Sea Otter Orphaned from Shark Bite that Ended His Mother’s Life
Still bearing a nasty wound from the shark bite that injured him and took the life of his mother, this sea otter was rescued and is currently receiving care in an effort to stabilize him.
Found on New Year's Day 2011, he is barely six weeks old and does not have a name yet. He's such a tender young age that upon examination, he was found to still have some milk teeth. Rescued at Morro Strand in San Luis Obispo county, he was found with lacerations characteristic of a shark bite.
Should he recover, he may be a prime candidate for the surrogacy program at Monterey Bay Aquarium. If he is able to participate, a surrogate mom will be chosen to care for him. Without a mother, he can’t survive on his own. He is currently receiving care at the aquarium. Learn more about the Monterey Bay Aquarium Sea Otter Research and Conservation Program.
Sea otters are social animals, with females and pups spending time together in one group and males in another. Pups stay with their mothers for the first eight months of their life. The pups' fur traps so much air that they actually cannot dive under water. When mothers leave the pups wrapped in kelp to hunt, pups bob on the surface of the ocean like a cork. Mothers spend much time grooming pups and often carry them on their chests. Pups begin to learn to swim at around four weeks of age.