"Another Deadly Challenge for the Sea Otter"

"It's been a struggle for the furry, button-nosed critter to make a comeback since being hunted nearly to extinction along California's coast.

They get chomped by great white sharks. They must scrounge in overexploited waters to find enough shellfish to eat. Their immune systems are weakened by polluted runoff and under attack by parasites that wash into coastal waters from the feces of domestic cats and opossums.

Now it turns out that some of these playful marine mammals are also being poisoned by an ancient microbe — a type of cyanobacteria — that appears to be on an upsurge in warmer, polluted waters around the world."

Kenneth R. Weiss reports for the Los Angeles Times September 23, 2010.

 

Thursday, September 23, 2010