Graduate students offer free lecture on Alaska wilderness and predators

Rachel Wheat with a mountain lion
UCSC Ph.D. candidate Rachel Wheat with a mountain lion near Corralitos being studied as part of the UCSC Puma Project. (Photo by Yasaman Shakeri)

UC Santa Cruz wildlife biologists Yiwei Wang and Rachel Wheat will hold a free public lecture on Alaskan wildlife and the importance of salmon to the Alaskan ecosystem, Monday, June 25th from 6:30 to 8 p.m. at the UCSC Arboretum.

The lecture will provide an opportunity to discover more about the unique wildlife, ecosystems, and threats to Alaskan wilderness. Southeastern Alaska is one of the few pristine areas remaining in the United States, though it is threatened with urban and agricultural development and growing human populations, The region also may be subject to additional gold and silver mining.

The Ph.D. candidates in environmental studies at UCSC will exhibit photos and videos from motion-detecting cameras in the region and discuss their upcoming research project. They will also discuss issues facing the area -- should the focus be on economic benefits from mining development or protection of some of the country's last wild lands?

Light refreshments will be served before the lecture begins.

More information is available at or from Rachel Wheat,, 719-439-3397 or Yiwei Wang,, 408-858-1309.