River Otter Survey

by | Mar 2, 2021 | Wildlife

2021 River Otter Bridge Crossing Survey

Once native to Ohio, the North American river otter was one species of wildlife that had been completely extirpated by the early 1900’s.  Though the river otter is still somewhat rarely seen in a majority of the counties throughout the Buckeye State, it is as the result of a 7-year reintroduction project initiated in 1986 that we’re now beginning to see a comeback.  Most recently, their presence was confirmed in 84 of 88 of our counties!


Each year since 1999, the Division of Wildlife continues to monitor the river otter populations.  Here at home in the District 2 area, the 2021 River Otter Bridge Crossing Survey was just completed in approximately 91 various watersheds throughout the twenty counties that comprise NW Ohio.  Though it may be some time before we see the results of that data collection, we’re optimistic that the population numbers of our river otter will remain stable, if not increase.


We would like to encourage all outdoor enthusiasts to report their own sightings to the Division of Wildlife, as well.  River otter observations can easily be submitted to the DOW on their website at https://apps.ohiodnr.gov/wildlife/speciessighting/.


For more information, you can also download a copy of the 2019-2020 River Otter Harvest and Population Monitoring Report below.