Big Lake, Alaska and The Susitna Valley News, Weather, Events, And More

Welcome to The Big Lake Times
Tuesday, February 20 2018 @ 10:05 AM AKST


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Scenes Around Big Lake: November Sunset

NatureTaken this evening while outside in Big Lake doing some Thanksgiving pre-grilling.

Photo by Dennis Garrett

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They're Still Awake: Be Bear Aware

NatureRecent incidents involving bears in Seward where a dog walker was mauled Thursday and a brown bear sow and two cubs were shot last week by homeowners in a local subdivision are serving as a wake-up call to many in Southcentral Alaska who believe bears have gone to sleep for the winter.

"Bears may be active any month of the year," says Kenai Area Wildlife Biologist Jeff Selinger, "especially if they have access to food."

Ongoing reports of bears drawn to Seward-area subdivisions by unsecured trash, pet foods, and poultry led to citations for some homeowners, but not before bears became habituated to attractants. This created a dangerous situation for people and bears alike.

Seward is not alone. Relatively mild weather in Southcentral Alaska so far this winter, combined with the availability human-supplied foods, has led to human-bear conflicts from Homer to Eagle River and many points in between, including Anchorage.

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Scenes Around Big Lake-October Sunrise

NatureIn case you missed the sunrise this morning here are a couple of images taken in Big Lake. Enjoy!

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100th Anniversary Celebration at The Alaska Wildbird Rehabilitation Center

NatureContributed by AWBRC

Join us for a Second Saturday to join in on the 100th Anniversary Celebration at The Alaska Wildbird Rehabilitation Center.

Saturday September 10th., Noon to 3 pm. Entertaining and enlightening for children and adults!

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Free Wildbird Rehab Program at The Big Lake Library

Nature Contributed by Janet Whitfield, Big Lake Library

The BLT's (Big Lake Teens, Big Lake Library Teen Advisory Board) is hosting a Wildbird Rehab Program this Friday July 8th from 4:30-5:30 pm, at The Big Lake Library. All ages welcome!.

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Understanding Wild Edible and Poisonous Plants of Alaska

NatureSubmitted by Janet Whitfield, Big Lake Library

There will be a free Short Course on wild edible and poisonous plants of Alaska. Friday June 24th 4:30-5:30 pm @ The Big Lake Library. For ages 11 and up.

Sponsored by BLT's (Big Lake Teens, Big Lake Library Youth Advisory Board).

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Pollinator Week

NatureWHEREAS, pollinator species such as bees, birds, butterflies, bats, beetles, and others provide significant benefits that are necessary for maintaining healthy, biodiverse ecosystems and are essential partners of farmers and ranchers in producing much of our food supply; and

WHEREAS, pollination plays a vital role in the health of our forests, grasslands, and other unique ecosystems, which provide forage, fish and wildlife, timber, water, mineral resources, and recreational opportunities, as well as economic development opportunities for individuals and communities; and

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Update your Fred Meyer Community Rewards with AWBRC!

Nature(Submitted by AWBRC)

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Steer Clear of "Orphaned" Wildlife Babies, Mother Likely Lurks Nearby

NatureAlaskans stepping outside to enjoy the wonders of springtime are reminded that May and June mark the season of wildlife giving birth. Newborn moose calves, bear cubs and other wildlife young may be encountered nearly anywhere – including in backyards, city greenbelts, along popular trails – and despite initial appearances, protective mothers are likely nearby.

“We’re already receiving reports of newborn moose calves,” said Anchorage Area Wildlife Biologist Dave Battle.

Moose calving generally peaks around the third week of May, and young can be encountered well into June. Cow moose can be particularly dangerous during calving season and attacks on people and pets by mothers aggressively defending calves are reported each spring.

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Alaska Wildbird Rehabilitation Center May Newsletter


May Newsletter

May is here, together with all its frenetic activity. Birds are everywhere, enriching our lives. Alaska WildBird Rehabilitation Center is a hub of spring activity; construction, spring cleaning, enrichment, and always learning. Our volunteers are busy with care and education,working together helping sick and injured birds.

Here at AWBRC it is all about the birds. We have wonderful experiences daily, thanks to our feathered residents. We are grateful to our community, and to our generous donors. Anyone interested in volunteer training or supporting the center, please call 892-2927.

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Round Island Ramps Up for Walrus-Viewing Season, Thanks to Donors

NatureWalrus are already arriving on Round Island and wildlife viewers, photographers and naturalists looking for adventure are urged to pick up permits now for this summer’s visits.

Famous for its summertime congregations of bull walruses which often gather by the thousands, Round Island will open to visitors May 1 through August 15. Operations typically include a camp staffed through the summer by department personnel who work to protect and monitor walruses and other wildlife, and oversee a visitor use program and campground. Access permits for camping or day visits are available at

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Warm Days, Stirring Bruins Remind Alaskans to be Bear Aware

NatureFrom Alaska’s southern reaches north to Fairbanks and points beyond, word has it that bears are waking and starting to move. And that can mean only one thing: It’s time for Alaskans to assume their best “bear aware” behavior.

“We had a report the other day of a grizzly out around Nordale Road,” said Jesse Dunshie, a fish and wildlife technician in the Alaska Department of Fish and Game’s Fairbanks office. That was one of a couple bear-related calls he’s received in recent days.

Indeed, unseasonably mild weather may be rousing bears earlier than usual in some parts of the state. In Anchorage, black bears have been spotted in several areas around the city. Reports in Kodiak have included sightings of brown bear sows and yearling cubs which normally don’t appear until later in the season. And in Southeast, recent warm days have skunk cabbage and other wild greens blooming, setting the stage for bears there to start moving any day.

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April Alaska Wildbird Newsletter

Natureby AWBRC

April - a month of anticipation. We get ready for the bustle of spring and summer, and at Alaska WildBird we prepare to provide the best bird education and rehabilitation possible. The birds are beginning to migrate through, and we are receiving excited notices of swans, goldeneyes, robins, and hawks.

This month we are bringing you some great opportunities to participate, enjoy, and support our wild birds.

Second Saturday with Sandy

Please join Alaska WildBird Rehabilitation Center and Valley Community for Recycling Solutions on Saturday April 9, from 12-2 PM

Meet Sandy the Sandhill Crane at the Recycling Center (9465 E. Chanlyut Cir, Palmer, off 49th State and Palmer-Wasilla Hwy.)
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Scenes Around Big Lake: Young Eagle

NatureThis young Eagle was hanging out at the Jordan Lake Park next to The Big Lake Library.

Photo by Dennis Garrett
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March Newsletter from The Alaska Wildbird Rehabilitation Center

Natureby AWBRC

With the coming of March, we at Alaska Wildbird Rehabilitation Center are welcoming the milder weather, and oh yes, that lovely extra sunlight. Get out and join us for some fun upcoming events!

Get out to PANDA EXPRESS on Saturday, March 12
Have you visited the new Panda Express restaurant near the Wasilla Fred Meyer yet? Here is the perfect time to try it out, and help Alaska WildBird Rehabilitation Center too! On Saturday, March 12 from 10 AM to 8 PM, Panda Express will donate a portion of all proceeds from our guests’ meals to AWBRC. All you need to do is present the above flyer when you order. The flyer can be printed or shown digitally on a phone or tablet (show this e-mail, for example).
Thank you for supporting AWBRC, and enjoy your meal!

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