Eastern Ecological Science Center


In 2020, the USGS Patuxent Wildlife Research Center and Leetown Science Center merged to create the Eastern Ecological Science Center (EESC). Our goals are to align our scientific capabilities with the most pressing conservation and management challenges; establish an engaged workforce that fosters high relationship trust with employees, partners and the public; and be a ‘go to’ organization for delivering actionable science to those responsible for conserving our nation’s natural resources for the enjoyment of current and future generations.

Risks posed by SARS-CoV-2 to North American bats

Risks posed by SARS-CoV-2 to North American bats

The virus that causes COVID-19 likely evolved in a mammalian host, possibly Old-World bats, before adapting to humans, raising the question of whether reverse zoonotic transmission to bats is possible. Wildlife management agencies in North America...

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Endocrine Disrupting Compounds in the Chesapeake

Endocrine Disrupting Compounds in the Chesapeake

Findings from US Geological Survey studies on sources, occurrence, effects and risk of contaminants throughout the Chesapeake Bay Watershed.

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Date published: September 24, 2021

The Launch of the Banders Without Borders Initiative

On 9 Sept 2021, the United States Bird Banding Lab (BBL) recently introduced a new initiative to strengthen connections with our sister banding schemes all over the world. This effort is part of our “Banders Without Borders Initiative;” an initiative that will allow banding schemes to share information about their banding program, history, staff, and current projects.  

Date published: September 21, 2021

New Insight on the Potential for Blue-Winged Teal to Transfer Avian Influenza to Domestic Poultry

A first-of-its-kind study by the USGS and partners provides an initial analysis of when commercial chicken and turkey facilities in the U.S. are at greatest risk to avian influenza viruses from one species of migratory waterfowl. 

Date published: July 14, 2021

USGS-Led Study Helps in the Fight Against the Coronavirus Pandemic

With few additional targeted tests and non-invasive surveys, public health agencies can better estimate disease occurrence and trends, changes in transmission, rates of hospitalization and death and effectiveness of vaccines and other control measures.


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Year Published: 2021

A comparison of methods for the long-term harness-based attachment of radio-transmitters to juvenile Japanese quail (Coturnix japonica)

BackgroundWhile the period from fledging through first breeding for waterbird species such as terns (e.g., genus Sterna, Sternula) is of great interest to researchers and conservationists, this period remains understudied due in large part to the difficulty of marking growing juveniles with radio transmitters that remain attached for extended...

Buck, Evan J; Sullivan, Jeffery D; Kent, Cody M.; Mullinax, Jennifer M.; Prosser, Diann

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Year Published: 2021

Identifying climate-resistant vernal pools: Hydrologic refugia for amphibian reproduction under droughts and climate change

Vernal pools of the northeastern United States provide important breeding habitat for amphibians but may be sensitive to droughts and climate change. These seasonal wetlands typically fill by early spring and dry by mid-to-late summer. Because climate change may produce earlier and stronger growing-season evapotranspiration combined with...

Cartwright, Jennifer M.; Morelli, Toni Lyn; Campbell Grant, Evan H.

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Year Published: 2021

Thyroid disruption and oxidative stress in American kestrels following embryonic exposure to the alternative flame retardants, EHTBB and TBPH

Brominated flame retardant chemicals, such as 2-ethylhexyl-2,3,4,5-tetrabromobenzoate (EHTBB) (CAS #: 183658–27-7) and bis(2-ethylhexyl)-2,3,4,5-tetrabromophthalate (TBPH) (CAS #: 26040–51-7), have been detected in avian tissues and eggs from remote regions. Exposure to EHTBB and TBPH has been shown to cause oxidative stress and altered thyroid...

Goodchild, CHristopher; Karouna-Renier, Natalie K.; Henry, Paula F. P.; Letcher, Robert J.; Schultz, Sandra L.; Maddox, Catherine M.; Bean, Thomas; Peters, Lisa E.; Palace, Vince P.; Fernie, Kimberly J.