Mission Areas

Ecosystems

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.

Collaborative Conservation

Collaborative Conservation

What do gray wolves, manatees and bears have in common? They are just a few of the species that are part of important USGS research that informs U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service decisions for endangered and threatened species.

Find out more

Outstanding in the Field

Outstanding in the Field

An Ecosystems Mission Area original podcast series that tells stories about our science, our adventures, and our efforts to better understand fish and wildlife and the ecosystems that support them.  

Ep 2-Citizen Science

Where's our Science?

Where

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

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Publications

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Year Published: 2019

Integrating behavior and physiology into strategies for amphibian conservation

The amphibian decline crisis has been challenging to address because of the complexity of factors—and their multitude of interactive effects—that drive this global issue. Dissecting such complexity could benefit from strategies that integrate multiple disciplines and address the mechanistic underpinnings of population declines and extirpations. We...

Walls, Susan; Gabor, Caitlin R

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Year Published: 2019

Densities, diets, and growth rates of larval Alewife and Bloater in a changing Lake Michigan ecosystem.

Variability in abiotic and biotic factors during larval stages has profound impacts on fish recruitment. In Lake Michigan, where the composition of lower trophic levels has undergone considerable changes in the past decade, managers are concerned that fish recruitment could be negatively affected. We hypothesized that spatial variation in Lake...

Eppehimer, Drew E; Bunnell, David; Armenio, Patricia; Warner, David; Eaton, Lauren A.; Wells, David J; Rutherford, Edward S.

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Year Published: 2019

Subsurface water piping prevents meromixis in a deep volcanic crater lake (Dominica, West Indies)

Boeri Lake—a small (3.6 ha) but deep (39.6 m) crater lake on Morne Micotrin in Dominica, West Indies—presents a limnological enigma; it exhibits strong morphometric and circumstantial evidence for meromixis, yet it is not stratified. We tested the hypothesis that water seepage from Boeri Lake overcomes morphometric drivers of stratification and...

Maitland, Bryan M.; O'Malley, Brian; Stewart, Donald J
Maitland B.M., B.P. O'Malley, and D.J. Stewart. 2019. Subsurface water piping transports plankton and prevents meromixis in a deep volcanic crater lake (Dominica, West Indies). Hydrobiologia.