Alaska News Nightly: February 4, 2010

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Point Hope Caribou Hunters Found Guilty
Lori Townsend, APRN – Anchorage
The three men on trial in Point Hope for wasting Caribou meat were found guilty today. Aqquilluk Hank, Chester Koonuk and Roy Miller Junior were tried in a makeshift courtroom this week in Point Hope’s community center. The case dates back to 2008, when state troopers said numerous caribou were left to rot on the tundra when they should have been salvaged.

Authorities Investigate Bird Killings in Sitka
Robert Woolsey, KCAW – Sitka
What began with the death of a swan last month in Sitka’s Starrigavan Valley has turned into spree of protected bird killings.Federal and state authorities are investigating the shooting of six bald eagles on popular trails around Sitka. One of the dead birds had been recently released by the Alaska Raptor Center.

Homer Pilot Confronts Haiti Bureaucracy
Aaron Selbig, KBBI – Homer
A Homer pilot who has spent the last two weeks helping the aid organization Agape Flights deliver aid to earthquake victims in Haiti made her first flight into the country on Monday.

Caribou Population on Unimak Island Plummets
Anne Hillman, KUCB – Unalaska
The caribou population on Unimak Island has dropped to dangerously low levels and the Alaska Department of Fish & Game is developing a plan to help restore it. Recent surveys found only 300 caribou on the island in the far Eastern Aleutians, and only 15 of them were bulls. In 2009, only seven calves survived into recruitment, mostly because of predation by wolves.

Alaska Mayors Look for Solutions to High Energy Costs
Casey Kelly, KTOO – Juneau
The biggest economic hurdle in rural Alaska is high energy costs. That was the message from about 50 elected officials who took part in Tuesday’s Alaska Conference of Mayors. The conference was part of the Alaska Municipal League’s annual legislative meeting happening this week in Juneau. One of AML’s priorities for this session is a statewide energy plan for local communities.

Juneau Prepares Bid for Arctic Winter Games
Rosemarie Alexander, KTOO – Juneau
Juneau may again bid to host the Arctic Winter Games. Mayor Bruce Botelho has called an organizational meeting tonight (Thursday), with an eye on a bid for 2014. KTOO’s Rosemarie Alexander looks at what’s been learned since Juneau’s previous bid for the games.