How could you not grin when looking at this little cutie?
One of the best parts about my recent trip to Alaska was the opportunity to photograph – and indeed see for my first time – cool creatures like this.
As we departed Seward and headed into Resurrection Bay for a day on the water, this little one was floating along, taking a nap. Our approach did wake him from a slumber but given how he remained quite relaxed and just looked at us, I am sure it didn’t mind too much.
Sea otters once had a range covering an arc of Pacific coastal waters from Japan to Mexico. Hunting in the 18th and 19th century devastated populations across much of that area bringing the species to the brink of extinction.
Thankfully, conservation efforts began in the early 20th century and it has rebounded quite well. However, they are still considered an endangered species with worldwide populations only about a third of what they are believed to have been before the 1700s.