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Alaska Science Center

The mission of the Alaska Science Center is to provide objective and timely data, information, and research findings about the earth and its flora and fauna to Federal, State, and local resource managers and the public to support sound decisions regarding natural resources, natural hazards, and ecosystems in Alaska and circumpolar regions. We have offices in Anchorage, Juneau, and Fairbanks. 

News

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Bird Bands and the Public Help Researchers Better Understand Alaskan Bird Populations

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Alaska Science Center Newsletter - Spring 2022

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Polar Bear Zoo Research Masterplan and Video

Publications

Sensitivity of headwater streamflow to thawing permafrost and vegetation change in a warming Arctic

Climate change has the potential to impact headwater streams in the Arctic by thawing permafrost and subsequently altering hydrologic regimes and vegetation distribution, physiognomy and productivity. Permafrost thaw and increased subsurface flow have been inferred from the chemistry of large rivers, but there is limited empirical evidence of the impacts to headwater streams. Here we demonstrate h

The role of satellite telemetry data in 21st century conservation of polar bears (Ursus maritimus)

Satellite telemetry (ST) has played a critical role in the management and conservation of polar bears (Ursus maritimus) over the last 50 years. ST data provide biological information relevant to subpopulation delineation, movements, habitat use, maternal denning, health, human-bear interactions, and accurate estimates of vital rates and abundance. Given that polar bears are distributed at low dens

First juvenile Chum Salmon confirms successful reproduction for Pacific salmon in the North American Arctic

The distributional extent of Pacific salmon Oncorhynchus spp. in the North American Arctic is unresolved. While adult Pacific salmon have a recurring presence across the Alaskan North Slope and into the Canadian Arctic, it is uncertain if these fish are part of established Arctic populations, vagrants from outside sources reproducing unsuccessfully, or both. Here we present the first confirmed rec

Science

Glaciers and Climate Project

Mountain glaciers are dynamic reservoirs of frozen water closely coupled to ecosystems and climate. Glacier change in North America has major socioeconomic impacts, including global sea level change, tourism disruption, natural hazard risk, fishery effects, and water resource alteration. Understanding and quantifying precise connections between glaciers and climate is critical to decision makers...
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Glaciers and Climate Project

Mountain glaciers are dynamic reservoirs of frozen water closely coupled to ecosystems and climate. Glacier change in North America has major socioeconomic impacts, including global sea level change, tourism disruption, natural hazard risk, fishery effects, and water resource alteration. Understanding and quantifying precise connections between glaciers and climate is critical to decision makers...
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Eelgrass

Eelgrass is the predominant aquatic plant within embayments of southwestern Alaska and provides an important habitat for birds, fish, and invertebrates. The USGS has conducted extensive research on the status, trends, and use of eelgrass by migratory birds in southwestern Alaska primarily at the Izembek National Wildlife Refuge.
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Eelgrass

Eelgrass is the predominant aquatic plant within embayments of southwestern Alaska and provides an important habitat for birds, fish, and invertebrates. The USGS has conducted extensive research on the status, trends, and use of eelgrass by migratory birds in southwestern Alaska primarily at the Izembek National Wildlife Refuge.
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Q&A: Polar Bears and Zoos

Polar bears are found throughout the circumpolar Arctic and roam across miles of sea ice and land. They prefer to eat blubber, especially from seals that are also found on the sea ice. However, the sea ice habitat of polar bears is changing rapidly with substantial recent declines in the extent of sea ice in the Arctic. These changes are leading polar bears to spend more time on land in some areas...
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Q&A: Polar Bears and Zoos

Polar bears are found throughout the circumpolar Arctic and roam across miles of sea ice and land. They prefer to eat blubber, especially from seals that are also found on the sea ice. However, the sea ice habitat of polar bears is changing rapidly with substantial recent declines in the extent of sea ice in the Arctic. These changes are leading polar bears to spend more time on land in some areas...
Learn More