Sea otters are an endangered species, thanks in large part to the fur trade.
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But scientists at the Seattle Aquarium, who have been working on The Otter Project, have found a way to gain vital information about sea otter genetics in a non-invasive way — by studying their poop. This will also help to determine stress levels and conditions for pregnancy.
From what they are learning, scientists hope to soon develop an easy pregnancy test, somewhat like the ones used for humans. This will provide vital information on what their reproductive cycle is, and how often they cycle.
Photo credit: Donnaphoto