There’s a rare guest in the Mendenhall Lake this week.
A seal was spotted Friday morning, cruising between the icebergs in the lake.
“It’s an interesting phenomenon that every once in a while we have one or possibly two seals,” Laurie Craig said. Craig is the lead naturalist for the Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center.
While the lake is about 6 miles from seawater, Craig said the presence of seals indicates that the fish are coming.
“We don’t expect sockeye until normally the third week of July, but this year who knows,” Craig said.
There have been two other sightings so far this year with one in May and the other in June.
Gail Blundell thinks it’s most likely a juvenile harbor seal.
Blundell is a Wildlife Biologist with the Alaska Department of Fish & Game. She heads up the statewide Harbor Seal Research Program.
“It’s not surprising, they do swim up rivers and they follow food,” Blundell said.
While it’s not clear how long the seal has been in the lake, it won’t likely be there long.
“My guess is this one will just be there temporarily and will find that there’s nothing worth being up there for and will turn around and head back,” Blundell said.
- "A lot of ice experts, including myself, thought we were headed for a record year minimum," said Hajo Eicken, a professor at the International Arctic Research Center at the University of Alaska Fairbanks.
- Despite rainy weather, the luxury cruise liner Crystal Serenity arrived in Nome on schedule, Sunday morning. About a thousand people poured out of the floating hotel and emptied into the town of Nome for a full day of scheduled activities and events, including the formal commemoration held at the Nome Mini Convention Center.
- Kenai Peninsula Assembly Vice President Brent Johnson plans to introduce an ordinance at the meeting Tuesday, August 23, that would replace the invocation or prayer said at the beginning of meetings with a moment of silence.