I dedicate this book to all my friends and family, and Mrs. Frassetto. Without all the help from you, I would be totally clueless about what to do and have possibly the worst book ever. You all helped me write this book, from giving me ideas and helping me know what to do, without you guys I would have the worst writers block and never get my book finished. You all inspired me to write more, and write my best. So, thank you all for helping me and making be the best writer I can be. I also dedicate this book to everyone who volunteered to help the sea otter, because everyone who makes a difference can change the world.

Introduction and Dedication  

Not many people think of endangered sea otters, their main focus in usually on pandas and rhinos, and that is why I chose this topic. Sea otters are very important to the environment, and without them the food chain would collapse. It was hard narrowing everything people needed to know about sea otters to three main topics, but I needed to get the word out that sea otters are endangered. Sea otters are very interesting animals, so it is terrible when all of my research claims how they are endangered and dying. They deserve to live, and we need to help them live, we are their only chance. This book will talk about a sea otter’s early life, where they live and how they survive, and why they are endangered and what we can do to help the poor animals. Even though the population is still increasing due to new laws on sea otters, they are still dying everyday, and all you have to do is help.


Chapter 1- Early Life- Pg. 4-10



Chapter 2- Habitat And Survival- Pg. 11-18



Chapter 3- Endangered And What We Can Do To Help- Pg. 19-23



Glossary- Pg. 24



Bibliography- Pg. 25

Table of Contents






Think about being born in the water as an only child and then having to leave your mother after eight months. That crazy life is the early life of a sea otter. The early life of these attractive little creatures can be difficult at parts, but from developing the right habits and being nursed constantly, these little pups will soon be adults. Nobody thinks much about these petite pups, but their early life can be like ours.  From being born, developing, to being constantly nursed by their mother, the early life of a sea otter is pretty enjoyable, up until they have to leave their mother.


These pups were born almost the exact opposite way of any other mammal. For starters, they were born in water, making them the only mammal to give birth in water. Don’t worry though, the adorable newborns won’t drown at any cost unless their mother drags them underwater for protection. Why you ask? Well, when pups are born, they only have the ability to float, and not swim.  These adorable pups only weigh 1.5-2.5 kg when they are born, so floating won’t be a problem.  According to www.buzzle.com, “Pups are born with their eyes open and a fine set of teeth”, not many mammals, not even humans, are born with that feature. These pups may be born in ways you never thought of, but they will get undeniably cuter as they start to develop.

These pups just get smarter and smarter as they grow up and start developing. At four weeks old, the newborn start to learn how to eat food, even if they still suckle on it. When the little pup is two months old, the otter learns how to swim and dive. While the sea otter’s mother swims around and gets food, the pup will start to practice swimming while waiting.  By 12 weeks, or three months,  the pup starts to become an adult. The 12-week-old pup sheds its buoyant baby fur, and grows his or her new adult fur! This new coat of fur is not buoyant like their old coat of fur,  so the pups can not float anymore. These pups grow up and develop quickly, but with great nursing from their mother, they can handle it all.


Above: A Baby Sea Otter Pup

Nothing beats the love and kindness from your mother, and mother sea otter make sure to do just that! For six-eight months, the mother will nurse her pup non-stop, with nothing in her way.  A sea otter’s mother uses up so much of her energy for her pup, making sure her pup grows up to be strong and healthy.  According to http://blogs.discovery.com, “ a sea otter's mother serves as her baby’s crib, ferry, groomer, and feeder”. This shows the undeniable love and compassion a sea otter mother shows for her pup. A mother will only have one pup each pregnancy, so she will put all of her time into that pup. If the mother has a set of twins, unfortunately the mother will only be able to care for one, leaving the other newborn behind. A mother will do anything for her pup, and making sure the pup is protected at any sign of danger.

These cuddly bundles of joy do require a lot of work, but their mothers and many people try to care for these endangered pups as much as they can. The early life of a sea otter can be difficult at times, but they always have someone, whether it's their mother or caretakers,  to fall back on. Before you know it, the cute little pups will become adults and have to survive on their own. These pups have learned how to swim and dive at a very young age and hunt for food. A baby sea otter’s life goes by very fast, and soon these otters will have their own pup to nurse.






Finding a habitat and surviving in it can be hard, but sea otters find ways to live easily. From using a tool to eat, to living by kelp beds, these intelligent animals survive together, live together, and help each other find food. A sea otter lives in places where you would be surprised that you can see them as they hunt for food. Sea otters intelligently use everything they have to help them hunt and survive, including rocks and shells. Sea otters have many ways to survive, and live in specific living conditions, and eat many things.  You don’t really think about it, but every animal in this world has their own unique habitat, just like the sea otters do.


     Have you ever seen a sea otter in the water when you were at the beach or even the bay? You might have if you were by coastal shallow waters. Unlike most marine animals, sea otter live in shallow, coastal waters.  These furry creatures have been seen in Mexico, Alaska, California, Russia, and along the coastline of the Northern Pacific Ocean. Most sea otters are found living near kelp beds, where they can sleep, anchor their pups if the mother needs to go somewhere, and even keep them anchored when they sleep. Sea otters typically do not swim alone,  they usually swim in rafts,  all of them floating together. According to www.worldwildlife.org, “ sea otters will spend their entire life without leaving the water, but on occasion some come ashore and rest”. Like most other mammals, sea otters will live based on if there is a good food supply.


It is hard to believe that these small little animals eat so much, but they do. From muscles, to clams, sea urchins, crabs, fish, and the occasional octopus, etc.,  these animals will eat almost everything. Unlike most mammals, a sea otter can commonly drink sea water without getting dehydrated. Crazy right? Sea otters are also very intelligent when finding food, using many different ways to scavenge for their meal. For instance, a sea otter is the only marine animals to actually use a tool to eat. When sea otters have food in their paws, they use any type of shell or rock to get the actual meat out of the shell, then discarding the shell. They also have enough strength to flip over boulders on the ocean floor to find food. These hungry animals eat many things, after all, they need to eat to survive!

Sea otters eating their meal. 


There are many factors when it comes to a sea otter needing to survive. First of all,to survive they have to keep meticulously clean, or else they will suffer from hypothermia. Yes, if a sea otter’s fur is not clean, they will have no warmth. This is because sea otters have no blubber, so they rely on their thick , furry coat to keep them warm, but if their fur coat gets dirty, the insulating fur does nothing to them and they will become freezing in the ocean water. Because of their fast metabolism and no insulating fat, in order to survive a sea otter must eat 25-30% of their body weight each day. In order for them to actually get their food, sea otters hunt by using their paws to locate and capture their prey. Usually, sea otters stick together, helping one another survive in their habitat.

There are many different factors on the habitat and survival of a sea otter, but the main three are where they live, what they eat, and how they actually survive in the real world.   They live in rafts along coastal waters where they can protect their puts, and hunt for food.  They are highly intelligent, especially when hunting and eating their food.  You may even see them using tools to crack open a muscle.  They can survive in these coastal waters not only because they swim in rafts, and have lots of food to eat, but their thick fur, which they keep meticulously clean, keeps them warm.   Just watching them swim, hunt, play and live in the coastal waters of many areas of the world can help you get a better understanding on how sea otter live in their habitat.  These cute animals eat tons of food, always stick together, and live all around the North Pacific, what is not to love?  





Without even thinking, many people each day are hurting the lives of sea otters. You may not think it, but even the simplest tasks, like throwing a water bottle on the floor, can harm sea otters. Us humans are one of the main reasons why sea otters are threatened, you could be hurting sea otters in your daily life and not give a second glance at it. While animals are also a factor of sea otters being endangered, we are the real animals to sea otters, killing them for fashion, and seeing them as a competition. For example, that new fur coat that you love? Well that could be the fur of a sea otter, thedead from the cold with no protection from the freezing water, or killed just for the sake of looks. Not all hope is lost yet though, there are many ways that we can help these little animals, and take them off  endangered list. From volunteering, to donating, there are many ways we can help sea otter, along with helping our environment. Sea otters may be endangered because of humans threats and animal threats, but there are also many ways to help and show your compassion for sea otters.


You may think how could anyone hurt a sea otter? Why would they do that? well, many people, including people from your own town, are doing daily task that hurt the sea otters each day. For example, just by littering, all or that waste goes into the ocean, and hurts the sea otters, who might think a plastic bottle is food. You probably did not know that fishermen kill sea otters, just to benefit them. Don’t believe me, well according to www.defenders.org, “Some shell fishers view sea otters as competition and a threat to their economic gain. Many fishermen use fishing gear that can entangle sea otters and cause them to drown”. Can you imagine someone killing an innocent animal because they want to eat what that animal eats? It is very sad, but there is even more things that cause sea otters to die. If you have ever seen an oil spill on the news, then you probably have heard of the people trying to save the animals, and how it is very hard. In order to keep warm, sea otters have to keep meticulously clean, so when oil gets all over their fur, a sea otter has no more warmth and protection from the freezing waters, making them suffer from hypothermia. Did I mention that people shoot sea otters for their fur? Yes, people will kill furry animals just so they can wear the skin of a dead animal. It is very sad, but people insist on doing just so they can look good. We are also the reason for a sea otter's habitat degradation, making sea otters not have homes. Because of air pollution and water pollution, sea otters can not live in the same habitat that they used to live in, making it harder and harder for a raft of sea otters to find a place to settle. Do not worry though, we are not the only reason sea otters are endangered, animals also contribute to why sea otters are endangered.

Being fairly small to the rest of the marine world, sea otters are prey to a lot of predators, making it hard to survive in the ocean. Many animals are always taking sea otters, making finding a safe habitat very hard for a sea otter. Killer whales are one of the reasons sea otters are becoming more endangered, eating more and more of them as their usual prey, (seals and sea lions) are becoming more rare. White sharks are also a reason sea otters are endangered, taking them any time a sea otter is in sight. This is very bad because once other sharks taste blood, they are attracted to it, and more of them will come to the sea otters habitat. Pups are also in great danger from other animal, including bald eagles. Bald eagles can swoop down and take the little pups, departing them from their mother. Fourtanley, sea otters are very protective of their young, so mothers won’t let anything happen to their pups. The last and most effective reason on why sea otters are endangered is, that parasites are making them sick. According to www.iucnredlist.org, “Recent studies have found infectious disease to be an important mortality factor in California Sea Otter populations. Around 280 Sea Otters found dead have been linked to a pair of protozoan parasites, Toxoplasma gondii and Sarcocystis neurona”. These parasites are a major problem to sea otters, making them sick and dead. Even though sea otters are becoming more and more endangered every day, there is still many things that we can do.

How You Can Help

These poor sea otters aren’t doing too well when it comes to surviving, but do not worry, there are many things we can do to help them. For instance, doing something simple like recycling can help the sea otters. Even if you do not live by a sea otter habitat, remember, all drains flow into streams, which drain into the oceans, so even if you think you are not impacting the environment, you still are. Another thing you can do to help is to donate. Donating to any type of sea otter fund can help sea otters live a bit longer, just because you donated. Have you tried volunteering? By volunteering to help the sea otters, you can help clean up their habitat and greet the fuzzy little animals, making an impact on not only their lives, but yours as well. Make sure that you get your car oil changed, or tell your parents to do that. Oil is one of the main reasons why otters die, and even a little oil leak can hurt an otter. The last thing you can do to help the sea otters is to make sure that you dispose hazardous waste properly. If someone does not dispose hazardous waste properly, then sea otters have a risk of eating that waste and getting very sick, and nobody wants that. Since sea otters are endangered, it is very important that we take great care of them, and if you do all of the right things, soon enough the sea otters will start to recover.

Sea otters have been around for such a long time, and it would be terrible if they went extinct. For instance, you probably did not know this but without sea otters, there would be no more kelp beds and the urchin population would grow and grow.  Sea otters eat urchins and many other sea foods, and without them the food chain would corrupt. Instead of thanking the sea otter for what they do, we kill them and wear their skin, and cause them to drown. There are many things we can do to help the otters, and most people do not realize that. From doing simple tasks like recycling, to spending a day to clean up the beach, we are the only way sea otters will be able to survive, and we should take that for granted.  These iconic species do so much for us, the least we can do for them is let them live.

Do you really want these animals to be gone forever? 


  1. Buoyant- keeping afloat

  2. Coastal- by or on the edge of water

  3. Corrupt-  to break

  4. Dehydrated- not having enough water

  5. Developing- growing or evolving

  6. Dispose- getting rid of or throwing away

  7. Endangered- risk of extinction

  8. Habitat- a place where one sleeps and lives

  9. Hazardous- bad, dangerous

  10. Hypothermia- having a dangerously low body temperature, being very cold

  11. Intelligently- having a good understanding of something or being smart

  12. Insulating- Protecting something from lack of cold

  13. Mammal- a warm blooded animal or human

  14. Metabolism- how fast you burn fat

  15. Meticulously- extremely careful, clean

  16. Parasites- an organism that attaches itself to a part of the body

  17. Petite- small, frail

  18. Protozoan- a diverse group of organisms and parasites

  19. Shallow- not deep

  20. Suckle- have to be fed to


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