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River Otter (Lutra canadensis)

For the last 10 years, between about 1,200 and 2,400 otters have been harvested annually in Alaska for their pelts. Natives in Prince William Sound once hunted otters with the aid of dogs of a nondescript type that were small enough to enter an otter den. The dogs could usually drive out the otter without a fight.

Wildlife watchers enjoy viewing otters when given the opportunity. Although otters are wary, their playful behavior and social interactions make them particularly interesting.