Because marine and coastal ecosystems provide an abundance of fish, marine mammals, and birds, they have been used for thousands of years by people. Today, many Alaska Natives live a subsistence lifestyle eating wild foods, using traditional hunting and fishing methods, and practicing the many cultural traditions associated with natural foods.
Unlike anywhere else in the United States, native people in Alaska are permitted to harvest fish and game on federal lands through the Alaska National Interest Lands and Conservation Act (ANILCA). The act recognizes both the significance of subsistence to rural Alaskan residents and the value of maintaining unspoiled ecosystems and healthy wildlife populations. The subsistence way of life is one of the timeless values sustanied by Alaska's national park units.