Science & Environment

Science and environmental reporting on news and community topics. Science coverage is occasionally provided by community members.

Zoe Grueskin / KNOM

 

Since May, hundreds of dead and dying seabirds have been found across the northern Bering and southern Chukchi Seas.

The National Park Service and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service have labeled the event a die-off and are coordinating monitoring efforts with local communities.

"These birds have been starving," said wildlife biolgoist Kathy Kuletz of USFWS. "They're very emaciated. Their muscles have atrophied."

Alaska Department of Fish and Game

Golden king crab season opens Wednesday in the Aleutian Islands.

And for the first time in its 22-year history, the commercial fishery isn't capped by a rigid quota.

"It's really exciting this year," said biologist Miranda Westphal of the Alaska Department of Fish and Game. "It was great to have some freedom in setting limits in this fishery."

Brown crab prefer the deep, current-heavy waters of island passes, so it's basically impossible to count them. In fact, Westphal said this is the region's only large rationalized crab fishery without a survey.

Zoë Sobel / KUCB

 

Unalaska welcomed two Japanese-flagged vessels to port this week — one devoted to Arctic research, the other connected to controversial commercial whaling.

The first is the Oshoro Maru V, a research vessel for Hokkaido University's school of fisheries sciences.

 

Professor Toru Hirawake is the chief scientist onboard.

 

Berett Wilber/KUCB

 

City Councilors and community members expressed overwhelming support Tuesday night for an ordinance that would ban single-use plastic bags in Unalaska.

As it stands, the proposed ordinance would put the burden on retailers.

 

KUCB

Unalaska fishermen cannot take salmon at McLees Lake within 500 yards of the river mouth.

The Alaska Department of Fish and Game issued that reminder Sunday as the restriction went into effect.

Biologist Lisa Fox said it'll last through next Monday, July 9.

"It's around the average peak time of that run," she said. "So if the run comes in normally, that should protect the peak."

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