Explore {{searchView.params.phrase}} by color family Water and ocean pollution affects them, particularly oil spills at sea. Jeff Foott / Getty Images Behavior . All inquiries should be made to the copyright owner at us@kidcyber.com.au. These charming marine mammals are a contrast of extremes. The object is for the sea otters to cross the ocean three times and get a sea urchin each time without being "eaten" (tagged) by an orca whale. The species’ kingdom is animalia because the sea otter is motile at some point in their life cycle, multicellular, heterotrophic, and also lacks cell walls. The benefits that a heavy sea otter presence provides to seagrass, among others, is one of the many reasons they are deemed keystone species — that is, species that hold an ecosystem together. In a healthy ecosystem, everything has its place. Asian short-clawed otters are classified as Vulnerable. Sea otters are part of the weasel family. Floating freely on its back, the sea otter seems like the very picture of serenity, but they are quite voracious predators and need to eat a lot to sustain their lifestyle. Saved from exploringnature.org. A sea otter’s pelt is the thickest of any mammal. With the help of donors like you, Ocean Conservancy is developing innovative solutions to save our ocean. Make a difference for sea otters, the ocean they call home, and the ecosystem we all depend on by making a donation today. Relevance. They are the largest of the otter species, but not as heavy as the sea otter. In California, the weight of a female is 45 lbs and of a male otte… It is made up of a waterproof top layer and a short underlayer, which can contain as many as one million hairs per square inch. They thrive in warm, coastal waters and usually remain within a kilometer from the shore. Periodic messages. They close their nostrils and ears when they are underwater. Sea otter life cycle: The otter does not go through stages to become an otter like some animals, for example a frog. Google Images. Otters find most of their food in the water. Sea otters are usually dark brown, often with lighter guard ha… Asian short-clawed otter feeding ©Getty Images. (Credit: Karen C Drayer Wildlife Center, University of California, Davis) They learn to swim at about two months of age, and until then they ride on their mother's chest to drink milk as she floats on her back. This is a medium sized otter about which little is known. Otters communicate with each other using lots of different sounds, such as whistles and growls, chirps and barks: about a dozen or more different calls, each with its own distinct meaning such as alarm, greeting and mating calls. Since they don’t have a layer of blubber to keep them warm, like other marine animals, adult sea otters must eat 25% or more of their body weight a day to keep warm. A raft of sea otters in a bed of kelp ©Getty Images. Some of their playful behaviour of rubbing on logs, rolling in piles of fallen leaves and rubbing their chests on bunches of leaves on bushes actually has a serious purpose:  they are ways of leaving scent to mark their territory. The females of most species give birth in a den, called a holt. They have very thick fur – near about 250,000 to one million hair per square inch. The average gestation period is six months. The writers and publishers of kidcyber are Shirley Sydenham, a primary teacher, and Ron Thomas, a primary teacher-librarian. They use the rock as a table against which they smash their shelled prey to g… Another way to prevent drifting off before sleeping is for sea otters to wrap themselves in kelp. When sleeping, sea otters are known to hold hands to keep from drifting apart while asleep. Using their sensitive front paws, they dig around in the mud and under stones to find their prey. Two sleeping sea otters holding hands so they do not float apart. Like other members of this family, they have very thick fur. Otters have very fine brown and black fur, but as they age their hair gets lighter until it is almost white around their necks and hands. It is found in Sumatra (Indonesia)  and southern Thailand, southwest Cambodia and south Vietnam. kidcyber provides links to other web pages, selected and examined for their appropriateness, to provide more information about a particular topic. Sea otter diet includes sea urchins, abalone, octopus, snails, clams and mussels. The season for mating depends on the region where they live. ©Getty. Please try Portrait . Asian short-clawed otter at entrance of its holt ©Getty Images. The Australian Copyright Act 1968 (the Act) allows 10% of the number of words on this website to be reproduced and/or communicated by any Australian educational institution for its educational purposes provided that the educational institution (or the body that administers it) has given a Notice to Copyright Agency under part VB of the Act. Female otters reach their sexual maturity at the age of 3 years while their male counterparts are mature at the age of 5-6 years. They are known to hunt in the sea and in freshwater. Males are more solitary or spend time with other males. Without them, the vibrant marine life they make possible is at risk, too. Includes easy to read sentences for early readers. Jun 9, 2016 - Explore Jenna Raski's board "Sea Otters" on Pinterest. They easily run on land and swim doggie-style. Otters are part of the mammal family called mustelids, which includes ferrets, badgers, minks and weasels. 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