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From Our Listeners

Alaska and Yukon Headlines

Cameras Capture Northern Migration

Thu, 2014-01-16 18:12

Scientists using time lapse photography have documented the migration of caribou and ptarmigan in northern Alaska. The project employed automated cameras to capture thousands of images of spring in the northern foothills of the Brooks Range.

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Photo courtesy Ken Tape.

University Of Alaska Fairbanks Ken Tape and fellow ecologist David Gustine with the U.S. Geological Survey set up cameras at sites along a 65 mile stretch off the Dalton Highway in the spring of 2012. Tape says the digital cameras were programmed to snap shots of the sprawling landscape every 15 minutes over about a month beginning in late April.

“It’s pretty fascinating,” Tape said. “What I’ve effectively got to do is watch spring happen in the Arctic from 14 different places sitting behind my computer.”

Tape spent hundreds of hours pouring over 40 thousand images of the view shed, and whatever passed through it.

“I wasn’t really sure that it was gonna work, it was kind of a pilot project, and when I got the data back and I first downloaded a couple cameras I realized that it was a bit of a gold mine,” he said.

Tape describes a landscape changing with the weather, wind bending bushes and drifting snow, but there’s also occasional more lively punctuation, like a curious wolf peering into the lens, or a hungry bear taking center stage.

“[The bear] attacked a caribou outside of the frame; drug the caribou into the frame; and sat there and ate it,” he said. “So things like that you just wouldn’t necessarily, I wasn’t expecting to see.”

Photo courtesy Ken Tape.

What Tape was anticipating is also there.

“Over 5,000 ptarmigan and over 6,000 caribou,” he said.

Scientists typically used GPS collars and aerial surveys to track migration, but cameras offer a less invasive alternative. Tape also points to telling context provided by the photos, images that illustrate not only the volume and location of caribou and ptarmigan, but the surrounding environment.

“The study offers an opportunity to document environmental condition along alongside that migratory pulse,” Tape said.

If conducted over multiple years, Tape believes the time lapse photography technique could help sort out whether and if so, how environmental factors affect Arctic wildlife behaviors like migration, big questions as climate change alters their northern home.

Diesel leaking from tugboat that sank near Wrangell

Thu, 2014-01-16 15:14
Diesel leaking from tugboat that sank near Wrangell The vessel Silver Bay II sank while moored at the Wrangell Silver Bay logging sawmill in Southeast Alaska and was under 120 feet of water on Thursday. An oil sheen extending several miles from the vessel was spotted during an overflight by the U.S. Coast Guard. January 16, 2014

‘It was very sad here today,’ vice-president says

Thu, 2014-01-16 13:59
Pelly Construction vice-president Jennifer Byram said it was sad day today as she delivered 44 permanent layoff notices this morning at the Minto Mine.

Be fair to bereaved families: NDP to government

Thu, 2014-01-16 13:58
The NDP is calling on the government to provide basic legal support to the families of Teresa Ann Scheunert and Mary Johnny as they prepare for the inquest investigating the deaths of their loved ones.

Yukon College raises tuition fees

Thu, 2014-01-16 13:56
The Yukon College board of governors has approved a 1.9 per cent tuition fee increase

'Panhandle Pilot' takes readers along on long career of Southeast Alaska flight

Thu, 2014-01-16 13:37
'Panhandle Pilot' takes readers along on long career of Southeast Alaska flight Author and pilot Bob Adkins spent more than a decade flying for air taxi Haines Airways and shares his adventures with humor and genial wit in this aviation memoir.January 16, 2014

Willomitzer nabs third at Copper Basin 300

Thu, 2014-01-16 13:37
Shallow Bay, Yukon musher Gerry Willomitzer earned himself a third-place finish at the Copper Basin 300 race Monday.

Nishikawa ranked second on NorAm ski circuit

Thu, 2014-01-16 13:35
Several big-name cross-country skiers find themselves atop the FIS Regional Series standings

Valiant effort

Thu, 2014-01-16 13:33
Vanier Crusaders star Linsey Eby, left, is swarmed by Skagway Panthers players on her way to the basket

Green hat trick leads EDI past Rangers

Thu, 2014-01-16 13:32
Sniper Adam Green scored three times

Minor soccer back on the indoor pitch

Thu, 2014-01-16 13:30
The second half of Whitehorse Minor Soccer’s indoor season is well underway

Municipality seeks $8.2 million to move Anchorage transit center

Thu, 2014-01-16 13:30
Municipality seeks $8.2 million to move Anchorage transit center As south and east Anchorage continue to grow, the Municipality of Anchorage is hoping for more than $8 million from the Legislature to help move the transit center toward the center of the city.January 16, 2014

Court calls off wolf hunt in Sweden once again

Thu, 2014-01-16 12:08
Court calls off wolf hunt in Sweden once again The ruling blocked the hunt of 30 wolves that was planned for February; it is the third such decision from Swedish courts in recent years. January 16, 2014

AK Beat: Wild, wet, windy weather to come

Thu, 2014-01-16 08:45
AK Beat: Wild, wet, windy weather to come Gulf coast residents, get ready to batten down the hatches as wind and rain head for Southcentral Alaska yet again.January 16, 2014

Silver Salmon For Lovers

Thu, 2014-01-16 08:00

The pleasant tanginess of homemade crème fraîche, lemon and leeks harmonize with the buttery richness of wild caught Alaskan Coho salmon presented on a bed of homemade egg noodles. Light candles, play soft music, pop a cork and serve.

Crème fraîche is not available at our local Native store. No problem. We simply mixed two cups of heavy cream, two tablespoons of our homemade plain yogurt and let the mixture sit for 24 hours at room temperature and, voilà, we had crème fraîche.

The leeks in this dish seem to suggest springtime. Endless variations are possible. The lobster base in the sauce lends itself to pairing the salmon fillet with a lobster tail or claw, shrimp or even scallops; freshly picked, lightly sautéed fiddlehead ferns would make a nice addition, as would fresh mushrooms, a sprig of fennel, and so on.

Because farmed salmon is environmentally harmful (regardless of what those who profit from that industry might say), if wild salmon is not available we suggest Arctic char (farmed or wild), trout or halibut. Remember, if the salmon in the market does not specifically say “wild” or “wild-caught,” it is farmed, and we urge that it be avoided.

Silver Salmon For Lovers

Ingredients

2 portions pasta of your choice
1 tbsp butter
1 tbsp olive oil
1 leek, cleaned and chopped moderately coarse
salt to taste
1/2 cup broth made from Better than Bouillon lobster bouillon or similar lobster base
2 tbsp lemon juice
1 cup crème fraîche
1 tsp dried tarragon, crushed
2 tsp Dijon mustard
2 pinches cayenne pepper
3/4 lb salmon fillet, cut into 2 pieces

Directions

  • Cook pasta according to directions. While pasta is cooking prepare sauce and salmon.
  • Melt butter in large pan over medium heat. Add olive oil.
  • Sauté chopped leek until softened, about 6 minutes.
  • Season with salt.
  • Pour lobster stock and lemon juice on leeks. Bring to a boil while stirring in order to deglaze pan. Let sauce reduce until it is nearly all evaporated.
  • Stir in crème fraîche, tarragon, mustard and a pinch of cayenne pepper. Reduce heat to low and bring sauce to a simmer.
  • Add salmon fillets to pan.
  • Cover pan and allow salmon to cook in sauce for approximately 5 – 8 minutes. White-colored fat on top of salmon indicates it’s cooked.
  • Divide pasta on 2 plates. Spoon sauce onto pasta. Place salmon atop sauce. Garnish fillets with a pinch of cayenne.
  • Light a couple of taper candles, pour two glasses of buttery chardonnay and enjoy the meal with someone special.

Parnell plan to export North Slope gas draws support, criticism

Wed, 2014-01-15 21:46
Parnell plan to export North Slope gas draws support, criticism The state’s ambitions, unveiled late last week, drew both criticism and praise on Wednesday, with some congratulating the effort and others saying the state is poised to give away too much control of the project to the Big Three oil producers and former AGIA licensee TransCanada.January 15, 2014

Parnell gas line deal aims to avoid 'fiscal certainty' confrontation

Wed, 2014-01-15 20:49
Parnell gas line deal aims to avoid 'fiscal certainty' confrontation The recent agreement between the state and the major oil companies on gas line planning attempts to sidestep debate on "fiscal certainty" and whether the Alaska Constitution allows long-term tax deals.January 15, 2014

Finland’s officers’ union supports NATO membership

Wed, 2014-01-15 19:17
Finland’s officers’ union supports NATO membership Membership in the alliance would help shore up underfunded national defense forces, many military officers believe.January 15, 2014

Politicians OK wind power on Swedish island; nuclear plant in Finland would use Russian fuel

Wed, 2014-01-15 19:16
Politicians OK wind power on Swedish island; nuclear plant in Finland would use Russian fuel Swedish authorities give approval to wind-energy facilities on an environmentally sensitive island, while a deal has been struck to use Russian fuel for the planned Fennovoima nuclear plant in Finland. January 15, 2014

Assembly Passes Election Law Rewrite, Weighs Ethics of Election Date Change

Wed, 2014-01-15 19:15

An Anchorage Assembly meeting in December 2012. Photo by Daysha Eaton, KSKA – Anchorage

The Anchorage Assembly passed a rewritten version of Anchorage’s election law last night (1/14 Tues). But some other election issues went went to the Ethics Board for review.
The Anchorage Assembly worked on several election-related items at Tuesday night. They updated the city’s election law after making a handful of amendments. One amendment that drew a lot of attention limits poll watchers use of electronic devices. They are not allowed to make or receive phone calls in the polling area or to photograph or record confidential information there. Additional amendments removed references to the Accu-vote election system and replaced them with the more general term optical scan system. The Assembly also added language to insure that poll watchers could observe during setup and tear down at polling places. And they extended the time for a recount from five to nine days. Officials began reviewing the law after problems with an election in 2012.

The Assembly also referred a new version of an ordinance crafted by Assembly member Chris Birch to the Municipal Board of Ethics. The ordinance would change the election date. The substitute version includes a new section that would allow Assembly members to participate in official actions on matters in which they have a substantial financial interest. They scheduled a public hearing on both of those for February 11th.
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