|Raft of sea otters
|Wally & Tanu
|Sea otter eating a clam for breakfast
|Sea otter with a crab lunch
|Shellfish farms around Vancouver Island
|Sea otter enjoying a sea urchin for dinner
On Gabriola Island a group of volunteers under the direction of Michael Mehta, a professor of environmental studies at Thompson Rivers University, have started an innovative campaign to "help the kelp" by mapping and seeding new beds of kelp around the Island. In addition to helping the existing kelp beds improve their canopies, the goal is to develop cost effective and proven techniques that other communities can copy. It's all part of a greater message that says if we want to be healthy we need our marine ecosystems to be healthy, and there's no better place to start than with kelp.
While obviously Wally was a victim of ignorance, perhaps he and the other rescued sea otters at the Vancouver Aquarium will now become the new ambassadors of marine education. Cuddly is nice but even better is the important role sea otters play in the marine ecosystem. Sea otters mean bigger kelp forests and bigger kelp forests mean even more fish. There's room for both shellfish farmers and sea otters and all Wally, Katmai, and Tanu are trying to say is "I want you to want me".