Environmental Projects: Kotzebue Sound 2004-2006 Young Bearded Seal Satellite Tagging Project:

Participants

Principal Principal Principal Principal

Principals

Alex Whiting
Environmental Specialist for the Native Village of Kotzebue since 1997 and Director of the Natural Resource program. The Tribal facilitator of the project, including coordinating field activities and is on the ADF&G permit to tag seals. Tagged the last seal of the year in 2005 at Sisualik.

Kathy Frost
1994 - present Affiliate Associate Professor, School of Fisheries and Ocean Sciences, University of Alaska Fairbanks. 1975-2000 Marine Mammal research biologist for the Alaska Department of Fish and Game. Conducted research in natural history and ecology of seals and beluga whales in Alaska including distribution, movements and diving behavior (satellite tagging) of spotted seals, harbor seals, and belugas; trophic interactions (diet) of ice-associated seals; abundance and trends of marine mammal populations; habitat use and diet of harbor seals. Member/Secretary of the Alaska Beluga Whale Committee.

John Goodwin
Lifelong marine mammal hunter in Kotzebue Sound . Captain of the vessel the Sagaan, used to assist and transport scientist' during the 2004-2006 field seasons. Trained in handling and tagging of seals. Netted in York 's Bay in 2005 and near Sisualiq and Nuvuraaq during the 2005 and 2006 field seasons. Co-investigator under ADF&G permit to tag seals. Tagged seals captured after the scientists departed in 2005 and 2006. He was assisted by Brenda Goodwin, Pearl Goodwin, Dan Savetilik and Tom Jones while netting off of Sisualik in 2005 and 2006.

Research Assistants

Cyrus Harris (2005, 2006)
Lifelong marine mammal hunter in Kotzebue Sound . He has an active camp located at Sisualiq and successfully netted seals off the beach near his camp during the 2005 and 2006 field seasons. He was assisted by Nereus Doc Harris III, Grover Harris and Lee Harris while netting off of Sisualik.

Nereis Doc Harris III (2005, 2006)
Lifelong marine mammal hunter in Kotzebue Sound . Worked with Cyrus Harris to catch seals during the 2005 field season and with John Goodwin and the scientists to tag and samples seals in 2005 and 2006. Named as a Co-Investigator under ADF&G permit to tag seals in 2006.

Chuck Schaeffer (2004)
Lifelong marine mammal hunter in Kotzebue Sound. Captain of the vessel the Bailey Lynn and a smaller net tending boat. He lives year round at a remote camp location on the NE side of Kobuk Lake. He successfully captured the first two bearded seals tagged in Fall 2004.

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Other Participants

Rob Delong (2004/2005/2006 )
Computer Programmer. Extensive experience capturing and tagging harbor seals in Alaska . Extensive small boat work. Coordinated small boat activities and net setting for this project.

Michael Cameron (2004/2005/2006 )
Marine mammals biologist for the National Marine Mammals Laboratory, NMFS, Seattle. Conducts studies of ice-associated seals in the Antarctic and Alaska . Tagged seals, prepared and distributed maps, and analyzed data for this project.

Gay Sheffield (2004)
Marine mammals biologist for the Alaska Department of Fish and Game; conducts studies of the natural history of ice-associated seals in northern Alaska; participates in sampling the bowhead whale harvest at Kaktovik; participates in biosampling program to obtain samples from subsistence-caught seals in northern Alaska.

Alaska Department of Fish and Game
Collaborating partner in the project, providing: logistics support, analysis of genetics material, loan of assorted field gear, and transportation for scientists while in town. Tagging for this project is being conducted under ADF&G's marine mammal permit numbers 358-1585 (2004/2005) and 358-1787 (2006) .
NMML/NMFS Collaborating partner in this project, providing: data acquisition from Service Argos for all satellite tags; personnel to participate in capture and tagging of seals; weekly mapping and distribution of tracks for the tagged seals; assistance with data analysis. In 2006, NMML provided all 15 tags that were deployed.

Selawik National Wildlife Refuge/Department of the Interior
Cooperating partner in the project, providing housing for visiting scientists in 2004-2006 and the use of their 16' Zodiac inflatable boat for fieldwork during Fall 2004. BLM also provided some housing in 2006.

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In Depth

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