Wherever flowering plants flourish, pollinating bees, birds, butterflies, bats, and other animals are at work, providing vital and often unnoticed services. Many of these species are in serious decline, a situation if unabated, threatens agricultural production, maintenance of natural plant communities, and other important services. Responding to this urgent challenge, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) is part of efforts to provide scientific information to support pollinator conservation, including the implementation of a national pollinator health strategy (http://www.usgs.gov/ecosystems/wildlife/pollinators/.)
This science is but one example of how the Ecosystems Science Mission Area of the USGS conducts science to support sound management and conservation of our Nation’s biological resources. It does this through research, technical assistance, and education conducted by Cooperative Research Units and Science Centers located in nearly every State.
The quality of life and economic strength in America hinges on healthy ecosystems that support living things and natural processes. Ecosystem science better enables society to understand how and why ecosystems change, to predict and forecast future changes, and to guide actions that can prevent damage to, and restore and sustain ecosystems. It is through this knowledge that informed decisions are made about natural resources that can enhance our Nation's economic and environmental well-being.