Surf Otter

If Wide World of Sports was still on the air today, this news out of California certainly would've made the cut. Surfers in Santa Cruz have to be on the lookout for aggressive... otters. That's right. These cute, but not-quite-tame creatures are not only attacking surfers but also taking people's surfboards. Dustin Jones at NPR has more.

Steamer Lane is a legendary point break nestled along the rocky shores of Santa Cruz, home to swaths of experienced surfers, as well as a 5-year-old female sea otter with a growing reputation for repeatedly confronting surfers and kayakers.

Videos across social media show the otter hoisting itself out of the ocean and onto boards while surfers sit back in awe. At times she's chewed on the boards or forced surfers to surrender their boards altogether.

Onlookers in the videos can be heard laughing in jest at surfers' misfortune, but officials with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service say the otter poses a public safety risk.

"While there have been no confirmed reports of injury, due to the highly unusual behavior of this otter, kayakers, surfers, and others recreating in the area should not approach the otter or encourage the otter's interactions," the USFWS said in a statement.


Jones' reporting goes on to say that the otter may has been fed by humans too many times and that can lead to not fearing them. There is nothing necessarily wrong with the otter but USFWS is looking to locate it and rehome it so it can live on in a new comfortable environment unencumbered by people.