Mission Areas


The USGS Ecosystems Mission Area, the biological research arm of the Department of the Interior (DOI), provides science to help America achieve sustainable management and conservation of its biological resources. This work is done within the broader mission of the USGS to serve the Nation with science that advances understanding of our natural resources and inform land and water stewardship.

Contact Us

Newsletter - EcoNews

Newsletter - EcoNews

This quarterly newsletter highlights ecosystems science and activities coming out of our Science Centers and Cooperative Research Units across the Nation. 

EcoNews Issues

Webinar - Friday's Findings

Webinar - Friday

A public webinar series meant to offer our audience an opportunity to discover the Ecosystems science capacity within the USGS.

Upcoming Webinars

Where's our Science?


Find out where Ecosystems Science Centers, Field Stations, Climate Adaptation Science Centers, and Cooperative Research Units are located.

Browse by Location


Date published: March 8, 2021

Invasive Zebra Mussels Found in Pet Stores in 21 States

A citizen’s report of an invasive zebra mussel found in an aquarium moss package found in a pet store prompted a U.S. Geological Survey expert on invasive aquatic species to trigger nationwide alerts that have led to the discovery of the destructive shellfish in pet stores in at least 21 states from Alaska to Florida.  

March 8, 2021

USGS EcoNews - Vol. 2 | Issue 2

The USGS turned 142 years old this month, but we continue to deliver new science! Hot off the press we have the USGS Wildland Fire Science Strategy and the Cooperative Research Units 2020 Year in Review. In this edition we also feature research on climate adaptation at National Parks, waterfowl ecology, aquatic diseases, avalanches, sea lampreys, our webinars, ... and what's an Ichthyologist?

Attribution: Ecosystems
Date published: March 8, 2021

Friday's Findings - March 19 2021

Impacts of translocation on the cooperatively breeding Florida scrub-jay in Ocala National Forest 

Date: March 19, 2021 from 2-2:30 p.m. eastern time

Speakers: Alexis Cardas, Graduate Research Assistant, University of Florida, USGS Florida Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit 



Publication Thumbnail
Year Published: 2021

Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Units program—2020 Year in review

Established in 1935, the Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Units program (CRU program) is a unique cooperative partnership among State fish and wildlife agencies, universities, the Wildlife Management Institute, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Designed to meet the scientific needs of natural resource...

Thompson, John D.; Dennerline, Donald E.; Childs, Dawn E.; Jodice, Patrick G.R.
Thompson, J.D., Dennerline, D.E., Childs, D.E., and Jodice, P.G.R., 2021, Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Units program—2020 Year in review (ver. 1.1, March 2021): U.S. Geological Survey Circular 1478, 22 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/cir1478.

Publication Thumbnail
Year Published: 2021

Spatial variation in population dynamics of northern Great Plains piping plovers

Metapopulation dynamics are determined not only by within-patch birth and death processes but also by between-patch movements of individuals (emigration and immigration). To conserve and manage a species that has a metapopulation structure, defined by local populations that are distributed among patches of suitable habitat, we need to understand...

Swift, Rose J.; Anteau, Michael J.; Ellis, Kristen S.; Ring, Megan M.; Sherfy, Mark H.; Toy, Dustin L.; Koons, David N.
Swift, R.J., Anteau, M.J., Ellis, K.S., Ring, M.M., Sherfy, M.H., Toy, D.L., and Koons, D.N., 2021, Spatial variation in population dynamics of northern Great Plains piping plovers: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2020–1152, 211 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/ofr20201152.

Publication Thumbnail
Year Published: 2021

Genomic association with pathogen carriage in bighorn sheep (Ovis canadensis)

Genetic composition can influence host susceptibility to, and transmission of, pathogens, with potential population‐level consequences. In bighorn sheep (Ovis canadensis), pneumonia epidemics caused by Mycoplasma ovipneumoniae have been associated with severe population declines and limited recovery across North America. Adult survivors...

Martin, Alynn Marie; Cassirer, E. Frances; Waits, Lisette P.; Plowright, Raina K.; Cross, Paul C.; Andrews, Kimberly R.