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Environmental Health Featured Science Activities

Our science activities are summarized in a series of feature articles that highlight recent U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) environmental health science activities. They are short summaries of peer-reviewed journal articles and USGS reports co-authored by our specialized teams of scientists.
 

Filter Total Items: 213

Gratitude for a Dedicated Civil Servant who Tirelessly Promoted Environmental Health Science

Mike Focazio, the Environmental Health Program Coordinator, editor of the GeoHEALTH-USGS Newsletter, and research scientist retired from the USGS at the end of November. Throughout his 33-year career, Mike’s principle-based leadership focusing on transparency, accountability, and scientific integrity has carried environmental health science forward at USGS and for the Nation.
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Gratitude for a Dedicated Civil Servant who Tirelessly Promoted Environmental Health Science

Mike Focazio, the Environmental Health Program Coordinator, editor of the GeoHEALTH-USGS Newsletter, and research scientist retired from the USGS at the end of November. Throughout his 33-year career, Mike’s principle-based leadership focusing on transparency, accountability, and scientific integrity has carried environmental health science forward at USGS and for the Nation.
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Wild Prairie Grouse Diet and Microbiomes Vary Between Cropland and Grassland Habitats

Wild prairie grouse residing in croplands had altered diets and gut microbiome imbalances characterized by a greater abundance of pathogenic bacteria and antibiotic-resistance genes in comparison to those residing in grasslands. Similar gut microbiome imbalances are rarely associated with lethal outcomes, but rather linked to sublethal health effects including growth, development, behavior, immune...
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Wild Prairie Grouse Diet and Microbiomes Vary Between Cropland and Grassland Habitats

Wild prairie grouse residing in croplands had altered diets and gut microbiome imbalances characterized by a greater abundance of pathogenic bacteria and antibiotic-resistance genes in comparison to those residing in grasslands. Similar gut microbiome imbalances are rarely associated with lethal outcomes, but rather linked to sublethal health effects including growth, development, behavior, immune...
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Review of Wildlife Health Outcomes and Potentially Toxic Algal Blooms in the Chesapeake Bay

Scientists provide resources that review algal toxin data, explore links between avian mortality and toxin exposure, and identify future research needs to predict algal toxin health hazards and risks for birds and other wildlife in the Chesapeake Bay.
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Review of Wildlife Health Outcomes and Potentially Toxic Algal Blooms in the Chesapeake Bay

Scientists provide resources that review algal toxin data, explore links between avian mortality and toxin exposure, and identify future research needs to predict algal toxin health hazards and risks for birds and other wildlife in the Chesapeake Bay.
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Avian Influenza Prevalence Correlated to Mercury Concentrations in Wild Waterfowl—Science to Understand Combined Pathogen and Contaminant Exposure on Wildlife Health

Low pathogenic avian influenza infections were directly correlated with blood mercury concentrations in wild waterfowl, indicating that mercury exposure may be related to pathogen susceptibility. Further study is needed to determine if and how mercury and other environmental contaminant exposures may affect disease susceptibility in wildlife.
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Avian Influenza Prevalence Correlated to Mercury Concentrations in Wild Waterfowl—Science to Understand Combined Pathogen and Contaminant Exposure on Wildlife Health

Low pathogenic avian influenza infections were directly correlated with blood mercury concentrations in wild waterfowl, indicating that mercury exposure may be related to pathogen susceptibility. Further study is needed to determine if and how mercury and other environmental contaminant exposures may affect disease susceptibility in wildlife.
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Antibiotic Resistant Bacteria Acquired by Wild Birds in Urban Settings and Dispersed via Migration

U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) scientists have developed a model that demonstrates how migratory wild birds in urban areas can acquire bacteria that are resistant to antibiotics, including those used in clinics, and potentially disperse these bacteria between continents via migration.
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Antibiotic Resistant Bacteria Acquired by Wild Birds in Urban Settings and Dispersed via Migration

U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) scientists have developed a model that demonstrates how migratory wild birds in urban areas can acquire bacteria that are resistant to antibiotics, including those used in clinics, and potentially disperse these bacteria between continents via migration.
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Pesticides Detected in Bees, Flowers, Soil, and Air within Pollinator-Attractive Row-Crop Border Plantings

Field study in California describes the potential for pollinator-attractive field borders in agricultural areas to become a pesticide exposure pathway to bees through soil, air, and plants.
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Pesticides Detected in Bees, Flowers, Soil, and Air within Pollinator-Attractive Row-Crop Border Plantings

Field study in California describes the potential for pollinator-attractive field borders in agricultural areas to become a pesticide exposure pathway to bees through soil, air, and plants.
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U.S. Geological Survey Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances Science Strategy Identifies Science Gaps and Opportunities

USGS recently (2022) released a strategic vision document that identifies science gaps and opportunities for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) monitoring, assessment, and research activities (sampling protocols and analytical methods, environmental sources and source apportionment, environmental occurrence, environmental fate and transport, human and wildlife exposure routes...
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U.S. Geological Survey Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances Science Strategy Identifies Science Gaps and Opportunities

USGS recently (2022) released a strategic vision document that identifies science gaps and opportunities for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) monitoring, assessment, and research activities (sampling protocols and analytical methods, environmental sources and source apportionment, environmental occurrence, environmental fate and transport, human and wildlife exposure routes...
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Study Provides a Data Resource for Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances in Streams Within Iowa Agricultural Watersheds

Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) were detected in streams within agricultural areas (an often-unmeasured landscape) across Iowa. The data from this study provide one resource to understand the extent of PFAS concentrations in water resources from diverse landscapes throughout the United States.
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Study Provides a Data Resource for Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances in Streams Within Iowa Agricultural Watersheds

Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) were detected in streams within agricultural areas (an often-unmeasured landscape) across Iowa. The data from this study provide one resource to understand the extent of PFAS concentrations in water resources from diverse landscapes throughout the United States.
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Web-Based Tool Developed through Multiagency Effort Allows Visualization of Cyanobacteria Blooms in Lakes and Reservoirs—Steps Toward Public Awareness and Exposure Prevention

A web-based application tool utilizing satellite data—CyANWeb—developed through collaborative interagency efforts was released as part of the Cyanobacteria Assessment Network (CyAN) to help Federal, State, Tribal, and local partners identify when cyanobacterial blooms may be forming. Available through a web browser or as an application, the tool can access, download, and provide data to notify...
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Web-Based Tool Developed through Multiagency Effort Allows Visualization of Cyanobacteria Blooms in Lakes and Reservoirs—Steps Toward Public Awareness and Exposure Prevention

A web-based application tool utilizing satellite data—CyANWeb—developed through collaborative interagency efforts was released as part of the Cyanobacteria Assessment Network (CyAN) to help Federal, State, Tribal, and local partners identify when cyanobacterial blooms may be forming. Available through a web browser or as an application, the tool can access, download, and provide data to notify...
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Large Fraction of Unidentified Organofluorine in a Coastal Watershed has Implications for River to Marine Ecosystems

A group of scientists investigated per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in watersheds on Cape Cod and identified a unique signature for aqueous film forming foams (AFFF) from legacy firefighting and fire training. A combination of statistical modeling and laboratory measurements indicates that unidentified organofluorine constitutes a large fraction of PFAS in the river systems that...
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Large Fraction of Unidentified Organofluorine in a Coastal Watershed has Implications for River to Marine Ecosystems

A group of scientists investigated per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in watersheds on Cape Cod and identified a unique signature for aqueous film forming foams (AFFF) from legacy firefighting and fire training. A combination of statistical modeling and laboratory measurements indicates that unidentified organofluorine constitutes a large fraction of PFAS in the river systems that...
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Do Trace Metal Concentrations in the Upper Columbia River Affect Early Life Stage White Sturgeon?

To understand if contaminants are associated with white sturgeon population declines, U.S. Geological Survey scientists reviewed the life history, physiology, and behavior of white sturgeon, along with recent toxicological studies and existing trace metal data for locations in the Columbia River. The analysis indicated that the highest concentrations of copper and other metals in the Columbia...
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Do Trace Metal Concentrations in the Upper Columbia River Affect Early Life Stage White Sturgeon?

To understand if contaminants are associated with white sturgeon population declines, U.S. Geological Survey scientists reviewed the life history, physiology, and behavior of white sturgeon, along with recent toxicological studies and existing trace metal data for locations in the Columbia River. The analysis indicated that the highest concentrations of copper and other metals in the Columbia...
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Groundwater Discharge is a Pathway for Phytoestrogen and Herbicide Entry to Streams in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed

Groundwater discharge zones are important spawning areas for fish because they provide a thermally stable habitat. Research at three streams in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed with areas of focused groundwater discharge revealed that groundwater also is a source of phytoestrogens and herbicides that could result in fish exposure during sensitive life stages.
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Groundwater Discharge is a Pathway for Phytoestrogen and Herbicide Entry to Streams in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed

Groundwater discharge zones are important spawning areas for fish because they provide a thermally stable habitat. Research at three streams in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed with areas of focused groundwater discharge revealed that groundwater also is a source of phytoestrogens and herbicides that could result in fish exposure during sensitive life stages.
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