How Sea Otters Thrive


Sea Otter Insulation
Share the following information with students.

The water temperature in Glacier Bay is about 37°-50° F. Sea otters don’t have a lot of body fat (blubber) like seals and whales, but they do have very dense fur. In fact their fur is the thickest of any animal in the world and it allows them to maintain their body temperature.

Briefly, ask students to respond to the following questions:

  1. How do you keep warm in cold temperatures?
  2. What insulating materials do you prefer? Why?

Answer: Answers will vary. Accept all insulating possibilities as long as they can support their suggestion with reasonable data and/or experience.

Experiment 1: Insulating Properties

Experiment 2: Air as an Insulator

Find all the details for experiment 1 & 2 as well as student handouts, sea otter background, extensions and more resources here.

Provided by National Park Service

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