All posts by cdale

glacier bay NPS vs. Hoonah

these are a coupel of pages from the same site addressing th econflict between the aestetics of th enational park system and the rights of the community of Hoonah to feed itself in traditional manners and in traditional locales.

the Tlingit of hoonah used to occupy what is now glacier bay national park before the last period of glaciation and have ancient claim to the area.

the park service has for decades banned subsistence use.

it is an ongoing question of rights. really an interesting one, these pages are a bit heavy but if you have a minute its a great history lesson, even if its not quite news.

pink forecast 2012

this is maybe not news per say, but it is darned interesting.

under the auspices of NOAA, there is a yearly forecast for returning pink salmon later that year. humpies run in rather unpredictable cycles and as im sure you’re all aware, they are one year old fish when they return.   with most salmon there is soem idea as to if the year class was strong or not, and there are a few years to anticipate and for bad conditions to be weathered by the stock. with pinks, bad conditions can wipe out a run because they have only the one year to mature and return. this also means that in some ways pink salmon stocks are the most susceptible to shifts in ocean conditions or say exposure to massive amounts of sea lice from adjacent British columbian salmon farms.

anyway by capturing   or surveying outgoing fry in a few corridors of egress to the open ocean, the strength of the return can be predicted, the forecast also takes into account, oceanic conditions or weather cycles like el nino which can change the situation dramatically.

if you look at this page, you see that by and large the forecast is accurate (2006 being th eexecption) and you can see that the forecast is DOWN.

bad news is always interesting news no?


changing habitats

this is a quick news story about how humbolt squid are adapting to climate and habitat change by changing their own reproductive habits and life hsitory.
cephelapods are on the rise in the north pacific as water temperatures increase. densities here in alaska are by and large a mystery. there are potentially even many species that are as of yet not recognized or undetermned in their range and extent.

a very bad dichotomous key

if i make a dichotomous key of the digits 1 through 15, i can diferentiate them in fourteen steps.
i am absolutely certain it could be done in less, but this is a frustratingly abstract excersize so i’ll be satisfied with having made one.

1; even /odd. go2/go3
2;9. go 4/ go 7
3; >8 /12/<12. =13/=11
12; prime y/n. go 13/ =1
13; square oot of 25 y/n. =5/go 14
14; half of 14 y/n. =7/=3

the devil of the esox

northern pike, or esox lucius, also known as jackfish in canada,  is a broadly represented fish that we find in freshwater all over the northern world.

these freshwater predators are often likened to water wolves, although this implies a hunting style that is not at all accurate regarding pike. Pike live in slow moving or sluggish, clear  waters, often weed choked or weedy. they lie in wait and then burst forth to nab their prey which is generally fish but  often  simply  anything they can fit down their throats.

these fish grow to rather large sizes depending on their latitude and the size of their home body of water. in the north there are many older smaller fish while down south, the lower forty eight, they can grow to much greater lengths, the largest nearing a meter. they spawn in weed beds in clear water and generally a female will be accompanied by a smaller male and they will deposit spawn a few times a day for a few days. this happens as the water warms near about 9 degrees C. females are generally larger than males and they live for upwards of a two decades in favorable conditions. these fish do not migrate but are highly mobile. they strike with a distinctive snaking motion as they curve their body into an s shape before snapping forward, they generally bite their prey from the side catching it with their sharp needle like teeth before turning it to swallow it head first..

they are not monogamous, they are highly territorial and cannibalistic. in some subarctic lakes i am given to understand that they can be the only species of fish present. they are a hardy delicious fish that can be a pest, especially in our state as their predation can strongly , adversely affect salmon fry stocks. pike are endemic in the interior and to a few locations that were not glaciated here in Alaska and are invasive in a few other drainage’s and controlled by adf&g. my experience with pike in this state has been in the headwaters of the ahrnklin river (sp?) in yakutat.

back in Minnesota, i was lucky enough to eat pike regularly. it has a lovely white flaky flesh that fries wonderfully.

it is a wonderful game fish, but has been long associated with stories of swimmer attacks and blamed for other game fish depredations. the name mean s devil of the esox river.