We’ve chosen a hopeful book to start off the year and will have a special guest speaker, Jessie Hale. Jessie was featured in the second half of chapter 11 – she is a PhD student at UW studying sea otter eating habits and spent a few days in the field with the author during the writing of the book.
Return of the Sea Otter: The Story of the Animal That Evaded Extinction on the Pacific Coast by Todd McLeish.
“Highly entertaining….A healthy sea-otter population is crucial for a healthy Pacific-coast ecosystem, and the author’s enthusiasm for the world’s cutest keystone species makes believers of all of us.” —Booklist, starred review
“This hopeful book, written by a science journalist who traveled North America’s west coast from California to Alaska, details the sea otter’s remarkable comeback story from the brink of extinction, the conservation efforts that helped it, and the challenges to so-called ‘sustainable fisheries’ that this comeback presents. Entertaining and yet still scientifically accurate, this inspiring book will be enjoyed by conservation biologists as well as by citizen scientists, students of the sciences, and by nonspecialists.” —Forbes.com
“Whether you are in the camp that defines sea otters as the epitome of cute or with the abalone, sea cucumber, or urchin fishermen that see them as their nemesis, there is no debating that sea otters play a key role in shaping healthy nearshore ocean ecosystems. From Alaska to California, these fascinating and complex animals have survived centuries of harvest and persecution and, in at least one location, even targeting as prey by killer whales. In his book Return of the Sea Otter, Todd McLeish tells this story. But he also tells the other side of the story: the one of multiple translocation efforts, research, and rehabilitation–the story of people committed to making the world a better place, once species at a time. Beautifully written, entertaining, and engaging, McLeish’s tale of the sea otter will make you love this incredible animal and the ocean even more, and will leave you with hope that our efforts to heal our stressed ocean can and will make a difference.” —Joseph K. Gaydos, coauthor of The Salish Sea
Get your copy at the Vashon Library or Vashon Bookshop and join us on Thursday, January 30th for friendly conversation. All are welcome!