Naturalist and early advocate for the preservation of wilderness John Muir once said "In every walk with nature one receives far more than he seeks." Always pragmatic, ecologists have their own term for nature's gifts - ecosystem services.
To some he is the manager of the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge, others know him as a fellow hunter, and many others consider him a friend, but regardless of how people know Robin West, they will soon be saying goodbye to him.
The early morning air was so still and the reflection on Bottenintnin Lake so crystal clear, it was difficult to tell where the water ended and the azure sky began. Even the one and only cloud a thin, white, wispy thing way up high was perfectly mirrored in the calm water. A small ripple at the surface emanating from where an emerald-colored dragonfly darted a little too low in pursuit of a mosquito meal was the only giveaway.
On December 16, 1941, President Franklin D. Roosevelt issued Executive Order 8979 establishing the Kenai National Moose Range. The eve of its 70th anniversary presents an ideal moment to reflect on the history of the Moose Range, later to become the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge. In Part I of this two-part article, we'll explore the early years leading up to and immediately following the Refuge's establishment.
The end of 2011 will mark my first full year as the new manager of the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge. Since this is my second tenure at the Refuge, the first as a wildlife biologist from 1988 to 1992, many of you have asked how things have changed over the last 20 or so years.
Despite early runs of king salmon in the Kenai and Kasilof rivers moving past their peaks, there are still plenty of fish entering these waterways.
The Federal Subsistence Board has closed a worrisome loophole that might have allowed Kenai Peninsula fishers to gillnet rainbow trout under the pretext of fishing for whitefish.
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