Sea Otter Biologist
Sea Otter Biologist

Brenda Ballachey, Ph.D., visits sea otters in Alaska and studies how they survived the Exxon Valdez oil spill. Observing otters in the wild takes her on some wild adventures under water, on the water, and up in an airplane. Her work as a wildlife biologist helps scientists learn more about the impact of environmental disasters on the nature world.

Your students will develop an understanding of:

• animal behavior
• interpreting and displaying data
• communities and ecosystems
• natural hazards and environmental changes
• how to solve math problems using data
• the use of simple tools to gather scientific data

Activities include:

• Otters in Action—observe and record sea otter behavior.
• Kelp Critters—create a kelp forest community.
• Fragile Waters—learn about the Exxon Valdez disaster and conduct oil investigations
• Otter Smorgasbörd—find out how much food a sea otter pup must eat in its first year of life.
• Tracking Otters—discover how scientists track sea otters and try it out yourself.

Check out the supply list for each activity.



This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant No. 9909496.
Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and
do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation (NSF).