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Meeting ID: 832 4959 1847
Governmental and private conservation organizations often use flagship species to achieve conservation goals. The North American river otter (Lontra canadensis) has many physical, behavioral and ecological attributes indicative of a flagship species. For example, the river otter has been popularized through media portrayals as being charismatic, cute, and playful. However, because the river otter is a fish-eating predator, it can sometimes elicit negative attitudes among certain stakeholders involved in commercial rearing of fish or angling, potentially diminishing its positive impact as a flagship species. This presentation will focus on using socio-ecological data as part of the basis for assessing the virtues and liabilities of using the river otter as a flagship species to promote aquatic conservation in the United States.