The biologists and science technicians of the natural resource management team work to understand and protect the myriad forms of life within the park, studying species ranging from spruce grouse to salmon, from bears to bald eagles, and ecosystems ranging from the park interior to coastal wilderness.
Katmai wildlife biologists are conducting a number of studies related to the bears of Brooks River. The bears’ familiarity with humans and each other, as well as their access to abundant and predicable summer food resources, means that individual animals can be extensively studied at close range. Studying individual animals yields insight into larger populations, while studying a single location reveals changes in population over time. Researchers are also studying the genetics of the Brooks bears, to construct a pedigree of the local population while also studying the genetic health of the population and insight into their movement patterns.
Katmai’s coastal team works to protect Katmai’s nearly 500 miles of wild coastline and its abundant wildlife. Working with the National Park Service Southwest Alaska Network, the natural resources team has been monitoring seals, sea lions, sea birds, mussels, and more along Katmai’s wild shores. The park has also partnered with the University of Washington’s Coastal Observation and Seabird Survey Team to document seabird mortality events, and with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to monitor accumulation and type of debris washing ashore.
Explore the links below to learn more about the work of the natural resources team.