Definition of sea otter in English:

sea otter


  • An entirely aquatic marine otter of North Pacific coasts, formerly hunted for its dense fur. It is noted for its habit of floating on its back with a stone balanced on the abdomen, in order to crack open bivalve molluscs.

    Enhydra lutris, family Mustelidae

    • ‘Attempts in 2003 to delist the southern sea otter as threatened were not successful.’
    • ‘A few other carnivores, such as the sea otter, are also specialized for life in the oceans.’
    • ‘Hunting during the 18th and 19th centuries greatly reduced the distribution of the sea otter.’
    • ‘The sea otter's range was restricted to the North Pacific basin, at least from the Pleistocene onward.’
    • ‘We went whale watching and saw two grey whales spurting in unison, dolphins, more sea lions and a sea otter.’
    • ‘In the north, the sea otter is thriving in areas off Alaska and British Columbia, and a translocated group off Washington State is growing.’