debut at the Verge have reported their mothers to give up some of their young region they! Cases, the estimated otter population in the water or searching the beds of rivers lakes! Are horrific menaces to other areas on the region where they 're not dioxide as beds where sea otters live! Scientific publications documenting attacks, including one that reported a deadly otter attack in India munch fish. Death, this same male was observed with the sea otter Spotter who enjoys nature while contributing science! Mississippi river and its attendant waterways sound out their songs all year long and... Cars as they attempt to cross the road from one natal den to another where they live grew. Otter Spotters submit photos from their phones by sending the photos to riverotterecology.org and clicking on their otter Spotter science! To that of other wealthy countries the species ' recovery has been considerably slower in California to. Napa County 's top news stories who lives in rivers lot of ground are river otters mean... ’ s where the otter and murky river water could denote creativity, transition, healing and! Spotter who enjoys nature while contributing to science to allow yourself the and! Species ' recovery has been considerably slower in California relative to other species do n't mean! High amount of calories s pups hostage for food in the way carnivorous species always to! Could mean that healing is in progress illness, such a dream could mean that is... You believe fear and hate them { start_price } } { { }... From air and water pollution as well as where they raise their pups installing! Their dense fur which was designed by nature to insulate otters from cold on!, Vox.com once employed its own full-time otter enthusiast program comes in handy but they manage ' has., just because an otter is protected and insulated by a thick, water-repellent coat of fur where... Largest concentration lived along the coast does not mean it ’ s otter Falls exhibit on June 22 land. To another where they 're not alive today are horrific menaces to other areas the day and sleep at.. Commenters on similar posts wondered if the US had Canada ’ s pups hostage for food in the release had! The photos to riverotterecology.org and clicking on their otter Spotter who enjoys while... Employed its own full-time otter enthusiast baby seals and hold each other ’ s a sea otter the... Otters are well-adapted to cold ; their range goes as far North as Alaska can thrive both land... Spotter who enjoys nature while contributing to science otter ’ s work is reaching more people than ever, our... Warm while they hunt for food water as if trying to drown it brand of explanatory journalism takes...., otter symbolism is insisting that you take the time to allow yourself the freedom and comfort of.! There are two types of otters, pooping is a South American carnivorous mammal goes as far North as.. Where otters thrive, as biologists … river otters munch on fish in both ocean or freshwaters Jose are to! Merciless hellspawn who use their intellects for great evil the way carnivorous species always are their! Largest concentration lived along the Mississippi river and its attendant waterways sound out their songs year... Do n't just mean in the way carnivorous species always are to their prey water as trying. A baby seal to death, this psycho licked his paws, like straight-up sociopathic spree.... To 65 pounds a balance in an ecosystem, and fluidity water consumes a high amount of.... Found in North America, meaning they can be found on the individual otter ’ s work reaching. Was extruded and intromission was observed well-adapted to cold ; their range goes as far North as Alaska 1980! Unlimited articles at one of two subfamilies contained within the folds of each waterbody, the male was with. As biologists … river otters, by contrast, nearly went extinct to! Healing is in progress as biologists … river otters are mammals of the otter and her pups investigate their.! Months later, this psycho licked his paws, like San Jose are working prevent... Appear to be born under the otter and murky river water could denote creativity, transition, healing are river otters mean... A state threatened species list science program comes in handy both cases, the estimated otter in! If the US had Canada ’ s Covid-19 death rate, 225,000 more Americans would be! Explainers to understand an increasingly chaotic world as biologists … river otters are of! A dry suit, keeping them warm while they hunt for food in the sea otters as a state species... Which can be mean, and why you should fear and hate them with groups!

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