Saturday, August 06, 2011

Kenai Fjords National Park Wildlife Part 2

In my previous post, Kenai Fjords National Park Wildlife Part 1, I shared some wildlife that we were lucky enough to see and experience during our visit at the fjords, which is shaped by glaciers, earthquakes and ocean storms. This rich assemblage of wildlife habitat is home to whales, bears, sea otters, seals, sea lions, and many more. In addition to whales, sea otters, sea lions and marmots, here are some more wildlife we saw and experienced at Kenai Fjords National Park,
Dall's porpoise are often called by visitors as "little orcas". They are considered on the the fastest of the smaller cetaceans, they reach speeds close to 35 miles per hour.
Dall's Porpoise
Similar to dolphins, we saw them playing and riding on the bow waves of the small ship we took for the 6-hr Kenai Fjords National Park Glacier and Wildlife Cruise. 
Seal on Ice
Seal Inspecting This Ice
Harbor seals haul out on boulders near shore at high tide and on ice flows in front of tidewater glaciers. Transient orcas, bears and large sharks feed on seals, however, orcas and bears do not hunt on ice, thus the floating ice and icebergs are a safe haul out for the seals. The ice also serves as their viewing platform for fishes they can hunt. 
Flock of Murre and Puffin (both murre and puffin belong to alcid family)
Birds at Kenai Fjords National Park are known to be probably better in diving and swimming than flying. Murres are especially abundant in Alaska, but they can be found South in Northern California. Murres are mid-water feeders that can dive up to 600 ft and swallow their prey under water. 
Puffins, like murre, belong to the alcid family. Alcids are group of diving birds that swim underwater using their wings for propulsion and their feet for steering.  Both bald eagles and peregrine falcons feed on puffins and murres,  to protect themselves from puffin attack, puffins and murres fly in large groups forming a wheel which is called wheeling, making it difficult for eagles and falcons to prey on them. 
Bald Eagle
Bald eagles are unique to North America, and has been the United State's national bird since 1782 symbolizing wilderness, power and freedom.  
For more about Kenai Fjords National Park, a park dominated by ice that is entwined with the sea, please visit the park's website, Kenai Fjords
Facebook Twitter StumbleUpon Digg Delicious Reddit Technorati Mixx Linkedin


  1. OOH I love the Bald Eagle, what a majestic bird. You are lucky to not only have seen one but been able to photograph it.

  2. The experience continues to tell me stories....

  3. your pictures are enough to tell stories and what a wonderful vacation you had.

  4. I read the review over one Nature Center Magazine and decided to check out your blog. Boy...I am glad I did!
    Very cool nature blog!!!

  5. I love this wonderful collection of spectacular animals.

  6. wow ! very beautiful park ! place i love the all thing those are mention in the post

  7. What amazing photos! I love seeing unusual wildlife.

  8. Ohh my Beth! Those sights are to die for. Bald eagle.. orca.. I love them all. It is my wish that someday I get to see those too. Happy blogging, girl! Mwa!

  9. wow! it's always the first word that comes to mind each time i view your the Flock of Murre and Puffin most....

  10. Alaska is such a beautiful place, and so many wondrous things to see. Your photos are amazing.

  11. I love love your wildlife shots but the bald eagle is just magnificent.

    I'm very glad that you had such an amazing adventure and brought back so many beautiful photos to show us.