New York Water Science Center

Ecosystem Health

Ecological assessments are a central focus of multidisciplinary projects and programs managed by the NYWSC and managed in cooperation with the water and soil chemistry laboratory as well as other Federal, State, county, and city agencies, academia, and nongovernmental organizations in New York and nationwide. The NYWSC studies the condition of aquatic communities to assess the effects of various manmade and natural stressors and of resource management practices on the aquatic ecosystems and environments in the State and nationwide and in cooperation with a wide array of partners and monitors climate change indicators to identify trends and data gaps for indicators of climate and habitat change. Specific studies include the effects of forest harvesting on the health of ecosystems at headwaters, the influence of remediation of watersheds on ecosystem health, and the interactions between urban landscapes and ecosystem health.

Filter Total Items: 89
Date published: August 28, 2015
Status: Active

Status of benthic macroinvertebrate communities and toxicity of sediments in the Eighteenmile Creek Area of Concern, New York

Background: The USGS propose a collaborative investigation with the NYSDEC to evaluate the current condition of benthic macroinvertebrate communities and toxicity of bed sediments in the Eighteenmile Creek Area of Concern (AOC). Sediment-toxicity data provided by the USGS and benthic-community data provided by the NYSDEC from inside the AOC will be compared to similar data from non-AOC sites...

Contacts: Barry P Baldigo, Scott George, Brian Duffy
Date published: August 28, 2015
Status: Active

Status of benthic macroinvertebrate communities and toxicity of sediments in the Niagara River Area of Concern, New York

Background: The USGS propose a collaborative investigation with the NYSDEC and NOAA to evaluate the current condition of benthic macroinvertebrate communities and toxicity of bed sediments in the Niagara River Area of Concern (AOC). Using a probabilistic study design, sediment-toxicity data compiled by the USGS, invertebrate community data collected by NYSDEC, and sediment-chemistry data...

Contacts: Barry P Baldigo, Scott George, Brian Duffy
Date published: August 27, 2015
Status: Active

Effects of Watershed and In-stream Liming on Accelerated Recovery of Macroinvertebrate Assemblages in Tributaries to Honnedaga Lake

Background Acidification of lotic and lentic environments has been found to adversely affect the integrity of resident biological assemblages. These effects have been particularly severe in poorly buffered regions like the Western Adirondacks. Although the Clean Air Act and its amendments have greatly reduced levels of atmospheric deposition, many streams in this region are still chronical...

Date published: August 27, 2015
Status: Active

Long-term Effects of the Clean Air Act on Water Toxicity and Brook Trout Survival in Acidified Streams of the Southwestern Adirondacks, 1984-2017

Background Forested watersheds in the southwestern Adirondack Mountains of New York received some of the most acidic deposition in North America from the 1970s through much of the 1990s (NADP 2005). Thus it is not surprising that associated effects on surface-water quality and ecosystems in lakes and streams of the southwestern Adirondack Mountains of New York were investigated to various...

Contacts: Barry P Baldigo
Date published: August 27, 2015
Status: Active

Sediment-bound Contaminant Resiliency and Response (SCoRR) Strategy

The U.S. Geological Survey's Strategy to Evaluate Persistent Contaminant Hazards Resulting from Sea Level Rise and Storm-derived Disturbances SCORR Mapper SCoRR: Sediment-bound Contaminant Resiliency and Response Strategy Project Page Natural and anthropogenic contaminants, pathogens, and viruses are found in soils and sediments throughout the United States. Enhanced dispersion and...

Date published: August 27, 2015
Status: Active

The National Network of Reference Watersheds

The National Network of Reference Watersheds is a collaborative and multipurpose network of minimally disturbed watersheds and monitoring sites. The purpose of this website is to allow users to search the NNRW database of reference watersheds, to identify watersheds of interest, and download watershed information and water quality data. The current scope of the network is limited to freshwat...

Date published: August 27, 2015
Status: Active

Effects of acid-base chemistry on biology of streams in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Background Watersheds of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park (GRSM) receive high levels of acid deposition resulting from atmospheric emissions of nitrogen and sulfur oxides. Acidic deposition has been shown to reduce acid neutralizing capacity (ANC) and calcium concentrations and increase acidity and aluminum concentrations in soils and surface waters and affect forest health as well as...

Contacts: Barry P Baldigo
Date published: August 27, 2015
Status: Active

Emerging Methods for Detection and their Potential for Inventorying Brook Trout Populations in Streams of the Western Adirondacks

Background Deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) is the hereditary material in organisms that contains the biological instructions for building and maintaining them. The chemical structure of DNA is the same for all organisms, but differences exist in the order of the DNA building blocks, known as base pairs. Unique sequences provide a means to identify individual species and detect their presence...

Date published: August 27, 2015
Status: Active

Long Island-New Jersey (LINJ) Coastal Drainages Study -- Land Use Study (NY)

Background The Long Island-New Jersey (LINJ) coastal drainages NAWQA study is one of the 1994 set and is coordinated from our West Trenton, NJ office. Tasks for the first two years, 1994-95, included staffing, developing a liaison process, analyzing existing data, and designing a data collection program that started in 1996. These planning activities lead to the study design for 3 years of...

Date published: August 20, 2015
Status: Active

Quantitative Assessment of Water Quality in Upper Esopus Creek: Fish, Macroinvertebrates, Periphyton, Turbidity, and Nutrients

Background The Esopus Creek is located in the Catskill Mountains of New York State and is part of the New York City (NYC) drinking water supply system. The basin was dammed in 1915 to form the Ashokan Reservoir splitting the creek into Upper (upstream of the reservoir) and Lower segments. The drainage area of Upper Esopus Creek, between the source (Winisook Lake) and the Ashokan Reservoir is a...

Contacts: Barry P Baldigo, Michael R McHale, Alexander J Smith
Date published: August 20, 2015
Status: Completed

National Acid Precipitation Assessment Program Report to Congress 2011: An Integrated Assessment

Title IV has been successful in reducing emissions of SO2 and NOx from power generation to the levels set by Congress. In fact, by 2009, SO2 emissions from power plants were already 3.25 million tons lower than the final 2010 cap level of 8.95 million tons, and NOx emissions were 6.1 million tons less than the projected level in 2000 without the ARP, or more than triple the Title IV NOx em...

Contacts: Douglas A Burns
Date published: August 20, 2015
Status: Active

Northeastern Soil Monitoring Cooperative

Mission Statement: The mission of the cooperative is to facilitate coordinated collection of high quality broad-based soil data to evaluate temporal dynamics, to complement meteorologic, hydrologic and biologic monitoring, and to support decision making and science education. Objectives: Develop and share protocols for field and lab soil sampling and analysis Identify information needs...