Northern river otters are listed in Appendix II of CITES. Populations were once extirpated through many parts of their range, especially around heavily populated areas in the midwestern and eastern United States. Population trends have stabilized in recent years and reintroduction and conservation efforts have resulted in recolonization of areas where they were previously extirpated. Northern river otter populations are still considered vulnerable or imperiled throughout much of their range in midwestern United States and the Appalachian mountains. They are presumed extirpated in New Mexico and population status in South Carolina and Florida has not yet been reviewed.
US Federal List: no special status
CITES: appendix ii
State of Michigan List: no special status
IUCN Red List of Threatened Species: least concern