© 1996-2015 National Geographic Society, © 2015- The sea otter’s diet includes fish, crabs, molluscs, and sea urchins, and it has very strong teeth for crushing their shells. Many sea otters are known to live in the marine coastal habitats but most of them are found in the rivers, lakes, or even on land. Sea otter is the heaviest mustelid with the weight measuring at 22 – 45 kg (49 – 99 lb) in males; and the length measures around 1.2 – 1.5 m (3 ft 10 in to 4 ft 10 in). The females reach the maturity age after 3 – 4 years; while males become mature at the age of 5. These animals often hunt in short dives and they mostly appear on the water surface. Sometimes, birth can lead to twin babies. Sea otters normally weigh around 14 to 45 kg (31 to 99 lb). While floating on their backs, sea otters not only nap, but also use rocks to help them open mussels or other shellfish. They usually stay on all four legs, but they can stand up as well but they are expert swimmers and spend a lot of time in water. The males of this subspecies weigh around 65 pounds while females are 45 pounds in weight. Two of these species are regarded as marine mammals. They have the thickest coat in the entire animal kingdom which serves as the supreme source of insulation. Sea otters are found in the offshore environments and they come to the surface to forage. They often dig deep to take snails and other like creatures from the mud. They have wide-webbed feet that propel its body to swim. They start final foraging journey around midnight. They shed all throughout the year instead of molting in a particular season. They can be found along the coasts of the Pacific Ocean in North America and Asia. Mothers cuddle their young while floating on their backs and hold infants on their chests to nurse them. They primarily feed on marine invertebrates such as bivalves, sea urchins, mussels, abalone, clams, crustaceans, snails, mollusks. Top 5 Tips That Can Help Your Kitten This Spring! They can walk on land but most of the time otters live in ocean. Unlike most sea mammals, the sea otter does not have a … Why Are Animals Endangered | Top 11 Causes of Endangered Species. Many sea otters have elongate lithe bodies, with four short limbs modified to varying degrees for swimming. The sea otter is the second smallest marine mammal and is the largest member of the weasel family. Sea otter pups aren’t just adorable, they’re also amazing. However, otters have developed many adaptations for living at sea. Early in the 20th century only 1,000 to 2,000 animals remained. The young otters weigh around 1,4 – 2.3 kg (3 – 5 lb). The fur of a sea otter is usually dark but it can also be shades of white or grey. Read More: How Many Sea Otters are Left in the World? They also snack on such aquatic creatures as sea urchins, crabs, squid, octopuses, and fish. They have a thick fur coat that keeps them warm even in freezing water. Sea otters are incredibly clean and keep their waterproof coats in perfect condition. Sea otters are diurnal and they begin eating and foraging in the morning followed by sleeping at noon. These animals are native to the coasts of eastern and northern North Pacific Ocean. Sea otters wrap themselves in kelp or hold hands when sleeping to prevent drifting. They eat almost 100 different kinds of prey species. Sea otters have a striking eating and foraging ability in that they employ different techniques to disengage their prey. Of all the otter’s species, sea otters are the supreme divers as well as swimmers and why wouldn’t they as they are known as ‘SEA OTTERS”. I’m bringing you all these and other useful sea otter facts for kids including sea otter diet, habitat, and reproduction. This traps a layer of air which keeps them dry and warm under water.They keep the air topped up by blowing into the fur with their mo… They quickly teach them to swim and hunt for themselves. At birth, the weight of a pup is 3 to 5 pounds. According to a modern study, there are around 13 otter species inhabiting all continents other than Australia and Antarctica. Sea otters wash themselves after a meal, cleaning their coat with their teeth and paws. They are often found breeding on the rocky shores together with feeding on small crustaceans grabbed from nearshore marine waters. The northern sea otters can weigh as much as 100 pounds. The female sea otters are smaller as they grow up to 4.7 feet in length and weigh up to 73 pounds. Sea otters are known to consume around 20 – 25% of their daily weight. Some specimens weighing up to 54 kg (120 lb) are also recorded. However, they cannot walk comfortably and swiftly on land. Sea otters were hunted for their fur to the point of near extinction. Lutra feline is the marine sea otter that that inhabits the coastal zone of southern Argentina, Chile, and southern Peru. They need to keep their fur coat clean so it stays waterproof. Sea otters often float at the water's surface in forests of kelp, or giant seaweed, and entangle themselves to keep from moving in the rolling sea. Raccoon Facts: Anatomy, Diet, Habitat, Behavior, First Horse Starter Kit – Equipment That You Need to Ride, Common Health Issues With Horses To Know The Signs Of, Woolly Mammoth Facts – Woolly Mammoth Habitat and Diet – Woolly Mammoth Extinction. Around 150,000 strands of hair per centimeter exist on its fur making it the densest of any animal. https://kids.nationalgeographic.com/animals/mammals/sea-otter.html. This ensures a limited heat loss and the cold air is kept away most of the time. The prey ranges from crabs and limpets to the giant octopuses. The maximum age of sea otters is about 23 years; with an average lifespan of 15 – 20 years. Sea otter typically leads a limited life at sea as it has to face certain restraints which is also common for other marine mammals too. They have very soft, insulated underfur, which is protected by an outer layer of long guard hairs. All rights reserved. They are also the relatives of wolverines, badgers, and minks. Sea Otter Facts For Kids The nostrils and ears of sea otters close in the water. Otters place a rock on their chests and smash the shellfish against it until it breaks open to reveal the tasty meat inside. This fur is so thick … It primarily feeds on aquatic invertebrates including crustaceans, molluscs, fish species, and sea urchins. The gestation period lasts for 4 – 12 months. The size of the California (or southern) sea otters is about 4 feet. The sea otters lack blubbers and they solely depend on their dense fur to keep them warm. Find out how in this "Weird But True!" Sea otters are the only otters to give birth in the water. They have a hearing sense that is neither acute nor poor. They are fast swimmers reaching a speed of about 9 km/h (5.6 mph). Males are larger than females. Mothers cuddle their young while floating on their backs and hold infants on their chests to nurse them. They have dense fur composed of two hair types—guard hairs and denser, shorter underfur. The mother will nurse its pups for about 8 – 12 months. Sea otters consume 35 – 40 sea urchins per day. 2020 National Geographic Partners, LLC. Read More: Why are Sea Otters Endangered? However, sea otters are typically marine mammals. Their hind legs serve as flippers which seem like those of the harbor seals.