And Maybe New Protections by Yareth Rosen (Editor’s note: This article is reprinted from Alaska Beacon under a Creative Commons license and edited for space and style. alaskabeacon.com) Scientists were on the water last summer gathering information about a once-mysterious habitat—the large and varied gardens of colorful corals that cover parts of the Alaskan seafloor. What they learn could prompt new restrictions for commercial seafood harvests. Though often associated with tropical locations, corals and associated sponges are also important features of Alaska’s marine ecosystem. Some of the state’s sites are believed to hold the world’s most diverse and abundant deep-sea coral and sponge communities, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. And like their tropical counterparts, Alaskan corals are vulnerable to disturbances—from bottom-scraping trawl nets, climate change, and ocean acidification. In the Gulf of Alaska, a NOAA research cruise that uses remotely operated vehicles and underwater cameras followed a…
A Taste of Wild Alaska by Vivian Wagner One July a few years ago, my husband and I sailed and hiked with friends around Kodiak Island, and everywhere we looked we saw them: bright red and orange salmonberries, hanging from bushes, just waiting to be plucked and eaten. It was the first time I’d ever had these berries, and I fell in love with them. We picked handfuls, eating as many as we could right where they grew, and carrying overflowing containers back to the boat. Salmonberries (Rubus spectabilis) are members of the rose family, and they’re related to raspberries, cloudberries, and other brambles. In Alaska they grow predominantly in damp coastal areas in the southeast, southcentral, and southwest regions. Prized as food by indigenous peoples, salmonberries can be eaten raw or used for pies, tarts, pancakes, jam, or syrup. They’re also high in antioxidants and vitamins A and C.…
Carnivore Confessions I tried to be a vegetarian once. I reasoned that if I couldn’t kill an animal myself, then I had no business allowing someone else to do it. The problem was that I hated vegetables (still do). Without meat or leafy greens, my diet consisted of cheese pizza, beer, and boxes of glazed donuts, much like it had in college. But I’m not in college. I’m a grown-ass woman who knows better. I lasted four months. But it did force me to examine my views on hunting. I grew up in Texas, surrounded by deer leases and guns. Over time, I heard every rationale for taking the life of an animal. I hunt because I love animals. My hunting license goes toward preserving wildlife. We use every part of the animal. Nothing goes to waste. It’s a tradition and bonding experience. Hunting is a valuable outdoor skill. I…
Yup’ik culture bearer and musician Qacung Blanchett received numerous notable recognitions in late 2021 and early 2022.
Indigenous people across Alaska used grass to weave baskets that are both masterpieces of art and useful tools.
Does moving to Alaska to escape the heat waves that now plague the western United States make someone a climate refugee?
Whether it’s shopping, surfing, birding, or another activity, here are some of the best places to indulge while you travel through Alaska.
A husband and wife team write about their divergent lives operating a salmon setnet operation in Bristol Bay.
Brewers making craft beer are a key part of many communities in Alaska. The breweries are a local gathering place and source of pride.
From beach camping to icy glacial waters, hit all five of the state’s regions to see the top spots for RV camping in Alaska.