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Governor Walker presents KHS student with Wings Over Alaska certificate.

 

One Kodiak High School student celebrated the culmination of years of birding today with the Governor of Alaska on hand to witness the achievement in person.

 

Over the past 12 years KHS student Keith Bruce has catalogued more than 275 different species of birds in the state as part of the Wings Over Alaska program. He has traveled to far flung corners of the state, such as Nome and St. Paul Island, all as part of a bird-watching hobby which has become a passion for him.

 

The Wings Over Alaska program is sponsored by the Alaska Department of Fish and Game and rewards those who can spot, identify, and catalogue at least 50 different species of birds. The highest award for identifying 275 bird species comes with a certificate signed by the Governor.

 

Governor Bill Walker is in Kodiak to sign House Bill 56, which increases loan caps for commercial fishermen. In addition to signing the Wings Over Alaska recognition, the governor visited an English Language Acquisition Program classroom in the high school and answered questions from students.

 

If you’re curious, a total of 471 species of birds have been identified in Alaska to date.

 

Photos courtesy of Wes Hanna and Elizabeth Bender