Rare San Francisco river otter stumps researchers

Jan 03, 2013

For the first time in decades, a river otter has made San Francisco its home, taking up residence in the ruins of a 19th Century seaside bath near the Golden Gate Bridge.

The otter has mystified and delighted , who are piecing together clues to figure out how he got there.

River otters once thrived in the . But development and the fur trade in the 19th and early 20th centuries nearly wiped them out.

A group called the River Otter Ecology Project studies otter populations further north and in the bay. It says until now it had no evidence the creatures had returned to San Francisco.

The otter is nicknamed "Sutro Sam" after the old baths, which were named after former San Francisco Mayor Adolph Sutro.

Explore further: Stanford researchers rethink 'natural' habitat for wildlife

3.3 /5 (3 votes)
add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

New light on otter mystery

Jul 19, 2011

(PhysOrg.com) -- The solitary and mysterious lives of British otters are being uncovered by Cardiff scientists – thanks to help from the public.

Otters on road to recovery in Andalusia

Mar 07, 2011

Improved environmental conditions have enabled the otter (Lutra lutra) to spread in Andalusia over the past 20 years. However, the recovery of populations of this mammal has been "relatively" slow, and in some areas the im ...

Sea Otters' Diet is Clue to Slow Recovery

Feb 12, 2009

(PhysOrg.com) -- UC Davis researchers trying to understand the sea otter's slow recovery in California have found an important clue: Some sea otters feed almost exclusively on animals that raise their risk of being infected ...

Recommended for you

Plants with dormant seeds give rise to more species

Apr 18, 2014

Seeds that sprout as soon as they're planted may be good news for a garden. But wild plants need to be more careful. In the wild, a plant whose seeds sprouted at the first warm spell or rainy day would risk disaster. More ...

Scientists tether lionfish to Cayman reefs

Apr 18, 2014

Research done by U.S. scientists in the Cayman Islands suggests that native predators can be trained to gobble up invasive lionfish that colonize regional reefs and voraciously prey on juvenile marine creatures.

User comments : 1

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

MCPtz
not rated yet Jan 03, 2013
I might go otter watching soon :)

More news stories

Biologists help solve fungi mysteries

(Phys.org) —A new genetic analysis revealing the previously unknown biodiversity and distribution of thousands of fungi in North America might also reveal a previously underappreciated contributor to climate ...

Making graphene in your kitchen

Graphene has been touted as a wonder material—the world's thinnest substance, but super-strong. Now scientists say it is so easy to make you could produce some in your kitchen.