KETCHIKAN, Alaska - Wild Alaska Live, a BBC Earth and PBS coproduction, invites viewers to share an adventure in the Tongass National Forest. The program will broadcast live (July 23, 26, and 30) from the Mendenhall Glacier Recreation Area and two other Alaska locations. Chris Kratt and Martin Kratt, zoologists and stars of the PBS KIDS series Wild Kratts, will host what they describe as an “expedition-in-progress” to experience the natural beauty and wildlife of Alaska.
The Tongass National Forest and other locations including Kenai Fjords National Park and Katmai National Park were chosen because of their significance as places where raw, unspoiled wilderness exists. “These places and others are key habitats for a wide variety of wildlife species,” explains host Chris Kratt. “They’re the types of places for any wildlife adventurer’s ‘bucket list.’ Tongass National Forest is the largest national forest in all of the USA – 17 million acres of unique temperate rain forest habitat with rare and classic American wildlife – like bald eagles, mountain goats, deer, wolves, sea otters, orcas, Arctic terns and so much more.”
Wild Alaska Live launches in late July to showcase the natural pulse of the ecosystem during the bountiful summer season when the full spectrum of wild Alaska wildlife – bears, eagles, salmon, whales, and more – are most active in the coastal waters, streams, rainforest, and glacial landscape of the Tongass National Forest. The show will also highlight the relationship between people and the land, taking time to recognize the locations as the traditional homelands of Alaska Natives including the Tlingit, Haida, and Tsimshian people of southeast Alaska.
As with any successful expedition, first-rate preparation is key. Forest Service employees have been in action mode since long before the cameras are scheduled to go live from BBC Earth’s production office in front of Mendenhall Glacier. In the months and weeks preceding the July premiere, Tongass and Alaska Region employees have excelled at administering special use permits for commercial filming in multiple locations; serving as location, wildlife, and cultural issue experts; and coordinating media and public outreach with the BBC production team. The professionalism of the Forest Service’s “expedition” team combined with the magnificence of the Tongass National Forest is sure to result in a show not to be missed.