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Marine Otter : Distribution

Lontra Felina

Where in the world...

The sea cat is found down the west coast of South America, from Peru in the north through Chili to Tiera del Fuego at the southernmost end of Argentina. There may also be a small population in the Falkland Islands, introduced there in the 1930s. Its range has not diminished much since it was first recognised, but the population is becoming sparse and fragmented throughout that range.

On the rocks!

This species is found only in coastal habitats and is thus classed as a marine mammal - the smallest marine mammal in the world. It lives mostly in rocky coastal areas, secluded bays and inlets near river estuaries. The areas typically have strong winds and heavy seas, the sea usually full of seaweed and algae - similar to the sea otter's love of kelp. Areas with caves above the high-water line are preferred. Otters have been reported to climb upriver to 2000 feet above sea level in search of freshwater shrimp.