Engineering a Solution for Managing Fish Waste

  • Alexandra West JefferiesEmail author
Part of the Environmental Discourses in Science Education book series (EDSE, volume 2)


Fishing on rivers in Alaska involves unique challenges. While the fish are often plentiful, the competition for catching these fish can be fierce. The Russian River on the Kenai Peninsula in southcentral Alaska is home to one of the most popular sport fisheries in the world, with two large annual sockeye salmon runs attracting thousands of anglers every summer. The Russian River also provides key habitat to a healthy population of brown bears, many of which have learned that rather than catching their own fish, they can rely instead on an ample supply of poorly discarded fish carcasses left behind by careless anglers. Human/bear interactions in this specific region have been studied for years, and remain a point of concern for experts and government agencies; the interactions have led to area closures and many bear deaths in defense of life and property. The most common solution to such confrontations is to remove the bear attractant: fish waste. Many efforts to accomplish this objective have been attempted, but to date, all have been unsuccessful. A possible solution? Engineering a way to harness the energy of the river and using that energy to grind the large pieces of fish waste, transport and disperse the smaller pieces downstream, and return the important marine nutrients to the ecosystem at concentrations low enough to avoid attracting bears.


Fishing Waste Grinder Bear Hydro-power 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.AnchorageUSA

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