• Forecast
  • News Tip
  • Categories
Temperature Precipitation
Estimated read time
2m 13s

Get Out: Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center

By Brett Shepard 6:48 PM May 1, 2014
PORTAGE –

This week’s edition is for the animal lovers. We went to Portage for an up-close look at a unique park in this beautiful corner of the state.

Portage is at the end of the Turnagain Arm and is one of the most scenic spots in Southcentral Alaska.

There are a large number of animals that get to call this amazing spot home at the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center.

It’s a 200-acre park that is designed to be an open, more natural environment.

“With all of our animals we do everything we can do to introduce them back into the wild. So every animal here has a special and unique story. A special and unique reason why they are here in captivity,” said Scott Michaelis the director of marketing and sales at the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center.

Aside from the elk, all of the animals at the park are exclusively Alaskan.

And since it’s spring they are expecting new additions to their elk herd, musk ox and big additions to their wood bison.

“A really exciting thing this spring will be for our wood bison herd. We could expect as many as 50 newborn calves,” Michaelis said.

Many of the wood bison will be moving from Portage in the near future as AWEC employees hope to re-introduce many of them into the wilds of Alaska in 2015.

This spring has brought us warm weather and all of the bears have come out of their dens, though they were being a bit shy when we were there.

The bear den has been the site of a lot of work recently with a new boardwalk and a soon-to-open amphitheater.

If you are familiar with the weather in Portage it can be kind of messy at times. The great thing about this park is that you can enjoy it from the comfort of your car when the weather does get a little ugly.

Rain or shine the animals and visitors seem to enjoy themselves.

“Nice to kind of see them in a natural habitat. You can’t beat the background of the mountains. I mean it’s like nothing we’ve seen before,” Joy Downs from Raleigh, North Carolina.

The bear enclosure, it’s 18 acres, and at a zoo you just see a pen with a bear in it. This way you get the wild and the animal there. It just seems more natural,” said Joy’s husband Tim.

For more information on the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center you can visit their website at http://www.alaskawildlife.org

If you have any ideas for the Get Out series you can contact Brett Shepard at bshepard@ktva.com.

Latest Stories

  • Lifestyle

    Lance Mackey withdraws from upcoming Iditarod

    by KTVA CBS 11 News on Sep 26, 11:57

    Lance Mackey will not be racing in the 2017 Iditarod because of “health reasons,” according to a Facebook post from the Iditarod Trail Committee. Mackey, a four-time Iditarod champion, has faced medical issues for more than a decade, which has hampered his mushing in recent years. In the 2016 race to Nome, Mackey struggled with […]

  • Politics

    Polls show tight presidential race nationally, in battleground states

    by CBS News on Sep 26, 11:03

    Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump are deadlocked nationally and are virtually tied in two battleground states, according to new polls released Monday. In a head-to-head national contest, voters are split 46 percent to 46 percent between Clinton and Trump, according to a Bloomberg survey. Taking third-party candidates into account, Trump leads Clinton 43 percent to 41 […]

  • Lifestyle

    Humpbacks thrive and adapt in southeast Alaska

    by Emily Carlson on Sep 26, 10:52

    Earlier this month, most of the world’s humpback whales were removed from the endangered species list. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) says nine of 14 humpback populations have returned to healthy numbers after they were hunted to the brink of extinction. However, their rebounded numbers are causing them to do something they have never […]

  • News

    FBI: Rise in murder, violent crime in 2015, after historic lows

    by CBS/AP on Sep 26, 9:26

    Last Updated Sep 26, 2016 12:24 PM EDT NEW YORK — Violent crimes in the United States increased 3.9 percent in 2015 from the year before, and cases of murder and non-negligent homicide rose 10.8 percent, according to new data released Monday by the FBI. The uptick in violence came after years of decline; in 2014 violent crime and […]

  • News

    Expert recommends consolidation for southeast Alaska hospitals

    by Associated Press on Sep 26, 7:46

    Two Alaska hospitals facing financial challenges will consider consolidation. KCAW-FM reports the Sitka Community Hospital board plans to discuss possible courses of action at a Monday work session. Hospital CEO Rob Allen says the hospitals are anticipating the needs of an aging population as well as less funding from the state. ECG Management Consultants came up […]

  • Sports

    LSU fires head football coach Les Miles

    by Associated Press on Sep 25, 22:49

    Les Miles has finally been done in by one of the frantic finishes that came to define the Mad Hatter’s tenure at LSU. LSU fired Miles and offensive coordinator Cam Cameron on Sunday, and promoted defensive line coach Ed Orgeron to interim head coach. The moves came less than 24 hours after Miles briefly watched his […]

  • Sports

    Baseball mourns death of Marlins ace Jose Fernandez

    by CBS/AP on Sep 25, 22:42

    Miami Marlins players have gathered at the team’s ballpark to grieve together following the death of teammate Jose Fernandez. The 24-year-old pitcher and two of his friends were killed when their boat smashed into a jetty off Miami Beach early today. Authorities say the 32-foot boat was demolished when it hit the rocks at full speed. […]

  • News

    Mall victims include teen, probation officer, Boeing worker

    by Associated Press on Sep 25, 18:53

    Five people died in the shooting at a Macy’s store in a mall north of Seattle. Authorities do not plan to make their identities public until Tuesday, but details about three of the victims have been reported by Washington state media. Here’s what is known about them: ___ SARAI LARA: The 16-year-old high school sophomore […]