Sunshine is abundant this time of year, but cooler temperatures this week have slowed the melting of a well above normal snowpack in Fairbanks. That’s affecting migratory bird’s arrival at a local refuge.
A wildfire is burning in a remote area of northwest Alaska. The Alaska Fire Service reports that the Zane Hills Fire was discovered this week, and mapped at 1,900 acres.
Rain caused mudslides are affecting roads in the southeastern Interior. The Alaska Department of Transportation reports that the McCarthy Road was shut down by a slide last night. Listen now
A wildfire north of Delta Junction has reignited. The more than 8,000-acre South Fork Salcha Fire was started by lightning earlier this month in a remote area about 70 miles southeast of Fairbanks.
Moose and other species have advanced north with warming temperatures. University of Alaska Fairbanks assistant professor of water and environmental research Ken Tape said movement of boreal species into far northern Alaska has corresponded over the last century with earlier snow-melt and river ice out.
Officials say the floodwaters are swamping Alaska towns, tearing buildings from foundations, seeping into homes and covering roads. In Glennallen, the local utility is setting up Porta-Potties around the community, and area residents are asked to limit water usage. The state transportation department said there was water over a portion of the Glenn Highway on Monday, but the road remained open.
The novel virus has only affected two people, both in Fairbanks. The "Alaskapox" was first identified in 2015 after a Fairbanks woman sought medical attention for a small skin lesion, pained fever and fatigue. In August, a second Fairbanks woman with no known connection to the first was found to have the virus. Scientists suspect both women may have gotten the virus from contact with small wild animals.
An unusual bird was sighted in the Yukon Flats village of Chalkyitsik recently. The raptor, uncommon to the state, has also been spotted in a few other Alaska locations. Bird biologist Jim Johnson says there’s broader evidence that the nomadic turkey vulture is expanding north.
Golden Valley Electric Association crews are still working to repair damage to power lines caused by warm chinook winds that blasted the Interior over the weekend, especially around Delta Junction.
The state Department of Fish and Game is warning pet owners in the Interior and Southcentral Alaska about a recent spike in reports of tularemia – sometimes called “rabbit fever.”
State Veterinarian Bob Gerlach told a crowd that turned out Saturday for the 46th Annual Delta Farm Forum that diseases that afflict livestock and wildlife are increasingly showing up in Alaska. Listen now
Fairbanks' May 10 temperature was two degrees below the daily record, while snow melt from an above-normal year is flooding Interior rivers.