Curious Otter Halts Tour

It doesn’t happen on every tour, but every so often we get “otter bombed” by a curious otter who wants to see what all the fuss is about up in our kayaks.  Senior guide, Franco Guzman, shot this video as he and his tour of excited school kids let this little guy give the kayakers a good otter-once over. Under the Federal Marine Mammal Protection Act, it is unlawful to approach or change the behavior of the endangered mammals of the Elkhorn Slough.  But, what do you do if the otter approaches you??! In the video, you can see another of our Kayak Connection guides dealt with this unexpected visitor by gently stopping the otter from boarding her kayak with her paddle.  Having an otter on your kayak is not good for the otter, and can be dangerous for you the paddler.  Sea otters are wild animals, so we ask you help keep them wild by continuing this practice of “gentle shooing.” Check out this video: Kayaking the Elkhorn Slough is a terrific way to see the California Southern Sea Otters. Once thought to be completely extinct along our coastline because of fur trading, a small raft of just 50 survivors were discovered in Big Sur in 1938.  These remaining 50 otters have grown into the the just over 2,000 in the Monterey Bay today.  The Elkhorn Slough has a resident population of otters, with their own unique behaviors, feeding patterns and culture.  Your Kayak Connection Tour Guide can tell you all kinds of interesting otter facts about our resident population.  On a good day, you will be able to kayak by the largest raft of Southern Sea Otters on the planet.

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