Alaska’s Baby Islands & Dutch Harbor

Jul 25, 2019 - National Geographic Orion


Dawn found National Geographic Orion nearing the Baby Islands: a small archipelago of, yes, small islands near Unalga Island in the Fox Islands group of the Aleutian Islands. These low, rocky islands are the nesting sites of thousands of seabirds such as tufted puffins and whiskered auklets. The range of whiskered auklets’ range in North America is limited to only about ten islands on the Aleutian Chain and we were lucky to see small flocks of them flying and on the water here. On Zodiac excursions here were surrounded by tufted puffins—thousands of them.

This afternoon we docked at Dutch Harbor, the busiest fishing port in the United States. Here we hiked up mountains, toured this interesting and historic town, and took a nature hike along a spit where we saw many beautiful flowers and birds that were new sightings to some of us.

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About the Author

Grace Winer

Naturalist

Geologist and naturalist, Grace is a Montanan now living in Seattle. Grace received her degrees in geology (BS and MSc) from Montana State University. Funded by a grant from the National Geographic Society, she pursued her master’s degree in Alaska’s remote Pribilof Islands. Here she investigated the volcanic evolution of St. Paul Island, creating a geologic map, and predicting volcanic hazards in the event of a future eruption. Her knowledge of the Pribilof Islands and the Bering Sea region led to her work as a consulting geologist on St. George Island for NOAA’s Pribilof Restoration Project.

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