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The near extinction of sea otters due to human poaching for their pelts caused a near loss of the kelp ecosystem in the Pacific Northwest.

The sea otters maintain the populations of sea urchins, which would otherwise decimate the kelp forests.

For this ecosystem, the sea otters represent a(n)

A

indicator species

B

exotic species.

C

generalist species.

D

invasive species.

E

keystone species.

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