From Natural History of Southeast Alaska
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A page to keep questions that come to mind.


  • Are ducks identifiable to species by the whistling/squeaking sound of their wing feathers in flight?
    • Perhaps wingbeat tempo is as (or more) important than pitch?
  • Do Marbled Murrelets respond to River Otter chirps?
  • How good is the night vision of Great Blue Herons? (occasionally seen flying at night)
  • How much evidence to owls leave below their roosts? Do they frequent the same ones? (Saw-whet, WESO, primarily)
  • Why are Leech's Storm-Petrels so rarely seen from town, even when Fork-tailed Storm-Petrels are fairly abundant? Leech's are the more common breeder on St. Lazaria, but it could explained by saying that Leech's very rarely come into the sound, except it's not unsual for the Raptor Center to pick up stranded, but otherwise healthy, Leech's Storm-Petrels that people find in their driveways or yards.
  • When do juvenile dippers acquire adult bill color?


  • Where are the weasels? Ermine are known from Baranof Island, but I've noticed little evidence of them, and only heard of a handful of people seeing them.
  • Is it possible to determine when a deer has used a habitutual bedding site with ibutton thermochrons?
  • Where were the Red Squirrels introduced on Baranof Island and is there any information concerning the manner of their population/range expansion throughout the island (assuming they're present throughout the island)?


  • Is Bog Laurel present in bogs/fens without Pines?
  • Is the pinnate form of Isothecium found on Alaska cedar genetically distinct from the other morphotypes?

Physical Enviroment

  • Where did the hard packed fine sediment come from on Indian River?
  • How do ribbon icicles form on rotting logs?
  • Glacier Questions
    • How deep are the glaciers on Baranof?
    • How old is the ice/snow at the bottom of the glaciers/snow fields?
    • Evidence of ice extent during little ice age?
    • What did things look like in Sitka Sound and the drainages that empty into during the last glacial maximum?
    • How deep does the ice have to be over a peak/ridge to result in a smoothed ridge rather than a steepened arrete?
    • Why/how did the glaciers erode so deep as to create many lakes (e.g. Blue Lake, Deer Lake) whose bottoms are well below sea level while the surface is significantly above sea level?
    • Is it typical for glaciers to carve out deep holes then flow up an over a "ridge" before continuing on down to lower elevations? (seems like this happens with cirques; but it would be instructive to understand how this happens some place like Blue Lake
    • Which valleys, if any, were not glaciated? Why weren't they glaciated? Examples might be Cascade Creek or the Falls Fork of Indian River
  • Blue Lake/Sawmill Creek System
    • Main glacier flowed WSW before running into ridge with Arrowhead peak and being forced to make a turn after which it appears to have spread resulting in flows from SW to S.
    • Very deep lake, even before damming, deepest near turn of main glacier
    • Looks like the glacier flowed over the area around Beaver Lake an into Silver Bay.
    • Sawmill Creek Canyon seems to be a bit of an anomaly, very narrow and at the start it is a couple hundred feet deep. How did it form? Is it possible to determine how old it is?