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Water is one of seven science mission areas of the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). Water's mission is to collect and disseminate reliable, impartial, and timely information that is needed to understand the Nation's water resources.

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Filter Total Items: 291
Date published: March 15, 2016

Water Use Open Forum

The Water-Use Open Forum allows those involved in water-use data collection, data management, and regulation to communicate about challenges and solutions to water-use data issues, such as data collection, storage, QA/QC, analysis and data dissemination.

Date published: September 22, 2012

U.S. Geological Survey Flood Inundation Mapping Science

Static flood-inundation map libraries consist of maps that have been created in advance of a flood that are ready to be served through the Internet. Each library consists of a set of flood extent and depth maps developed for predetermined stream stage intervals (for example, a map for each one foot of stage). A user can view real-time or forecast stage data from a USGS streamgage or National...

Date published: September 22, 2012

USGS StreamStats

StreamStats is a Web-based tool that provides streamflow statistics, drainage-basin characteristics, and other information for USGS streamgaging stations and for user-selected ungaged sites on streams. When users select the location of a streamgaging station, StreamStats provides previously published information from a database. When users select a site on an ungaged stream, StreamStats will...

The USGS collects, analyzes, and distributes data on a wide variety of water-related issues and resources. Much of our data is publicly available through the National Water Information System (NWIS), but additional datasets and analytical tools are also available.

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Filter Total Items: 392
Date published: January 1, 2017

MODFLOW-NWT model used in simulation of groundwater flow and availability in the North Fork Red River aquifer, southwest Oklahoma, 1980-2013

In 2017 the U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with the Oklahoma Water Resources Board, published a
calibrated numerical groundwater-flow model and associated model documentation report that evaluated the effects
of potential groundwater withdrawals on groundwater flow and availability in the North Fork Red River aquifer in
southwest Oklahoma. The results of groundwater-...

Attribution: Water Resources
Date published: January 1, 2017

Hydraulic Conductivity Data for Piezometers Near Cottonwood Lake Reserach Area, North Dakota (1978-2017)

Hydraulic conductivity (K), calculated at wells in and near Cottonwood Lake Research Area, North Dakota.

Attribution: Water Resources
Date published: January 1, 2017

Data from Mercury intrusion porosimetry conducted on samples of a mudstone underlying the Naval Air Warfare Center, West Trenton, NJ

This data set presents the results of conducting mercury intrusion porosimetry on core samples of the mudstone underlying the Naval Air Warfare Center, West Trenton, NJ. The core samples were selected from the continuous core collected from boreholes 83BR-89BR.

Attribution: Water Resources
Date published: December 16, 2016

Real and synthetic data used to test the Two-tracer Ratio-based Mixing Model (TRaMM)

This USGS Data Release represents the synthetic and real data from hydrologically diverse streams used to test the performance and limitations of the Two-tracer Ratio-based Mixing Model (TRaMM) which uses high-frequency measures of two tracers (A and B) and streamflow to separate total streamflow into water from slowflow and fastflow sources.

Attribution: Water Resources
Date published: October 14, 2016

USGS Water Data Discovery

Are you looking for data for today, in the past, or what might happen in the future? Discover USGS Water Data resources here!

Attribution: Water Resources
Date published: September 28, 2016

Water Quality Monitor Network In Ohio

Stream water-quality characteristics provide scientists and water managers with a better understanding of the effects of natural and anthropogenic (human) activities on streams and ecosystems. The USGS operates a network of near-real-time water-quality monitoring stations that provide data for temperature, specific conductance, pH, dissolved oxygen, and turbidity of surface water.

Date published: May 1, 2016

Electrical Conductivity Data for the Snake River, Yellowstone National Park and Grand Teton National Park

The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and the National Park Service (NPS) have collaborated on monitoring the chloride flux in the major rivers of Yellowstone National Park by periodically sampling the rivers and analyzing chloride concentrations in discrete water samples since the 1970's. However, restrictions of winter travel, great distances between sites, and sampling and analytical costs have...

Attribution: Water Resources
Date published: April 18, 2016

National Water Census - Data Portal

At the National Water Census Data Portal you will find national estimates of water budget components for local watersheds, water withdrawal data for counties, tools to calculate statistics of daily streamflow records, modeled daily streamflow at ungaged stations, and access to records of aquatic biology observations.

Date published: April 7, 2016

Great Lakes, Ohio, Upper Mississippi, Red River Basins (MRB3) SPARROW Mapper, 2002

This mapper displays SPARROW nutrient load and yield data and the importance of various nutrient sources for the MRB3, given nutrient inputs similar to 2002. Rankings can be shown by major watershed, state, HUC8, tributary, and catchment. Nutrient data can be explored using maps and interactive graphs and tables. Modeling results can be exported as an Excel spreadsheet or a geospatial dataset...

Date published: April 6, 2016

Great Lakes SPARROW Mapper, 2002

This mapper displays SPARROW nutrient load and yield data specifically for U.S. tributaries to the Great Lakes. The results are based on the SPARROW models developed for the Great Lakes, Ohio, Upper Mississippi, Red River Basins (MRB3). Modeling results can be exported as an Excel spreadsheet or a geospatial dataset.

Date published: April 5, 2016

Mississippi/Atchafalaya River Basin (MARB) SPARROW Mapper, 2002

The mapper displays SPARROW nutrient load and yield data and the importance of various nutrient sources for the MARB, given nutrient inputs similar to 2002. Rankings can be shown by major watershed, state, HUC8, tributary, and catchment. Nutrient data can be explored using maps and interactive graphs and tables. Modeling results can be exported as an Excel spreadsheet or a geospatial dataset...

Date published: April 4, 2016

Yellowstone River SPARROW Mapper, 2002

This mapper displays SPARROW nutrient load and yield data specifically for the Yellowstone River. The results are based on the SPARROW models developed for the Mississippi/Atchafalaya River Basin (MARB). Modeling results can be exported as an Excel spreadsheet or a geospatial dataset.

Filter Total Items: 15,398
Year Published: 2018

Testing a two-scale focused conservation strategy for reducing phosphorus and sediment loads from agricultural watersheds

This study tested a focused strategy for reducing phosphorus (P) and sediment loads in agricultural streams. The strategy involved selecting small watersheds identified as likely to respond relatively quickly, and then focusing conservation practices on high-contributing fields within those watersheds. Two 5,000 ha (12,360 ac) watersheds in the...

Carvin, Rebecca; Good, Laura W.; Fitzpatrick, Faith A.; Diehl, Curt; Songer, Katherine; Meyer, Kimberly J.; Panuska, John C.; Richter, Steve; Whalley, Kyle
R. Carvin, L.W. Good, F. Fitzpatrick, C. Diehl, K. Songer, K.J. Meyer, J.C. Panuska, S. Richter, and K. Whalley. Testing a two-scale focused conservation strategy for reducing phosphorus and sediment loads from agricultural watersheds. Journal of Soil and Water Conservation 2018 73(3):298-309; doi:10.2489/jswc.73.3.298

Year Published: 2018

Estimates of long-term mean-annual nutrient loads considered for use in SPARROW models of the Midcontinental region of Canada and the United States, 2002 base year

Streamflow and nutrient concentration data needed to compute nitrogen and phosphorus loads were compiled from Federal, State, Provincial, and local agency databases and also from selected university databases. The nitrogen and phosphorus loads are necessary inputs to Spatially Referenced Regressions on Watershed Attributes (SPARROW) models....

Saad, David A.; Benoy, Glenn A.; Robertson, Dale M.
Saad, D.A., Benoy, G.A., and Robertson, D.M., 2018, Estimates of long-term mean-annual nutrient loads considered for use in SPARROW models of the Midcontinental region of Canada and the United States, 2002 base year: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2018–5051, 14 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/sir20185051.

Year Published: 2018

Hydraulic, water-quality, and temperature performance of three types of permeable pavement under high sediment loading conditions

Three permeable pavement surfaces - asphalt (PA), concrete (PC), and interlocking pavers (PIP) - were evaluated side-by-side to measure changes to the infiltrative capacity and water quality of stormwater runoff originating from a conventional asphalt parking lot in Madison, Wisconsin. During the 24-month monitoring period (2014-16), all three...

Selbig, William R.; Buer, Nicolas
Selbig, W.R., and Buer, Nicolas, 2018, Hydraulic, water-quality, and temperature performance of three types of permeable pavement under high sediment loading conditions: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2018–5037, 44 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/sir20185037.

Year Published: 2018

Groundwater-quality data from the eastern Snake River Plain Aquifer, Jerome and Gooding Counties, south-central Idaho, 2017

Groundwater-quality samples and water-level data were collected from 36 wells in the Jerome/Gooding County area of the eastern Snake River Plain aquifer during June 2017. The wells included 30 wells sampled for the U.S. Geological Survey’s National Water-Quality Assessment project, plus an additional 6 wells were selected to increase spatial...

Skinner, Kenneth D.
Skinner, K.D., 2018, Groundwater-quality data from the eastern Snake River Plain aquifer, Jerome and Gooding Counties, south-central Idaho, 2017: U.S. Geological Survey Data Series 1085, 20 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/ds1085.

Year Published: 2018

U.S. Geological Survey science for the Wyoming Landscape Conservation Initiative—2016 annual report

This is the ninth annual report highlighting U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) science and decision-support activities conducted for the Wyoming Landscape Conservation Initiative (WLCI). The activities address specific management needs identified by WLCI partner agencies. In fiscal year (FY) 2016, there were 26 active USGS WLCI science-based projects...

Bowen, Zachary H.; Aikens, Ellen; Aldridge, Cameron L.; Anderson, Patrick J.; Assal, Timothy J.; Chalfoun, Anna D.; Chong, Geneva W.; Eddy-Miller, Cheryl A.; Garman, Steven L.; Germaine, Stephen S.; Homer, Collin G.; Johnston, Aaron; Kauffman, Matthew J.; Manier, Daniel J.; Melcher, Cynthia P.; Miller, Kirk A.; Walters, Annika W.; Wheeler, Jerrod D.; Wieferich, Daniel; Wilson, Anna B.; Wyckoff, Teal B.; Zeigenfuss, Linda C.
Bowen, Z.H., Aikens, E., Aldridge, C.L., Anderson, P.J., Assal, T.J., Chalfoun, A.D., Chong, G.W., Eddy-Miller, C.A., Garman, S.L., Germaine, S.S., Homer, C.G., Johnston, A., Kauffman, M.J., Manier, D.J., Melcher, C.P., Miller, K.A., Walters, A.W., Wheeler, J.D., Wieferich, D., Wilson, A.B., Wyckoff, T.B., and Zeigenfuss, L.C., 2018, U.S. Geological Survey science for the Wyoming Landscape Conservation Initiative—2016 annual report: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2018–1048, 49 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/ofr20181048.

Year Published: 2018

Simulated effects of groundwater withdrawals from the Kirkwood-Cohansey aquifer system and Piney Point aquifer, Maurice and Cohansey River Basins, Cumberland County and vicinity, New Jersey

The U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, conducted a study to simulate the effects of withdrawals from the Kirkwood-Cohansey aquifer system on streamflow and groundwater flow and from the Piney Point aquifer on water levels in the Cohansey and Maurice River Basins in Cumberland County...

Gordon, Alison D.; Buxton, Debra E.
Gordon, A.D., and Buxton, D.E., 2018, Simulated effects of groundwater withdrawals from the Kirkwood-Cohansey aquifer system and Piney Point aquifer, Maurice and Cohansey River Basins, Cumberland County and vicinity, New Jersey: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2017–5144, 93 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/sir20175144.

Year Published: 2018

Methods for peak-flow frequency analysis and reporting for streamgages in or near Montana based on data through water year 2015

This report documents the methods for peak-flow frequency (hereinafter “frequency”) analysis and reporting for streamgages in and near Montana following implementation of the Bulletin 17C guidelines. The methods are used to provide estimates of peak-flow quantiles for 50-, 42.9-, 20-, 10-, 4-, 2-, 1-, 0.5-, and 0.2-percent annual exceedance...

Sando, Steven K.; McCarthy, Peter M.
Sando, S.K., and McCarthy, P.M., 2018, Methods for peak-flow frequency analysis and reporting for streamgages in or near Montana based on data through water year 2015: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2018–5046, 39 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/sir20185046.

Year Published: 2018

Compilation and analysis of multiple groundwater-quality datasets for Idaho

Groundwater is an important source of drinking and irrigation water throughout Idaho, and groundwater quality is monitored by various Federal, State, and local agencies. The historical, multi-agency records of groundwater quality include a valuable dataset that has yet to be compiled or analyzed on a statewide level. The purpose of this study is...

Hundt, Stephen A.; Hopkins, Candice B.
Hundt, S.A., and Hopkins, C.B., 2018, Compilation and analysis of multiple groundwater-quality datasets for Idaho: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2018-1079, 3 p., plus presentation, https://doi.org/10.3133/ofr20181079.

Year Published: 2018

Integrating adaptive management and ecosystem services concepts to improve natural resource management: Challenges and opportunities

Executive Summary—OverviewNatural resource managers must make decisions that affect broad-scale ecosystem processes involving large spatial areas, complex biophysical interactions, numerous competing stakeholder interests, and highly uncertain outcomes. Natural and social science information and analyses are widely recognized as important for...

Epanchin-Niell, Rebecca S.; Boyd, James W.; Macauley, Molly K.; Scarlett, Lynn; Shapiro, Carl D.; Williams, Byron K.
Epanchin-Niell, R.S., Boyd, J.W., Macauley, M.K., Scarlett, Lynn, Shapiro, C.D., and Williams, B.K., 2018, Integrating adaptive management and ecosystem services concepts to improve natural resource management—Challenges and opportunities: U.S. Geological Survey Circular 1439, 62 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/cir1439.

Year Published: 2018

Response to comment by Walker et al. on “From data to decisions: Processing information, biases, and beliefs for improved management of natural resources and environments”

Our different kinds of minds and types of thinking affect the ways we decide, take action, and cooperate (or not). The comment by Walker et al. (2018, https://doi.org/10.1002/2017EF000750) illustrates several points made by Glynn et al. (2017, https://doi.org/10.1002/2016EF000487) and many other articles. Namely, biases and beliefs often...

Glynn, Pierre D.; Voinov, Alexey A.; Shapiro, Carl D.; White, Paul A.
Attribution: Water Resources,

Year Published: 2018

Soil moisture datasets at five sites in the central Sierra Nevada and northern Coast Ranges, California

In situ soil moisture datasets are important inputs used to calibrate and validate watershed, regional, or statewide modeled and satellite-based soil moisture estimates. The soil moisture dataset presented in this report includes hourly time series of the following: soil temperature, volumetric water content, water potential, and total soil water...

Stern, Michelle A.; Anderson, Frank A.; Flint, Lorraine E.; Flint, Alan L.
Stern, M.A., Anderson, F.A., Flint, L.E., and Flint, A.L., 2018, Soil moisture datasets at five sites in the central Sierra Nevada and northern Coast Ranges, California: U.S. Geological Survey Data Series 1083, 23 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/ds1083.

Year Published: 2018

Characterization of stormwater runoff from bridge decks in eastern Massachusetts, 2014–16

The quality of stormwater runoff from bridge decks (hereafter referred to as “bridge-deck runoff”) was characterized in a field study from August 2014 through August 2016 in which concentrations of suspended sediment (SS) and total nutrients were monitored. These new data were collected to supplement existing highway-runoff data collected in...

Smith, Kirk P.; Sorenson, Jason R.; Granato, Gregory E.
Smith, K.P., Sorenson, J.R., and Granato, G.E., 2018, Characterization of stormwater runoff from bridge decks in eastern Massachusetts, 2014–16: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2018–5033, 73 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/sir20185033.

The USGS produces many types of multimedia products. Use the links below to browse our offerings of photograph galleries, podcasts and sound files, videos, aerial photos, and posters related to water. The USGS Newsroom has a Web page that highlights the main collection of multimedia products.

Filter Total Items: 1,396
Mobile laboratory fathead minnow experiment station pictures
May 1, 2017

Shenandoah mobile laboratory fathead minnow experiment station

Shenandoah mobile laboratory fathead minnow experiment station

USGS Hydrologic Technician performing wire weight measurement during record flood at USGS gage 7018500
May 1, 2017

USGS Employee Performing Measurement In Record Flood At Gage 7018500

USGS employee Aaron Walsh performing wire weight measurement in record flood at gage 7018500 Big River at Byrnesville, MO

Attribution: Water Resources
Hydro techs use q boat to make streamflow measurement
April 30, 2017

Remote Control Streamflow Measurement

Scientists from the USGS Albuquerque Field Office use an ADCP mounted on a remotely-controlled Q boat to measure the streamflow of the Rio Grande near Bosque Farms. Use of the Q boat allows our hydro techs to safely and quickly respond to flood events that may threaten the public. The Q boat also saves time and manpower as compared to traditional measurement methods.

USGS hydrologic technician Christopher Rowden verifies the accuracy of streamgage information at the Jacks Fork River.
April 30, 2017

USGS Measures Record Flooding in Missouri

USGS hydrologic technician Christopher Rowden verifies the accuracy of streamgage information at the Jacks Fork River at Eminence, Missouri.

USGS hydrologic technician measures floodwaters along Flat Creek near Jenkins, Missouri.
April 30, 2017

USGS Measures Record Flooding in Missouri

USGS hydrologic technician measures floodwaters along Flat Creek near Jenkins, Missouri using an Acoustic Doppler Current Profiling instrument. 

 Scientist tows GPR over ice
April 26, 2017

Collecting GPR Data in Alaska

Research Hydrologist Neil Terry (USGS) collects ground-penetrating radar (GPR) data along an oil pipeline in Alaska. (April 2017)

Attribution: Water Resources
Pipeline in Alaska early Spring
April 26, 2017

Alaskan Pipeline April 2017

USGS scientists are working alongside University researchers in Alaska to understand how groundwater and permafrost conditions change over time due to seasonal variations and climate change. View down the oil pipeline through one April 2017 study area. (April 2017)

Attribution: Water Resources
Scientist tows GPR over ice
April 24, 2017

Ground-penetrating Radar

Research Hydrologist Martin Briggs (USGS) tows ground-penetrating radar (GPR) during field work in Alaska. (April 2017)

Attribution: Water Resources
Helicopter with equipment strapped to side
April 24, 2017

GPR and Helicopter

Helicopters are often used to carry scientists and equipment to remote study areas in Alaska. In this photo, a ground-penetrating radar (GPR) unit is securely strapped to the side of the helicopter. (April 2017)

Attribution: Water Resources
Scientist operates equipment console while towing GPR on ice
April 24, 2017

Hydrologist and Ground-Penetrating Radar (GPR)

Research Hydrologist Martin Briggs (USGS) collects ground-penetrating radar (GPR) data. He is wearing special ice cleats on his shoes to have better traction walking on the ice. (April 2017)

Attribution: Water Resources
Scientists work on equipment in snow-covered area.
April 22, 2017

Surface nuclear magnetic resonance in Alaska

USGS Research Geophysicist Andy Kass (left, in orange) adjusts surface nuclear magnetic resonance equipment (NMR) with input from collaborators Eliot Grunewald (Vista Clara), Alex Huryn (University of Alabama), and Patrick Hendrickson (University of Colorado). NMR is being used to measure the distribution of liquid water in the subsurface. (April 2017)

Attribution: Water Resources
man working with equipment by pickup truck
April 20, 2017

Borehole logging

Borehole logging

Filter Total Items: 392
Date published: August 7, 2015

Extensive Investigation of Intermittent Streams Indicates Link to Past Climate

A new USGS study published in the journal River Research and Applications presents an extensive analysis of temporary (intermittent) streams across regions in the conterminous United States where such streams are prevalent (in the western plains and southwest) and describes their sensitivity to past climate.

Attribution: Water Resources
Date published: August 4, 2015

Study Explores Groundwater and Geothermal Energy in Drought-Stricken Eastern Oregon and Neighboring States

A new study now underway by the U.S. Geological Survey is exploring the groundwater resources and geothermal energy potential in drought-stricken areas of eastern Oregon and nearby parts of California, Idaho and Nevada.

Attribution: Water Resources
Date published: June 23, 2015

Scientists Expect Slightly Below Average Chesapeake Bay ’Dead Zone’ this Summer

Scientists are expecting that this year’s Chesapeake Bay hypoxic low-oxygen zone, also called the “dead zone,” will be approximately 1.37 cubic miles – about the volume of 2.3 million Olympic-size swimming pools. While still large, this is 10 percent lower than the long-term average as measured since 1950.

Date published: June 18, 2015

USGS Measures Local Impacts of Tropical Depression Bill

Several U.S. Geological Survey field crews are measuring flooding in south-central Oklahoma due to heavy rainfall from the remnants of Tropical Depression Bill.

Date published: June 15, 2015

Media Advisory: Remembering the 1965 South Platte River Flood and Moving Forth with Science for Safety

Fifty years ago on June 16, a devastating flood swept through the South Platte River Basin of the Front Range and Eastern Plains of Colorado, killing 21 people and causing more than $540 million in damage.

Date published: May 28, 2015

Heat Accelerates Dry in California Drought

Although record low precipitation has been the main driver of one of the worst droughts in California history, abnormally high temperatures have also played an important role in amplifying its adverse effects, according to a recent study by the U.S. Geological Survey and university partners.

Date published: May 21, 2015

New Maps Reveal Seafloor off San Francisco Area

Three new sets of maps detail the offshore bathymetry, habitats, geology and submarine environment of the seafloor off the coast of San Francisco, Drakes Bay, and Tomales Point.

Attribution: Water Resources, Pacific
Date published: May 20, 2015

Media Advisory: USGS Responds to Record-Breaking Rains in Oklahoma

As moderate to major flooding in southern Oklahoma continues, multiple crews of U.S. Geological Survey scientists are in the field measuring how the recent heavy rains are impacting streamflows and streamgages.

Date published: May 19, 2015

Muskingum and Ohio River Flood Maps Can Help Prepare for Floods

New flood inundation maps and an updated flood warning system can help Marietta, Ohio, and other communities along the Lower Muskingum River and Ohio River prepare and plan for floods.

Attribution: Water Resources, Midwest
Date published: May 19, 2015

Media Advisory: USGS Measuring High Flows Around Denver

Crews from the U.S. Geological Survey are monitoring high streamflows due to sustained rain in various locations around Denver today.

Date published: May 18, 2015

Atmospheric Release of BPA May Reach Nearby Waterways

Water contamination by hormone-disrupting pollutants is a concern for water quality around the world. Existing research has determined that elevated concentrations of Bisphenol-A (BPA), a chemical used in consumer products such as plastic food storage and beverage containers, have been deposited directly into rivers and streams by municipal or industrial wastewater.

Attribution: Water Resources
Date published: May 13, 2015

Spring Showers and Snowmelt: The State of Minnesota’s Groundwater

New research can help water resource managers quantify critical groundwater resources and assess the sustainability of long-term water use in Minnesota.

Attribution: Water Resources, Midwest
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