Kodiak Daily Mirror - Daily newspaper of Kodiak, Alaska
  
 
ALASKA SCIENCE FORUM: The giant wave of Icy Bay
A landslide last fall caused a giant wave of the type not seen in Alaska since the storied 1958 event in Lituya Bay. After a period of heavy rains, a mountainside near Tyndall Glacier collapsed into a fiord of Icy Bay on Oct. 17, 2015. The displaced water generated a wave that sheared alders more than 500 feet up on a hillside across from the slide. To put that in perspective, the 2011 tsunami in Japan reached abo...
Apr 13, 2016 | 0 0 comments | 37 37 recommendations | email to a friend
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Healthy Kodiak: Isolation contributes to danger of addiction
I recently spent 10 days in California visiting family and I was very thankful to come home to Kodiak, because I realized that the community here is very different than any other place I have lived. I have noticed that the population is very small and close-knit. I have deeper friendships with people even though I have known them for less time. I was pleasantly surprised when my Kodiak friend bought me flowers and...
Apr 06, 2016 | 1 1 comments | 41 41 recommendations | email to a friend
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Alaska Science Forum: Thule people had northern life figured out
About 1,000 years ago, Norse explorer Leif Ericson bumped into the New World at Newfoundland. The old world was filling up, with 300,000 people living in the Roman capital of Constantinople. Up here in Alaska, the ancestors of today's coastal Natives were quietly having one of the more successful runs in human history. The Thule people of Alaska's west and north coasts lived a good life for centuries, perfecting t...
Apr 06, 2016 | 0 0 comments | 37 37 recommendations | email to a friend
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Alaska Science Forum: Broken ice makes for worst breakup floods
For half the year, Alaska’s big rivers provide a somewhat flat surface, allowing travel by snowmachine, dog team, ski, bike, snowshoe and foot. For a few weeks during their spring transition to liquid water, those useful ribbons of ice become a threat to river communities. Massive ice-jam floods happen every few years on Alaska rivers. Some of them are large enough to cause damage more than $80 million, when offic...
Mar 23, 2016 | 0 0 comments | 29 29 recommendations | email to a friend
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Alaska Science Forum: Coyotes show up here, there, everywhere
Last Friday, an email popped up in all the mailboxes of people with the Geophysical Institute: Someone saw what might have been a wolf on the trails north of the UAF campus. “Please be cautious if skiing in the area.” A few people responded, saying they had seen one or two coyotes roaming the 1,000-plus acres of trails and frozen wetlands just north of campus buildings and roads. UAF ski trail groomer Jason Garron...
Mar 16, 2016 | 0 0 comments | 22 22 recommendations | email to a friend
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Alaska Science Forum: Barrow’s extreme spring of one year ago
For a town of its size (4,300 people), Barrow receives more visits by scientists than anyplace in America. The northernmost community in the U.S. has hosted researchers since Army Lt. P. Henry Ray built a polar observatory there in 1882. This different-than-anywhere-else place with fewer people than a one-stoplight town in Texas has attracted scientists from all over the globe. Why? Because Barrow has housing, ele...
Mar 09, 2016 | 0 0 comments | 15 15 recommendations | email to a friend
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Many sources of change in northern realm
In anticipation of an arctic science conference happening next month in Fairbanks, an editor asked me to write a column on climate change in the north. I told her climate stability would be the bigger story, since basswood trees used to grow in Fairbanks and redwoods once dropped their cones into the Porcupine River. Climate is always changing. But we have gotten much better at measuring those changes. We people a...
Mar 02, 2016 | 0 0 comments | 14 14 recommendations | email to a friend
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Alaska Science Forum: Country bird, city bird, all the same bird
The upper Colville River is one of the quietest places on the planet, a land of cliffs and tundra and tangles of willow. Fashion Island is one of the most human-altered landscapes in America, where developers long ago replaced the native vegetation with a Cheesecake Factory and P.F. Chang’s. A female peregrine falcon born in northern Alaska spent at least one of her winters on the 13th floor balcony of a hotel in ...
Feb 24, 2016 | 0 0 comments | 18 18 recommendations | email to a friend
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Ice worms: enigmas of the north
Recent research on the ice worm has shone some light on the tiny creature that appears when the sun sets on warmish glaciers. Few people have seen ice worms, but they are not mythical. Wispy and less than one inch long, ice worms live on glaciers, wriggling to the surface at night and sometimes lingering in meltwater pools during the day. They seem to be dormant during the winter. No one knows how long they live, ...
Feb 17, 2016 | 0 0 comments | 20 20 recommendations | email to a friend
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Alaska Science Forum: Polar bears walk shrinking treadmill of ice
Polar bears walking a treadmill of ice Stronger winds and thinner ice are forcing Alaska polar bears to work harder to remain in Alaska, according to scientists who have studied increased movements of both sea ice and bears. “There’s an energetic cost to stay in Alaska,” said David Douglas of the U.S. Geological Survey Science Center. He and others compared wanderings of polar bears from two periods and found the ...
Feb 10, 2016 | 0 0 comments | 23 23 recommendations | email to a friend
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