Western Ecological Research Center


Click on the articles below to read about the latest WERC scientific discoveries.

Filter Total Items: 108
Date published: August 8, 2019

USGS WERC Researcher Wins Award for Reptile and Amphibian Conservation

SAN DIEGO—Dr. Robert Fisher wins Herpetological Conservation Award

Date published: July 18, 2019

What’s It Like To Be a Tree in California Today? WERC Forest Ecologist Weighs In (Mashable)

Dr. Nate Stephenson says the rules are changing for Sierra Nevada trees

Date published: July 18, 2019

WERC Scientist Unites Research, Restoration, and Education on the California Channel Islands (Inside Science)

For Dr. Kathryn McEachern, research and outreach go hand in hand

Date published: June 30, 2019

Research Spotlight: Mercury Exposure in Wild Songbirds Associated with Disrupted Parental Care at the Nest

In a study published in the journal Environmental Science and Technology, U.S. Geological Survey biologists report that methylmercury concentrations in wild tree swallows (Tachycineta bicolor) in the California Central Valley are associated with disruption of parental care. 

Date published: June 24, 2019

WERC Scientists Find that Threatened Snakes Depend on Agriculture (TWS Wildlife News)

SACRAMENTO – A new study shows how giant gartersnakes use Central Valley rice fields

Date published: June 12, 2019

Research Spotlight: Ducklings Leave Nests in Early Morning, Suggesting Predator Avoidance

In a study published in the journal Ecology and Evolution, U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) biologists put small cameras next to duck nests to determine what time of day wild ducklings began hatching, when the hen and ducklings departed the nest, and if any predators came to the nest when ducklings were present.

Date published: May 31, 2019

Research Spotlight: New Guidelines and Tool for Assessing Mercury Contamination Using Bird Feathers

In a study published in the journal Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry, U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) biologists provide a detailed approach and guidelines for using bird feathers in mercury monitoring programs. From these results, USGS biologists were able to create a tool to help guide the appropriate experimental design, processing and mercury determination for feather mercury studies...

Date published: May 30, 2019

Research Spotlight: California Central Valley Ducks Move Shorter Distances and Use Smaller Areas Than Expected

In a new publication, U.S. Geological Survey biologists report the results of real-time tracking of three species of dabbling ducks in California’s Central Valley with GPS to examine the ducks’ fine-scale 24-hour movement patterns.

Date published: April 23, 2019

Salamander Surveys by WERC Scientists Help Monitor Fungal Threat (US Fish and Wildlife Pacific Southwest Highlights)

SAN DIEGO – WERC scientists find salamanders, test for deadly chytrid disease

Date published: April 11, 2019

WERC Scientists Combine Bird Calls and Artificial Intelligence to Keep Tabs on the Elusive Ashy-Storm Petrel (Audubon magazine)

CALIFORNIA COAST – Artificial intelligence and acoustic sensors help scientists monitor seabirds

Date published: April 10, 2019

Burrowing Owls and Horned Lizards Thrive in Ecological Hot Spot Next to Los Angeles Airport (Los Angeles Times)

LOS ANGELES -- WERC Researchers study lizards and owls at the LAX Dunes preserve

Date published: March 4, 2019

Genetics Study Reveals Good News for the Southern California Population of the California Gnatcatcher

Results of a recent study by WERC scientists are providing helpful information to resource managers as they work to protect important habitat.