Sea Otter Awareness Week

In 2012 Friends of the Sea Otter (FSO) helped promote, organize, and coordinate events surrounding the 10th anniversary of Sea Otter Awareness Week, which was from September 23-September 29. Image courtesy of Lucy-Ann Huskisson.

Find out what is happening this year to celebrate Sea Otter Awareness Week.

Disabling the No-Otter Zone

Friends of the Sea Otter (FSO) has been tirelessly working with partners for the past 25 years, pushing for the termination of the no sea otter zone off the coast of southern California.

This zone was originally created by the US Fish and Wildlife Service to appease fishing interests while establishing an “experimental” population of sea otters on the island of San Nicolas. Click here to learn more.

Yampah Island Sea Otter Monitoring Station

Friends of the Sea Otter (FSO) has partnered with the Elkhorn Slough National Estuarine Research Reserve (ESNERR) to monitor sea otter activity and create an educational and new way for researchers, members, locals and tourists alike to watch sea otters in their natural habitat.

Our two organizations installed and operate a remote-controlled video camera on Yampah Island within Elkhorn Slough. Elkhorn Slough is home to over one hundred southern sea otters, making it one of the most densely-populated habitat for southern sea otters.

Click here to learn more.

California Sea Otters

Friends of the Sea Otter is based in the Monterey Bay area of California and focus a lot of our efforts on the sea otters of California.  Click here to learn more.

Alaskan Sea Otters

Alaskan sea otters are at the heart of the sea otter’s historical range, and since the end of the fur trade, have rebounded unlike in many other regions.

From the Aleutian Islands to British Columbia, sea otters number approximately 70,000.

Sea otters in southeast Alaska are currently facing legislative threats that could put extra hunting pressure on the sea otters of southeast Alaska as well as the other two sea otter stocks in Alaska. Click here to learn more.

Marine Water Monitoring

Water quality plays a significant role in sea otter health, which is why FSO is teaming up with the California Department of Public Health and asking volunteers to collect water samples all along the coast of California. The data from the water samples will ultimately be received and used by researchers working with otters and other sea mammals (to see the monthly reports using our volunteer data, please click here). Volunteers are needed to collect samples at locations along the coast where the southern sea otter call home (San Francisco to Santa Barbara). Sampling takes only about 15 minutes and must be done weekly; if we get enough interest, teams can be created so that individuals can take turns with sampling throughout the month.

Please read more about the phytoplankton monitoring program here.