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Miss Top of the World waves to the crowd during the July 4th celebration in Barrow, the North Slope’s largest village. Barrow is home to 5,000 people, half of the total on the Slope.

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An elder from the village of Barrow butchers a young walruson an ice flow near Barrow. Walrus are prized for their meat and tusks.

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Young boys watch their elders compete in a seal skin boat race off the coast of Barrow.

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Eskimo hunters take shots at ringed seals off the coast of Barrow. A few seals were wounded but sank out of reach.

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A young man is tossed high in the air during a traditional blanket toss, part of a whaling feast in Barrow.

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Contestants in the Barrow’s cutest baby contest strut theirstuff in coats made of seals and wolves.

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Miss Top of the World waves to the crowd during the July 4th celebration in Barrow, the North Slope’s largest village. Barrow is home to 5,000 people, half of the total on the Slope.

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A freshly killed spotted seal awaits butchering in downtownBarrow.

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A dead bowhead whale lies on the beach in Kaktovik. The village is allowed by law to take three whales each fall for the meat and baleen. First the whale is washed with a front-end loader, then butchering begins.

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A dead bowhead whale lies on the beach in Kaktovik. The village is allowed by law to take three whales each fall for the meat and baleen. First the whale is washed with a front-end loader, then butchering begins.

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A dead bowhead whale lies on the beach in Kaktovik. The village is allowed by law to take three whales each fall for the meat and baleen. First the whale is washed with a front-end loader, then butchering begins.

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A youth camp for native kids on the outskirts of Kaktovik, Alaska. Attendees learns ancestral skills that are fast disappearing in favor of Western culture.

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A youth camp for native kids on the outskirts of Kaktovik, Alaska. Attendees learns ancestral skills that are fast disappearing in favor of Western culture.

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The feet of photographer Joel Sartore were covered in mosquitoes within five minutes of removing his boots. Small insects may be a nuisance, but are critical in anchoring the bottom of the food chain during the short summer season on the North Slope.

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Scientists at the Toolik Research Center study the effects of global warming on the tundra. If the permafrost melts, the amount of carbon released into the air could make man-madeemissions look trivial, the scientists said. Shown are botanists studying a thermokarst in which the permafrost has melted away

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Scientists at the Toolik Research Center study the effects of global warming on the tundra. If the permafrost melts, the amount of carbon released into the air could make man-madeemissions look trivial, the scientists said. Shown are botanists studying tundra plants by the square meter.

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Live birds serve as bait in a raven study area in Prudhoe Bay. The oil industry sponsors projects to trap and radio tag the birds in order to learn more about them. Ravens are quite disruptive to the oil industry, often dropping wire and nesting material into power transformers.

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Oil workers perform a ‘workover’ on a thirty-year-old well head in Prudhoe Bay. Old wells need constant coaxing to continue to bring up oil. Some 95% of the fluid coming up now is water.

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Oil bubbles up out of the ground at Umiat, the first site where oil was discovered on the North Slope. The oil-rich area is too far removed from the Prudhoe Bay fields to make transport possible at this time.

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An aerial of Prudhoe Bay. In operation since the 1970’s, the aging field is nearing the end of its life with no funding or plans in place to clean up the mess when the oil plays out. This area is thought to be one of the largest industrial zones on Earth.

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A researcher examines peregrine falcon chicks in a nest on Alaska’s North Slope.

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A red phalarope (Phalaropus fulicarius) checks his nest on the tundra near Barrow, Alaska.

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A red phalarope (Phalaropus fulicarius) checks his nest on the tundra near Barrow, Alaska.

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A parasitic jaeger (Stercorarius parasiticus) dive swoops past the photographer on the wide-open tundra near Barrow, Alaska.

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A close-up of a black brandt in Alaska’s North Slope.

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A close-up of a black brandt in Alaska’s North Slope.

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Biologists band black brandt and check for avian flu on Alaska’s North Slope.

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A white-fronted goose prepares for flight in Alaska’s North Slope.

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Black brant (Branta bernicla nigricans) shown from above at Teshekpuk Lake, Alaska.

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White-fronted geese in Alaska’s North Slope near Teshukpuk Lake.

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White-fronted geese under go capture and leg banding by biologists on the western part of the Slope near Teshukpuk Lake. The on going study has surveyed the population, age and health of several goose species for decades in hope of better managing the flocks.

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White-fronted geese under go capture and leg banding by biologists on the western part of the Slope near Teshukpuk Lake. The on going study has surveyed the population, age and health of several goose species for decades in hope of better managing the flocks.

Photo: Julie Jensen Director of Marketing | WVC O: 866.800.7326 | D: 702.443.9249 | E: j.jensen@wvc.org

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