Troopers investigate Palmer homicide: Alaska State Troopers reported Wednesday that they were investigating a homicide in the Matanuska-Susitna Borough community of Palmer after the body of 60-year-old Theodore Konyot was discovered by a family member on Monday. Troopers reported that a marijuana grow of about 60 plants was also discovered at Konyot's residence after his death was reported at about 8 p.m. Monday. Authorities had not immediately ruled the death a homicide but are now asking for anyone who may have seen any suspicious activity in the area of Konyot's home -- located around mile 1.1 of Knik River Road -- or who may have had contact with Konyot prior to his death to contact the Alaska State Troopers or call Crime Stoppers at 907-745-3333.
Goats survive avalanche: Some astonishing footage of nine chamois goats narrowly escaping an avalanche in France is making the rounds. Avalanches are also a source of danger to North America’s only relative of the these animals, the mountain goats. According to an Alaska Department of Fish and Game publication, “Avalanches are an ever-present threat for mountain goats during winter and can be a significant cause of mortality in some areas.” Still, the slides are a blessing as well as a curse, as they can also open up high-altitude habitat critical to the animal’s survival.
Europe votes down -- barely -- a deep-water trawling ban: The European Parliament on Tuesday narrowly struck down a proposal to do away with deep-water trawling -- trawling in waters deeper that 600 meters (a mark just shy of 2,000 feet), according to the New York Times. The vote was narrow -- 342-326, with 19 abstentions -- and some observers had expected it to pass, especially since the European fisheries commissioner supported it. The parliament did end the practice in some areas deemed ecologically sensitive. Controversy over trawling -- and not just the deep-water variety -- has its own his history in Alaska, and some groups of fisherman representing subsistence users and other gear types are among its most vocal critics.
Winter storm heading for Southeast: The National Weather Service has issued winter storm warnings for much of Southeast Alaska, from Cape Fairweather to Misty Fjords National Monumen. Snowfall totals of 13 to 24 inches are expected in Juneau, while winds could reach speeds of upwards of 30 mph in places. Winds will be higher in coastal areas -- gale winds with sustained speeds of 35 knots, and 14-foot seas are predicted for some portions of the coast -- and those areas will receive rain, not snow.