Along the coast of California, one of the most appealing sights is to watch a raft of Sea Otters lying on their backs in the water, relaxed and enjoying the sunshine. Watching these fascinating maritime mammals, it seems as if their lives are peaceful and serene. However, this perception we might have of them is not entirely correct for the Sea Otter’s life has always been, and still is today, a struggle for survival.
For centuries, fur traders relished their beautiful, soft fur coats and as a result, thousands lost their lives until they were given protection by the federal government under the Endangered Species act. But even so, they still face many challenges such as finding enough food to sustain themselves (Sea Otters require at least six to eight pounds of food each day).
They also face predators such as the great white shark, and conflicts with commercial fishermen. Then there are the oil spills that have occurred in our waters in recent years. So the life of the Sea Otter is not nearly as quiet and peaceful as it may seem as you observe them from afar. Like so many other species of wildlife, their life is a constant challenge for existence.
HUMANS SAY I’M FETCHING, WINSOME AND CUTE,
BUT I SAY I’M SMART AND ASTUTE.
I LOVE THE CHANNEL ISLANDS MOST,
AND THE OCEAN ALONG THE COAST.
BUT…I HOPE I NEVER AGAIN SEE,
AN OIL SPILL ANYWHERE NEAR ME.