Today Is the 57th Anniversary of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge

The Arctic coastal plain hosts a staggering amount of wildlife, but less than two percent of this vital habitat is currently protected.

This audio story is brought to you by BirdNote, a partner of the National Audubon Society. BirdNote episodes air daily on public radio stations nationwide.


Gerrit Vyn interviewed, by Chris Peterson

This is BirdNote!

The Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, a place where wildlife photographer and sound recordist, Gerrit Vyn, has spent a lot of time… Let’s hear what he has to say about the wetlands there:    

GV: “There’s one habitat in Alaska that’s probably most important for the widest number of species and the most number of birds as individuals in the entire state, and it’s the Arctic coastal plain… and ironically, that’s the one habitat type that has the least protection in the entire state.  Less than 2% of the entire Arctic coastal plain…is protected.” 

GV: “In early June millions of birds arrive there, from all over the world to breed, all these different kinds of ducks, shorebirds… which are sandpipers, plovers, and other types of wading birds -- all these birds go up there and they’re feeding on this explosion of insect life that happens in the brief spring and it’s also a place that’s very safe for them to nest because there’s relatively few predators – so they’re going to this place because it’s safe and there’s lots of food, and trying to quickly breed and then move on again, across the globe...to where they spend the rest of the year.”

From the American Birding Association to the U.S. Sportsmen’s Alliance, from the National Audubon Society to the National Rifle Association, groups are joining together in support of funding to maintain wildlife refuges.  Learn how you, too, can help. Begin at our website, BirdNote.org.



Narrator: Mary McCann

Songs and calls of the birds at the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge provided by The Macaulay Library of Natural Sounds at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, New York, recorded by M.J. Anderson and Gerrit Vyn

Producer: John Kessler

Executive Producer: Chris Peterson

© 2012 Tune In to Nature.org     December 2017     

ID# SotB-ANWR-01-2010-12-06   SOTB-ANWR-01  

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