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

2019 USGS Alaska Annual Science Report
Filter Total Items: 2,440
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Year Published: 2018

Surficial geologic map of the Dillingham quadrangle, southwestern Alaska

The geologic map of the Dillingham quadrangle in southwestern Alaska shows surficial unconsolidated deposits, many of which are alluvial or glacial in nature. The map area, part of Alaska that was largely not glaciated during the late Wisconsin glaciation, has a long history reflecting local and more distant glaciations. Late Wisconsin...

Wilson, Frederic H.
Wilson, F.H., 2018, Surficial geologic map of the Dillingham quadrangle, southwestern Alaska: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Map 3388, 15 p., scale 1:250,000, https://doi.org/10.3133/sim3388.

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Year Published: 2018

Development and characterization of 12 polymorphic microsatellite loci in the sea sandwort, Honckenya peploides

Codominant marker systems are better suited to analyze population structure and assess the source of an individual in admixture analyses. Currently, there is no codominant marker system using microsatellites developed for the sea sandwort, Honckenya peploides (L.) Ehrh., an early colonizer in island systems. We developed and characterized novel...

Gravley, Megan C.; Sage, George K.; Talbot, Sandra L.; Carlson, Matthew L.
Gravley, M. C., G. K. Sage, S. L. Talbot, and M. L. Carlson. 2018. Development and characterization of 12 polymorphic microsatellite loci in the sea sandwort, Honckenya peploides. Journal of Plant Research:1-7. doi:10.1007/s10265-018-1036-7

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Year Published: 2018

A comparison of photograph-interpreted and IfSAR-derived maps of polar bear denning habitat for the 1002 Area of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska

Polar bears (Ursus maritimus) in Alaska use the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) for maternal denning. Pregnant bears den in snow banks for more than 3 months in winter during which they give birth to and nurture young. Denning is one of the most vulnerable times in polar bear life history as the family group cannot simply walk away from a...

Durner, George M.; Atwood, Todd C.
Durner, G.M., and Atwood, T.C., 2018, A comparison of photograph-interpreted and IfSAR-derived maps of polar bear denning habitat for the 1002 Area of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2018–1083, 12 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/ofr20181083.

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Year Published: 2018

Acquisition and dissemination of cephalosporin-resistant E. coli in migratory birds sampled at an Alaska landfill as inferred through genomic analysis

Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) in bacterial pathogens threatens global health, though the spread of AMR bacteria and AMR genes between humans, animals, and the environment is still largely unknown. Here, we investigated the role of wild birds in the epidemiology of AMR Escherichia coli. Using next-generation sequencing, we characterized...

Ahlstrom, Christina Ann; Bonnedahl, Jonas; Woksepp, Hanna; Hernandez, Jorge; Bjorn, Olsen; Ramey, Andrew M.

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Year Published: 2018

A snow density dataset for improving surface boundary conditions in Greenland ice sheet firn modeling

The surface snow density of glaciers and ice sheets is of fundamental importance in converting volume to mass in both altimetry and surface mass balance studies, yet it is often poorly constrained. Site-specific surface snow densities are typically derived from empirical relations based on temperature and wind speed. These parameterizations...

Robert Fausto; Box, Jason E.; Baptiste Vandecrux; Dirk van As; Steffen, Konrad; MacFerrin, Michael J.; Machguth, Horst; Colgan, William; Mcgrath, Daniel; Koenig, Lora S.; Charalampidis, Charalampos; Braithwaite, Roger J.

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Year Published: 2018

Effects of climate change on ecological disturbance in the Northern Rockies Region [Chapter 8]

This chapter describes the ecology of important disturbance regimes in the Forest Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture (USFS) Northern Region and the Greater Yellowstone Area, hereafter called the Northern Rockies region, and potential shifts in these regimes as a consequence of observed and projected climate change. The term disturbance regime...

Loehman, Rachel A.; Bentz, Barbara J.; DeNitto, Gregg A.; Keane, Robert E.; Manning, Mary E.; Duncan, Jacob P.; Egan, Joel M.; Jackson, Marcus B.; Kegley, Sandra; Lockman, I. Blakey; Pearson, Dean E.; Powell, James A.; Shelly, Steve; Steed, Brytten E.; Zambino, Paul J.
Loehman, Rachel A., B. Bentz, R. Keane, and others. 2018. Effects of Climate Change on Ecological Disturbance in the Northern Rockies region. In Halofsky, J.E.; Peterson, D.L.; Dante-Wood, S.K.; Hoang, L., eds. Climate change vulnerability and adaptation in the Northern Rocky Mountains – Part 2. Gen. Tech. Rep. RMRS-GTR-374. Fort Collins, CO: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station, Ft. Collins, CO. Pp. 317-352.

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Year Published: 2018

Effects of climate change on forest vegetation in the Northern Rockies Region

The projected rapid changes in climate will affect the unique vegetation assemblages of the Northern Rockies region in myriad ways, both directly through shifts in vegetation growth, mortality, and regeneration, and indirectly through changes in disturbance regimes and interactions with changes in other ecosystem processes, such as hydrology, snow...

Keane, Robert E.; Mahalovich, Mary Frances; Bollenbacher, Barry L.; Manning, Mary E.; Loehman, Rachel A.; Jain, Terrie B.; Holsinger, Lisa M.; Larson, Andrew J.; Webster, Meredith M.
Keane, Robert E.; Mahalovich, Mary Frances; Bollenbacher, Barry L.; Manning, Mary E.; Loehman, Rachel A.; Jain, Terrie B.; Holsinger, Lisa M.; Larson, Andrew J.; Webster, Meredith M. 2018. Effects of climate change on forest vegetation in the Northern Rockies Region [Chapter 6]. In: Halofsky, Jessica E.; Peterson, David L.; Dante-Wood, S. Karen; Hoang, Linh; Ho, Joanne J.; Joyce, Linda A., eds. 2018. Climate change vulnerability and adaptation in the Northern Rocky Mountains - Part 1. Gen. Tech. Rep. RMRS-GTR-374. Fort Collins, CO: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station. p. 128-173.

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Year Published: 2018

Phenological mismatch in coastal western Alaska may increase summer season greenhouse gas uptake

High latitude ecosystems are prone to phenological mismatches due to climate change- driven advances in the growing season and changing arrival times of migratory herbivores. These changes have the potential to alter biogeochemical cycling and contribute to feedbacks on climate change by altering greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions of carbon dioxide (...

Kelsey, Katharine C.; Leffler, A. Joshua; Beard, Karen H.; Choi, Ryan T.; Schmutz, Joel A.; Welker, Jeffery M.
Kelsey, K.C., Leffler, A.J., Beard, K.H., Choi, R.T., Schmutz, J.A., and Welker, J.M., 2018, Phenological mismatch in coastal western Alaska may increase summer season greenhouse gas uptake. Environmental Research Letters 13(4) 044032, https://doi.org/10.1088/1748-9326/aab698

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Year Published: 2018

Legacy K/Ar and 40Ar/39Ar geochronologic data from the Alaska-Aleutian Range batholith of south-central Alaska

Sample descriptions and analytical data for more than 200 K/Ar and 40Ar/39Ar analyses from rocks of the Alaska-Aleutian Range batholith of south-central Alaska are reported here. Samples were collected over a period of 20 years by Bruce R. Reed and Marvin A. Lanphere (both U.S. Geological Survey) as part of their studies of the batholith.

Koeneman, Lisa L.; Wilson, Frederic H.
Koeneman, L.L., and Wilson, F.H., comps., 2018, Legacy K/Ar and 40Ar/39Ar geochronologic data from the Alaska- Aleutian Range batholith of south-central Alaska: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2018–1033, 8 p., 1 plate, https://doi.org/10.3133/ofr20181033.

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Year Published: 2018

Influenza A virus recovery, diversity, and intercontinental exchange: A multi-year assessment of wild bird sampling at Izembek National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska

Western Alaska is a potential point-of-entry for foreign-origin influenza A viruses (IAVs) into North America via migratory birds. We sampled waterfowl and gulls for IAVs at Izembek National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) in western Alaska, USA, during late summer and autumn months of 2011–2015, to evaluate the abundance and diversity of viruses at this...

Reeves, Andrew B.; Hall, Jeffery S.; Poulson, Rebecca L.; Donnelly, Tyrone F.; Stallknecht, David E.; Ramey, Andrew M.

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Year Published: 2018

Montane-breeding bird distribution and abundance across national parks of southwestern Alaska

Between 2004 and 2008, biologists conducted an inventory of breeding birds during May–June primarily in montane areas (>100 m above sea level) in Aniakchak National Monument and Preserve (Aniakchak NMP), Katmai National Park and Preserve (Katmai NPP), and Lake Clark National Park and Preserve (Lake Clark NPP) in southwestern Alaska. Observers...

Amundson, Courtney L.; Handel, Colleen M.; Ruthrauff, Daniel R.; Tibbitts, T. Lee; Gill, Robert E.
Amundson, C.L., C.M. Handel, D.R. Ruthrauff, T. Lee Tibbitts, and R.E. Gill, Jr. 2018. Montane-breeding Bird Distribution and Abundance across National Parks of Southwestern Alaska. Journal of Fish and Wildlife Management, In Press. http://fwspubs.org/doi/pdf/10.3996/062017-JFWM-050

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Year Published: 2018

Plasticity in physiological condition of female brown bears across diverse ecosystems

Variation in life history strategies facilitates the near global distribution of mammals by expanding realized niche width. We investigated physiological plasticity in the spring body composition of adult female brown bears (Ursus arctos) across 4 diverse Alaskan ecosystems. Brown bears are a highly intelligent omnivore with a historic range...

Hilderbrand, Grant V.; Gustine, David; Mangipane, Buck A.; Joly, Kyle; Leacock, William; Mangipane, Lindsey; Erlenbach, Joy; Sorum, Mathew; Cameron, Matthew; Belant, Jerrold L.; Cambier, Troy
Hilderbrand, G. V., D. D. Gustine, B. Mangipane, K. Joly, W. Leacock, L. Manipane, J. Erlenbach, M. S. Sorum, M. D. Cameron, J. L. Belant, and T. Cambier. 2018. Plasticity in physiological condition of female brown bears across diverse ecosystems. Polar Biology. DOI: 10.1007/s00300-017-2238-5.

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: 974
Boat on the water near a glacier
August 6, 2016

Collecting seismic data in Taan Fjord

USGS scientists collect seismic data to image the 2015 Taan Fjord landslide in southeast Alaska.

Montana River bridge
August 1, 2016

Montana River bridge

Montana River bridge

Putting together a yellow polygonal floating structure with netting that will hang from the sides to do limnological studies
July 31, 2016

Constructing a limnocorral at McKinley Lake

Constructing a limnocorral at McKinley Lake for Elodea spp. experiment. This experiment is studying the effect of the invasive species Elodea spp. on aquatic ecosystems.

Scientists moving a complete limnocorral to McKinley Lake
July 31, 2016

Deploying of a limnocorral at McKinley Lake

Deployment of a limnocorral at McKinley Lake, near Cordova, Alaska for Elodea spp. experiment. This experiment is studying the effect of the invasive species Elodea spp. on aquatic ecosystems.

A completed limnocorral positioned over a bed of Elodea spp.
July 31, 2016

Deployment of a limnocorral in McKinley Lake

A completed limnocorral positioned over a bed of Elodea spp.. This experiment is studying the effect of the invasive species Elodea spp. on aquatic ecosystems.

Resource-2 AWiFS image over Norton Bay, Alaska
July 31, 2016

Resource-2 AWiFS image over Norton Bay, Alaska

Resource-2 AWiFS image over Norton Bay, Alaska.

Attribution: Region 11: Alaska
Three scientists sorting through samples for invertebrates
July 29, 2016

Sorting aquatic macroinvertebrates in the field

Three researchers from the University of Waterloo hunt for aquatic insects among the detritus scooped from the lake’s nearshore zone.

Fyke net contents from a lake near Atqasuk, Alaska mainly sticklebacks
July 26, 2016

Fyke net contents from a lake near Atqasuk, Alaska

Contents of the fyke net that was set in the lake near Atqasuk in 2016.  All sticklebacks.

A flock of Black-legged Kittiwakes foraging on small fish in the water
July 23, 2016

A flock of Black-legged Kittiwakes foraging on small fish in the water

A flock of Black-legged Kittiwakes foraging.

Common Murres in the water
July 23, 2016

Common Murres in the water

Large amount of Common Murres in the water 

Four birds standing on a ledge of rock
July 23, 2016

Common Murres stand at the edge of their colony on Gull Island

Common Murres stand at the edge of their colony on Gull Island, Cook Inlet on July 23, 2016.

Eklutna River traveling under two bridges
July 20, 2016

Eklutna River traveling under two bridges

Eklutna River traveling under two bridges

Browse a collection of stories about prominent USGS scientists and projects in Alaska news.

2019 USGS Alaska Annual Science Report

Filter Total Items: 252
USGS
June 23, 1999

Alaska is a land of great opportunity for scientific research, according to the director of the U.S. Geological Survey. 

USGS
November 24, 1998

The water quality of the Fortymile River -- a beautiful, wild and scenic river in the remote part of east-central Alaska -- has not been adversely impacted by selected suction-dredge gold placer mining operations, according to an integrated study under way by the U.S. Geological Survey and the Alaska Department of Natural Resources.

USGS
August 31, 1998

The Aleutian Islands of Alaska and the Kamchatka Peninsula of the Russian Far East are often thought of as desolate windswept outposts along the northern Pacific rim, yet this is a heavily traveled region.

USGS
August 28, 1998

Torrents of meltwater are unleashed suddenly from the margins of the great moving sheets of snow and ice, known as glaciers. In Alaska, these pulses of activity, called "outburst floods," are usually caused by the failure of ice dams that restrain the meltwater of glacial margin lakes.

USGS
May 17, 1998

A new fact sheet from the U.S. Geological Survey provides results of the latest assessment of petroleum resources in the 1002 area of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, including new estimates of how much petroleum may be present. The 1002 area, defined by the Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act of 1980, includes most of the coastal plain of the Arctic Refuge and covers about 1.5 mil

USGS
September 19, 1997

A new, computer-generated, digital map of Alaska was presented to Gov.Tony Knowles and John Shively, Commissioner of the Alaska Department of Natural Resources, today by Gordon Nelson, State Representative for the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS).

USGS
May 15, 1997

A computer-generated map published by the U.S. Geological Survey provides a striking portrayal of Alaska’s varied landscape.

USGS
February 13, 1997

China and Indonesia suffered the deadliest and most destructive earthquakes in 1996, while the U.S. remained relatively quiet according to scientists at the U.S. Geological Survey, Department of the Interior. The last deadly earthquake in the U.S. was the 1994 Northridge, Calif., quake that took 60 lives.

USGS
December 13, 1996

Just in time for Christmas, Pavlof volcano in Alaska and Montserrat volcano in the Caribbean are more active but are not expected to alter or delay Santa’s trip around the world, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.

USGS
August 9, 1996

From glaciers and lava flats to white spruce woodlands and bog communities, a new U.S. Geological Survey report will aid scientists, managers and planners in organizing environmental data.

USGS
October 5, 1995

A magnitude 6.4 earthquake occurred Thurs., Oct. 5, 1995, in Alaska, about 40 miles northwest of Fairbanks, at 9:23 p.m. Alaska Daylight Time (1:23 a.m. EDT, Oct. 6), according to the U.S. Geological Survey.

USGS
October 2, 1995

"After seven months of near-stagnation, Alaska’s Bering Glacier resumed surging. Between May 19th and June 1, part of the glacier advanced almost half a mile (about 2,500 ft). As of mid-September, the surge was continuing," said Bruce F. Molnia, leader of the U.S. Geological Survey’s Bering Glacier Research Project.

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.