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.

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.

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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 3 - CWD

Where's our Science?


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

Browse by Location


Date published: August 14, 2019

Rising Sea Levels Could Accelerate Florida Bay Mangrove Loss

USGS scientists look to the past to learn about the future of Florida mangroves

Date published: July 25, 2019

Big Sagebrush Recovery After Fire Inhibited by its Own Biology

Plant age drives mortality, reproductive success and population dynamics


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Year Published: 2019

Interactions between resident risk perceptions and wildfire risk mitigation: Evidence from simultaneous equations modeling

Fire science emphasizes that mitigation actions on residential property, including structural hardening and maintaining defensible space, can reduce the risk of wildfire at a home. Accordingly, a rich body of social science literature investigates the determinants of wildfire risk mitigation behaviors of residents living in fire-prone areas. Here...

Meldrum, James R.; Brenkert-Smith, Hannah; Champ, Patricia A.; Gomez, Jamie; Falk, Lilia C.; Barth, Christopher M.

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Year Published: 2019

Using scenarios to evaluate vulnerability of grassland communities to climate change in the Southern Great Plains of the United States

Scenario planning is a useful tool for identifying key vulnerabilities of ecological systems to changing climates, informed by the potential outcomes for a set of divergent, plausible, and relevant climate scenarios. We evaluated potential vulnerabilities of grassland communities to changing climate in the Southern Great Plains (SGP) and the...

Manier, Daniel J.; Carr, Natasha B.; Reese, Gordon C.; Burris, Lucy
Manier, D.J., Carr, N.B., Reese, G.C., and Burris, L., 2019, Using scenarios to evaluate vulnerability of grassland communities to climate change in the Southern Great Plains of the United States: U.S. Geological Survey, Open-File Report 2019–1046, 48 p., https://doi.org/10.3313/ofr20191046.

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Year Published: 2019

Ecosystems Mission Area bookmark

Scientists with the USGS Ecosystem Mission Area can be found at Science Centers and Cooperative Research Units across the Nation. We provide scientific research for the Department of the Interior that supports the management and conservation of our Nation’s biological resources.

Attribution: Ecosystems
U.S. Geological Survey, 2019, Ecosystems Mission Area bookmark: U.S. Geological Survey General Information Product 192, https://doi.org/10.3133/gip192.