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Old 04-01-2010, 10:47 AM   #1
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Default California sea otter numbers down for third year

California sea otter numbers down for third year
By Jory John
Santa Cruz Sentinel
Posted: 03/31/2010 08:57:49 AM PDT
Updated: 03/31/2010 10:08:26 PM PDT

California sea otter numbers down for third year - San Jose Mercury News
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The fragile California sea otter population is in decline for the third straight year, according to a comprehensive year-end report issued by the Otter Project, a Monterey-based organization whose mission is to aid the rapid recovery of the animal.

The report is based on surveys conducted by the U.S. Geological Survey in coordination with other organizations, including the Monterey Bay Aquarium. It took into consideration otters found onshore, the age and sex of the dead otters and where...
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Old 10-05-2010, 04:00 PM   #2
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Default Freshwater toxins to blame for sea otter deaths

Freshwater toxins to blame for sea otter deaths
PhysOrg
September 13, 2010

http://www.physorg.com/news203595019.html
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In a paper published today (Sept. 10) in PLoS ONE, the researchers reported that the deaths of at least 21 California sea otters (a federally listed threatened species) were linked to the toxin, called microcystin. First author Melissa Miller, a senior wildlife veterinarian at the DFG Marine Wildlife Veterinary Care and Research Center in Santa Cruz, also presented the findings at the California and the World Ocean Conference in San Francisco today (Sept. 10).

The toxin is produced by a type of cyanobacteria (also known as "blue-green algae") called Microcystis. Warm, nutrient-rich water conditions favor large blooms of Microcystis, which can form thick green mats on the surface of the water.

"This study is significant because it is the first to establish a connection between freshwater contamination by microcystin and marine mammal mortality," said Miller, who is...
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