• 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

  • News

    Mayor Sullivan: More funds needed to push SAP project forward

    by Lauren Maxwell on Feb 28, 11:31

    Anchorage’s troubled computer software system, known as SAP, needs more cash to get it going. Mayor Dan Sullivan’s administration asked the Anchorage Assembly Friday to spend $8.3 million to hire consultants who can help to push the project forward. Sullivan said the money will pay for contracts that would run through Sept. 30 and carry over […]

  • News

    Pedestrian running across Muldoon Road struck by SUV

    by KTVA CBS 11 News on Feb 28, 0:16

    A pedestrian running across Muldoon Road late Friday night was struck by an oncoming vehicle, police say. Just after 11 p.m., six units from the Anchorage Police Department responded to the scene of a collision involving a Toyota SUV and a male pedestrian near Duben Avenue. The driver remained on scene and was cooperating with […]

  • News

    2014 Alaska drug report shows increases in heroin and meth use

    by KTVA CBS 11 News on Feb 27, 22:42

    A report highlighting cases related to substance abuse in Alaska in 2014 was released by the Department of Public Safety Friday. The Statewide Drug Enforcement Unit’s 2014 annual drug report covered arrests and seizures of items ranging from alcohol and prescription medication to heroin and meth labs. Over $28 million worth of drugs — in street […]

  • News

    CANstruction raises hunger awareness

    by Bonney Bowman on Feb 27, 21:04

    Making art and raising awareness about hunger, all with cans of food — the 2015 CANstruction food drive kicked off Friday at University Mall. Teams have 12 hours to build large sculptures, using only canned food. This year’s theme is “Under the Sea.” Organizers say it’s a great way to bring the issue of hunger in […]

  • Weather

    Evening News weather, Feb. 27

    by KTVA Weather on Feb 27, 20:55

    Kenai Peninsula/Prince William Sound There will be light snow on Saturday with some rain in there, too. No accumulation is expected in lower elevations. Valdez will only have snow. Southeast Southeast Alaska will have cloudy skies with light wind. Interior/North Slope Locations will have snow, blowing snow and blizzard conditions depending on the location. Mat-Su […]

  • News

    Students recreate tent city in school gym

    by Shannon Ballard on Feb 27, 20:43

    From a tent city to modern metropolis, Anchorage has come a long way in its 100 years. Some local students have brought to life a piece of the town’s history in a very real way. Polaris K-12 School students Breelyn Mangold and Canzada Maruski were curious about what was life like back in 1915. The girls […]

  • News

    Students link up for Anchorage children’s hospital

    by Shannon Ballard on Feb 27, 20:31

    Students around Anchorage found out that a little effort can reap big results. Together they raised more than $4,000 for the Children’s Hospital at Providence. All it took was a few weeks of selling small paper links for the Chains of Caring project for 25 cents, which added up. Highland Tech High School alone raised nearly $300. […]

  • Lifestyle

    Fur Rondy kicks off in downtown Anchorage

    by KTVA CBS 11 News on Feb 27, 18:35

    Friday marks the official start of the 80th annual Fur Rendezvous Festival in downtown Anchorage. The 10-day-long festival includes annual favorites, such as the snow sculpture competition, outhouse race and the Running of the Reindeer. The warm winter and lack of snow led to the cancellation of the Fur Rondy World Championship sled dog races this […]