The vast majority of the world’s understanding of estuaries is based on studies of sub-tropical and temperate estuarine areas. Few studies of subarctic and arctic estuaries have been conducted in coastal Alaska, despite the economic and worldwide importance of these fisheries, wildlife and natural resources.

At the Prince William Sound Science Center, we’ve conducted detailed studies of the Copper River Delta estuary. We selected the Copper River Delta because its ecological and economic resources are at risk to potential oil spills. For example, the Trans Alaska oil pipeline crosses six major tributaries of the Copper River. A breach of the pipeline at one of these sites, or a tanker spill in Prince William Sound or in the Gulf of Alaska, would pose a severe threat to ecology and economy.

Understanding the fundamental ecological processes that define this large marine, forest, river, lake and estuarine habitat is at the core of our work. Our work includes partnering with other organizations to understand how this complex system nurtures world-class stocks of Pacific salmon (principally Chinook and sockeye), waterfowl of a variety of kinds, and substantial populations of the eastern Pacific’s seasonally migrating shorebirds each year.

May 24, 2016

Marine-Derived Nutrients in the Copper River Delta

Related posts June 7, 2017 2017 LOWER COPPER RIVER SONAR STATION FISH PASSAGE COUNTSRead More May 24, 2016 Ecology of the Copper River DeltaRead More May […]
May 24, 2016

Ecology of the Copper River Delta

Related posts May 23, 2018 Imaging Sonar Deployment in the Lower Copper River Delta to Enhance Early Season ManagementRead More May 15, 2018 2018 LOWER COPPER […]
December 30, 2014

Data Management Support

Related posts September 11, 2014 Non-lethal sampling of juvenile herringRead More July 24, 2013 Juvenile Herring Abundance and habitat utilization in Prince William SoundRead More June […]
August 21, 2013

Investigating Site Fidelity of Migrating Shorebirds

Related posts March 27, 2018 Disease susceptibility and fitness costs in shorebirdsRead More Semipalmated Plover chick August 21, 2013 Monitoring Shorebirds on Barrier Islands of the […]
August 21, 2013

Monitoring Shorebirds on Barrier Islands of the Copper River Delta

Related posts The high loss rates of ice mass in the heavily glaciated Copper River watershed has led to biogeochemical changes both upriver and down. March […]