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Alaska IBAs by Type

IBA Priority Number Acres
Global 174 106,641,073
Continental 8 3,155,469
State 31 9,705,649
Total 213 119,502,191

Click Here for a downloadable map of Alaska's IBAs.

Alaska spans 1200 miles from north to south, and 2300 miles from west to east with a land mass that is larger than Texas, California, and Montana combined. Alaska has over 47,000 miles of coastline and a diversity of habitats that range from temperate rainforest to Arctic tundra. Alaska also has more than 75 million seabirds, 10 million waterfowl, and many species of birds that breed nowhere else in the US.

Alaska's IBA program began in 2000, in cooperation with the Russian Union for Bird Conservation and the Asia Council of BirdLife International, to identify marine and coastal IBAs on both the Alaskan and Russian sides of the Bering Sea. In October 2001, Audubon Alaska initiated a second IBA project in the Cook Inlet watershed of southcentral Alaska. Sites were identified based on information provided by wildlife agencies, Audubon chapters, major landowners, and others in the Cook Inlet area.

In 2004, Audubon Alaska received a State Wildlife Grant from the Alaska Department of Fish & Game to support a statewide IBA project. Building on the work already carried out in the Bering Sea and Cook Inlet regions, Audubon Alaska launched the statewide IBA project in 2005, and over the next few years identified IBAs across Alaska. An Alaska IBA Technical Committee was formed in April 2005 to help to guide the process.

From 2010 to 2015, we developed spatial analysis methods to reassess Alaska's IBAs. We identified marine IBAs utilizing a wealth of new at-sea survey data (the NPPSD 2) and the revised Beringian seabird colony catalog. We identified new and/or revised coastal and interior IBAs using an extensive compilation of data we called the Alaska Waterbird Dataset. This work was supported by a grant from the Alaska Department of Fish & Game. The marine IBA identification methods were published in Biological Conservation in 2014

We continue to gather and analyze bird survey datasets to identify core areas for species within Alaska. Currently our work focuses on utilizing the existing IBAs and spatial data layers to analyze threats, prioritize our work, and recommend conservation of these sites.

Site Name Status Prioritysort descending Counties IBA Criteria
Amakdedulia Cove Recognized Continental Kenai Peninsula D5
Anchorage Coastal Recognized Continental Anchorage
Kenai River Flats Recognized Continental Kenai Peninsula D4ii
Goose Bay Recognized Continental Matanuska-Susitna
Colville River Delta Recognized Continental North Slope D1
Northwest Afognak Island Recognized Continental Kodiak Island D1
Northeast Arctic Coastal Plain Recognized Continental D4i
Lower Colville River Recognized Continental North Slope D1
Tuxedni Bay Recognized Global Kenai Peninsula D4ii
Trading Bay Recognized Global Kenai Peninsula D3, D5
Susitna Flats Recognized Global Matanuska-Susitna D3
Kahiltna Flats-Petersville Road Recognized Global Denali, Matanuska-Susitna D3
Redoubt Bay Recognized Global Kenai Peninsula D4iv, D4v
Kasegaluk Lagoon Recognized Global North Slope D3
Swanson Lakes Recognized Global Kenai Peninsula D4ii
St. Lawrence Island Polynya Recognized Global Nome, Wade Hampton D3, D5
Central Seward Peninsula Recognized Global Nome, Northwest Arctic D3, D4iii, D4iv, D4v, D4vi
East Norton Sound Recognized Global Nome, Wade Hampton D4ii, D4iii, D5
Andreafsky Wilderness Recognized Global Yukon-Koyukuk
Chagvan Bay Recognized Global Bethel