The Valdez Star - Serving Prince William Sound and Copper River Basin

 

Articles written by Ned Rozell

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 By NED ROZELL    Main News    September 14, 2016

The Pleistocene sounds of the season up north

UAF FARM FIELDS: Gliding in with their wings folded like paper airplanes, nine Canada geese drop their paddle feet and prepare to land in a corner of this cleared plain. On this early fall day, the...

 
 By NED ROZELL    Main News    September 7, 2016

Rabies endures with help of the arctic fox

Rabies is a death sentence for any animal. Experts have wondered how a virus survives when it kills all the creatures it infects. "We don't have a really good answer to that," said UAF's Karsten Hueffer. "It probably has to do with the long...

 
 By NED ROZELL    Main News    August 31, 2016

Exotic ticks found on Alaska dogs, Alaskans

While Alaskans have long endured dense mosquitoes and frigid air, we've always had the absence of venomous snakes and dog ticks. But the latter may be establishing themselves here. Ticks that infest red squirrels, snowshoe hares and a variety of bird...

 
 By NED ROZELL    Main News    August 24, 2016

The state of the state, 110 years ago according to Brooks

Alfred Brooks was a geologist who traveled thousands of miles in Alaska and left his name on the state's northernmost mountain range. Twenty years before his death in 1924, he also left behind a summary of what Alaska was like more than one century...

 
 By NED ROZELL    Main News    August 17, 2016

Elephant Point and forests on ice

For all the descriptive Alaska place names out there - like the Grand Canyon, the Wall of China and the three Death Valleys - there are some that make you wonder. Elephant Point is just south of the...

 
 By NED ROZELL    Main News    August 10, 2016

Flood control project keeps Fairbanks quietly dry

MOOSE CREEK DAM - For thirteen consecutive days, four plates of steel in a framework of concrete quietly saved Fairbanks. Heavy rains in the basin of the Chena River, the waterway that spawned...

 
 By NED ROZELL    Main News    August 3, 2016

Tight evidence for what killed St. Paul mammoths

Using the tiniest of clues, scientists have determined what probably killed the mammoths of St. Paul Island - thirst. "It looks like climate did them in," said Matthew Wooller, the UAF scientist who in 2013 went to St. Paul as part of a diverse team...

 
 By NED ROZELL    Main News    July 27, 2016

Discovering the hidden universe at Fairbanks bug camp

OUTSIDE THE UA MUSEUM OF THE NORTH - "Look, it's a crab spider eating a moth!" says Declan Griswold, an 8-year-old who points to a rose bush. "You're right, it's a true spider, an orb weaver, just...

 
 By NED ROZELL    Main News    July 20, 2016

A ghost town on the Tanana River

COS JACKET - On a canoe trip down the lower Tanana River, we've scrambled up a sandy bank to explore a place that is less populated now than it was a century ago. No one, in fact, lives at Cos Jacket...

 
 By NED ROZELL    Main News    July 6, 2016

Sheefish a shiny surprise on interior river paddling trip

ZITZIANA RIVER - Fishing at the spot where this long, squiggly stream mixes with a floury channel of the Tanana River, Alison Beamer feels a thump. Line squeals from her spinning reel as a creature...

 
 By NED ROZELL    Main News    June 29, 2016

No moose reported by Army explorer of old

LOWER TANANA RIVER - On a day like this 121 years ago, a hungry U.S. Army explorer passed here at the mouth of Fish Creek, where clear water collides with the cloudy Tanana. Henry Allen did not stop...

 
 By NED ROZELL    Main News    June 22, 2016

Summer solstice doesn't mean maximum warmth

A person might think that since we get our maximum sunlight on the summer solstice (on or about June 21), we should also get our peak warmth then. The sun's calling the shots, right? Not entirely, said former Alaskan Martha Shulski, author of "The...

 
 By NED ROZELL    Main News    June 15, 2016

Foam on the water a sign of life and death

While sitting in the front of a canoe on a twisty Alaska creek, my daughter asked to steer closer to the riverbank. She wanted to grab some suds. There, caught in the elbows of fallen trees, were...

 
 By NED ROZELL    Main News    June 8, 2016

Much of the Arctic is lower than it was before

When botanist Janet Jorgenson first visited a patch of tundra east of Kaktovik in 1988, it was flat, dry and thick with 29 species of lichens and mosses. Now, Tapkaurak is wet, gullied and fragrant...

 
 By NED ROZELL    Main News    June 1, 2016

Fire breaks down and builds up boreal forest

I once wrote about how fire had ravaged more than 10 percent of Interior Alaska during two smoky summers. A wildlife biologist called me out for choosing an inadequate verb. Tom Paragi chooses words that are more positive when he looks at a burned...

 
 By NED ROZELL    Main News    May 25, 2016

Moose flies a high-summer Alaska pest of big proportions

While boating down the Yukon River during the hottest summer recorded in Alaska (1915, when Fort Yukon reached 100 degrees Fahrenheit), missionary Hudson Stuck wrote about the wildlife that most...

 
 By NED ROZELL    Main News    May 16, 2016

Big changes on a big Alaska peninsula in the past 50 years

Larger than West Virginia, the Kenai Peninsula has the best of Alaska: coastal rainforests, two icefields, majestic deep-water fiords and a sapphire river home to the largest king salmon ever caught. It also has some of the best-documented changes...

 
 By NED ROZELL    Main News    May 11, 2016

Much of the Arctic is lower than it was before

When botanist Janet Jorgenson first visited a patch of tundra east of Kaktovik in 1988, it was flat, dry and thick with 29 species of lichens and mosses. Now, Tapkaurak is wet, gullied and fragrant...

 
 By NED ROZELL    Main News    May 4, 2016

Yukon River breaking up with a whimper this spring

CIRCLE - As the pilot of a chartered Cessna 206 curved in for a land-ing above the Yukon River, his passengers squinted at white river ice that clung to the south bank near town. Chocolate brown open...

 
 By NED ROZELL    Main News    April 27, 2016

Frog calls signal the change of season in Alaska

NEAR BALLAINE LAKE - Over the blat of engines and hum of tires on nearby Farmers Loop, Mark Spangler hears the chuckles of the animal he is studying. Male wood frogs in a one-acre pond on the campus of the University of Alaska Fairbanks are singing...

 
 By NED ROZELL    Main News    April 27, 2016

Frog calls signal the change of season in Alaska

NEAR BALLAINE LAKE - Over the blat of engines and hum of tires on nearby Farmers Loop, Mark Spangler hears the chuckles of the animal he is studying. Male wood frogs in a one-acre pond on the campus...

 
 By NED ROZELL    Main News    April 26, 2016

Frog calls signal the change of season in Alaska

NEAR BALLAINE LAKE - Over the blat of engines and hum of tires on nearby Farmers Loop, Mark Spangler hears the chuckles of the animal he is studying. Male wood frogs in a one-acre pond on the campus...

 
 By NED ROZELL    Main News    April 20, 2016

White creatures changing with the northern season

This morning, through the west window, I noticed a flash of white. I looked up from breakfast to see a short-tailed weasel popping from a hole in the snowpack. He was sleek and streamlined and...

 
 By NED ROZELL    Main News    April 6, 2016

The giant wave of Icy Bay: a look back to last October

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 col-lapsed into...

 
 By NED ROZELL    Main News    March 30, 2016

Thule people had northern life figured out archeologists find

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...

 

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