Mission Areas

Ecosystems

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Filter Total Items: 455
Plants grown in a greenhouse
Date Published: October 30, 2017

There is a growing consensus among resource managers to use native plant materials for ecological restoration of degraded drylands. Some plant species may be suitable for re-introduction across broad environmental gradients. Other species may fail under narrower conditions, or their re-introduction may have genetic consequences for local ecotypes, particularly when adapting to future climate...

Plant extraction wells WERC
Date Published: October 30, 2017

Dr. Amy Vandergast and team develop genetic approaches for species detection, individual mark recapture, and studying ecological associations (such as predator/prey relationships). These techniques often increase monitoring effectiveness and efficiency when replacing or combining with standard field methodologies.

WERC sea otter
Date Published: October 30, 2017

WERC's Dr. Tim Tinker colloborates with other research scientists to conduct annual population surveys of the southern sea otter -- a federally listed threatened species. In coordination with the California Department of Fish and Game and other institutions, ongoing surveys and research continues to inform the southern sea otter recovery plan for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and...

Sea otter Elkhorn Slough National Estuarine Research Reserve (WERC)
Date Published: October 30, 2017

Dr. Tim Tinker and his team of researchers are developing and utilizing a variety of methodological and analytical tools to understand the causes of biological and ecological trends in sea otter populations, and to predict the ecological consequences of management practices on these populations and their ecosystems.

WERC Suisun Marsh Waterfowl
Date Published: October 30, 2017
Status: Active

The Suisun Marsh and Central Valley in California are recognized as some of the world’s most important wetland habitat because it provides critical breeding and wintering habitat for many waterfowl in the Pacific Flyway. Mike Casazza and USGS WERC biologists are providing necessary scientific information to support and evaluate waterfowl populations and habitat management in North America....

Photo depicting drought-related tree mortality in Sequoia National Park
Date Published: October 30, 2017

USGS WERC's Dr. Phil van Mantgem and his collaborators are using plot-based methods to describe change and vulnerability to drought in the forests of the western United States. A focus of this work is the installation and maintenance of large (1 ha) monitoring plots. Many other vegetation monitoring strategies are based on small (0.1 ha) plots, which may not be sufficient to detect changes in...

WERC Fire
Date Published: October 30, 2017

How will increased drought affect forest fire severity? WERC’s Dr. Phil van Mantgem is testing the idea increased drought stress may affect forest fire severity independent of fire intensity. Drought stress prior to fire can affect tree health, potentially resulting in a higher sensitivity to fire-induced damage. Thus, with drought there may be ongoing increases in fire severity (the number of...

WERC looking over lush forested hills, Oregon Caves National Monument
Date Published: October 30, 2017

This project uses new and existing field data to assess forest restoration treatment effects across broad spatial and temporal scales. WERC's Dr. Phil van Mantgem and project partners are considering the effects of restoration treatments in terms of forest structure, forest stand development, subsequent tree mortality patterns mortality, and how climate influences the success or failure of...

WERC Chick and Decoy Birds at the South Bay Salt Pond Restoration Area
Date Published: October 30, 2017

The San Francisco Bay is designated as a site of hemispheric importance to shorebirds and annually supports over one million waterbirds. Within the USGS WERC waterbird breeding ecology program, Dr. Josh Ackerman and partners are studying habitat selection, movements, and factors influencing waterbird nest success and chick growth and survival. 

WERC researcher conducting elevation surveys in San Pablo Bay National Wildlife Refuge
Date Published: October 30, 2017
Status: Active

With sea level rise, how will the coastal habitats of the San Francisco Bay Estuary change over the next 100 years? Mapping and modeling studies by Dr. Karen Thorne, WERC scientists, and partners have produced scenarios for this important coastal ecosystem.

WERC Ridgway’s rail in vegetation
Date Published: October 30, 2017

The Ridgway’s rail is a federal and state listed endangered species that occurs in wetlands along the Pacific Coast and from the Lower Colorado River drainage to southern Baja California. Three subspecies of Ridgway’s rail are found within the United States: the California Ridgway’s Rail, Yuma Ridgway’s rail, and Light-footed Ridgway’s rail.  All three subspecies have declined since 1900 as a...

Wildfire in the Mid-Elevation Mojave Desert
Date Published: October 30, 2017
Status: Active

Fuel conditions and fire regimes in western forests and deserts have been altered due to past land management, biological invasions, and recent extreme weather events and climate shifts. These changes have created extreme fire risk to local and regional communities, threatening their economic health related to wildland recreation, forest production, livestock operations, and other uses of...

Filter Total Items: 58
South Florida Information Access logo
April 27, 2016

South Florida Information Access (SOFIA)

South Florida Information Access (SOFIA) was established to provide coherent information access in support of research, decision-making, and resource management for the South Florida ecosystem restoration effort.

SLR graphic
April 21, 2016

Sea-Level Rise Visualization for Alabama and Mississippi

The interactive sea-level rise visualization tool results from a collaborative effort between NOAA's Coastal Services Center, USGS WARC, and USGS Mississippi Water Science Center. The tool illustrates the scale of potential flooding, but not the exact location, and does not account for erosion, subsidence, sediment accretion, or future construction. 

AL-SHU graphic
April 21, 2016

Alabama Strategic Habitat Units Applications

WARC's Advanced Applications Team develops and maintains databases and applications to help the Alabama Department of Transportation and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service ensure new road construction and existing road maintenance at waterway crossings don't adversely affect threatened and endangered species dependent on those waterways. 

Sandy Science logo
April 21, 2016

Hurricane Sandy Ecosystems Application Development

This showcases the data and analytical products from studies related to habitat change, storm surge and ecological modeling, migratory bird impacts, and other studies conducted at WARC and funded by the Disaster Relief Appropriations Act of 2013. WARC's Advanced Applications Team also supports the efforts of scientists conducting research in Hurricane Sandy-impacted areas. 

CRMS Wetlands logo
April 21, 2016

Coastwide Reference Monitoring System (CRMS)

CRMS is the largest of all Coastal Wetlands Planning, Protection and Restoration Act (CWPRRA) funded projects and has established a network of ~400 biological monitoring stations across coastal Louisiana spanning all coastal habitat types and generating tremendous volumes of data. 

MsCIP logo
April 21, 2016

Mississippi Coastal Improvements Program (MsCIP) Barrier Island Restoration

MsCIP was developed in 2009 by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Mobile District, in conjunction with other Federal and State agencies, to help reduce future storm damage along the Mississippi Gulf coast. In 2014, in cooperation with the USACE Mobile District, WARC's Advanced Applications Team began development on the MsCIP Data Viewer, an interactive web-mapping environment. 

CWPPRA logo
April 20, 2016

Coastal Wetlands Planning, Protection and Restoration Act (CWPPRA)

CWPPRA is the oldest and largest coastal restoration effort operating across coastal Louisiana and has constructed 105 restoration projects since its establishment over 20 years ago. WARC's Advanced Applications Team has proudly worked with the CWPPRA Task Force over the years to ensure timely and accurate project-specific information is publicly available. 

JEM logo
April 20, 2016

Joint Ecosystem Modeling (JEM) Support

The JEM community of practice is focused on ecological modeling and monitoring across the Greater Everglades, with particular interest in habitats, how various factors affect habitat change, and how the organisms dependent on those habitats respond today and into the future.

EverVIEW logo
April 20, 2016

Everglades Eco-Modeling Data Visualization and Tool Development

Working with the Joint Ecosystem Modeling (JEM) community of practice, the WARC Advanced Applications Team developed and maintains the EverVIEW Data Viewer desktop visualization platform, which allows users to easily visualize and inspect standards-compliant NetCDF modeling data and has experienced tremendous feature growth driven by user feedback. 

EverVIEW logo
April 20, 2016

EverVIEW Lite

Recently, the Team has developed and released EverVIEW Lite, an online web mapping framework based on the core features available in the desktop viewer.

CIMS logo
April 20, 2016

Coastal Information Management System (CIMS)

WARC's Advanced Applications Team is responsible for data management and application development to support the biological monitoring components of coastal restoration projects in the Louisiana Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority portfolio. 

Nonindigenous Aquatic Species Database and Website (NAS)
April 12, 2016

Nonindigenous Aquatic Species Program Database Queries

Welcome to the Nonindigenous Aquatic Species (NAS) information resource for the United States Geological Survey. Located at Gainesville, Florida, this site has been established as a central repository for spatially referenced biogeographic accounts of introduced aquatic species.

Filter Total Items: 544
Year Published: 2016

Passage of downstream migrant American eels through an airlift-assisted deep bypass

Traditional downstream guidance and bypass facilities for anadromous fishes (i.e., surface bypasses, surface guidance structures, and behavioral barriers) have frequently been ineffective for anguillid eels. Because eels typically spend the majority of their time near the bottom in the vicinity of intake structures, deep bypass structures with...

Haro, Alexander J.; Watten, Barnaby J.; Noreika, John
Haro, A., B. Watten, and J. Noreika. 2016. Passage of downstream migrant American eels through an airlift deep bypass system. Ecological Engineering 91(2016):545-552. http://dx.doi.org/ 10.1016/j.ecoleng.2016.02.028

Year Published: 2016

Seasonal response of ghrelin, growth hormone, and insulin-like growth factor I in the free-ranging Florida manatee (Trichechus manatus latirostris)

Seasonal changes in light, temperature, and food availability stimulate a physiological response in an animal. Seasonal adaptations are well studied in Arctic, Sub-Arctic, and hibernating mammals; however, limited studies have been conducted in sub-tropical species. The Florida manatee (Trichechus manatus latirostris), a sub-tropical marine...

Tighe, Rachel L; Bonde, Robert K.; Avery, Julie P.

Year Published: 2016

Habitat selection by juvenile Mojave Desert tortoises

Growing pressure to develop public lands for renewable energy production places several protected species at increased risk of habitat loss. One example is the Mojave desert tortoise (Gopherus agassizii), a species often at the center of conflicts over public land development. For this species and others on public lands, a better understanding of...

Todd, Brian D; Halstead, Brian J.; Chiquoine, Lindsay P.; Peaden, J. Mark; Buhlmann, Kurt A.; Tuberville, Tracey D.; Nafus, Melia G.
Todd, BD, BJ Halstead, LP Chiquoine, JM Peaden, KA Buhlmann, TD Tuberville, MG Nafus. 2016. Habitat selection by juvenile Mojave Desert tortoises. The Journal of Wildlife Management. doi: 10.1002/jwmg.1054

Year Published: 2016

Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Units Program—2015 Year In Review

Summary The Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit (CRU) Program had its 80th anniversary in 2015. We did not have a party, but those of us who work directly for the Unit program on a daily basis celebrate the privilege we feel in being part of one of the greatest conservation institutions in history. Our mission is our hallmark: meeting the...

Organ, John F.; Thompson, John; Dennerline, Don E.; Childs, Dawn
Organ, J.F.; Thompson, J.D.; Dennerline, Don; and Childs, D.E., 2016, Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Units—2015 year in review: U.S. Geological Survey Circular 1420, 36 p., http://dx.doi.org/10.3133/circ1420.

Year Published: 2016

Desert tortoise annotated bibliography, 1991-2015

Introduction Agassiz’s desert tortoise, Gopherus agassizii, was considered a single species for 150 years after its discovery by James Cooper (1861), with a geographic range extending from southeastern California, southern Nevada, and southwestern Utah southward into northern Sinaloa, Mexico (Murphy and others, 2011). What was once G....

Berry, Kristin H.; Lyren, Lisa M.; Mack, Jeremy S.; Brand, L. Arriana; Wood, Dustin A.
Berry, K.H., Lyren, L.M., Mack, J.S., Brand, L.A., and Wood, D.A., 2016, Desert tortoise annotated bibliography, 1991–2015: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2016-1023, 312 p., http://dx.doi.org/10.3133/ofr20161023.

Year Published: 2016

Reconstruction of late Holocene climate based on tree growth and mechanistic hierarchical models

Reconstruction of pre-instrumental, late Holocene climate is important for understanding how climate has changed in the past and how climate might change in the future. Statistical prediction of paleoclimate from tree ring widths is challenging because tree ring widths are a one-dimensional summary of annual growth that represents a multi-...

Tipton, John; Hooten, Mevin B.; Pederson, Neil; Tingley, Martin; Bishop, Daniel

Year Published: 2016

Population connectivity and genetic structure of burbot (Lota lota) populations in the Wind River Basin, Wyoming

Burbot (Lota lota) occur in the Wind River Basin in central Wyoming, USA, at the southwestern extreme of the species’ native range in North America. The most stable and successful of these populations occur in six glacially carved mountain lakes on three different tributary streams and one large main stem impoundment (Boysen Reservoir)...

Underwood, Zachary E.; Mandeville, Elizabeth G.; Walters, Annika W.

Year Published: 2016

Body size and condition influence migration timing of juvenile Arctic grayling

Freshwater fishes utilising seasonally available habitats within annual migratory circuits time movements out of such habitats with changing hydrology, although individual attributes of fish may also mediate the behavioural response to environmental conditions. We tagged juvenile Arctic grayling in a seasonally flowing stream on the Arctic Coastal...

Heim, Kurt C.; Wipfli, Mark S.; Whitman, Matthew S.; Seitz, Andrew C.

Year Published: 2016

Stable isotope evaluation of population- and individual-level diet variability in a large, oligotrophic lake with non-native lake trout

Non-native piscivores can alter food web dynamics; therefore, evaluating interspecific relationships is vital for conservation and management of ecosystems with introduced fishes. Priest Lake, Idaho, supports a number of introduced species, including lake troutSalvelinus namaycush, brook trout S. fontinalis and opossum shrimp ...

Ng, Elizabeth L.; Fredericks, Jim P.; Quist, Michael C.

Year Published: 2016

Governance principles for wildlife conservation in the 21st century

Wildlife conservation is losing ground in the U.S. for many reasons. The net effect is declines in species and habitat. To address this trend, the wildlife conservation institution (i.e., all customs, practices, organizations and agencies, policies, and laws with respect to wildlife) must adapt to contemporary social–ecological conditions....

Decker, Daniel J.; Smith, Christian; Forstchen, Ann; Hare, Darragh; Pomeranz, Emily; Doyle-Capitman, Catherine; Schuler, Krysten; Organ, John F.

Year Published: 2016

Innate and adaptive immune responses in migrating spring-run adult chinook salmon, Oncorhynchus tshawytscha

Adult Chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) migrate from salt water to freshwater streams to spawn. Immune responses in migrating adult salmon are thought to diminish in the run up to spawning, though the exact mechanisms for diminished immune responses remain unknown. Here we examine both adaptive and innate immune responses as well as...

Dolan, Brian P.; Fisher, Kathleen M.; Colvin, Michael E.; Benda, Susan E.; Peterson, James T.; Kent, Michael L.; Schreck, Carl B.

Year Published: 2016

Extensive dispersal of Roanoke logperch (Percina rex) inferred from genetic marker data

The dispersal ecology of most stream fishes is poorly characterised, complicating conservation efforts for these species. We used microsatellite DNA marker data to characterise dispersal patterns and effective population size (Ne) for a population of Roanoke logperchPercina rex, an endangered darter (Percidae). Juveniles and candidate parents were...

Roberts, James H.; Angermeier, Paul; Hallerman, Eric M.

Filter Total Items: 453
Sea Lamprey Larvae in Hand 2
2017 (approx.)
This image shows sea lampreys in their larvae phase. Slower sea lamprey growth rates during the larval phase of development may increase the odds of sea lampreys becoming male, according to a USGS study. S ea lamprey s are an invasive, parasitic species of fish damaging the Great Lakes.
Chelonid herpesvirus 5 replication
2017 (approx.)
This microscopic image shows a sun-shaped area within turtle skin cells where chelonid herpesvirus 5 replicates. The virus capsids, or protein shells, are arrayed like a corona around the circle. ChHV5 is associated with fibropapillomatosis a tumor disease affecting endangered green turtles. (Credit: Thierry Work, USGS)
November 24, 2017
A USGS video about manatees reveals that while the animals may act like the cows of the sea, they also have more than a bit of the magical siren or mermaid about them. Go for a serene swim.
Man measuring a little red bird.
2017 (approx.)
Measuring the wing length of a banded Iiwi
Man holding red bird.
2017 (approx.)
Iiwi with small radio transmitter attached to help track the bird's movement through the forest
WERC researcher conducting elevation surveys in San Pablo Bay National Wildlife Refuge
2017 (approx.)
WERC researcher conducting elevation surveys in San Pablo Bay National Wildlife Refuge
WERC Coastal ecosystem
2017 (approx.)
Coastal ecosystem studies at Trinidad coast, California.
chart of vegetation change in the bird's foot delta
2017 (approx.)
Chart showing changes in vegetation density in the Mississippi River delta in Louisiana, May 2015-May 2016. From a USGS Open File Report published in July 2017 by co-authors Elijah Ramsey III and Amina Rangoonwala,
Mallard Duckling
July 26, 2017
This mallard duckling was captured in Suisun Marsh. USGS scientists are weighing, measuring and banding waterfowl to understand how they are using the marsh and for capture-recapture data.
Retrieving waterfowl
July 24, 2017
Two WERC technicians walk back from a placed trap with hands full.
Photo of seeding experiment to improve restoration outcomes in the Southwest.
July 17, 2017
USGS ecologists Molly McCormick (left) and Katie Laushman (right) conducting a seeding experiment that is a part of RAMPS , a new USGS-led initiative to improve restoration outcomes in the Southwest. Seedings such as these are common land treatments on BLM lands. An examination of long-term data for lands managed by the Bureau of Land Management finds that land treatments in the southwestern...
Filter Total Items: 293
Commercial lake fishing
June 26, 2017

Harvests from freshwater fisheries such as the Great Lakes could total more than 12 million tons a year globally and contribute more to global food supplies and economies than previous estimates indicate, according to a study published today by Michigan State University and the U.S. Geological Survey.

Prairie dog and SPV bait
June 22, 2017

Prairie dogs in the wild are less likely to succumb to plague after they ingest peanut-butter-flavored bait that contains a vaccine against the disease, according to a U.S. Geological Survey study published today in the journal EcoHealth.  

A Laysan Albatross chick in its nest near the coastline at Midway Atoll, Hawaii
June 22, 2017

Sudden flooding hit islands of global importance for Pacific birds highlighting threats and opportunities for conservation planning

A juvenile Broad-banded Watersnake that tested positive for snake fungal disease (SFD) exhibiting ulceration of the skin.
June 19, 2017

Europe’s wild snakes could face a growing threat from a fungal skin disease that has contributed to wild snake deaths in North America, according to an international collaborative study, led by conservation charity Zoological Society of London alongside partners including the U.S. Geological Survey. The new study is published in the journal Scientific Reports.

Issue5.5May2017Thumb
June 15, 2017

Exploring the Role of Non-Native American Shad in the Columbia River Basin

Illustration of Fijian Gau iguanas.
June 6, 2017

Researchers from the U.S. Geological Survey, Taronga Conservation Society Australia, The National Trust of Fiji and NatureFiji-MareqetiViti have discovered a new species of banded iguana.

A polar bear walks across rubble ice in the Alaska portion of the southern Beaufort Sea
June 6, 2017

A new study led by the U.S. Geological Survey and the University of Wyoming found that increased westward ice drift in the Beaufort and Chukchi seas requires polar bears to expend more energy walking eastward on a faster moving “treadmill” of sea ice.  

The Bathythermograph
June 6, 2017

On June 6, 1944, thousands of men rained down from the skies onto the battlegrounds of Normandy. After five grueling years of war that shook the globe, D-Day’s victory swept the Allied nations into a wave of celebration.

Image: Vegetation Drought
June 5, 2017

The U. S. Geological Survey is poised to bring a dynamic array of science and tools to help decision-makers manage and offset effects of increased drought across the United States, according to a drought plan report released today.

Southeastern myotis with Pd - thumb
June 1, 2017

Biologists have confirmed white-nose syndrome in the southeastern bat, or Myotis austroriparius, for the first time. The species joins eight other hibernating bat species in North America that are afflicted with the deadly bat fungal disease.

Microscope image of Dolichospermum circinale, a cyanobacteria found in last year's Florida harmful algal bloom.
May 31, 2017

A new U.S. Geological Survey study that looked at the extensive harmful algal bloom that plagued Florida last year found far more types of cyanobacteria present than previously known.

Chesapeake Bay 2014 Landsat imagery
May 25, 2017

USGS’ pixel-by-pixel land use forecasts offer essential road maps for restoration.