Tag Archives: River Otters

Loren Adrian wrote, "Here are a couple of shots from Big River right after the big heat wave. There was a family of [River] Otters on the lower end of the river, a mother and her four offspring. My wife and I paddled up the river about two hours, then returned after we came across a log jam. It was a nice day on Big River.”

If you haven’t explored the trails at Big River, you are in for a treat. The Mendocino Land Trust acquired over 7000 acres in 2002. There is a ten-mile trail, formerly a haul road, that connects Big River Beach to Mendocino Woodlands State Park. You can hike or bike there, with the river flowing gently by your side. It is now part of California State Parks.

To learn more about the Big River Trail, here is the link to the Mendocino Land Trust: https://www.mendocinolandtrust.org/trails/central-coastal-trails/big-river-trail/

Thanks to Loren for allowing me to share his photos with you here.

River Otters live in and by Mendonoma rivers and creeks. Steve Coffey-Smith recently spotted three River Otters in the ocean.

River Otters by Steve Coffey-Smith

One place you might see River Otters is near the lagoon of the Gualala River. They cannot abide pollution so the fact that they are here is a good indication of the health of our waterways.

Though they look cute, they are feisty creatures. The female raises her pups; the male is only around for mating. One of my favorite photos was taken by Nan Brichetto of a River Otter sleeping on a beach.

River Otter sleeping in the sun by Nan Brichetto (Large)

Thanks to Steve and Nan for allowing me to share their photos with  you here.

Bob Rutemoeller was walking on the Gualala Bluff Trail this past week when he saw two River Otters swimming in the river. They came up onto the banks of the river and gave Bob a chance to photograph them.

These creatures are comfortable in the water and on land. They can only thrive where the water is unpolluted. They eat fish, octopus, amphibians and even small mammals and birds. One was seen swimming under an unsuspecting Gull and grabbing it for a meal. Sometimes life on the Gualala River can be dangerous.

Thanks to Bob for allowing me to share his photo with you. Before this photo I did not know they groomed each other. I love learning new information about our wildlife. To see a River Otter and her pup, here's the link: http://www.mendonomasightings.com/2011/08/19/river-otters-seen-in-the-gualala-river/

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Allen Vinson was walking the Gualala Bluff Trail this week and he saw a mother North American River Otter and her pup in the Gualala River. Lucky for us he had his camera with him!

River Otters are comfortable in water and on land. I've had sightings of them climbing up bluffs. There is at least one den of these critters near the mouth of the Gualala River. They primarily eat fish but they've been seen sneaking up on an unsuspecting Gull now and then.

They are adversely impacted by environmental pollution. The fact that they are thriving on the Mendonoma Coast is a testament to our pristine waters.

                                                                This is the pup.

                                                 And here is the mom with her pup.

Thanks to Allen for allowing me to share these photos. My best to you today, Jeanne

If you are visiting the Mendonoma Coast, a trip to the Point Arena Lighthouse is a great stop. There's a museum, a gift shop and the restored lighthouse itself. It's a great spot for seeing wildlife, including River Otters, Brown Pelicans and Whales. It's also a great spot for spectacular sunsets as evidenced in Rae Radtkey's photo below. I thank her for allowing me to share it here with you.

To learn more about this landmark, go to http://www.pointarenalighthouse.com/