Friday, June 15, 2007

The Otter's Demise

I had bee hearing about the otters at Trout Lake in the northeast corner of Yellowstone. The stories sounded wonderful. The otters fished regularly in the shallow rocky bed where the trout spawn. I even heard there was a collared coyote that went fishing there. I should have known that would spell trouble.

There is a BBC crew here filming what will be a four part series - The Seasons of Yellowstone. They found the first dead otter. And then they found two more dead. Apparently the otter population was the one family. While there may be a male hanging aroud, there might not be. In which case there are no babies to die for lack of a mother, but it also means no more otters for now.

I have mixed feelings - I no longer am quite as eager to hike the .6 miles uphill. This will free me to watch other wildlife. And I did get to see an otter in Hayden Valley. But it is sad, because it sounds as though the creek leading into Trout Lake was a unique place to watch otters fishing. I wonder how long it will be before a new otter family comes in.

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