Online Encyclopedia

SEA OTTER

Online Encyclopedia
Originally appearing in Volume V11, Page 352 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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SEA OTTER.—Size 50 X25 in. Possesses one of the most beautiful of coats. Unlike other aquatic animals the skin undergoes no process of unhairing, the fur being of a rich dense silky wool with the softest and shortest of water hairs. The colours vary from pale grey brown to a rich black, and many have even or uneven sprinkling of white or silvery-white hairs. The blacker the wool and the more regular the silver points, the more valuable the skin. Sea otters are, unfortunately, decreasing in numbers, while the demand is increasing. The fur is most highly esteemed in Russia and China; in the latter country it is used to trim mandarins' state robes. In Europe and America it is much used for collar, long facings and cuffs of a gentle-man's coat; such a set may cost from too to £600, and in all probability will soon cost more. Taking into consideration the size, it is not so costly as the natural black fox, or the darkest Russian sable, which is now the most expensive of all. The smaller and young sea otters of a grey or brown colour are of small value compared to the large dark and silvery ones. Value I0 to 220. A single skin has been known to fetch 400.
End of Article: SEA OTTER
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