The University of Alaska Foundation announces the winning proposal for the 2022 Angus Gavin Memorial Migratory Bird Research Grant

Anchorage, AK - Annie Maliguine, a master’s student in marine biology at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, is the recipient of the 2022 Angus Gavin Memorial Migratory Bird Research Grant. Her proposal, titled “Steller’s Eider Foraging Habitat in Izembek Lagoon, AK,” is focused on understanding how forage habitat conditions for Steller's eiders may have changed in the last two decades at Izembek Lagoon, Alaska.

Maliguine is comparing benthic data collected at the lagoon from 1998 and from 2018 to 2019. The eider population has declined dramatically at that site since the early 1980s and is now a federally threatened species. She is using her findings to create a habitat suitability model of the lagoon for eiders, and to understand factors causing habitat changes.

The Gavin Grant is awarded annually to support research on bird species found either permanently or seasonally in Alaska or its coastal waters, including their biology, general ecology, and habitat relationships. This specific project will assist in understanding how climate change may affect Alaska’s avian population over time.

The Gavin Grant was established in 1983 with gifts from ARCO and its employees to honor the memory of Angus Gavin, an environmental scientist and advisor to ARCO. Gavin was hand-picked by ARCO Chairman Robert O. Anderson to observe, categorize and quantify the little-known flora and fauna of Prudhoe Bay in 1969. Gavin’s work was instrumental in helping ARCO and the scientific community draw conclusions about the impact of oil field development on the ecology of the North Slope and to recommend operational changes that would minimize or negate any adverse effects on the environment. ARCO later became part of ConocoPhillips Alaska.

For more information, please contact Dory Straight at the UA Foundation, 907-450-8030