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: 2,528
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Year Published: 2018

Shorebirds adjust spring arrival schedules with variable environmental conditions: Four decades of assessment on the Yukon–Kuskokwim Delta, Alaska

Arctic summers are brief, and there has been strong selection for migratory birds to arrive in Arctic nesting areas as early as possible to time breeding with peak food availability and complete reproduction. The timing of emergence of nesting habitat in spring is, however, extremely variable in the Arctic, and few long-term studies have examined...

Shuford, W. David; Gill, Robert E.; Handel, Colleen M.; Ely, Craig R.; McCaffery, Brian; Gill, Robert E.

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Year Published: 2018

Survey-based assessment of the frequency and potential impacts of recreation on polar bears

Conservation plans for polar bears (Ursus maritimus) typically cannot prescribe management actions to address their primary threat: sea ice loss associated with climate warming. However, there may be other stressors that compound the negative effects of sea ice loss which can be mitigated. For example, Arctic tourism has...

Rode, Karyn D.; Fortin, Jennifer K.; Garshelis, Dave; Dyck, Markus; Sahanatien, Vicki; Atwood, Todd C.; Belikov, Stanislav; Laidre, Kristin L.; Miller, Susanne; Obbard, Martyn E.; Vongraven, Dag; Ware, Jasmine V.; Wilder, James
Rode, K. D., J. K. Fortin-Noreus, D. L. Garshelis, M. Dyck, V. Sahanatien, T. C. Atwood, S. E. Belikov, K. L. Laidre, S. Miller, M. E. Obbard, D. Vongraven, J. V. Ware, and J. Wilder. 2018. Survey-based assessment of the frequency and potential impacts of recreation on polar bears. Biological Conservation 227:121-132. doi:10.1016/j.biocon.2018.09.008

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Year Published: 2018

Use of landscape simulation modeling to quantify resilience for ecological applications

Goals of fostering ecological resilience are increasingly used to guide U.S. public land management in the context of anthropogenic climate change and increasing landscape disturbances. There are, however, few operational means of assessing the resilience of a landscape or ecosystem. We present a method to evaluate resilience using simulation...

Keane, Robert; Loehman, Rachel A.; Holsinger, Lisa M.; Falk, Donald A.; Higuera, Phil E; Hood, Sharon; Hessburg, Paul F.

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Year Published: 2018

Movements and dive patterns of pygmy killer whales (Feresa attenuata) released in the Gulf of Mexico following rehabilitation

The habits and habitats of pygmy killer whales (Feresa attenuata) in the Gulf of Mexico (GoM) are poorly known outside of strandings and line-transect surveys. Two adult male pygmy killer whales were found live-stranded in the state of Mississippi (USA) on 1 September 2015 and were subsequently rehabilitated and returned to the offshore waters of...

Pulis, Eric; Wells, Randall S.; Schorr, Gregory S.; Douglas, David C.; Samuelson, Mystera M.; Solangi, Moby
Pulis, E.E., Wells, R.S., Schorr, G.S., Douglas, D.C., Samuelson, M.M., and Solangi, M., 2018, Movements and dive patterns of pygmy killer whales (Feresa attenuata) released in the Gulf of Mexico following rehabilitation: Aquatic Mammals vol. 44, no. 5 p. 555-567. doi: 10.1578/AM.44.5.2018.555

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Year Published: 2018

Spring temperature, migration chronology, and nutrient allocation to eggs in three species of arctic‐nesting geese: Implications for resilience to climate warming

The macronutrients that Arctic herbivores invest in their offspring are derived from endogenous reserves of fat and protein (capital) that females build prior to the period of investment or from foods they consume concurrently with investment (income). The relative contribution from each source can be influenced by temporal and environmental...

Hupp, Jerry W.; Ward, David H.; Soto, David X.; Hobson, Keith A.
Hupp, J.W., Ward, D.H., Soto, D.X.and Hobson, K. A., 2018, Spring temperature, migration chronology, and nutrient allocation to eggs in three species of arctic‐nesting geese: Implications for resilience to climate warming: Global Change Biology. doi: 10.1111/gcb.14418

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Year Published: 2018

Genetic evidence supports sporadic and independent introductions of subtype H5 low pathogenic avian influenza A viruses from wild birds to domestic poultry in North America

Wild bird–origin influenza A viruses (IAVs or avian influenza) have led to sporadic outbreaks among domestic poultry in the United States (US) and Canada, resulting in economic losses through the implementation of costly containment practices and destruction of birds. We used evolutionary analyses of virus sequence data to determine that 78 H5 low...

Li, Lei; Bowman, Andrew S.; DeLiberto, Thomas J.; Killian, Mary L.; Krauss, Scott; Nolting, Jacqueline M.; Torchetti, Mia Kim; Ramey, Andrew M.; Reeves, Andrew B.; Stallknecht, David E.; Webby, Richard J.; Wan, Xiu-Feng

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Year Published: 2018

Introduction of Eurasian-origin H8N4 influenza A virus into North America via migratory birds

We identified a Eurasian-origin influenza A(H8N4) virus in North America by sampling wild birds in western Alaska, USA. Evidence for repeated introductions of influenza A viruses into North America by migratory birds suggests that intercontinental dispersal might not be exceedingly rare and that our understanding of viral establishment is...

Ramey, Andrew M.; Reeves, Andrew B.; Donnelly, Tyrone F.; Poulson, Rebecca L.; Stallknecht, David E.
Ramey, A. M., Reeves, A. B., Donnelly, T., Poulson, R. L., and Stallknecht, D. E., 2018, Introduction of Eurasian-origin H8N4 influenza A virus into North America via migratory birds: Emerging Infectious Diseases, vol. 24, no. 10, p. . doi:10.3201/eid2410.180447.

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Year Published: 2018

Evaluating time-removal models for estimating availability of boreal birds during point count surveys: Sample size requirements and model complexity

We used conventional and finite mixture removal models with and without time-varying covariates to evaluate availability given presence for 152 bird species using data from point counts in boreal North America. We found that the choice of model had an impact on the estimability of unknown model parameters and affected the bias and variance of...

Solymos, Peter; Matsuoka, Steven M.; Cumming, Steven G.; Stralberg, Diana; Fontaine, Patricia C.; Schmiegelow, Fiona K. A.; Song, Samantha J.; Bayne, Erin M.
Sólymos, P., Matsuoka,S.M., Cumming, S.G., Stralberg, D.,Fontaine, C., Schmiegelow, F.K.A., Song, S.J., and Bayne, E.M., 2018. Evaluating time-removal models for estimating availability of boreal birds during point count surveys: Sample size requirements and model complexity: Condor vol. 120, no. 4, p. 765-786. doi:10.1650/CONDOR-18-32.1

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Year Published: 2018

Aerial surveys of sea otters (Enhydra lutris) in Lower Cook Inlet, Alaska, May, 2017

Portions of two stocks of northern sea otters (Enhydra lutris kenyoni) occur in Lower Cook Inlet (LCI), Alaska. Sea otters on the west side of LCI are considered part of the southwest Alaska stock; sea otters occupying eastern LCI are considered part of the southcentral Alaska stock. Information concerning the distributions and abundance of sea...

Gerlach-Miller, Joel; Esslinger, George G.; Weitzman, Ben

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Year Published: 2018

Flyway structure in the circumpolar greater white‐fronted goose

Dispersal and migratory behavior are influential factors in determining how genetic diversity is distributed across the landscape. In migratory species, genetic structure can be promoted via several mechanisms including fidelity to distinct migratory routes. Particularly within North America, waterfowl management units have been delineated...

Wilson, Robert E.; Ely, Craig R.; Talbot, Sandra L.
Wilson RE, Ely CR, Talbot SL. Flyway structure in the circumpolar greater white‐fronted goose. Ecol Evol. 2018;00:1–18. https://doi.org/10.1002/ece3.4345

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Year Published: 2018

A transcriptome resource for the Arctic Cod (Boreogadus saida)

Arctic Cod (Boreogadus saida) serve as an important link in Arctic food webs and are thus considered an important species for environmental monitoring. RNA-Seq was conducted on samples from wild-collected individuals representing various age classes and tissue types to obtain as complete a transcriptome as possible on an Illumina MiSeq, which...

Wilson, Robert E.; Menning, Damian M.; Wedemeyer, Kate; Talbot, Sandra L.
Wilson, R.E., D.M. Menning, K. Wedemeyer, S.L. Talbot. 2018. A transcriptome resource for the Arctic Cod (Boreogadus saida), Marine Genomics, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.margen.2018.03.003

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Year Published: 2018

Liverworts from Attu Island, Near Islands, Aleutian Islands, Alaska (USA) with comparison to the Commander Islands (Russia)

The liverwort flora of Attu Island, the westernmost Aleutian Island in the United States, was studied to assess species diversity in the hyperoceanic sector of the northern boreal subzone. The field study was undertaken in sites selected to represent a spectrum of environmental variation, primarily within the eastern part of the island. Data were...

Talbot, Stephen S.; Schofield, Wilfred B.; Váňa, Jiří; 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: 988
The north fork of the Agashashok River
August 20, 2016

The north fork of the Agashashok River

The north fork of the Agashashok River

Bedrock peaks in the Agashashok River Watershed
August 20, 2016

Bedrock peaks in the Agashashok River Watershed

Bedrock peaks in the Agashashok River Watershed

Copper River bridge longer view
August 18, 2016

Copper River bridge

Copper River bridge longer view

A tributary of the Agashashok River
August 16, 2016

Tributary of the Agashashok River

A tributary of the Agashashok River.

The Agashashok River Watershed
August 15, 2016

The Agashashok River Watershed

The Agashashok River Watershed

Periphyton in a tributary of the Agashashok River
August 15, 2016

Periphyton in a tributary of the Agashashok River

Periphyton in a tributary of the Agashashok River

Kasilof River bridge during high water
August 11, 2016

Kasilof River bridge during high water

Kasilof River bridge during high water

Four people looking a flattened trees
August 9, 2016

Surveying the Taan Fjord tsunami runup

USGS scientists investigate trees knocked over by the tsunami at the mouth of Taan Fjord. Flow depth here was likely 5 m based on the height of branches stripped off trees in the background. This event had the 4th highest tsunami runup ever recorded.

People with tents in the grass by a bay
August 7, 2016

Geologists' camp on Unga Island, Alaska

USGS geologists' camp overlooking Unga Village on Unga Island, Alaska.

Landsat image showing the landslide in Glacier Bay
August 7, 2016

Landslide Spreads 6 Miles Across Glacier Bay National Park

On June 28, 2016, a 4,000-foot-high mountainside in Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve collapsed, sending rocky debris equivalent to 60 million mid-size SUVs tumbling onto nearby Lamplugh Glacier.  Almost 6 weeks later, on August 7, the Operational Land Imager sensor aboard Landsat 8 captured the black stain of the landslide in the image on the right. No such

...
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

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.