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The benefits and perils of re-introducing sea otters to Oregon waters will be up for discussion when the Oregon Chapter of the American Cetacean Society meets in Newport this Saturday, June 1.

The group will hear from guest speaker Dominique Kone, a masters student studying Marine Resource Management at Oregon State University. For his thesis work, Kone is assessing the ecological factors and implications of a potential sea otter reintroduction to Oregon.

Sea otters used to exist along the Oregon Coast, but were wiped out by the maritime fur trade more than 100 years ago.

Kone said the success of a re-introduction effort depends on several factors, including whether Oregon still has suitable sea otter habitat, and what effect sea otters might have on the state’s nearshore ecosystems.

Before joining OSU, Kone worked in the marine and wildlife conservation field by developing and applying scientific research to inform policy and management. As an ecologist, he merges his experience in science and policy to better use targeted research for the conservation and effective management of at-risk marine species and ecosystems. He holds a B.A. in Environmental Studies Science with a concentration in Conservation Biology from Colby College.

Saturday’s talk will run from 10 am to noon at Newport Public Library, 35 NW Nye Street.

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