Speaker: Dr. M. Tim Tinker- Research Wildlife Biologist and Adjunct Professor of Ecology & Evolutionary Biology with the University of California, Santa Cruz
Topic: The rise and fall of sea otter populations: a question of scale
Sea otters represent an iconic keystone predator, widely recognized for the profound influence they exert on the structure and dynamics of nearshore marine ecosystems. Today, different sea otter populations around the NE pacific are associated with very different challenges for management and conservation: in southeast Alaska and British Columbia, rapidly growing and expanding sea otter populations have led to conflicts with commercial shell fisheries and subsistence shellfish harvests by native communities. In southwest Alaska, a dramatic population decline in the 1990s has resulted in a depleted population with heavily fragmented distribution. And in California, population recovery has been slow and halting, with range expansion into unoccupied habitat (most of coastal California) apparently stalled. While seemingly contradictory, all three of these examples are consistent with our emerging understanding of the spatial ecology of sea otters. Moreover, I suggest that in each case it is impossible to properly interpret dynamics without appropriate attention to spatial scale.
Thursday, December 19, 2019 at 3:30pm to 4:30pm
Hatfield Marine Science Center, Guin Library Seminar Room
2030 SE Marine Science Dr, Newport, OR 97365