Not eggs, after all.
Scientists have done a more detailed examination of that mysterious orange goo that showed up recently in a lagoon near Kivalina.
They are fungal spores.
Samples were sent down to the NOAA’s National Ocean Service Center for Coastal Environmental Health and Biomolecular Research in Charleston, South Carolina. Doctor Steve Morton, a research oceanographer there, said they used an electron scanning micrograph to examine in greater detail the tiny orange balls that were seen in earlier pictures.
“It was just a very interesting, unusual event,” said Morton. “I’ve been during oceanographic work on red tides for 20 years now. This is the first one I’ve ever seen that’s caused by a fungal spore.”
Morton says the spores are consistent with a fungus that causes rust, or the discoloration that appears on plant leaves and stems. But it’s still unclear which of the 78-hundred types of rust fungi is the Kivalina goo.
Initial analysis by NOAA’s Ted Stevens Marine Institute at Auke Bay showed what appeared to be a concentration of microscopic eggs, possibly of an invertebrate like a copepod.
- In the past month, the top three leaders at the Alaska Mental Health Trust Authority have submitted letters of resignation. The shake up comes at a time when the organization, which manages funds for mental health and substance abuse programming across the state, is undergoing a special legislative audit over concerns about financial mismanagement.
- Alaska’s U.S. senators have issued a second round of statements following the rally of white nationalists in Charlottesville, Virginia. This time their criticisms are aimed at President Donald Trump.
- States across the lower 48 will get to see a full solar eclipse Monday, August 21, as the moon slides directly in front of the sun for roughly two minutes. People from all over the world are flocking to towns that will fall under the path of the moon’s shadow.
- A science, technology, engineering, and math program geared towards Alaska Native students has guided one Kodiak local through both middle school and high school. And now, he’s off to college.