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Three Books on Beluga

This week our “Three Books on …” series takes us to Beluga. Here is a description of Beluga’s location and climate from the Alaska Communities Database:

Beluga is located 8 miles northeast of Tyonek, along Cook Inlet in the Kenai Peninsula Borough. It lies 40 air miles southwest of Anchorage. The community lies at approximately 61.171910° North Latitude and -151.168260° West Longitude. (Sec. 35, T017N, R010W, Seward Meridian.) Beluga is located in the Anchorage Recording District. Winter temperatures typically range 4 to 22 °F. Summer temperatures average 46 to 65 °F. Temperature extremes have been recorded from a low of -27 to a high of 91 °F. Average annual precipitation is 23 inches, and average annual snowfall is 82 inches.

Looking through WorldCat, we find these three books with Beluga as a subject, among others:

Stanek, Ronald T., Davin L. Holen, and Crystal Wassillie. 2007. Harvest and uses of wild resources in Tyonek and Beluga, Alaska, 2005-2006. Juneau: Alaska Dept. of Fish and Game, Division of Subsistence. Read this book online.

Diamond Alaska Coal Company, and Gilbert/Commonwealth (Firm). 1985. Feasibility study of the Beluga coal-fired power plant project. Jackson, Mich: Gilbert/Commonwealth Inc.

Placer Amex. 1977. Beluga coal project status report. San Francisco, Calif: Placer Amex Inc.

The town of Beluga gives me an opportunity to give a quick information literacy lesson. As you may know, Beluga is a type of whale. This means that my usual approach in this series of typing the town name and Alaska into WorldCat wasn’t that helpful. Beluga and Alaska got me a bunch of whale related reports in my first page of results. This is where the librarian’s friends Boolean and Wildcards come in. NOT is a Boolean operator that says “don’t include results that include the word(s) after NOT in my search.” A wildcard is a way to search for variations on a word.

Putting these together and using the special terms that WorldCat provides for these functions, I came up with:

beluga and alaska – whal?

This brought me records mentioning Beluga and Alaska, but keeping out whale, whales, whaling and other whal[whatever] words. If you find yourself swamped with lots of irrelevant results, try throwing in a NOT into your search engine or database. They’ll usually respond to “NOT” or the minus sign. Check your site’s help page for details.

Join us next week as our trek through WorldCat takes us to Bethel.

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