“Thousands of tired, nerve-shaken, over-civilized people are beginning to find out that going to the mountain is going home; that wildness is necessity; that mountain parks and reservations are useful not only as fountains of timber and irrigating rivers, but as fountains of life.”

John Muir

Sunday, December 19, 2010

River Otters in Missouri

 Last trip in November we spotted two River Otters on the North Fork of the White. Then just this weekend came across a trapper trapping them.

Did a little research and came across the following.

In the early 1980s with overwhelming citizen support, the decision was made to restore otter populations to all major streams in the state. Between 1982 and 1992, 845 otters were released in 35 streams with suitable habitat. From these releases, otters increased their distribution and abundance beyond the highest expectations. By 1996, the otter population had increased sufficiently to support the first trapping season. By 2001, populations throughout the state were estimated to be between 11,000 and 18,000.

The attached article actually discusses methods for setting traps and scoouting areas for trapping Otters.  A bit disturbing for me. I'll let each of you decide.

The trapper did mention that Otters favor trout.

During an 11-year program, MDC released 845 otters, setting them free in 43 streams in 35 counties. MDC traded some of our wild turkeys for wild-caught Cajun otters—the same subspecies that once existed here. The otters not only survived, they flourished. Otters now exist in every county in the state and in most watersheds, even those miles from the original release sites. And, they made their way into places no one believed they could, and where they were really not wanted.

No comments:

Post a Comment