Columbia Environmental Research Center


CERC’s priority is to continue the important work of the Department of the Interior and the USGS, while also maintaining the health and safety of our employees and community.  Based on guidance from the White House, the CDC, and state and local authorities, we are shifting our operations to a virtual mode and have minimal staffing within our offices.

Staff Directory

Comprehensive Sturgeon Research Project (CSRP) Blog

Comprehensive Sturgeon Research Project (CSRP) Blog

Learn how CERC research is contributing to the recovery of the endangered pallid sturgeon in the Missouri River

Read the Blog

Passive Sampling Using SPMDs and POCIS - Resources and Tools

Passive Sampling Using SPMDs and POCIS - Resources and Tools

CERC scientists are pioneers in the development of passive sampling techniques.

Resources & Tools


Date published: April 30, 2021

Media Alert: Portions of Missouri River to change color temporarily as USGS releases dye to study endangered pallid sturgeon

Scientists from the U.S. Geological Survey will conduct a dye-trace assessment. For a few hours during this research, several miles of the Missouri river will appear reddish due to non-toxic dye. The red color will dissipate rapidly and will disappear after it travels several miles downstream. During the study, USGS will deploy several boats on the river to monitor how and where the dye moves

Date published: January 4, 2021

CERC’s Research Supporting Conservation of Endangered Mussels Featured in the Columbia Missourian

CERC scientist James Kunz is featured in the Columbia Missourian on USGS research related to endangered mussels.

Date published: October 1, 2020

Invasive Mussel Species Impacts the Food Web in Lake Mead

In an article for the journal Science of the Total Environment, USGS scientists and others discuss the impact of invasive quagga mussels on the ecosystem of Lake Mead located on the border of Arizona and Nevada. 


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Year Published: 2021

The role of behavioral ecotoxicology in environmental protection

For decades, we have known that chemicals affect human and wildlife behavior. Moreover, due to recent technological and computational advances, scientists are now increasingly aware that a wide variety of contaminants and other environmental stressors adversely affect organismal behavior and subsequent ecological outcomes in terrestrial and...

Ford, Alex T.; Ågerstrand, Marlene; Brooks, Bryan W.; Allen, Joel; Bertram, Michael G.; Brodin, Tomas; Dang, Zhichao; Duquesne, Sabine; Sahm, René; Hoffmann, Frauke; Hollert, Henner; Jacob, Stefanie; Klüver, Nils; Lazorchak, James M.; Ledesma, Mariana; Melvin, Steven D.; Mohr, Silvia; Padilla, Stephanie; Pyle, Gregory G.; Scholz, Stefan; Saaristo, Minna; Smit, Els; Steevens, Jeffery; van den Berg, Sanne; Kloas, Werner; Wong, Bob B.M.; Ziegler, Michael; Maack, Gerd

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Year Published: 2021

Predicting the spatiotemporal exposure of aquatic species to intrusions of fire retardant in streams with limited data

Because fire retardant can enter streams and harm aquatic species including endangered fish, agencies such as the U.S. Forest Service (USFS) must estimate the downstream extent of toxic effects every time fire retardant enters streams (denoted as an “intrusion”). A challenge in estimating the length of stream affected by the intrusion...

Rehmann, Chris R.; Jackson, P. Ryan; Puglis, Holly J.

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Year Published: 2021

Embryo deformities and nesting trends in Kemp’s ridley sea turtles Lepidochelys kempii before and after the Deepwater Horizon oil spill

Kemp’s ridley sea turtles Lepidochelys kempii were disproportionately affected by the Deepwater Horizon (DWH) oil spill, which began on 20 April 2010. Embryo deformities were documented in inviable L. kempii eggs before (2008-2010) and after (2011-2013) the DWH spill in 2 Texas (USA) nesting areas (Upper Texas Coast...

Shaver, Donna J.; Gredzens, Christian; Walker, J. Shelby; Godard-Codding, Céline A. J.; Yacabucci, Janet E.; Frey, Amy; Dutton, Peter H.; Schmitt, Christopher J.