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

Regions L2 Landing Page Tabs

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: 2,445
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Year Published: 2012

Mate loss affects survival but not breeding in black brant geese

For birds maintaining long-term monogamous relationships, mate loss might be expected to reduce fitness, either through reduced survival or reduced future reproductive investment. We used harvest of male brant during regular sport hunting seasons as an experimental removal to examine effects of mate loss on fitness of female black brant (Branta...

Nicolai, Christopher A.; Sedinger, James S.; Ward, David H.; Boyd, W. Sean
Mate loss affects survival but not breeding in black brant geese; 2012; Article; Journal; Behavioral Ecology; Nicolai, Christopher A.; Sedinger, James S.; Ward, David H.; Boyd, W. Sean

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Year Published: 2012

A climate for speciation: rapid spatial diversification within the Sorex cinereus complex of shrews

The cyclic climate regime of the late Quaternary caused dramatic environmental change at high latitudes. Although these events may have been brief in periodicity from an evolutionary standpoint, multiple episodes of allopatry and divergence have been implicated in rapid radiations of a number of organisms. Shrews of the Sorex cinereus complex have...

Hope, Andrew G.; Speer, Kelly A.; Demboski, John R.; Talbot, Sandra L.; Cook, Joseph A.
A climate for speciation: rapid spatial diversification within the Sorex cinereus complex of shrews; 2012; Article; Journal; Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution; Hope, Andrew G.; Speer, Kelly A.; Demboski, John R.; Talbot, Sandra L.; Cook, Joseph A.

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Year Published: 2012

Process-based coastal erosion modeling for Drew Point (North Slope, Alaska)

A predictive, coastal erosion/shoreline change model has been developed for a small coastal segment near Drew Point, Beaufort Sea, Alaska. This coastal setting has experienced a dramatic increase in erosion since the early 2000’s. The bluffs at this site are 3-4 m tall and consist of ice-wedge bounded blocks of fine-grained sediments cemented by...

Ravens, Thomas M.; Jones, Benjamin M.; Zhang, Jinlin; Arp, Christopher D.; Schmutz, Joel A.
Process-based coastal erosion modeling for Drew Point (North Slope, Alaska); 2012; Article; Journal; Journal of Waterway, Port, Coastal, and Ocean Engineering; Ravens, Thomas M.; Jones, Benjamin M.; Zhang, Jinlin; Arp, Christopher D.; Schmutz, Joel A.

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Year Published: 2012

Colonizing the world in spite of reduced MHC variation

Reduced immune gene diversity is thought to negatively affect the capacity of organisms to adapt to pathogen challenges, which represent a major force in natural selection. Genes of the Major Histocompatibility Complex (MHC) are the most widely invoked adaptive loci in conservation biology, and have become the most popular genetic markers to...

Gangoso, L.; Alcaide, M.; Grande, J.M.; Muñoz, J.; Talbot, Sandra L.; Sonsthagen, Sarah A.; Sage, G. Kevin; Figuerola, J.
Gangoso, L., M. Alcaide, J. M. Grande, J. Muñoz, S. L. Talbot, S. A. Sonsthagen, G. K. Sage, and J. Figuerola. 2012. Colonizing the world in spite of reduced MHC variation. Journal of Environmental Biology 25(7):1438-1447. doi:10.1111/j.1420-9101.2012.02529.x

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Year Published: 2012

Polymorphic microsatellite loci identified through development and cross-species amplification within shorebirds

We developed microsatellite loci for demographic assessments of shorebirds, a group with limited markers. First, we isolated five dinucleotide repeat microsatellite loci from the Black Oystercatcher (Haematopodidae: Haematopus bachmani), and three from the Bristle-thighed Curlew (Scolopacidae: Numenius tahitiensis); both species are of...

Williams, I.; Guzzetti, Brian M.; Gust, Judy R.; Sage, G. Kevin; Gill, Robert E.; Tibbitts, T. Lee; Sonsthagen, Sarah A.; Talbot, Sandra L.
Polymorphic microsatellite loci identified through development and cross-species amplification within shorebirds; 2012; Article; Journal; Journal of Ornithology; Williams, I.; Guzzetti, B. M.; Gust, J. R.; Sage, G. K.; Gill, R. E.; Tibbitts, T. L.; Sonsthagen, S. A.; Talbot, S. L.

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Year Published: 2012

Scaling the Teflon Peaks: Rock type and the generation of extreme relief in the glaciated western Alaska Range

Parts of the Alaska Range (Alaska, USA) stand in prominent exception to the “glacial buzzsaw hypothesis,” which postulates that terrain raised above the ELA is rapidly denuded by glaciers. In this paper, we discuss the role of a strong contrast in rock type in the development of this exceptional terrain. Much of the range is developed on...

Ward, Dylan J.; Anderson, Robert S.; Haeussler, Peter J.

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Year Published: 2012

Shifting balance of thermokarst lake ice regimes across the Arctic Coastal Plain of northern Alaska

The balance of thermokarst lakes with bedfast- and floating-ice regimes across Arctic lowlands regulates heat storage, permafrost thaw, winter-water supply, and over-wintering aquatic habitat. Using a time-series of late-winter synthetic aperture radar (SAR) imagery to distinguish lake ice regimes in two regions of the Arctic Coastal Plain of...

Arp, Christopher D.; Jones, Benjamin M.; Lu, Zong; Whitman, Matthew S.
Shifting balance of thermokarst lake ice regimes across the Arctic Coastal Plain of northern Alaska; 2012; Article; Journal; Geophysical Research Letters; Arp, Christopher D.; Jones, Benjamin M.; Lu, Zong; Whitman, Matthew S.

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Year Published: 2012

Reconstruction of past methane availability in an Arctic Alaska wetland indicates climate influenced methane release during the past ~12,000 years

Atmospheric contributions of methane from Arctic wetlands during the Holocene are dynamic and linked to climate oscillations. However, long-term records linking climate variability to methane availability in Arctic wetlands are lacking. We present a multi-proxy ~12,000 year paleoecological reconstruction of intermittent methane availability from a...

Wooller, Matthew J.; Pohlman, John W.; Gaglioti, Benjamin V.; Langdon, Peter; Jones, Miriam; Anthony, Katey M. Walter; Becker, Kevin W.; Hinrichs, Kai-Uwe; Elvert, Marcus
Reconstruction of past methane availability in an Arctic Alaska wetland indicates climate influenced methane release during the past ~12,000 years; 2012; Article; Journal; Journal of Paleolimnology; Wooller, Matthew J.; Pohlman, John W.; Gaglioti, Benjamin V.; Langdon, Peter; Jones, Miriam; Anthony, Katey M. Walter; Becker, Kevin W.; Hinrichs, Kai-Uwe; Elvert, Marcus

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Year Published: 2012

Evidence for competition at sea between Norton Sound chum salmon and Asian hatchery chum salmon

Increasing production of hatchery salmon over the past four decades has led to concerns about possible density-dependent effects on wild Pacific salmon populations in the North Pacific Ocean. The concern arises because salmon from distant regions overlap in the ocean, and wild salmon populations having low productivity may compete for food with...

Ruggerone, Gregory T.; Agler, B.A.; Nielsen, Jennifer L.
Ruggerone, G. T., B.A. Angler, and J. L. Nielsen,2012. Evidence for competition at sea between Norton Sound chum salmon and Asian hatchery chum salmon. Environmental Biology of Fishes 94(1): 149-163. 10.1007/s10641-011-9856-5

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Year Published: 2012

Studying ocean acidification in the Arctic Ocean

The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) partnership with the U.S. Coast Guard Ice Breaker Healey and its United Nations Convention Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) cruises has produced new synoptic data from samples collected in the Arctic Ocean and insights into the patterns and extent of ocean acidification. This framework of foundational geochemical...

Robbins, Lisa
Studying ocean acidification in the Arctic Ocean; 2012; FS; 2012-3058; Robbins, Lisa

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Year Published: 2012

Estimating survival rates with time series of standing age‐structure data

It has long been recognized that age‐structure data contain useful information for assessing the status and dynamics of wildlife populations. For example, age‐specific survival rates can be estimated with just a single sample from the age distribution of a stable, stationary population. For a population that is not stable, age‐specific survival...

Udevitz, Mark S.; Gogan, Peter J.
Udevitz, M. S. and P. J. P. Gogan. 2012. Estimating survival rates with time series of standing age-structure data. Ecology 93(4):726-732. doi:10.1890/11-1766.1

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Year Published: 2012

Identification of metapopulation dynamics among Northern Goshawks of the Alexander Archipelago, Alaska, and Coastal British Columbia

Northern Goshawks occupying the Alexander Archipelago, Alaska, and coastal British Columbia nest primarily in old-growth and mature forest, which results in spatial heterogeneity in the distribution of individuals across the landscape. We used microsatellite and mitochondrial data to infer genetic structure, gene flow, and fluctuations in...

Sonsthagen, Sarah A.; McClaren, Erica L.; Doyle, Frank I.; Titus, K.; Sage, George K.; Wilson, Robert E.; Gust, Judy R.; Talbot, Sandra L.
Sonsthagen, S. A., E. L. McClaren, F. I. Doyle, K. Titus, G. K. Sage, R. E. Wilson, J. R. Gust, and S. L. Talbot. 2012. Identification of metapopulation dynamics in Northern Goshawk of the Alexander Archipelago and coastal British Columbia. Conservation Genetics 13(4):1045-1057. doi:10.1007/s10592-012-0352-z

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
Flock of birds over Arey Island near Kaktovik on the coastline of the Beaufort Sea
December 31, 1969

Beaufort Sea coastline on Arey Island with flock of birds

Flock of birds over Arey Island near Kaktovik on the coastline of the Beaufort Sea.

Bring in the mid-water trawl on the R/V Alaskan Gyre
December 31, 1969

Starting to bring in the mid-water trawl on the R/V Alaskan Gyre

Bring in the mid-water trawl on the R/V Alaskan Gyre

Biologists sorting through buckets of benthic invertebrates looking for bivalves onboard the Norseman II in the Chukchi Sea
December 31, 1969

Biologists sorting through benthic invertebrates for bivalves

Biologists sorting through buckets of benthic invertebrates looking for bivalves onboard the Norseman II in the Chukchi Sea.

Repeat oblique photographs of Gulkana glaciers in Alaska.
December 31, 1967

Repeat oblique photographs of Gulkana glaciers in Alaska.

Repeat oblique photographs of Gulkana glaciers in Alaska.  1967, Unknown USGS photographer. 2016, L. Sass, USGS.

Repeat oblique photographs of Wolverine glacier in Alaska.
December 31, 1966

Repeat oblique photographs of Wolverine glacier in Alaska.

Repeat oblique photographs of Wolverine glacier in Alaska.  1966 image by unknown USGS photographer; 2015 image by L. Sass, USGS.

Photograph shows what remains of a building foundation in the foreground and a house in the background and up a slight elevation
December 31, 1964

Chenega Village after tsunami waves hit in 1964

Photograph taken in 1964 of the main part of the Chenega village site in Alaska. Pilings in the ground mark the former locations of homes swept away by tsunami waves. The schoolhouse on high ground was undamaged. Credit: Figure 6 from Plafker et al. (1969).

Image: Muir and Riggs Glaciers, Muir Inlet, Alaska - 1950
August 4, 1950

Muir and Riggs Glaciers, Muir Inlet, Alaska - 1950

This, the first of two repeat photographs, documents significant changes that have occurred during the nine years between photographs A and B. Although Muir Glacier has retreated more than 3 kilometers and thinned more than 100 meters, exposing Muir Inlet, it remains connected with tributary Riggs Glacier. White Thunder Ridge remains devoid of vegetation. In places,

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Image: Muir and Riggs Glaciers, Muir Inlet, Alaska - 1941
August 13, 1941

Muir and Riggs Glaciers, Muir Inlet, Alaska - 1941

This northeast-looking photograph, on the southeastern side of White Thunder Ridge ,shows the lower reaches of Muir Glacier, then a large tidewater calving valley glacier, and its tributary Riggs Glacier. The séracs in the lower right-hand corner of the photograph mark Muir Glacier’s terminus. The ice thickness is more than 700 meters. Muir Glacier had been retreating

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Image: Katmai National Park and Preserve, Alaska
August 13, 1912

Katmai National Park and Preserve, Alaska

Volcanic ash drifts around houses at Katmai after the June 1912 eruption of Novarupta Volcano. Church in the distant background. August 13, 1912.

Clear day view of Shishaldin volcano

Shishaldin Volcano

This camera is located on the south flank of Isanotski, and looks west-northwest to Shishaldin. Read more details about Shishaldin Volcano.

View of a beach that's mostly mud with some dried grasses and rocks, shown at low tide with birds and ice in the water.

Unalakleet video camera 2 time exposure

Two video cameras overlook the coast from atop a windmill tower in Unalakleet, Alaska where they look westward over Norton Sound. Every half hour during daylight hours, the cameras collect snapshots and video for 10 minutes. Today’s most recent time-exposure (timex) image from camera 2 is shown here. Please note that it takes 10 minutes for the images to be posted, once

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Image: Exit Glacier, Alaska (In Full Retreat)

Exit Glacier, Alaska (In Full Retreat)

USGS ecologist Kevin Lafferty visits the Exit Glacier in Alaska.

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