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NSF, with interagency and international partners, makes first round of grants to understand Arctic sustainability
Date:11/7/2013

ka Fairbanks

The Pacific walrus (Odobenus rosmarus divergens) is one of many species affected by recent environmental change in the Arctic. This project aims to integrate several disciplines including archaeology, ethnology, biology and ecology using diverse sources of data including DNA, stable isotope, steroid and trace element analysis as well as to ascertain long-term trends of walrus feeding ecology, foraging location and stock genetics over the last two millennia. This time-frame includes large climatic anomalies such as the Medieval Warm and the Little Ice Age, thereby presenting scientists with the possibility of understanding how walruses adapt during times of stress and change. The project is jointly funded by NSF and the Department of Interior's Bureau of Ocean Energy Management.

Collaborative Research: Sustainabiity of critical areas for eiders and subsistence hunters in an industrializing nearshore zone

Principal Investigators: Tuula Hollmen, Alaska SeaLife Center; Henry Huntington, Huntington Consulting, Eagle River, Alaska; James Lovvorn, Southern Illinois University at Carbondale; Neesha Stellrecht, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Throughout the Arctic, indigenous people are faced with difficult choices between the cash benefits of industrialization versus potential degradation of subsistence hunting. Subsistence hunting often provides a large fraction of foods and may be more reliable in the long term than a cash economy based on nonrenewable resources. Subsistence hunting for certain species may also have cultural significance that far exceeds their dietary contribution. Researchers will model habitat requirements and map viable prey densities for formerly hunted, but now threatened species, such as Spectacled Eider and a commonly hunted species, King Eider, in the Chukchi near-shore zone and determine long-term variability in the eiders' access to those areas through the ice. They will refine the maps with tra
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Contact: Peter West
pwest@nsf.gov
703-292-7530
National Science Foundation
Source:Eurekalert  

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NSF, with interagency and international partners, makes first round of grants to understand Arctic sustainability
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