Record number of shark attacks on otters
September 16, 2010
Scientists collected 19 injured or dead otters with signs of shark attacks last month. The 10 year average for August is seven.
The agency contends the increase in shark-bitten otters along the central coast is because of cooler than average ocean temperatures creating ideal conditions for white sharks.
“White sharks do not typically feed on sea otters,” said Michael Harris, environmental scientist with DFG’s office of spill prevention and response. “Their preferred prey is seals and sea lions. This would explain why the majority of the otters collected have a single bite mark. These bites are more investigative – like a taste test.”
According to the DFG, white sharks do no typically prey on humans. White sharks have attacked 95 humans since 1950 with only 11 fatalities.