Sea otter survey encouraging, but comes up short of the 'perfect story'
The southern sea otter, Enhydra lutris nereis, continues its climb toward recovery, according to the annual count released today by the U.S. Geological Survey and partners. For the first time, southern sea otters' numbers have exceeded 3,090, which is the threshold that must be exceeded for three consecutive years in order for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to consider de-listing the species as "threatened" under the Endangered Species Act. However, localized population declines at the northern and southern ends of the range continue to be a cause for concern among resource management officials.