Joe Viechnicki, KFSK - Petersburg

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Joe Viechnicki is a reporter at KFSK in Petersburg.
(Photo from alaskaair.com)

Cargo-passenger “combi” jets out from Alaska Airlines lineup in 2017

Alaska Airlines will be phasing out its combination cargo and passenger planes used in Southeast Alaska and elsewhere around the state.

Tongass plan drafts timeline for transition to young-growth harvest

The U.S. Forest Service has released a new plan for managing timber lands on the Tongass National Forest in Southeast Alaska. It puts a timeline on the transition from young- to old-growth logging and it attempts to make it easier to develop hydro projects on forest land. Download Audio

Alaska budget cuts lead to less fishing opportunity

Because of Alaska’s budget crisis, state agencies cut spending this year and are planning additional reductions in the next few years. For the Alaska Department of Fish and Game, those cuts have meant less monitoring of fish runs, a change that will lead to more conservative management and less fishing opportunity. That was the message from Fish and Game officials to a commercial fishing industry organization that met in Petersburg in late October.

Scientists ID dead killer whale found in Southeast

Scientists have identified the dead killer whale found on a shoreline in Southeast Alaska last week. The dead whale was discovered by a moose hunter last week, about 25 miles from Petersburg.

Scientists ID dead orca in Southeast Alaska

Scientists have identified the dead killer whale found on a shoreline in Southeast Alaska last week. NOAA fisheries spokesperson Julie Speegle says a team of scientists made it to the Portage Bay on northern Kupreanof Island Monday.

Independent ferry tied up for repairs in Wrangell

An independent ferry in Southeast Alaska is tied up with mechanical problems in Wrangell, the latest in series of delays and difficulties for the new service.

Hurricane Oho barrels in on Southeast

The remnants of a hurricane in the Pacific will bring high winds and heavy rains to southern and central Southeast Alaska on Friday. Download Audio

Middle schoolers join in monitoring for invasives in Petersburg harbor

Sixth graders were in Petersburg’s Middle Harbor Thursday morning checking for an invasive species that has shown up on the waterfront not too far away in Sitka. So far there’s no sign yet of the tunicate called D Vex here.

Southeast feels the sting of curtailed ferry service

People who use the Alaska Marine Highway System ferries will have longer travel times and less service next year under a proposed summer schedule released by the state this week. The Marine Highway is proposing to keep the state’s two fast catamarans tied up next year along with two other, older vessels. That will mean fewer stops in some coastal communities. Download Audio

Launch of Independent Ferry Service Delayed In Southeast

A new independent ferry service in Southeast Alaska is delaying the start-up of service that was planned for this weekend.

Strong King Salmon Catch Means Early Closure For Southeast Trollers

Southeast Alaska’s commercial salmon trollers are heading back into port now that the winter season has closed. Thanks to strong catches of king salmon on the outer coast near Sitka. Download Audio

Petersburg Man Arrested For Meth Importing

Petersburg police and the Southeast Alaska Cities Against Drugs task force arrested a Petersburg man this week in an investigation into two packages of methamphetamine mailed to town.

Commission Recommends Boost In Coast-Wide Halibut Catch

The International Pacific Halibut Commission Friday voted to recommend a 1.7-million pound increase in the coast-wide catch of halibut. The joint U.S. and Canadian body oversees management of the highly prized bottom fish from California to Alaska. The commission held its annual meeting in Vancouver, British Columbia this week.

Southeast Divers Finish Up Sea Cucumber Season

It was a relatively quick season for Southeast Alaska sea cucumber divers. The season closed in mid-November after the fleet landed a little more than a million pounds of the seafood delicacy. Meanwhile, it looks like diving for geoduck clams might not be over so quickly. Download Audio

Deadline Set; Southeast Wolves To Undergo ESA Review

The federal government has agreed to a deadline of the end of next year for an endangered species review for wolves in Southeast Alaska. Listen now:

Alaska Seeks Continued Involvement In BC Mine Review

The state of Alaska is requesting to be involved with Canadian approval of a proposed copper and gold mine across the border in British Columbia. State commissioners of three departments submitted comments on Seabridge Gold’s Kerr-Sulphurets-Mitchell or KSM mine this month. Download Audio:

Air Force Cleans Up Cold War-Era Radio Site In Southeast

A large soil clean-up project at a former Cold War mountaintop radio site near Petersburg is underway this summer. A contractor for the U.S. Air Force is removing soil contaminated by fuel and building debris left at the site after it’s decommissioning almost three decades ago. Download Audio

Authorities Investigate Explosion in Petersburg

Details are emerging about an explosion that injured a Petersburg person over the weekend and has brought federal explosives agents there to investigate. Download Audio

Hatchery Chum Salmon Forecast Close To 2013 Levels

The first returns of hatchery chum salmon are showing up in fishing nets in Southeast Alaska this month. Summer chums play an important part in the early season for net fishing fleets and the troll fleet as well. Hatchery officials are forecasting runs close to last year’s.

Hatchery in Kake closing June 30th

A hatchery in the Southeast community of Kake is closing its doors this month and has released its final chum, pink and coho salmon. There’s still some hope that a larger regional hatchery organization can figure out a way to restart the salmon enhancement program there.