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Western Ecological Research Center (WERC)

The Western Ecological Research Center (WERC) is a USGS Ecosystems Mission Area operation serving primarily California and Nevada. WERC scientists work closely with Federal, State, academic, and other collaborators to address a diverse array of high-profile topics. Topics include research on effects of wildfire, sea level rise, drought, energy development and more on federal Trust species.

News

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San Francisco Bay Shallow Water Strategic Placement Pilot Project

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Latest science findings from Ocean Ecology Research to be presented at Conferences in February 2024

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Amphibians have one more thing to worry about—mercury—large USGS study shows

Publications

Eggshell thickness and egg morphometrics in five songbird species from the Central Valley, California

Avian eggshell thickness is an important life history metric in birds and has broad applications across disciplines ranging from animal behavior to toxicology. Empirical eggshell thickness values for songbirds (Order Passeriformes) are under-represented in the literature due to the difficulty of measuring smaller eggs using traditional methods. We used a Hall-effect thickness gauge to measure eggs
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Carley R. Schacter, Sarah H. Peterson, C. Alex Hartman, Mark P. Herzog, Josh T. Ackerman

Scattered tree death contributes to substantial forest loss in California

In recent years, large-scale tree mortality events linked to global change have occurred around the world. Current forest monitoring methods are crucial for identifying mortality hotspots, but systematic assessments of isolated or scattered dead trees over large areas are needed to reduce uncertainty on the actual extent of tree mortality. Here, we mapped individual dead trees in California using
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Yang Cheng, Stefan Oehmcke, Martin Brandt, Lisa Micaela Rosenthal, Adrian Das, Anton Vrieling, Sassan Saatchi, Fabien Wagner, Maurice Mugabowindekwe, Wim Verbruggen, Claus Beier, Stephanie Horion

A dataset of amphibian species in U.S. National Parks

National parks and other protected areas are important for preserving landscapes and biodiversity worldwide. An essential component of the mission of the United States (U.S.) National Park Service (NPS) requires understanding and maintaining accurate inventories of species on protected lands. We describe a new, national-scale synthesis of amphibian species occurrence in the NPS system. Many park u
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Benjamin Lafrance, Andrew M. Ray, Robert N. Fisher, Evan H. Campbell Grant, Charles Shafer, David Beamer, Stephen Frank Spear, Todd W Pierson, Jon M. Davenport, Matthew L. Niemiller, R. Alexander Pyron, Brad Glorioso, William Barichivich, Brian J. Halstead, Kory Roberts, Blake R. Hossack

Science

Assessing heat stress in migrating Yukon River Chinook Salmon

We will examine evidence of heat stress in Yukon River Chinook salmon ( Oncorhynchus tshawytscha ) using heat shock proteins and gene expression.
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Assessing heat stress in migrating Yukon River Chinook Salmon

We will examine evidence of heat stress in Yukon River Chinook salmon ( Oncorhynchus tshawytscha ) using heat shock proteins and gene expression.
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AIMS for Wildlife

We are building a 21st century wildlife monitoring system to inform resource management of the impacts of drought, wildfire, land use, climate change, and other landscape level stressors. The Automated Interactive Monitoring System (AIMS) for Wildlife will provide an actionable data stream by combining enormous quantities of wildlife movement data with environmental data and delivering it to...
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AIMS for Wildlife

We are building a 21st century wildlife monitoring system to inform resource management of the impacts of drought, wildfire, land use, climate change, and other landscape level stressors. The Automated Interactive Monitoring System (AIMS) for Wildlife will provide an actionable data stream by combining enormous quantities of wildlife movement data with environmental data and delivering it to...
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Understanding Population Trends for the Gunnison Sage-Grouse to Inform Adaptive Management

In partnership with the Bureau of Land Management and Colorado Parks and Wildlife, scientists from USGS Fort Collins Science Center and Western Ecological Research Center are applying a hierarchical monitoring framework to Gunnison sage-grouse ( Centrocercus minimus ) to evaluate population trends and inform adaptive management.
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Understanding Population Trends for the Gunnison Sage-Grouse to Inform Adaptive Management

In partnership with the Bureau of Land Management and Colorado Parks and Wildlife, scientists from USGS Fort Collins Science Center and Western Ecological Research Center are applying a hierarchical monitoring framework to Gunnison sage-grouse ( Centrocercus minimus ) to evaluate population trends and inform adaptive management.
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