Sunday, October 09, 2011

Good Morning King Salmon

Ghost, Petra and I were guest of the USF&W Visitors Center at the Alaska Peninsula Wildlife Refuge in King Salmon over the weekend. Airfare for Ghost and Petra was provided by PenAir. On the first day, we visited Bristol Bay School in Egegik and did a 1 1/2 presentation to the students. I was amazed how well behaved and attentive they were. Many, many questions.
Lodging and transportation was provided by USF&W. Both Ghost and Petra loved being tethered outside were we stayed. The nights were cool and quiet. Being the end of the fall season, most other distractions weren't around.

Hopefully I'll have some presentation photos later. Many were taken the next day where we did about 3 1/2 hours of presentations at the visitor center. Over the weekend we saw over 250 people. At the visitor center alone we saw ove 120 people, which is 1/2 the population of King Salmon.

Ghost, Petra and I would like to thank USF&W for having us out to King Salmon and Egegik. It was great to meet the people of the Bristol Bay area, the people of USF&W and the Alaska Wildlife Troopers. I specifically would like to thank Julia Pinnix, Visitor Services Manager, Alaska Peninsula/Becharof National Wildlife Refuge. She was a great host and made our trip most memorable and enjoyable.
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Tuesday, October 04, 2011

For love in Fairbanks

I was invited to participate in Owlpaloza at the Alaska Bird Observatory in Fairbanks by my friends Nancy and Jen. Little did we know that it would be such a hit and Gus our Great Horned Owl would find a friend.
On the first night after we arrived, Gus was staying in an outside mew on the deck. About 1AM there began a series of hoots and all were not Gus's. All night long they hooted back and forth.
As it got lighter, she got braver and came closer and closer to his mew. We could only get a faint view of her, but she responded to all of Gus's hoots.

As it got lighter, we were able to see what a beauty she really was. Her bib expanded with every hoot and her feet were bright and fluffy. I really don't know, but I believe she's a young gal. Maybe 2 to 3 years old.
Little did we know that she had got a lot closer when we weren't watching, and did some damage to the mew. Unfortunately for Gus, the next night he got to spend inside, for his safety and so we could sleep. He's a 20+ year old Great Horned Owl and not able to care for himself as well as a wild owl can.

The next day, as tired as he was, Gus and 3 other owls WOWed them at Owlpaloza! 775 people came to the event and saw 4 owls, but Gus was the only one love struck.

The story was all over Facebook and Twitter. For more on Gus and Owlpaloza, check these links.
Wickersham's Conscience
Fairbanks Daily News Miner
More to come!
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