KTNA Studio – Dave Totten, artist

Photo by Deb Wessler

Photo by Dora Miller

KTNA Studio

KTNA On Air Studio, Jan 2013

Photo by Deb Wessler

Photo by James Trump

Winter Black-capped Chickadee

winter chickadee

Photo by Robin Song

Fish Lake morning

Fish Lake morning

photo: Robin Song

Archives

Dunleavy will not challenge Murkowski in 2016, cites need for state budget cuts

U.S. Senator Lisa Murkowski is up for reelection later this year. No major candidates have emerged to challenge her, and one Republican who said he was considering a run last May now says he will not pursue the U.S. Senate seat in 2016.

State Senator Mike Dunleavy a Republican from Wasilla says his focus will be on issues facing the legislature in Juneau.

”We’ve got too many things we have to deal with in the State of Alaska. And I’ve got to be honest with you, you can’t take your eye off the ball in this situation for a second. So, I would be doing a disservice, I think, to the people of Alaska [and] myself to do anything other than focus on what we have to do here in Alaska.”

 

The biggest issue, Dunleavy says, is the state budget. With oil trading at less than $40 per barrel, he says deeper cuts are needed, potentially up to a billion dollars.

”We thought it was bad last year. We lost $600 million when it went from $64 a barrel to $38. So, the hole keeps getting bigger. It doesn’t get smaller, and there’s no more kicking this down the road, because there’s no more road left.”

Senator Dunleavy was in Talkeetna discussing issues of concern with constituents before heading to Juneau to begin the legislative session on January 19th.

Writer’s Voice, Nov.2015 ~Robin Song
Wasilla Eagle’s Nest

In the summer of 2014 I visited a Bald Eagle’s nest I know of in Wasilla. I’d been going to visit a nest site a few hundred yards north of it for years, but that nest had been abandoned and storms had taken it apart. Now a new nest had been built in a cottonwood and a new pair of eagles was raising their first clutch of two eaglets. I spent an hour photographing the birds, that first visit, with the dad sitting on a branch above the nest, waiting for his mate to return with food for the two hungry youngsters. I was just about to leave when the eaglets started calling in their high-pitched, squeaky voices, denoting they had spotted mom. I swung the camera up just in time to catch her coming in, a salmon clutched in her talons.

use this for sure--080614,mom returns with headless salmon

use this for sure--mom feeds fish to three eaglets,0626

Dad Eagle defending nest,060515

 

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Natural Observations – Wasilla Eagle’s Nest by Robin Song

Writer’s Voice, Nov.2015 ~Robin Song
Wasilla Eagle’s Nest

use this for sure--080614,mom returns with headless salmonuse this for sure--mom feeds fish to three eaglets,0626Dad Eagle defending nest,060515

In the summer of 2014 I visited a Bald Eagle’s nest I know of in Wasilla. I’d been going to visit a nest site a few hundred yards north of it for years, but that nest had been abandoned and storms had taken it apart. Now a new nest had been built in a cottonwood and a new pair of eagles was raising their first clutch of two eaglets. I spent an hour photographing the birds, that first visit, with the dad sitting on a branch above the nest, waiting for his mate to return with food for the two hungry youngsters. I was just about to leave when the eaglets started calling in their high-pitched, squeaky voices, denoting they had spotted mom. I swung the camera up just in time to catch her coming in, a salmon clutched in her talons.

 

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Natural Observations – “Osprey Nest” by Robin Song

Spectacular Nests of 2015-part 1

My last story involved a nest of Blackpoll Warblers whose nestlings did not survive to fledge. I wanted to have this story be about two nests I observed that same summer who had spectacular survivals. Because there is a lot to tell about each family, I will divide it into two segments.

 
3-mom returns to nest after sending dad to get food
052615-dad lands on the yearling
dad leaves yrlng,joins female on nest

This first story is about an Osprey nest located atop an A T & T tower near the Capitol Raceway, west of the Parks highway, at mile 75. It is a fairly recent nest, having been there only a few years. I noticed it three years ago, and pull off the observe its progress whenever I make a trip to Wasilla. I noted this year that someone had applied spikes to the horizontal bars atop the tower, no doubt to dissuade the birds from building their nest there. However, the birds do not use the horizontal bars. Rather, they perch on the tall vertical poles at each corner, which gives them the best lookout in all directions. The nest was built in the center of the tower, where there were no spikes. The birds drop down onto the nest from the poles. So whomever erected all those spikes went to a lot of trouble for nothing.

 

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Tips For Health Living

A  live conversation about health and health news from the Sunshine Community Health Center: It’s hosted by Holly Stinson, with this Friday’s in-studio guest Keith Kehoe, Physician Assistant at the clinic.

Borough, contractor fined for clean water act violation

Clarification:  No runoff pollution was cited by the ADEC. 

Last week, KTNA reported that the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation has asked for a meeting with the Mat-Su Borough regarding alleged Clean Water Act violations from the Talkeetna wastewater treatment lagoon.

In addition, the state has settled with borough and its contractor for $18,050 regarding a Clean Water Act violation in the building of the Talkeetna Public Library. According to the state, the violations in the library’s construction had to do with plans to prevent pollution from storm water runoff at the site. The lack of a plan was the reason for the citation, and no pollution from runoff was reported by ADEC.

According to a press release by ADEC, the borough and its contractor, E&E Construction, took the notice of violation seriously, and worked to correct the issue. As a result, A-D-E-C says the fine is only for the amount of money that would have been spent if the borough and E&E Construction had complied from the start.

Star Date Susitna 12-6-2015

Earth & Beyond author Kathleen Fleming presents Stardate Susitna.

 

Venus at 6am GMT on Tuesday, 8 December 2015, Comet Catalina (C/2013 US10) rapidly heads north through the constellation Virgo, crossing the border into Boötes on Christmas Eve. It passes within ½ degree of the brightest star in the northern celestial hemisphere — magnitude +0.1 Arcturus — on the morning of New Year’s Day 2016. The positions shown are for 06h UT on the stated date. 

Comet Catalina

Comet Catalina

 

Talkeetna Council fills vacancy, approves revenue sharing grants

On Monday, the Talkeetna Community Council board of directors held its regular monthly meeting.

The first order of business handled by the council was filling a board vacancy. Last month, board member Iris Vandenham resigned after learning her status as a permanent legal resident, but not a United States citizen, precluded her from serving on the board, according to borough code.

According to the Talkeetna Community Council, Inc. bylaws, the board chooses the person to fill a vacancy based on nominations. Laura Wright was the only nominee submitted before and at the meeting. Wright was elected by a unanimous secret ballot. Read More »

State offers to meet with borough over Clean Water Act violations

The Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation has started the process of an enforcement action against the Matanuska-Susitna Borough for violations of the federal Clean Water Act. KTNA’s Phillip Manning has more:

 

 

The violations the state cites are due to inadequate treatment of wastewater from the Talkeetna sewer lagoon. The borough operates the lagoon under an ADEC permit. That permit requires that certain criteria be met in the water that is eventually released into the Talkeetna River.

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