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Below is a list of WERC's peer-reviewed publications. If you are searching for a specific publication and cannot find it in this list, please contact

Filter Total Items: 3527

Monitoring nesting waterbirds for the South Bay Salt Pond Restoration Project—2022 breeding season

The San Francisco Bay supports thousands of breeding waterbirds annually and hosts large populations of American avocets (Recurvirostra americana), black-necked stilts (Himantopus mexicanus), and Forster’s terns (Sterna forsteri). These three species have relied largely on former commercial salt ponds in South San Francisco Bay, which provide wetland foraging habitat and island nesting habitat. Th
Joshua T. Ackerman, C. Alex Hartman, Mark P. Herzog

Native amphibian toxin reduces invasive crayfish feeding with potential benefits to stream biodiversity

BackgroundBiodiversity is generally reduced when non-native species invade an ecosystem. Invasive crayfish, Procambarus clarkii, populate California freshwater streams, and in the Santa Monica Mountains (Los Angeles, USA), their introduction has led to trophic cascades due to omnivorous feeding behavior and a rapid rate of population growth. The native California newt, Taricha torosa, possesses a
Gary M. Bucciarelli, Sierra J. Smith, Justin J. Choe, Phoebe D. Shin, Robert N. Fisher, Lee B. Kats

Southern (California) sea otter population status and trends at San Nicolas Island, 2020–2023

The population of southern sea otters (Enhydra lutris nereis) at San Nicolas Island, California, has been monitored annually since the translocation of 140 southern sea otters to the island was completed in 1990. Monitoring efforts have varied in frequency and type across years. In 2017, the U.S. Navy and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service initiated a southern sea otter monitoring and research pla
Julie L. Yee, Joseph A. Tomoleoni, Michael C. Kenner, Jessica A. Fujii, Gena B. Bentall, Michelle M. Staedler, Brian B. Hatfield

Status, trend, and monitoring effectiveness of Marbled Murrelet (Brachyramphus marmoratus) at sea abundance and reproductive output off central California, 1999–2021

Marbled Murrelets (Brachyramphus marmoratus) have been listed as “endangered” by the State of California and “threatened” by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service since 1992 in California, Oregon, and Washington. Information regarding murrelet abundance, distribution, and habitat associations is critical for risk assessment, effective management, evaluation of conservation efficacy, and ultimately, t
Jonathan Felis, Josh Adams, Benjamin H. Becker

Priority research needs to inform amphibian conservation in the Anthropocene

The problem of global amphibian declines has prompted extensive research over the last three decades. Initially, the focus was on identifying and characterizing the extent of the problem, but more recently efforts have shifted to evidence-based research designed to identify best solutions and to improve conservation outcomes. Despite extensive accumulation of knowledge on amphibian declines, there
Evan H. Campbell Grant, Staci M. Amburgey, Brian Gratwicke, Victor Acosta Chaves, Anat M. Belasen, David Bickford, Carsten Brühl, Natalie E. Calatayud, Nick Clemann, Simon Clulow, Jelka Crnobrnja-Isailovic, Jeff Dawson, David A. De Angelis, C. Kenneth Dodd, Annette Evans, Gentile Francesco Ficetola, Mattia Falaschi, Sergio González-Mollinedo, David M. Green, Roseanna Gamlen-Greene, Richard A. Griffiths, Brian J. Halstead, Craig Hassapakis, Geoffrey Heard, Catharina Karlsson, Tom Kirschey, Blake Klocke, Tiffany A. Kosch, Sophia Kusterko Novaes, Luke Linhoff, John C. Maerz, Brittany A. Mosher, Katherine M O'Donnell, Leticia M. Ochoa-Ochoa, Deanna H. Olson, Kristiina Ovaska, J. Dale Roberts, Aimee J. Silla, Tariq Stark, Jeanne Tarrant, R. Upton, Judit Vörös, Erin L. Muths

On the origin and current distribution of the Oceania Snake-Eyed Skink (Cryptoblepharus poecilopleurus) in the Hawaiian archipelago

Because of its extreme isolation and lack of historical connection to a mainland, the Hawaiian Archipelago is thought to have no native nonvolant terrestrial reptiles. Several squamate species have been introduced to the archipelago, likely starting with early Polynesian contact, and increasing as human traffic in the Pacific has amplified. Of the earlier introductions, one species of skink, Crypt
Valentina Alvarez, Samuel R Fisher, Anthony J. Barley, Kevin Donmoyer, Mozes P. K. Blom, Robert C. Thomson, Robert N. Fisher

Amphibians and reptiles

Amphibians and reptiles are a diverse group of ectothermic vertebrates that occupy a variety of habitats in rangelands of North America, from wetlands to the driest deserts. These two classes of vertebrates are often referred to as herpetofauna and are studied under the field of herpetology. In U.S. rangelands, there are approximately 66 species of frogs and toads, 58 salamanders, 98 lizards, 111
David Pilliod, Todd C. Esque

Potential economic consequences along migratory flyways from reductions in breeding habitat of migratory waterbirds

The migration of species, often across continents, makes it difficult to quantify the cumulative effects of local- and regional-scale conservation actions. Further, variation in stakeholder interests, differing jurisdictional governance processes, priorities, and monitoring abilities across the migratory range shapes place-specific differences in management actions. These differences may lead mana
Wayne E. Thogmartin, James H. Devries, Darius J. Semmens, James E. Diffendorfer, James A. Dubovksy, Jonathan J. Derbridge, Brady J. Mattsson

Identifying drivers of population dynamics for a stream breeding amphibian using time series of egg mass counts

The decline in amphibian populations is one of the starkest examples of the biodiversity crisis. For stream breeding amphibians, alterations to natural flow regimes by dams, water diversions, and climate change have been implicated in declines and extirpations. Identifying drivers of amphibian declines requires long time series of abundance data because amphibian populations can exhibit high natur
Jonathan P. Rose, Sarah J. Kupferberg, Ryan A. Peek, Don Ashton, James B. Bettaso, Steven Bobzien, Ryan M. Bourque, Koen G.H. Breedveld, Alessandro Catenazzi, Joseph E. Drennan, Earl Gonsolin, Marcia Grefsrud, Andrea E. Herman, Matthew R. House, Matt R. Kluber, Amy J. Lind, Karla R. Marlow, Alan Striegle, Michael van Hattem, Clara A. Wheeler, Jeffery T. Wilcox, Kevin D. Wiseman, Brian J. Halstead

Best practices for distributing and deploying U.S. Geological Survey Shiny applications

A goal of U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) research is to create actionable science for U.S. Department of the Interior managers and partners. Properly managed and released software tools can quickly, accurately, and easily translate scientific results to aid managers’ decision-making. The USGS policies on software development and distribution affect how authors of USGS software products must navigat
Daniel F. Shryock, Micah C. Wright, Phillip J. van Mantgem, Todd C. Esque

AIMS for wildlife: Developing an automated interactive monitoring system to integrate real-time movement and environmental data for true adaptive management

To effectively manage species and habitats at multiple scales, population and land managers require rapid information on wildlife use of managed areas and responses to landscape conditions and management actions. GPS tracking studies of wildlife are particularly informative to species ecology, habitat use, and conservation. Combining GPS data with administrative data and a diverse suite of remotel
Michael L. Casazza, Austen Lorenz, Cory T. Overton, Elliott L. Matchett, Andrea Lynn Mott, Desmond Alexander Mackell, Fiona McDuie

Evolutionary fire ecology: An historical account and future directions

The idea that fire acts as an evolutionary force contributing to shaping species traits started a century ago, but had not been widely recognized until very recently. Among the first to realize this force were Edward B. Poulton, R. Dale Guthrie, and Edwin V. Komarek in animals and Willis L. Jepson, Walter W. Hough, Tom M. Harris, Philip V. Wells, and Robert W. Mutch in plants. They were all ahead
Juli G. Pausas, Jon Keeley