Unified Interior Regions

Region 11: Alaska

Alaska Science Center

Alaska Science Center

4210 University Drive
Anchorage, AK 99508
Phone: (907) 786-7000

View Center Website

Volcano Science Center

Volcano Science Center

4230 University Drive
Anchorage, AK 99508
Phone: (907) 786-7497

View Center Website

Climate Adaptation Science Center

Climate Adaptation Science Center

4230 University Drive
Anchorage, AK 99508
Phone: 907-301-7830

View Center Website

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USGS research activities relevant to Alaska have yielded more than 9400 historical publications. This page features some of the most recent newsworthy research findings.

Search USGS publications for Alaska

Arctic Science for Decision Maker

2020 USGS Alaska Annual Science Report
Filter Total Items: 2,626
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Year Published: 2019

Extreme reduction in nutritional value of a key forage fish during the Pacific marine heatwave of 2014–2016

Pacific sand lance Ammodytes personatus are a key forage fish in the North Pacific for many species of salmon, groundfish, seabirds, and marine mammals and have historically been important to predators in relatively warm years. However, extreme declines in the nutritional value of sand lance in Prince William Sound, Alaska, USA, during...

von Biela, Vanessa R.; Arimitsu, Mayumi L.; Piatt, John F.; Heflin, Brielle; Schoen, Sarah K.; Trowbridge, Jannelle; Clawson, Chelsea

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Year Published: 2019

Estimating the energy expenditure of free‐ranging polar bears using tri‐axial accelerometers: A validation with doubly labeled water

Measures of energy expenditure can be used to inform animal conservation and management, but methods for measuring the energy expenditure of free‐ranging animals have a variety of limitations. Advancements in biologging technologies have enabled the use of dynamic body acceleration derived from accelerometers as a proxy for energy expenditure....

Pagano, Anthony M.; Williams, Terrie M.

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Year Published: 2019

Migratory goose arrival time plays a larger role in influencing forage quality than advancing springs in an Arctic coastal wetland

With warmer springs, herbivores migrating to Arctic breeding grounds may experience phenological mismatches between their energy demands and the availability of high quality forage. However, the timing of high quality forage relative to the timing of grazing is often unknown. In coastal western Alaska, approximately one million migratory geese...

Beard, Karen H.; Choi, Ryan T.; Leffer, A. Joshua; Carlson, Lindsay; Kelsey, Katharine C.; Schmutz, Joel A.; Welker, Jeffrey

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Year Published: 2019

Current trends and future directions in swan research: Insights from the 6th International Swan Symposium

Given their popularity with researchers and public alike, together with their welldocumented importance in aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems, fundamental and applied research on swans continues to develop in the 21st century. The 6th International Swan Symposium (6th ISS), was held at the Estonian University of Life Sciences in Tartu, Estonia, in...

Wood, Kevin; Cao, Lei; Clausen, P.; Ely, Craig R.; Luigujoe, L.; Rees, Eileen; Snyder, Jeffrey; Solovyeva, D.; Wlodarczyk, R.

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Year Published: 2019

Influenza A prevalence and subtype diversity in migrating teal sampled along the United States Gulf Coast

Wild birds in the order Anseriformes are important reservoirs for influenza A viruses (IAV); however, IAV prevalence and subtype diversity may vary by season, even at the same location. To better understand the ecology of IAV during waterfowl migration through the Gulf Coast of the United States (Louisiana and Texas), surveillance of blue-winged (...

Carter, Deborah; Link, Paul T.; Walther, Patrick; Ramey, Andrew M.; Stallknecht, David E.; Poulson, Rebecca L.

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Year Published: 2019

Dropstones in lacustrine sediments as a record of snow avalanches - a validation of the proxy by combining satellite imagery and varve chronology at Kenai Lake (south-central Alaska)

Snow avalanches cause many fatalities every year and damage local economies worldwide. The present-day climate change affects the snowpack and, thus, the properties and frequency of snow avalanches. Reconstructing snow avalanche records can help us understand past variations in avalanche frequency and their relationship to climate change. Previous...

Thys, Sien; Van Daele, Maarten; Praet, Nore; Jensen, Britta J.L.; Van Dyck, Thomas; Haeussler, Peter; Vandekerkhove, Elke; Cnudde, Veerle; De Batist, Marc

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Year Published: 2019

The black brant population is declining based on mark recapture

Annual survival and recruitment in black brant (Branta bernicla nigricans) have declined since the 1990s, yet aerial surveys of the global population have been stable or even increasing over the past decade. We used a combination of a Lincoln estimator based on harvest information and band recoveries, and marked‐unmarked ratios in bag checks in 1...

Sedinger, James S.; Riecke, Thomas V.; Leach, Alan G.; Ward, David H.

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Year Published: 2019

Flexible timing of annual movements across consistently used sites by Marbled Godwits breeding in Alaska

The study of avian movement has detailed a spectrum of strategies for the timing and use of sites throughout the annual cycle, from near randomness to complete consistency. New tracking devices now permit the repeated tracking of individual animals throughout the annual cycle, detailing previously unappreciated levels of variation within migratory...

Ruthrauff, Daniel R.; Tibbitts, Lee; Gill, Robert E.

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Year Published: 2019

Spatial distribution of band recoveries of black brant

On average, band recovery rates of adult black brant (Branta bernicla nigricans) more than doubled between the 2000s and 2010s. However, the spatial distribution of band recoveries of black brant has not been reported. Our objective was to describe the spatial distribution of band recoveries of black brant since 1990. We found that Alaska,...

Leach, Alan G.; Ward, David H.; Sedinger, James S.; Riecke, Thomas V.; Hupp, Jerry W.; Ritchie, Robert J.

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Year Published: 2019

Pace and process of active folding and fluvial incision across the Kantishna Hills anticline, central Alaska

Rates of northern Alaska Range thrust system deformation are poorly constrained. Shortening at the system's west end is focused on the Kantishna Hills anticline. Where the McKinley River cuts across the anticline, the landscape records both Late Pleistocene deformation and climatic change. New optically stimulated luminescence and cosmogenic ...

Bender, Adrian; Lease, Richard O.; Haeussler, Peter; Rittenour, Tammy M.; Corbett, Lee B.; Bierman, Paul R.; Caffee, Marc W.

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Year Published: 2019

Wasting disease and static environmental variables drive sea star assemblages in the northern Gulf of Alaska

Sea stars are ecologically important in rocky intertidal habitats where they can play an apex predator role, completely restructuring communities. The recent sea star die-off throughout the eastern Pacific, known as Sea Star Wasting Disease, has prompted a need to understand spatial and temporal patterns of sea star assemblages and the...

Konar, Brenda; Mitchell, Timothy J.; Iken, K.; Dean, Thomas; Esler, Daniel N.; Lindeberg, Mandy; Pister, Benjamin; Weitzman, Ben P.

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Year Published: 2019

Micro-geographic population genetic structure within Arctic cod (Boreogadus saida) in Beaufort Sea of Alaska

Many marine organisms show significant levels of genetic heterogeneity on local spatial scales despite exhibiting limited genetic structure at large geographic scales which can be produced through a variety of mechanisms. The Arctic cod (Boreogadus saida) is a circumpolar species and is a vital species in Arctic food webs. To examine population...

Wilson, Robert E.; Sage, George K.; Wedemeyer, Kate; Sonsthagen, Sarah A.; Menning, Damian M.; Gravley, Megan C.; Nelson, R. John; Talbot, Sandra L.

Browse a selection of videos, audio clips, images, and more from a wide range of science topics covered by USGS!

"Science for a Changing World" - watch the short film here!

Documentary on walruses here!

Watch the first-ever footage of a polar bear on Arctic sea ice!

Join USGS geologists as they collect lava samples from Kilauea Volcano.

Watch researchers in the Arctic!

Filter Total Items: 984
Molybdenite mineral coating on a fractured surface in Tertiary granite north of Lake Clark
July 14, 2016

Molybdenite mineral coating on a fractured surface

Molybdenite mineral coating on a fractured surface in Tertiary granite north of Lake Clark

Horned Puffin, one of the species affected by a recent seabird die-off in the Pribilof Islands, AK
July 14, 2016

Horned Puffin, near Chisik Island in Lower Cook Inlet, Alaska

Horned Puffin, one of the species affected by a recent seabird die-off in the Pribilof Islands, AK. Near Chisik Island in Lower Cook Inlet, Alaska

A Horned Puffin flying over the water
July 14, 2016

A Horned Puffin flying over the water

A Horned Puffin flying over the water

Geologists discuss big picture geology of Lake Clark National Park
July 9, 2016

Geologists discuss big picture geology of Lake Clark National Park

USGS research geologists Jamey Jones (left) and Erin Todd (right) discuss the "big picture" geology in their project area in and around Lake Clark National Park. Redoubt volcano in background left; baseball-sized cobbles on ground at researchers feet are pumice cobbles from the 2009(?) eruption of Redoubt volcano. 

Geologist collects sample with helicopter in background, Lake Clark
July 9, 2016

Geologist collects sample with helicopter in background, Lake Clark

Jamey Jones collects a sample of Talkeenta Formation volcaniclastic sandstone for detrital zircon geochronology. 

A scenic of Cabin Bay on Naked Island in Prince William Sound
July 7, 2016

Cabin Bay on Naked Island in Prince William Sound

A scenic of Cabin Bay on Naked Island in Prince William Sound

Three Arctic Terns sitting on a log in the water in Prince William Sound
July 6, 2016

Three Arctic Terns sitting on a log in Prince William Sound

Three Arctic Terns sitting on a log floating in the water in Prince William Sound.

Schools (shadows along the shore) of Pacific sand lance in Cabin Bay, Prince William Sound
July 6, 2016

Schools of Pacific sand lance in Cabin Bay, Prince William Sound

Schools (shadows along the shore) of Pacific sand lance in Cabin Bay, Prince William Sound

Kittlitz's Murrelet flying above the water in Cook Inlet, Alaska
July 4, 2016

Kittlitz's Murrelet flying above the water in Cook Inlet, Alaska

Kittlitz's Murrelet flying above the water in Cook Inlet, Alaska

Biologists catching forage fish with a cast net in Prince William Sound
July 2, 2016

Biologists with cast net caught forage fish in Prince William Sound

Brielle Heflin and Sarah Schoen catching forage fish with a cast net in Prince William Sound.

Black-legged Kittiwake captured 2 Pacific sand lance
July 1, 2016

Black-legged Kittiwake captured 2 Pacific sand lance

Black-legged Kittiwake captured 2 Pacific sand lance.

2 Black-legged Kittiwakes, one captured Pacific sand lance
July 1, 2016

Black-legged Kittiwakes foraging on Pacific sand lance

Black-legged Kittiwakes foraging on Pacific sand lance

Stay up-to-date with what is happening in the Alaska Region by checking out our different social media accounts. You can also contact Alaska Regional Office staff or Center Directors for more information.