Sea otter rescued in California oil spill dies of shark bite

Famous Sea Otter 'Olive' Dies After Being Bitten By Shark

SANTA CRUZ, Calif. (AP) - A sea otter that became an ambassador for her species after a remarkable recovery from an oil tar soaking off the coast of Northern California has been killed by a shark.

"Olive the Oiled Otter" made headlines in 2009 when she was found covered in oil and near death on Santa Cruz beach. Olive recovered fully and went on to deliver a healthy pup years later.

The California Department of Fish and Wildlife says Olive was found dead by a beachgoer on Sunday.

The department says wildlife biologists found wounds consistent with a shark bite on the 7-year-old marine mammal's body.

It says Olive's wounds showed no signs of healing, indicating that she died quickly after the fatal bite.

Olive had more than 5,000 Facebook followers, in an account set up by wildlife officials. Hundreds of followers expressed sadness after reading about her passing.

See photos of Olive:

11 PHOTOS
Olive the sea otter
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Sea otter rescued in California oil spill dies of shark bite
Photo via Facebook
Ben Weitzman of the Department of Fish and Game, releases the oiled sea otter named Olive at Sunset State Beach in Santa Cruz County on Tuesday, April 7, 2009. Olive was found at Sunset State Beach on Feb. 21, and rehabed at the Monterey Bay Aquarium. (Credit Image: Monterey Herald/ZUMA Press)
The release of the oiled sea otter named Olive by members of the Department of Fish & Game and volunteers at the Long Marine Laboratories in Santa Cruz at Sunset State Beach in Santa Cruz County on Tuesday, April 7, 2009. Olive was found on Feb. 21, and rehabed at the Monterey Bay Aquarium. (Credit Image: Monterey Herald/ZUMA Press)

Otter recuperating from oil contamination

Photo: CaliforniaDFW/Flickr

Oiled otter being washed

Photo: CaliforniaDFW/Flickr

Oiled otter anesthetized for cleaning

Photo: CaliforniaDFW/Flickr

Otter grooming after oil removed

Photo: CaliforniaDFW/Flickr

Oiled otter being washed

Photo: CaliforniaDFW/Flickr

Olive the Otter

Photo: Valerie Everett/Flickr

Photo via Facebook
Photo via Facebook
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