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Mission Areas

Ecosystems

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The Ecosystems Mission Area provides impartial science information and tools to the Nation’s natural resource managers, with particular focus on the science needs of the Department of the Interior (DOI) and DOI bureaus to manage species, lands and priority ecosystems; fulfill treaty obligations; respond to and reduce threats to natural resources; and manage mineral and energy resources.

 

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Filter Total Items: 715
Date published: February 29, 2016

Conservation Genetics

Researchers apply the tools and concepts of genetics to the conservation of biological resources.

Attribution: Ecosystems
Date published: February 29, 2016

Genetics

USGS uses cutting edge research and technologies to answer biological questions at a molecular level.

Date published: February 29, 2016

Epidemiology of Fish and Wildlife Diseases

Wildlife health experts apply the latest tools of molecular biology and genetics to address the ecology of infectious diseases affecting both fish and wildlife.

Attribution: Ecosystems
Date published: February 29, 2016

Imperiled Species

Our science is designed to understand the status of declining, Threatened, and Endangered species, and assist managers in their recovery.

Date published: February 29, 2016

Environmental Toxicology

Toxicologists use genomics to develop, apply, and validate methods for assessing the effects of contaminants and other environmental stressors on wild populations.

Attribution: Ecosystems
Date published: February 29, 2016

Invertebrates

There is a great deal to be learned about the invertebrate organisms which serve such critical ecological functions.

Date published: February 29, 2016

Genetically Engineered Organisms

Researchers are investigating the utility of genetic engineering for use in controlling or eradicating invasive species.

Attribution: Ecosystems
Date published: February 29, 2016

Mammals

Large or small, in water or on land, our science enhances understanding of these captivating animals.

Date published: February 29, 2016

Genetics in Water Quality and Public Health Microbiology

Researchers use microbial and molecular techniques as tools to manage beach water quality and to protect the public from swimming-related illnesses such as gastroenteritis.

Attribution: Ecosystems
Date published: February 29, 2016

Reptiles

Reptiles have unique forms and lifestyles, making them fascinating research subjects for USGS scientists who work to better understand them.

Date published: February 29, 2016

Prevention

Prevention is the most efficient solution in the long run.

Date published: February 29, 2016

Wildlife Health and Disease

USGS maintains unique capabilities to detect and describe wildlife disease, and understand the role of pathogens in the environment.

Filter Total Items: 2,932
Year Published: 2015

Infecting Pacific Herring with Ichthyophonus sp. in the laboratory

The protistan parasite Ichthyophonus sp. occurs in coastal populations of Pacific Herring Clupea pallasii throughout the northeast Pacific region, but the route(s) by which these planktivorous fish become infected is unknown. Several methods for establishing Ichthyophonus infections in laboratory challenges were examined. Infections were most...

Hershberger, Paul; Hart, Lucas; Mackenzie, Ashley; Yanney, M.L.; Conway, Carla M.; Elliott, Diane G.
Hershberger, P.K., L.M. Hart, A.H. MacKenzie, M.L. Yanney, C.M. Conway, and D.G. Elliott. 2015. Infecting Pacific Herring with Ichthyophonus sp. in the Laboratory. J. Aquat. Anim. Health 27(4): 217-221.

Year Published: 2015

Estimating mercury exposure of piscivorous birds and sport fish using prey fish monitoring

Methylmercury is a global pollutant of aquatic ecosystems, and monitoring programs need tools to predict mercury exposure of wildlife. We developed equations to estimate methylmercury exposure of piscivorous birds and sport fish using mercury concentrations in prey fish. We collected original data on western grebes (Aechmophorus occidentalis) and...

Ackerman, Joshua T.; Hartman, C. Alex; Eagles-Smith, Collin A.; Herzog, Mark P.; Davis, Jay; Ichikawa, Gary; Bonnema, Autumn
Ackerman, JT, CA Hartman, CA Eagles-Smith, MP Herzog, J Davis, G Ichikawa, A Bonnema. 2015. Estimating Mercury Exposure of Piscivorous Birds and Sport Fish Using Prey Fish Monitoring. Environmental Science and Technology 49: 13596-13604. DOI: 10.1021/acs.est.5b02691

Year Published: 2015

Restoration handbook for sagebrush steppe ecosystems with emphasis on greater sage-grouse habitat—Part 2. Landscape level restoration decisions

Sagebrush steppe ecosystems in the United States currently (2015) occur on only about one-half of their historical land area because of changes in land use, urban growth, and degradation of land, including invasions of non-native plants. The existence of many animal species depends on the existence of sagebrush steppe habitat. The greater sage-...

Pyke, David A.; Knick, Steven T.; Chambers, Jeanne C.; Pellant, Mike; Miller, Richard F.; Beck, Jeffrey L.; Doescher, Paul S.; Schupp, Eugene W.; Roundy, Bruce A.; Brunson, Mark; McIver, James D.
Pyke, D.A., Knick, S.T., Chambers, J.C., Pellant, M., Miller, R.F., Beck, J.L., Doescher, P.S., Schupp, E.W., Roundy, B.A., Brunson, M., and McIver, J.D., 2015, Restoration handbook for sagebrush steppe ecosystems with emphasis on greater sage-grouse habitat—Part 2. Landscape level restoration decisions: U.S. Geological Survey Circular 1418, 21 p., http://dx.doi.org/10.3133/cir1418.

Year Published: 2015

Occupancy estimation for rare species using a spatially-adaptive sampling design

Summary 1. Spatially clustered populations create unique challenges for conservation monitoring programmes. Advances in methodology typically are focused on either the design or the modelling stage of the study but do not involve integration of both. 2. We integrate adaptive cluster sampling and spatial occupancy modelling by developing two models...

Pacifici, Krishna; Reich, Brian J.; Dorazio, Robert; Conroy, Michael J.
Pacifici, K., Reich, B.J., Dorazio, R.M., and Conroy, M.J., 2015, Occupancy estimation for rare species using a spatially-adaptive sampling design: Methods in Ecology and Evolution, Early View, http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/2041-210X.12499.

Year Published: 2015

A framework for decision points to trigger adaptive management actions in long-term incidental take permits

Introduction The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) has begun to issue incidental take permits (ITPs) to wind power companies to allow limited take of bird and bat species that are protected under the Endangered Species Act, the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act, or the Migratory Bird Treaty Act (Huso and others, 2015). Expected take rates...

Dalthorp, Daniel; Huso, Manuela M.
Dalthorp, Daniel, and Huso, Manuela, 2015, A framework for decision points to trigger adaptive management actions in long-term incidental take permits: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2015-1227, 88 p., http://dx.doi.org/10.3133/ofr20151227.

Year Published: 2015

Current land bird distribution and trends in population abundance between 1982 and 2012 on Rota, Mariana Islands

The western Pacific island of Rota is the fourth largest human-inhabited island in the Mariana archipelago and designated an Endemic Bird Area. Between 1982 and 2012, 12 point-transect distance-sampling surveys were conducted to assess bird population status. Surveys did not consistently sample the entire island; thus, we used a ratio estimator to...

Camp, Richard J.; Brinck, Kevin W.; Gorresen, P. Marcos; Amidon, Fred A.; Radley, Paul M.; Berkowitz, S. Paul; Banko, Paul C.
Camp RJ, Brinck KW, Gorresen PM, Amidon FA, Radley PM, Berkowitz SP, Banko PC. 2015. Current land bird distribution and trends in population abundance between 1982 and 2012 on Rota, Mariana Islands. Journal of Fish and Wildlife Management 6(2):511–540; e1944-687X. doi: 10.3996/112014-JFWM-085

Year Published: 2015

Assessment of model estimates of land-atmosphere CO2 exchange across northern Eurasia

A warming climate is altering land-atmosphere exchanges of carbon, with a potential for increased vegetation productivity as well as the mobilization of permafrost soil carbon stores. Here we investigate land-atmosphere carbon dioxide (CO2) cycling through analysis of net ecosystem productivity (NEP) and its component fluxes of gross primary...

Rawlins, M.A.; McGuire, A.D.; Kimball, J.S.; Dass, P.; Lawrence, D.; Burke, E.; Chen, X.; Delire, C.; Koven, C.; MacDougall, A.; Peng, S.; Rinke, A.; Saito, K.; Zhang, W.; Alkama, R.; Bohn, T. J.; Ciais, P.; Decharme, B.; Gouttevin, I.; Hajima, T.; Ji, D.; Krinner, G.; Lettenmaier, D.P.; Miller, P.; Moore, J.C.; Smith, B.; Sueyoshi, T.

Year Published: 2015

Fire effects on aquatic ecosystems: an assessment of the current state of the science

Fire is a prevalent feature of many landscapes and has numerous and complex effects on geological, hydrological, ecological, and economic systems. In some regions, the frequency and intensity of wildfire have increased in recent years and are projected to escalate with predicted climatic and landuse changes. In addition, prescribed burns continue...

Rebecca J. Bixby; Scott D. Cooper; Gresswell, Robert E.; Lee E. Brown; Clifford N. Dahm; Kathleen A. Dwire
Bixby, R.J., S.D. Cooper, R.E. Gresswell, L.E. Brown, C.N. Dahm, and K.A. Dwire. 2015. Fire effects on aquatic ecosystems: an assessment of the current state of the science. Freshwater Science 34:1340-1350.

Year Published: 2015

Predicting spatial distribution of postfire debris flows and potential consequences for native trout in headwater streams

Habitat fragmentation and degradation and invasion of nonnative species have restricted the distribution of native trout. Many trout populations are limited to headwater streams where negative effects of predicted climate change, including reduced stream flow and increased risk of catastrophic fires, may further jeopardize their persistence....

Sedell, Edwin R; Gresswell, Robert E.; McMahon, Thomas E.
Sedell, E.R., R.E. Gresswell, and T.E. McMahon. 2015. Predicting spatial distribution of postfire debris flows and potential consequences for native trout in headwater streams. Freshwater Science 34:1558-1570.

Year Published: 2015

Quantifying the adaptive cycle

The adaptive cycle was proposed as a conceptual model to portray patterns of change in complex systems. Despite the model having potential for elucidating change across systems, it has been used mainly as a metaphor, describing system dynamics qualitatively. We use a quantitative approach for testing premises (reorganisation, conservatism,...

Angeler, David G.; Allen, Craig R.; Garmestani, Ahjond S.; Gunderson, Lance H.; Hjerne, Olle; Winder, Monika

Year Published: 2015

Aerial-broadcast application of diphacinone bait for rodent control in Hawai`i: Efficacy and non-target species risk assessment

Introduced rats (Rattus rattus, R. exulans, and R. norvegicus) have been implicated in the decline or extinction of numerous species of plants and animals in Hawai‘i. This study investigated the efficacy of aerial-broadcast application of Ramik® Green baits containing 50 ppm (0.005%) diphacinone in reducing rat and mouse populations and...

Foote, David; Spurr, Eric B.; Lindsey, Gerald D.; Forbes Perry, Charlotte
Spurr, E. B., D. Foote, G.D. Lindsey, and C.F. Perry. 2015. Aerial-broadcast application of diphacinone bait for rodent control in Hawai`i: Efficacy and non-target species risk assessment. Hawaii Cooperative Studies Unit Technical Report. TR HCSU-0071. University of Hawaii at Hilo. 28 pp.

Year Published: 2015

Health and condition of endangered juvenile Lost River and shortnose suckers relative to water quality and fish assemblages in Upper Klamath Lake, Oregon, and Clear Lake Reservoir, California

Executive Summary Most mortality of endangered Lost River (Deltistes luxatus) and shortnose (Chasmistes brevirostris) suckers in Upper Klamath Lake, Oregon, appears to occur within the first year of life. However, juvenile suckers in Clear Lake Reservoir, California, appear to survive longer and may even recruit to the spawning populations. Our...

Burdick, Summer M.; Elliott, Diane G.; Ostberg, Carl O.; Conway, Carla M.; Dolan-Caret, Amari; Hoy, Marshal S.; Feltz, Kevin P.; Echols, Kathy R.
Burdick, S.M., Elliott, D.G., Ostberg, C.O., Conway, C.M., Dolan-Caret, A., Hoy, M.S., Feltz, K.P., and Echols, K.R., 2015, Health and condition of endangered juvenile Lost River and shortnose suckers relative to water quality and fish assemblages in Upper Klamath Lake, Oregon, and Clear Lake Reservoir, California: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2015-1217, 56 p., http://dx.doi.org/10.3133/ofr20151217.

Filter Total Items: 660
Comparison of traditional and thermal imagery to show mange.

Comparison of traditional and thermal imagery to show mange.

Thermal imagery is one tool to assist researchers in measuring temperature loss from the mange patches (red) and compare this with temperature loss from natural fur (blues and greens). As you can see in the two contrasting images, the hairless areas associated with mange are much easier to see using thermal imagery due to heat loss versus a standard photograph from a

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Image: A Clay-Colored Sparrow Nest

A Clay-Colored Sparrow Nest

A colorful clay-colored sparrow nest. These sparrows live in brushy grasslands and prairie habitats.

USGS
August 29, 2018

Proposed Course Outline for SDM Construction

Proposed outline for course on SDM construction

Attribution: Ecosystems
USGS
August 30, 2018

USGS IPM contacts

USGS Contacts for Intergrated Population Modeling, AFWA 2018

Attribution: Ecosystems
USGS presentation title slide for GenEst, A Generalized Estimator of Mortality
December 21, 2018

"Intro to GenEst" workshop at NWCC - 26Nov2018

Slides used during the Intro to GenEst, A Generalized Estimator of Mortality, Workshop held at the National Wind Coordinating Collaborative's Wind Wildlife Research Meeting XII on November 26, 2018 in St. Paul Minnesota. https://www.nationalwind.org/meetings/wind-wildlife-research-meeting-