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: 638
Date published: May 6, 2014

Adaptive Management for the Northern Bobwhite on the Babcock-Webb Wildlife Management Area

Based on field research conducted during 2002-2009, the bobwhite population on the Babcock-Webb Wildlife Management Area (WMA) in Southwest Florida is incapable of supporting desired levels of sport harvest.

Date published: April 17, 2014

Use of Amphibian Communities as Indicators of Restoration Success in the Greater Everglades

Habitat alteration and climate, when combined, are serious threats to amphibians and other wildlife. Habitat suitability models are being used to predict the responses of an amphibian community to hydrological and habitat restoration in the Greater Everglades Ecosystem. 

Date published: April 1, 2014

Assessment of South Atlantic Landscape Conservation Cooperative (SALCC) Marine Indicators

The South Atlantic Landscape Conservation Cooperative (SALCC) has proposed natural resource indicators and associated targets for the marine ecosystem.

Contacts: Michael Randall
Date published: April 1, 2014
Status: Active

Abiotic and Biotic Effects on Delta Smelt Abundance and Distribution

Scientists research the importance of abiotic versus biotic (food supply) habitat features as drivers of delta smelt abundance and distribution.

Date published: April 17, 2013

Coping with Invasive Alien Species and Environmental Stressors: Linking Behavioral Studies with Management for Anuran Amphibians

Climate change and invasive species are two key drivers of biodiversity loss. Knowing how amphibians respond to climate change and invasive species can greatly improve predictions of species' persistence in the face of these factors and can help guide resource managers and conservation biologists in developing strategies to manage for these encroaching disturbances. 

Date published: April 18, 2012
Status: Completed

Experimental Study of Fire Season and Frequency in South Florida Pinelands

Fire is a major driving force in determining the structure and composition of subtropical vegetation. Prescribed fire constitutes one of the most pervasive management actions influencing the restoration and maintenance of the Greater Everglades Ecosystem. 

Contacts: James Snyder
Date published: March 10, 2012

Systematic Studies of Southeastern Fishes

The southeastern United States is home to a variety of freshwater snails, mussels, crayfish, and fishes. USGS scientists are conducting systematic studies to better document the region's biodiversity.

Contacts: Noel Burkhead
Date published: April 17, 2009

Integrative Studies of Florida Spring Ecosystems

Florida's springs are a source of cultural, recreational, and ecological importance. But land-use changes and increased demands for groundwater due to the state's growing population have led to widespread impairment of these unique ecosystems. 

Date published: March 10, 2008

Conservation Research on North American Freshwater Faunas

The decline of freshwater animals has resulted in an increase in the number of imperiled species and extinctions. USGS scientists use genetics to determine if these species truly are gone forever.

Contacts: Noel Burkhead
Date published: October 14, 2003

Gulf sturgeon Fact Sheet

Gulf sturgeon Fact Sheet

Microbiology

Research in fish and wildlife health and disease, geomicrobiology, ecosystem function, climate change, water quality for drinking and in recreation, bioremediation, nanotechnology, energy and geographic patterns of microbial distribution.

Attribution: Ecosystems

National Phenology Network

Brings together citizen scientists, government agencies, non-profit groups, educators and students of all ages to monitor the impacts of climate change on plants and animals in the United States.

Attribution: Ecosystems
Filter Total Items: 2,895
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.

Year Published: 2015

Biofilm formation of Francisella noatunensis subsp. orientalis

Francisella noatunensis subsp. orientalis (Fno) is an emergent fish pathogen in both marine and fresh water environments. The bacterium is suspected to persist in the environment even without the presence of a suitable fish host. In the present study, the influence of different abiotic factors such as salinity and temperature were...

Soto, Esteban; Halliday-Wimmonds, Iona; Francis , Stewart; Kearney, Michael T.; Hansen, John D.

Year Published: 2015

Piscine reovirus: Genomic and molecular phylogenetic analysis from farmed and wild salmonids collected on the Canada/US Pacific Coast

Piscine reovirus (PRV) is a double stranded non-enveloped RNA virus detected in farmed and wild salmonids. This study examined the phylogenetic relationships among different PRV sequence types present in samples from salmonids in Western Canada and the US, including Alaska (US), British Columbia (Canada) and Washington State (US). Tissues testing...

Siah, Ahmed; Morrison, Diane B.; Fringuelli, Elena; Savage, Paul S.; Richmond, Zina; Purcell, Maureen K.; Johns, Robert; Johnson, Stewart C.; Sakasida, Sonja M.
Siah A., D.B. Morrison, E. Fringuelli, P. Savage, Z. Richmond, R. Johns, M.K. Purcell, S.C. Johnson, S.J. Saksida. 2015. Piscine Reovirus: Genomic and Molecular Phylogenetic Analysis from Farmed and Wild Salmonids Collected on the Canada/US Pacific Coast. PLoS ONE 10(11):e0141475.

Year Published: 2015

Genetic variation underlying resistance to infectious hematopoietic necrosis virus in a steelhead trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) population

Understanding the mechanisms of host resistance to pathogens will allow insights into the response of wild populations to the emergence of new pathogens. Infectious hematopoietic necrosis virus (IHNV) is endemic to the Pacific Northwest and infectious to Pacific salmon and trout (Oncorhynchus spp.). Emergence of the M genogroup of IHNV in...

Brieuc, Marine S. O.; Purcell, Maureen K.; Palmer, Alexander D.; Naish, Kerry A.
Brieuc, M.S.O., M.K. Purcell, A.D. Palmer, and K.A. Naish. 2015. Genetic variation underlying resistance to infectious hematopoietic necrosis virus in a steelhead trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) population. Dis. Aquat. Org. 117(1): 77-83.

Year Published: 2015

Behavior, passage, and downstream migration of juvenile Chinook salmon from Detroit Reservoir to Portland, Oregon, 2014–15

An evaluation was conducted to estimate dam passage survival of juvenile Chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) at Detroit Dam during a period of spill. To estimate dam passage survival, we used a paired-release recapture study design and released groups of tagged fish upstream (997 fish) and downstream (625 fish) of Detroit Dam. A total of 43...

Kock, Tobias J.; Beeman, John W.; Hansen, Amy C.; Hansel, Hal C.; Hansen, Gabriel S.; Hatton, Tyson W.; Kofoot, Eric E.; Sholtis, Matthew D.; Sprando, Jamie M.
Kock, T.J., Beeman, J.W., Hansen, A.C., Hansel, H.C., Hansen, G.S., Hatton, T.W., Kofoot, E.E., Sholtis, M.D., and Sprando, J.M., 2015, Behavior, passage, and downstream migration of juvenile Chinook salmon from Detroit Reservoir to Portland, Oregon, 2014–15: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2015-1220, 30 p., http://dx.doi.org/10.3133/ofr20151220.

Year Published: 2015

Dim ultraviolet light as a means of deterring activity by the Hawaiian hoary bat Lasiurus cinereus semotus

Widespread bat fatalities at industrial wind turbines are a conservation issue with the potential to inhibit efficient use of an abundant source of energy. Bat fatalities can be reduced by altering turbine operations, but such curtailment decreases turbine efficiency. If additional ways of reducing bat fatalities at wind turbines were available...

Gorresen, P. Marcos; Cryan, Paul M.; Dalton, David C.; Wolf, Sandy; Johnson, Jessica A.; Todd, Christopher M.; Bonaccorso, Frank J.
Gorresen, P.M., P.M. Cryan, D. Dalton, J. Johnson, C. Todd, S. Wolf, and F.J. Bonaccorso. 2015. Dim ultraviolet light as a means of deterring activity by the Hawaiian hoary bat (Lasiurus cinereus semotus). Endangered Species Research 28:249-257.

Year Published: 2015

Hybridization between Yellowstone cutthroat trout and rainbow trout alters the expression of muscle growth-related genes and their relationships with growth patterns

Hybridization creates novel gene combinations that may generate important evolutionary novelty, but may also reduce existing adaptation by interrupting inherent biological processes, such as genotype-environment interactions. Hybridization often causes substantial change in patterns of gene expression, which, in turn, may cause phenotypic change....

Ostberg, Carl O.; Chase, Dorothy M.; Hauser, Lorenz
Ostberg, C.O., D.M. Chase, and L. Hauser. 2015. Hybridization between Yellowstone cutthroat trout and rainbow trout alters the expression of muscle growth-related genes and their relationships with growth patterns. PLoS ONE 10(10): E0141373.

Year Published: 2015

Shaping species with ephemeral boundaries: The distribution and genetic structure of desert tortoise (Gopherus morafkai) in the Sonoran Desert region

Aim We examine the role biogeographical features played in the evolution of Morafka's desert tortoise (Gopherus morafkai) and test the hypothesis that G. morafkai maintains genetically distinct lineages associated with different Sonoran Desert biomes. Increased knowledge of the past and present distribution of the Sonoran Desert...

Edwards, Taylor; Vaughn, Mercy; Rosen, Philip C.; Torres, Ma. Cristina Melendez; Karl, Alice E.; Culver, Melanie; Murphy, Robert W.

Year Published: 2015

Incorporating future change into current conservation planning: Evaluating tidal saline wetland migration along the U.S. Gulf of Mexico coast under alternative sea-level rise and urbanization scenarios

In this study, the U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, quantified the potential for landward migration of tidal saline wetlands along the U.S. Gulf of Mexico coast under alternative future sea-level rise and urbanization scenarios. Our analyses focused exclusively on tidal saline wetlands (that is,...

Enwright, Nicholas M.; Griffith, Kereen T.; Osland, Michael J.
Enwright, N.M., Griffith, K.T., and Osland, M.J., 2015, Incorporating future change into current conservation planning—Evaluating tidal saline wetland migration along the U.S. Gulf of Mexico coast under alternative sea-level rise and urbanization scenarios: U.S. Geological Survey Data Series 969, http://dx.doi.org/10.3133/ds969.

Year Published: 2015

Dreissenid mussel research priorities workshop

Currently, dreissenid mussels have yet to be detected in the northwestern part of the United States and western Canada. Infestation of one of the jurisdictions within the mussel-free Pacific Northwest would likely have significant economic, soci­etal and environmental implications for the entire region. Understanding the biology and environmental...

Sytsma, Mark; Phillips, Stephen; Counihan, Timothy D.
Sytsma, M.D., S. Phillips, and T.D. Counihan. 2015. Dreissenid mussel research priorities workshop. Center for Lakes and Reservoirs Publications and Presentations. Paper 49.

Year Published: 2015

Fire activity as a function of fire–weather seasonal severity and antecedent climate across spatial scales in southern Europe and Pacific western USA

Climate has a strong influence on fire activity, varying across time and space. We analyzed the relationships between fire–weather conditions during the main fire season and antecedent water-balance conditions and fires in two Mediterranean-type regions with contrasted management histories: five southern countries of the European Union (...

Urbieta, Itziar R.; Zavala, Gonzalo; Bedia, Joaquin; Gutierrez, Jose M.; San Miguel-Ayanz, Jesus; Camia, Andrea; Keeley, Jon E.; Moreno, Jose M.
Urbieta, IR, G Zavala, J Bedia, JM Gutierrez, JS Miguel-Ayanz, A Camia, JE Keeley, JM Moreno. 2015. Fire activity as a function of fire–weather seasonal severity and antecedent climate across spatial scales in southern Europe and Pacific western USA. Environmental Research Letters 10(11): 114031. doi:10.1088/1748-9326/10/11/114013

Filter Total Items: 667
California condor soaring
December 23, 2006

California condor #412 soars above the Los Padres National Forest

The California condor is the largest bird in North America.

Lake Whitefish
November 4, 2006

Lake Whitefish

Lake Whitefish from our fall survey.

Image: Brewer's Sparrow Surveys
October 9, 2006

Brewer's Sparrow Surveys

Conducing Brewer's sparrow (Spizella breweri) surveys in sagebrush habitat, Owyhee Moutains, SW Idaho.

Image: Brewer's Sparrow Nest in Sagebrush
September 10, 2006

Brewer's Sparrow Nest in Sagebrush

Top view of Brewer's sparrow (Spizella breweri) nest in sagebrush (Artemisia tridentata), Owyhee Mountains, SW Idaho.

Image: Brewer's Sparrow Nest
June 15, 2006

Brewer's Sparrow Nest

Unhatched eggs in Brewer's sparrow (Spizella breweri) nest.

Sagebrush in central Idaho
June 15, 2006

Sagebrush in central Idaho

Sagebrush in central Idaho.

Big sagebrush near Parawon, UT
June 5, 2006

Big sagebrush near Parawon, UT

Big sagebrush near Parawon, UT.

Varied Thrush perched on a branch
June 4, 2006

Varied Thrush perched on a branch

The Varied Thrush is a year-round native of Pacific Northwest forests. Its diet consists of mostly insects in the summer and berries and wild fruit in the winter.

Image: Radio Marked Sage-grouse Hen
April 18, 2006

Radio Marked Sage-grouse Hen

A sage-grouse hen ready for release after being radio-marked and having an identification band placed on her left leg.

Attribution: Ecosystems
Image: Brewer's Sparrow in Hand
March 4, 2006

Brewer's Sparrow in Hand

Brewer's sparrow (Spizella breweri) held by field technician.

Image: Brewer's Sparrow Being Held for Assessment
February 26, 2006

Brewer's Sparrow Being Held for Assessment

John Warzybok records data whille Caroline Poli secures a Brewer's sparrow (Spizella breweri) for assessment, White Sands Missile Range, New Mexico.

Image: Measurement of Brewer's Sparrow
February 26, 2006

Measurement of Brewer's Sparrow

Brewer's sparrow (Spizella breweri) being measured, White Sands Missile Range, New Mexico.