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Publications

Browse more than 160,000 publications authored by our scientists over the past 100+ year history of the USGS.  Publications available are: USGS-authored journal articles, series reports, book chapters, other government publications, and more.

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Interlaboratory comparison of three sediment bioaccumulation tests

Standard bioaccumulation tests are commonly conducted using Macoma nasuta (clam), and Alitta virens (polychaete) for marine tests, and Lumbriculus variegatus (an oligochaete) for freshwater tests. Because the interlaboratory variability associated with these tests is unknown, four experienced laboratories conducted standard 28-day bioaccumulation tests with the above species using sediments contam

Poplar Island: Understanding the development of a beneficial use restoration site

Poplar Island, like many other islands throughout the Chesapeake Bay, eroded from 460 hectares in 1847 to only 1.5 hectares by the 1990’s. However, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Maryland Department of Transportation, and numerous other state and federal agencies selected this site as the location of a beneficial use project aimed at restoring remote island habitat in the Chesapeake Bay using c

Development and description of a composite hydrogeologic framework for inclusion in a geoenvironmental assessment of undiscovered uranium resources in Pliocene- to Pleistocene-age geologic units of the Texas Coastal Plain

A previously completed mineral resources assessment of the Texas Coastal Plain indicated the potential for the future discovery of uranium resources. Geoenvironmental assessments that include the hydrogeologic framework can be used as a tool to understand the potential effects of mining operations. The hydrogeologic framework for this study focused on the composite hydrogeologic unit of the tract

Can machine learning accelerate process understanding and decision-relevant predictions of river water quality?

The global decline of water quality in rivers and streams has resulted in a pressing need to design new watershed management strategies. Water quality can be affected by multiple stressors including population growth, land use change, global warming, and extreme events, with repercussions on human and ecosystem health. A scientific understanding of factors affecting riverine water quality and pred

A methodology to assess the historical environmental footprint of in-situ recovery (ISR) of uranium: A demonstration in the Goliad Sand in the Texas Coastal Plain, USA

In-situ recovery (ISR) has been the only technique used to extract uranium from sandstone-hosted uranium deposits in the Pliocene Goliad Sand in the Texas Coastal Plain. Water plays a crucial role throughout the ISR lifecycle of production and groundwater restoration yet neither the water use nor other environmental footprints have been well documented. The goal of this study is to examine histori

Local diversity in phenological responses of migratory lake sturgeon to warm winters

Rich intraspecific diversity in traits that shape responses to environmental conditions implies that effects of climate change will differ within species or even populations. Nevertheless, few studies investigate how different groups within species respond to climatic fluctuations, and most risk assessments rely upon species-wide generalizations. We studied effects of among-year variation in air t

The reuse of avian samples: Opportunities, pitfalls and a solution

Tissue samples are frequently collected to study various aspects of avian biology, but in many cases these samples are not used in their entirety and are stored by the collector. The already collected samples provide a largely overlooked opportunity because they can be used by different researchers in different biological fields. Broad reuse of samples could result in multispecies or large-scale s

First juvenile Chum Salmon confirms successful reproduction for Pacific salmon in the North American Arctic

The distributional extent of Pacific salmon Oncorhynchus spp. in the North American Arctic is unresolved. While adult Pacific salmon have a recurring presence across the Alaskan North Slope and into the Canadian Arctic, it is uncertain if these fish are part of established Arctic populations, vagrants from outside sources reproducing unsuccessfully, or both. Here we present the first confirmed rec

Landscape-scale forest restoration decreases vulnerability to drought mortality under climate change in southwest USA ponderosa forest

Drought-induced tree mortality is predicted to increase in dry forests across the western USA as future projections show hotter, drier climates potentially resulting in large-scale tree die-offs, changes in species composition, and loss of forest ecosystem services, including carbon storage. While some studies have found that forest stands with greater basal areas (BA) have higher drought mortalit

Sedimentary record of annual-decadal timescale reservoir dynamics: Anthropogenic stratigraphy of Lake Powell, Utah, U.S.A.

The tributaries of Lake Powell were impounded following construction of Glen Canyon Dam, resulting in deposition of reservoir sediment over a ∼650 km2 area since 1963. These units have been exposed through erosion as water storage in Lake Powell has decreased since 2000. This anthropogenic sedimentary record reflects the complex interplay among wet and dry periods of Colorado River runoff and the r

Mapping aquifer salinity gradients and effects of oil field produced water disposal using geophysical logs: Elk Hills, Buena Vista and Coles Levee Oil Fields, San Joaquin Valley, California

The effects of oil and gas production on adjacent groundwater quality are becoming a concern in many areas of the United States. As a result, it has become increasingly important to identify which aquifers require monitoring and protection. In this study, we map the extent of groundwater with less than 10,000 mg/L TDS both laterally and vertically near the Elk Hills, Buena Vista and Coles Levee Oi

The wildland-urban interface in the United States based on 125 million building locations

The wildland-urban interface (WUI) is the focus of many important land management issues, such as wildfire, habitat fragmentation, invasive species, and human-wildlife conflicts. Wildfire is an especially critical issue, because housing growth in the WUI increases wildfire ignitions and the number of homes at risk. Identifying the WUI is important for assessing and mitigating impacts of developmen