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: 2,487
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Year Published: 2017

A global threats overview for Numeniini populations: synthesising expert knowledge for a group of declining migratory birds.

The Numeniini is a tribe of 13 wader species (Scolopacidae, Charadriiformes) of which seven are Near Threatened or globally threatened, including two Critically Endangered. To help inform conservation management and policy responses, we present the results of an expert assessment of the threats that members of this taxonomic group face across...

Pearce-Higgins, James W. ; Brown, Daniel J.; Douglas, David J.T. ; Alves, José A.; Bellio, Mariagrazia; Bocher, Pierrick; Buchannan, Graeme M. ; Clay, Robert P.; Conklin, Jesse R.; Crockford, Nicola ; Dann, Peter; Elts, Jaanus; Friis, Christian ; Fuller, Richard A. ; Gill, Jennifer A.; Gosbell, Ken; Johnson, James A.; Marquez-Ferrando, Rocio; Masero, José A.; Melville, David S.; Millington, Spike; Minton, Clive; Mundkur, Taej; Nol, Erika; Pehlak, Hannes; Piersma, Theunis; Rogers, Danny I.; Ruthrauff, Daniel R.; Senner, Nathan R.; Nazeer Shah, Junid; Sheldon, Rob D. ; Soloviev, Sergej A.; Tomkovich, Pavel S.; Verkuil, Yvonne I.
Pearce-Higgins, J. W., D. J. Brown, D. J. T. Douglas, J. A. Alves, M. Bellio, P. Bocher, G. M. Buchanan, R. P. Clay, J. R. Conklin, N. Crockford, P. Dann, J. Elts, C. Friis, R. A. Fuller, J. A. Gill, K. Gosbell, J. A. Johnson, R. Marquez-Ferrando, J. A. Masero, D. S. Melville, S. Millington, C. Minton, T. Mundkur, E. Nol, H. Pehlak, T. Piersma, F. Robin, D. I. Rogers, D. R. Ruthrauff, N. R. Senner, J. N. Shah, R. D. Sheldon, S. A. Soloviev, P. S. Tomkovich, and Y. I. Verkuil. 2017. A global threats overview for Numeniini populations: synthesising expert knowledge for a group of declining migratory birds. Bird Conservation International 27:6-34. doi:10.1017/S0959270916000678

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Year Published: 2017

Evaluation of a method using survey counts and tag data to estimate the number of Pacific walruses (Odobenus rosmarus divergens) using a coastal haulout in northwestern Alaska

Increased periods of sparse sea ice over the continental shelf of the Chukchi Sea in late summer have reduced offshore haulout habitat for Pacific walruses (Odobenus rosmarus divergens) and increased opportunities for human activities in the region. Knowing how many walruses could be affected by human activities would be useful to conservation...

Battaile, Brian; Jay, Chadwick V.; Udevitz, Mark S.; Fischbach, Anthony S.
Battaile, B. C., C. V. Jay, M. S. Udevitz, and A. S. Fischbach. 2017. Evaluation of a method using survey counts and tag data to estimate the number of Pacific walruses (Odobenus rosmarus divergens) using a coastal haulout in northwestern Alaska. Polar Biology, DOI 10.1007/s00300-016-2060-5.

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Year Published: 2017

Harvest dynamics and annual survival of mallards and grey ducks

We examined how hunter behavior, environmental covariates, and mallard (Anas platyrhynchos) and grey duck (A. superciliosa) population indices affected per capita harvest, hunter effort (i.e., hours hunted), and hunter participation (i.e., license sales) between 1997 and 2012 in the Eastern Fish and Game Region of New Zealand. Additionally, we...

McDougall, Matthew B.; Amundson, Courtney L.

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Year Published: 2017

Bedrock geologic map of the northern Alaska Peninsula area, southwestern Alaska

The northern Alaska Peninsula is a region of transition from the classic magmatic arc geology of the Alaska Peninsula to a Proterozoic and early Paleozoic carbonate platform and then to the poorly understood, tectonically complex sedimentary basins of southwestern Alaska. Physiographically, the region ranges from the high glaciated mountains...

Wilson, Frederic H.; Blodgett, Robert B.; Blome, Charles D.; Mohadjer, Solmaz; Preller, Cindi C.; Klimasauskas, Edward P.; Gamble, Bruce M.; Coonrad, Warren L.
Wilson, F.H., Blodgett, R.B., Blome, C.D., Mohadjer, S., Preller, C.C., Klimasauskas, E.P., Gamble, B.M., and Coonrad, W.L., 2017, Bedrock geologic map of the northern Alaska Peninsula area, southwestern Alaska: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Map 2942, pamphlet 43 p., scale 1:350,000, https://doi.org/10.3133/sim2942.

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Year Published: 2017

Geospatial analysis identifies critical mineral-resource potential in Alaska

Alaska consists of more than 663,000 square miles (1,717,000 square kilometers) of land—more than a sixth of the total area of the United States—and large tracts of it have not been systematically studied or sampled for mineral-resource potential. Many regions of the State are known to have significant mineral-...

Jacques, Katherine; Landowski, Claire; Karl, Susan M.; Labay, Keith A.
Karl, S.M., and Labay, K.A., Geospatial analysis identifies critical mineral-resource potential in Alaska: U.S. Geological Survey Fact Sheet 2017–3012, 4 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/fs20173012.

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Year Published: 2017

Regional patterns of Mesozoic-Cenozoic magmatism in western Alaska revealed by new U-Pb and 40Ar/39Ar ages

In support of regional geologic framework studies, we obtained 50 new argon-40/argon-39 (40Ar/39Ar) ages and 33 new uranium-lead (U-Pb) ages from igneous rocks of southwestern Alaska. Most of the samples are from the Sleetmute and Taylor Mountains quadrangles; smaller collections or individual samples are from the Bethel, Candle, Dillingham,...

Dumoulin, Julie A.; Bradley, Dwight C.; Miller, Marti L.; Friedman, Richard M.; Layer, Paul W.; Bleick, Heather A.; Jones, James V.; Box, Steven E.; Karl, Susan M.; Shew, Nora B.; White, Timothy S.; Till, Alison B.; Dumoulin, Julie A.; Bundtzen, Thomas K.; O'Sullivan, Paul B.; Ullrich, Thomas D.
Bradley, D.C., Miller, M.L., Friedman, R.M., Layer, P.W., Bleick, H.A., Jones, J.V., III, Box, S.E., Karl, S.M., Shew, N.B., White, T.S., Till, A.B., Dumoulin, J.A., Bundtzen, T.K., O’Sullivan, P.B., and Ullrich, T.D., 2017, Regional patterns of Mesozoic-Cenozoic magmatism in western Alaska revealed by new U-Pb and 40Ar/39Ar ages, in Dumoulin, J.A., ed., Studies by the U.S. Geological Survey in Alaska, vol. 15: U.S. Geological Survey Professional Paper 1814–D, 48 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/pp1814D.

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Year Published: 2017

Walrus haul-out and in water activity levels relative to sea ice availability in the Chukchi Sea

An animal’s energetic costs are dependent on the amount of time it allocates to various behavioral activities. For Arctic pinnipeds, the time allocated to active and resting behaviors could change with future reductions in sea ice cover and longer periods of open water. The Pacific walrus (Odobenus rosmarus divergens) is a large Arctic pinniped...

Jay, Chadwick V.; Taylor, Rebecca L.; Fischbach, Anthony S.; Udevitz, Mark S.; Beatty, William

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Year Published: 2017

Advancing the match-mismatch framework for large herbivores in the Arctic: Evaluating the evidence for a trophic mismatch in caribou

Climate-induced shifts in plant phenology may adversely affect animals that cannot or do not shift the timing of their reproductive cycle. The realized effect of potential trophic “mismatches” between a consumer and its food varies with the degree to which species rely on dietary income and stored capital. Large Arctic herbivores rely heavily on...

Gustine, David D.; Barboza, Perry; Adams, Layne G.; Griffith, Brad; Cameron, Raymond D.; Whitten, Kenneth R.
Gustine, D., Barboza, P., Adams, L., Griffith, B., Cameron, R., and Whitten, K. 2017 Advancing the match-mismatch framework for large herbivores in the Arctic: Evaluating the evidence for a trophic mismatch in caribou, PLoS ONE: vol. 12 no. 2 p. e0171807. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0171807

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Year Published: 2017

Assessment of contemporary genetic diversity and inter-taxa/inter-region exchange of avian paramyxovirus serotype 1 in wild birds sampled in North America

BackgroundAvian paramyxovirus serotype 1 (APMV-1) viruses are globally distributed, infect wild, peridomestic, and domestic birds, and sometimes lead to outbreaks of disease. Thus, the maintenance, evolution, and spread of APMV-1 viruses are relevant to avian health.MethodsIn this study we sequenced the fusion gene from 58 APMV-1 isolates...

Ramey, Andrew M.; Goraichuk, Iryna V.; Hicks, Joseph T.; Dimitrov, Kiril M.; Poulson, Rebecca L.; Stallknecht, David E.; Bahl, Justin; Afonso, Claudio L.
Ramey, A.M., Goraichuk, I.V., Hicks, J.T., Dimitrov, K.M., Paulson, R.L., Stalknecht, D.E., Bahl, J., and Afonso, C.L., 2017, Assessment of contemporary genetic diversity and inter-taxa/inter-region exchange of avian paramyxovirus serotype 1 in wild birds sampled in North America: Virology Journal, v. 14, p. 43. doi: 10.1186/s12985-017-0714-8

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Year Published: 2017

Hypsometric control on glacier mass balance sensitivity in Alaska and northwest Canada

Glacier hypsometry provides a first‐order approach for assessing a glacier's response to climate forcings. We couple the Randolph Glacier Inventory to a suite of in situ observations and climate model output to examine potential change for the ∼27,000 glaciers in Alaska and northwest Canada through the end of the 21st century. By 2100, based on...

Mcgrath, Daniel; Sass, Louis C.; O'Neel, Shad; Arendt, Anthony A.; Kienholz, C.

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Year Published: 2017

Neisseria arctica sp. nov. isolated from nonviable eggs of greater white-fronted geese (Anser albifrons) in Arctic Alaska

During the summers of 2013 and 2014, isolates of a novel Gram-negative coccus in the Neisseria genus were obtained from the contents of nonviable greater white-fronted goose (Anser albifrons) eggs on the Arctic Coastal Plain of Alaska. We used a polyphasic approach to determine whether these isolates represent a novel species. 16S rRNA gene...

Hansen, Cristina M.; Himschoot, Elizabeth; Hare, Rebekah F.; Meixell, Brandt W.; Van Hemert, Caroline R.; Hueffer, Karsten
Hansen, C. M., E. A. Himschoot, R. F. Hare, B. W. Meixell, C. R. Van Hemert, and K. Hueffer. 2017. Neisseria arctica sp. nov. isolated from nonviable eggs of greater white-fronted geese (Anser albifrons) in Arctic Alaska . International Journal of Systematic and Evolutionary Microbiology. doi:10.1099/ijsem.0.001773

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Year Published: 2017

Climate change and the eco-hydrology of fire: Will area burned increase in a warming western USA?

Wildfire area is predicted to increase with global warming. Empirical statistical models and process-based simulations agree almost universally. The key relationship for this unanimity, observed at multiple spatial and temporal scales, is between drought and fire. Predictive models often focus on ecosystems in which this relationship appears to be...

McKenzie, Donald; Littell, Jeremy S.
McKenzie, D. and Littell, J. S. (2017), Climate change and the eco-hydrology of fire: Will area burned increase in a warming western USA?. Ecol Appl, 27: 26–36. doi:10.1002/eap.1420

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
Person writing on a data sheet in a burned area of the Funny River fire on the Kenai Peninsula, Alaska
June 30, 2015

Fire effects monitoring after the Funny River Fire, Kenai Peninsula AK

Pre- and post-fire measurements of fire effects help ecologists, fire scientists, and managers determine how the severity of wildfires affects plants, animal habitat, and ecosystem services

A sparrow in the grass
June 27, 2015

Savannah Sparrow on a hummock in dwarf shrub meadow habitat

Savannah Sparrow on a hummock in dwarf shrub meadow habitat.  This photo was taken on the Seward Peninsula as part of the Changing Arctic Ecosystem Boreal-Arctic Transition Zone program.

A shorebird on the tundra in Alaska
June 27, 2015

Whimbrel in dwarf shrub meadow habitat on the Seward Peninsula, Alaska

Whimbrel in dwarf shrub meadow habitat on the Seward Peninsula, Alaska.

Songbird sitting on the tundra
June 27, 2015

Savannah Sparrow sitting on a hummock in dwarf shrub meadow habitat

Savannah Sparrow sitting on a hummock in dwarf shrub meadow habitat. This photo was taken on the Seward Peninsula as part of the Changing Arctic Ecosystem Boreal-Arctic Transition Zone program. 

A shorebird on the tundra in Alaska
June 27, 2015

Whimbrel feeding on a hummock of dwarf shrub meadow habitat

Whimbrel feeding on a hummock of dwarf shrub meadow habitat.

Fire ecologists record post-fire information
June 23, 2015

Fire ecologists record post-fire information

Fire ecologists record post-fire information on tree mortality, fuel consumption, and vegetation communities to better understand and predict fire impacts, Kenai National Wildlife Refuge, AK

Dan Esler with a PFD
June 20, 2015

Dan Esler staff photo 2015

Dan Esler at work.

A Pacific Loon swimming on a small lake
June 18, 2015

Pacific Loon swimming in a small lake near the Colville River, Alaska

A Pacific Loon swimming in a small lake on the Colville River delta.

A Pacific Loon swimming on a small lake
June 18, 2015

Pacific Loon swimming in a small lake near the Colville River, Alaska

A Pacific Loon swimming in a small lake on the Colville River delta.

Greater White-fronted Goose standing in the grass on the Colville River Delta, northern Alaska
June 18, 2015

Greater White-fronted Goose, Colville River Delta, northern Alaska

Greater White-fronted Goose on the Colville River Delta, northern Alaska.

A smoke plume from a wildland fire rises above a spruce stand in the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge, AK
June 15, 2015

A smoke plume from a wildland fire Kenai National Wildlife Refuge

A smoke plume from a wildland fire rises above a spruce stand in the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge, AK

Snow Goose near the Colville River, northern Alaska
June 15, 2015

Snow Goose near the Colville River, northern Alaska

Snow Goose near the Colville River, northern Alaska.

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.