With springtime in full swing in Southeast Alaska, our meadows and forest shrub-layers are greening up as new leaves sprout from twigs and blades of grass poke up from the ground. However, in certain places around Juneau, curious-looking patches of yellow stand out starkly within a sea of fresh green growth. These bright spots are infestations of reed canarygrass, an extremely aggressive invasive plant that is found throughout Juneau and elsewhere in the region. In late summer and early fall, canarygrass transfers energy from above-ground foliage to below-ground rhizomes. Come spring, this stored energy fuels the production of new stems and leaves which rise up through a dense mat of yellow thatch left behind the previous year. By early May, fresh green growth nearly obscures last year's thatch. Reed canarygrass…
Presentations from the 2018 Southeast Alaska Watershed Restoration Workshop are now available on the Southeast Alaska Fish Habitat Partnership's webpage! If you were unable to attend or would like to review the material, please check out the posted presentations.
SAWC hosted a regional watershed restoration workshop in Juneau March 5-7 to tackle issues around collaboration, technical capacity, funding, and coping with climate change. Individuals from over 30 organizations and agencies participated, sharing stories of success and lessons learned, and contributing to great discussions about how to move forward to make restoration efforts more successful in the region. A big thanks to the National Forest Foundation, The Nature Conservancy, and the Southeast Alaska Fish Habitat Partnership for supporting the workshop. Presentations will soon be archived and available on SEAKFHP's website.
SAWC is part of a newly-funded Sea Grant project that will assess the resilience of Southeast Alaska salmon to a shifting freshwater environment. Along with researchers from the University of Alaska and the Forest Service, we will work with communities in Southeast Alaska to collect water temperature and flow data in streams that are important for traditional and subsistence use. We will develop a new model that integrates the effects of water temperatures and flows on salmon across their freshwater life stages to help us to better understand how salmon might respond to future changes. To learn more about the project, or if you are interested in participating, contact SAWC Science Director, Rebecca Bellmore firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit the SeaGrant webpage.
Stepping up to the plate for collaborative restoration March 5-7, Juneau AK Workshop Goals: The 2018 Southeast Alaska Watershed Restoration Workshop will build capacity to develop collaborative solutions for the restoration and informed management of SEAK’s watersheds. The event will bring together community leaders, NGOs and resource managers from across SEAK to share stories of restoration efforts – successes, techniques, and lessons learned, to network and develop partnerships for collaborative projects, and to provide tools and resources to build the capacity or our region’s land managers to carry out watershed restoration across the Tongass National Forest and its neighboring lands. Session topics will include collaborative approaches, capacity gaps and how to bridge them, funding opportunities and strategies, and successful restoration in a changing region. If you are interested in sharing your…
SAWC is pleased to release "Management Applications of Regional Freshwater Temperature Data for Southeast Alaska," a white paper that describes the need for freshwater temperature monitoring and ways the data can be used in natural resource management applications, including fisheries management, invasive species control, riparian conditions, fish passage, water quality regulations, and conservation priorities. We hope this paper will be useful to network partners and other organizations that are considering monitoring freshwater temperature, as they make decisions about priority activities and consider contributing their information to the larger community of researchers, managers and stakeholders.
SAWC Science Director Rebecca Bellmore visited Whale Pass on July 25 to meet with the Prince of Wales Community Advisory Council. She discussed a potential research project to study the effects of climate change on drinking water quality. Many communities in Southeast Alaska have concerns about high organic matter concentrations in drinking water sources, and increasingly extreme weather events may exacerbate these issues. Analyzing water quality data in the context of historic precipitation data and recently downscaled climate change projections for Alaska could provide some insights into how water quality may change in the future.
We are excited to partner with Chilkat Indian Village and Cook Inletkeeper to provide a stream and wetland temperature monitoring training and climate change monitoring training May 2-5, 2017, in Klukwan, AK. The training is designed for tribes and community organizations and will include hands-on field demonstrations. Contact information and more details, including a travel scholarship application, can be found here.