Alaska Region
Conserving the Nature of America
Photo of Sidney Huntington
U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service Conservation Hero
Sidney Huntington (1915-2015)

October 20, 2016

At the 2016 Alaska Federation of Natives Conference this year, Regional Director Gregory Siekaniec will be honoring the late Sidney Huntington. Sidney built a deep attachment to the lands and waters of Alaska over the course of his 100-year life. As a trapper, fishermen, boat builder, business owner and subsistence user, he relied on the resources around him – often for his very survival. When he was five years old, he endured two weeks of isolation at his family’s remote trading post on the Hogatza River, caring for his younger brother and sister after the untimely death of their mother. His formal education ended at the third grade, but his practical, wilderness education progressed for decades, rooted firmly in the stories and lessons of the Koyukon Athabaskan elders of the Koyukuk and Middle Yukon River area. Read more about this years concervation hero, Sidney Huntington.

Walrus image courtesy of NOAA/NMFS/AFSC/MML

Walruses reported at Point Lay move on
October 11, 2016

Approximately 6000 Pacific walruses hauled out on a barrier island near the Native Village of Point Lay on Friday, October 7, but by Monday morning the animals appear to have moved on. “The walruses are likely heading south to coastal haulouts in Chukotka Russia” said Joel Garlich-Miller, a walrus biologist with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

Paddler on Selawik Refuge Photo Credit: S. Hildebrand
Paddler on Selawik Refuge
Photo Credit: S. Hildebrand
National Wildlife Refuge Week -
Celebrates Conservation Lands Vital to People

September 29, 2016

National Wildlife Refuge Week – observed October 9–15, 2016 – reminds Americans how nature enriches our lives and adds to the beauty of our country. What better time to celebrate that connection with the natural world and the 16 National Wildlife Refuges in Alaska. Come celebrate National Wildlife Refuge Week with us in Alaska!

Kodiak National Willdllife Refuge. Celebrationg 75th Anniversary
Kodiak 75th Anniversary

Kodiak National Wildlife Refuge - 75th Anniversary
August 19, 2016

President Franklin D. Roosevelt established Kodiak National Wildlife Refuge on August 19, 1941, for the “purpose of protecting the natural feeding and breeding range of the brown bears and other wildlife on Uganik and Kodiak Islands, Alaska.”  One of Alaska’s oldest and best-known wildlife refuges, Kodiak provides access to a stunning diversity of landscapes and wildlife and attracts thousands of visitors annually to get a glipse of the estimated amount of 3500 bears on the Archipelago.  A gem among America’s public lands, today the Refuge plays a global conservation role as a steward for interdependent species within one of the world’s few remaining intact ecosystems.

Brown bear and cubs on Kodiak National Wildlife Refuge.  Photo Credit: Lisa Hupp/USFWS
Photo Credit: Lisa Hupp/USFWS
Final Rule for Alaska National Wildlife Refuges Supports Resource Conservation
August 3, 2016

In response to public interest and concern about predator harvest on national wildlife refuges across Alaska, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service today announced a final rule to clarify that predator control is not allowed on national wildlife refuges in the state unless based on sound science and in response to a conservation concern or is necessary to meet refuge purposes, federal laws or Service policy. In addition, the rule defines the process that will be used for considering predator control, prohibits certain methods and means for non-subsistence harvest of predators, and updates the procedures for closing an area or restricting an activity on refuges in Alaska.

Research Vessel Tiglax at Bogoslof Island.  Photo Credit: Paul Wade
Research Vessel Tiglax at Bogoslof Island.
Photo Credit: Paul Wade
Research at Sea on the R/V Tiglax
July 15, 2016

For nearly 30 years the R/V Tiglax (TEKH-lah - Aleut for Eagle) and its crew has supported the Alaska Maritime National Wildlife Refuge and partners as a research and transportation vessel across a landscape that stretches from the Arctic Ocean to the southeast panhandle of Alaska. In a typical season, the Tiglax will sail 15,000 to 20,000 nautical miles as biologists and researchers undertake seabird surveys, oceanographic studies, marine mammal monitoring, invasive species management. archaeological inventories, and more.


Photo of Greg Siekaniec
Gregory Siekaniec
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Director Dan Ashe Appoints GregorySiekaniec as Regional Director for Alaska
May 5, 2016

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Director Dan Ashe today announced the appointment of Gregory Siekaniec as the agency’s Regional Director for Alaska, marking Siekaniec’s return to the agency he served for more than two decades.

Siekaniec, a career Service employee, previously served as the agency’s Deputy Director for Policy, before leaving the Service in 2012 to assume the leadership of Ducks Unlimited Canada, one of Canada’s most prominent conservation organizations.

In his new capacity as Regional Director, Siekaniec will oversee the direction and day-to-day operations of the Alaska Region, the only FWS Region to manage a single state. The Region's National Wildlife Refuge system is massive, accounting for over 80 percent of all refuge land managed by the agency.

“Greg Siekaniec has been an outstanding conservation leader throughout his long career in the Fish and Wildlife Service, and we’re fortunate to have him returning to the agency to lead our Alaska Region. Greg spent much of his career as a refuge employee and manager in Alaska, and he’s intimately familiar with the region’s outstanding employees and incredible conservation work,” said Ashe.  Read more...

Archived Articles

Last updated: October 2016


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Migratory Bird Treaty Centennial 1916-2016