Skip to main content

We've gone 24/7 live!!!!

On March 19, 2014 HaulingGear enabled 24/7 live comfish newsfeeds on our front page at ! Enjoy! Click image to view

Northern Southeast Alaska sea otter numbers up 4 percent

by Ed Schoenfeld
December 22, 2011 4:04 pm

Will Ware goes subsistence fishing in Sumner Strait, south of Petersburg. But the administrator of the town’s tribal government says he finds fewer shellfish there these days.

“When you get onto the reefs you’re seeing that it’s just shell-laden all over the rocks and beaches. There’s gumboot shells everywhere, shrimp shells. It’s almost like a devastating sight to see on some of these islands and rocks,” he says.

The shells are leftovers from sea otters’ meals. A few decades ago, the federally protected marine mammals were hard to find. But that’s no longer the case.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and other agencies have been surveying Southeast

A sea otter floats on its back. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service photo.
waters to determine the extent of otter growth.

Wildlife Biologist Verena Gill just released a new population estimate: 20,000.

“The reason it is increasing, both in distribution and in number, is because...


Dec 6, 2011... published in the Ketchikan Daily News via the SARDFA Blog > ...
Jun 10, 2011... products, which are tested for toxins by the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation." Related >> ...