Kachemak Bay

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The weather on January 9th may not be conducive to riding a jet ski in Alaska waters, but that’s the date the State of Alaska has chosen for the return of personal watercraft to Kachemak Bay.
    In an order signed by an aide in Lieutenant Governor Kevin Meyer’s office on his behalf, the state law that prohibited personal watercraft use in Kachemak Bay and the Fox River Flats Critical Habitat Areas was repealed.
    The order came from Alaska Department of Fish and Game Commissioner Doug Vincent-Lang.

State of Alaska


The ban on personal watercraft in Kachemak Bay and Fox River Flats is up for public comment until January 6, 2020. Personal watercraft have been banned from Kachemak Bay and Fox River Flats  since 2001.

Public comments are all directed through one person, Rick Green, appointed by Governor Dunleavy to serve as Special Assistant to the Alaska Department of Fish and Game Comminssioner Doug Vincent-Lang.
KBBI’s Kathleen Gustafson spoke to Green about the proposed repeal.

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The Alaska Department of Fish and Game proposes to repeal the ban on personal watercraft use in Fox River Flats and Kachemak Bay Critical Habitat Areas.
The ban was enacted in 2001. 

Robert Archibald is the chair of The Kachemak Bay State Park Citizens Advisory Board.  Their next meeting is on Wednesday, December 11 at Islands and Ocean Visitor Center in Homer. Archibald says the watercraft repeal is going on the agenda.

"We will be discussing that as a board, whether to pass a resolution for or against that," said Archibald.

Courtesy of Mike DeVany.

Kachemak Bay was once abundant with crab, shrimp and other shellfish species. But by the early 1990s, populations hit rock bottom. Now, a scientist and a college student are hoping to find out more about what happened. But they’re not looking for clues in the water. They want to hear from fishermen and those who were in the fishing industry at that time.

Homer resident Mike DeVaney flipped through a photo album from the 1980s and pointed to a picture of someone holding a large king crab.

Marilyn Sigman

Throughout her former job as the director of the Center for Alaska Coastal Studies, Marilyn Sigman, saw how climate change was affecting the state. But instead of researching how climate change might develop in the future, she decided to look to the past, specifically at how Kachemak Bay’s climate has changed over time and how people have adapted. Her book “Entangled: People and Ecological Change in Alaska’s Kachemak Bay” is coming out on February 15th. Renee Gross sat down with Sigman to talk more:   

Kachemak Bay wetlands could be profitable for landowners

Oct 3, 2017
Courtesy of Ginger Frizzell

What if you could get paid for simply agreeing to not develop any wetlands on your property? The idea is to store carbon in marshes and bogs, preventing the greenhouse gas from entering the atmosphere, and the Kachemak Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve wants to know if enough carbon is stored around Kachemak Bay to turn a profit.

Japanese Navy anchors near Homer

Sep 25, 2017
Aaron Bolton, KBBI News

Two Japanese naval destroyers are anchored in Kachemak Bay near Homer. The ships are passing through on their way to Anchorage for a “good-will” port call.

The Japanese Maritime Self Defense Force has been traveling the world since May, making port calls in South America, Canada, along the East Coast and even Pearl Harbor. About 500 sailors are on board both ships, but the six-month tour is primarily part of an effort to train 200 new cadets.

Inlet Keeper

A Cook Inlet Health Check
Guests: Angela Doroff from the Kachemak Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve, and Bob Shavelson from Inlet Keeper.

Cranes Return to Kachemak Bay

Apr 22, 2017
Nina Faust

If you would like to contribute to Kachemak Crane Watch's tracking and research, call 235-6262 or send an email to reports@cranewatch.org. Faust is tracking information about nesting pairs - the date they started nesting, the date they hatch their colts, and at the end of the season, when they fledge.
For complete information, go to http://cranewatch.org

Contaminated Shellfish Found In Homer Harbor

Aug 24, 2016
Photo by Kathy Kartchner

The State Department of Health and Social Services is warning residents to exercise caution when collecting shellfish in Homer harbor.

Recent tests have shown elevated saxitoxin levels in blue mussels.

Catherine Bursch is the Harmful Species Program Coordinator at Kachemak Bay Research Reserve. She samples blue mussels every two weeks in Homer harbor to monitor for toxins.

Drill Rigs, the Homer Port and Critical Habitat

Apr 12, 2016
Photo by Quinton Chandler/KBBI

The Randolph Yost, a jackup rig contracted by Furie Operating Alaska, is currently docked in the Port of Homer and the city is making $1,000 per day in dockage fees. The port provided similar services to another rig in 2012, but in the process a set of rules the state created to protect Kachemak Bay were broken.

High Winds Expected for Southern Kenai Peninsula

Dec 29, 2015

The National Weather Service has issued a high wind warning for the Southern Kenai Peninsula. Luis Ingram, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Anchorage, says winds could gust up to 75 miles per hour.

“For the Kachemak Bay area we’re specifically looking for mostly just high winds with that potential of gusts up to 75 miles an hour. And as we go into late morning and midday those winds should be slacking off,” said Ingram.