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Conservation Plan for Alaska-Chukotka Polar Bears Approved

At the 5th meeting of the U.S.-Russia Polar Bear Commission, which
concluded today, Commissioners approved development of a Conservation
Management Plan for the shared Alaska-Chukotka polar bear population.  The
Conservation Management Plan identifies important habitats, high priority
research activities, and traditional ecological knowledge studies necessary
to provide information for the sound management of the shared population.
Federal Commissioners Geoffrey Haskett, Regional Director of the U.S. Fish
and Wildlife Services’ Alaska Region, and Amirkhan Amirkhanov, Deputy Head
of the Federal Supervisory Natural Resources Management Service, described
the activities of the Commission as an example of one of the best working
relationships and collaborative partnerships between the two countries.
Native Commissioners Jack Omelak, Executive Director of the Alaska Nanuuq
Commission and Sergey Kavry, Representative of the indigenous people of
Chukotka Autonomous District observed that the activities of the Commission
will help ensure the future conservation of the polar bear and the
preservation of Native peoples’ culture.
The 5th meeting of the Commission was held June 5-7 2013, at the Arctic and
Antarctic Research Institute in St. Petersburg, Russian Federation.
Participants included federal, state, and Native representatives from the
United States and Russian Federation.  The goal of the meeting was to
continue to implement the Bilateral Treaty for the Alaska-Chukotka polar
bear population, which inhabits the Bering and Chukchi seas and is shared
between the two countries.  The treaty between Native and government
representatives of the U.S. and Russia was signed in 2000 due to the need
for coordinated management of the shared Alaska-Chukotka polar bear
population that inhabits the Chukchi and northern Bering seas.
For more information about the treaty and Commission, please visit
http://alaska.fws.gov/fisheries/mmm/polarbear/bilateral.htm
*The mission of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is working with others
to conserve, protect, and enhance fish, wildlife, plants, and their
habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people. We are both a
leader and trusted partner in fish and wildlife conservation, known for our
scientific excellence, stewardship of lands and natural resources,
dedicated professionals, and commitment to public service. For more
information on our work and the people who make it happen, visit www.fws.gov.
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