VERY IMPORTANT DATES
California Sea Otters
NEW DEADLINE - NOVEMBER 21, 2011
UNAUTHORIZED BALLOON RELEASE
COMMENT DEADLINE - DECEMBER 8, 2011
Submit a "No Otter Zone" Comment
You Don't Have to Live in California
California Sea Otter
Photo: Thomas R. Kieckhefer
The Fish and Wildlife Service announced that it
will continue to accept comments on its proposal to end the No-Otter Zone past its initial deadline.
NEW DEADLINE: November 21, 2011
A No-Otter Zone has existed in Southern California since 1987. This is an artificial zone that prohibits California sea otters from living in the entire southern coast of California, from Pt. Conception to the Mexican border.
This policy has failed for more than 20 years to assist in the recovery of the southern sea otter. Your input is needed now to end the damaging No-Otter Zone forever and allow sea otters to naturally expand their range without boundaries which an otter cannot recognize.
Last year, 99 sea otters were counted within the No-Otter Zone. In addition, otters within the man-made "No-Otter Zone" are not protected under the Endangered Species Act or Marine Mammal Protection Act like the rest of their species. These sea otters are liable to capture and removal by the Fish and Wildlife Service from the No-Otter Zone. For an otter, this stressful experience can result in death.
Tell the Fish and Wildlife Service that you support their proposed decision to end the No-Otter Zone. Please help the California sea otter by making a comment as each comment represents many voices. These animals are attempting to recover from near extinction and need your help to freely roam coastal California.
POINTS to USE IN COMMENTS:
1) Sea otters currently inhabiting the No-Otter Zone (the population at San Nicolas Island) should remain in their current habitat and be extended full rights under the Endangered Species Act and the Marine Mammal Protection Act.
2) The "No-Otter" Zone is illogical because sea otters don't know where the boundary lines are drawn.
3) When otters are absent, sea urchins dominate the ocean floor and feed voraciously on kelp which destroys the kelp ecosystem and creates "urchin barren" environments with much less productivity and biodiversity.
4) The No-Otter "Management Zone" created by Public Law 99-625 off the coast of California should be terminated and the southern sea otter allowed to naturally expand its range. This is necessary to halt its declining population.
HOW YOU CAN HELP THE OTTERS
Submit an electronic comment by Nov. 21 2011.
1. Submit comments on form in support of the No-Otter Zone.
2. Fill out the form and write your comment. Please be aware that there is a 20-minute time limit for this page. We suggest that you write your comments first, and copy and paste your comments in the comment box.
3. Remember to click Submit!
Otter Pup Inside Plastic Bag -
Mother Worked 5 Minutes to Free - Elkhorn Slough CA
Photo: Terry McCormac
RELEASE OF BALLOONS LEADS TO PROPOSED
FINE OF $7,000
The California Regional Water Quality Control Board, San Francisco Bay Region Prosecution Team and Trash TalkFCM have entered into a proposed Settlement Agreement and Stipulated Order ("Agreement"). The proposed Agreement imposes an administrative civil liability against TrashTalk FCM in the amount of $7,000.
Allegations have been made that Trash TalkFCM released 10,000 biodegradable, red latex ballons into the atmosphere resulting in an unauthorized discharge of hundreds of these ballons to San Francisco Bay and its tributaries.
TrashTalkFCM is a marketing agency that describes their services as strategic, professionally-executed nontraditional brand marketing solutions for their agency and client partners.
Persons may comment on the proposed Agreement by submitting written comments no later than 5:00 p.m. on December 8, 2011.
Please send comments via email or by mail to: San Francisco Bay Regional Water Board, Attn. Brian Thompson, 1515 Clay Street, Suite 1400, Oakland, CA 94612. The Executive Officer is expected to adopt the Order if no significant comments are received by the deadline above. If significant comments are received, a hearing before the Water Board may be scheduled
While the otter photograph dislayed shows a pup with a plastic bag, it could easily be a balloon. If swallowed, balloons kill animals in oceans, lakes, rivers and stream, along with their fragments, ribbons and strings, that resemble floating plankton, kelp and jellyfish.