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Sea Otter

Enhydra lutris


I think this is a Sea Otter, but please correct me if I'm wrong. I spotted this chap feeding (though I can't identify the food, he'd already mangled it up pretty well) just off the coast at Stanley Park, Vancouver pretty much underneath Lions Gate Bridge. Interestingly, I took a vast array of photos of the otter, and in every one his eyes appear to be closed. Can anyone tell me if this is common behaviour in these otters or whether this otter may be blind?

1 Species ID Suggestions

Annika 9 years ago
Northern River Otter
Lontra canadensis North American river otter

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Annika 9 years ago

Hi Andy! This adorable guy is actually a river otter. Sea otters have extremely dense fur and silvery-white heads, and usually float on their backs to eat their prey. River otters are actually found along the coast as well as in rivers.
I can't tell what the food is either, though I don't think it's a fish. Interesting observation about the closed eyes - I don't know if that's normal, but in a similar spotting of a river otter feeding just south of you, the otter seems to have his eyes open even when he's eating... Great spotting!

alicelongmartin 10 years ago

Lovely series!

AndyNewman 10 years ago

I'm from NZ myself, Megs and mammals are a rarity in general here so have no idea about how they behave in the wild. I was in Canada hoping to spot a few interesting birds, but instead saw Otters, Raccoons and Squirrels galore!

Megs18 10 years ago

He's a lovely fellow! There are no otters in Australia, apart from captive, so my knowledge is limited!! I hope is eyes are ok, he managed to catch whatever he's eating.

Spotted by

Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

Spotted on Jun 17, 2012
Submitted on Jun 17, 2012

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