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Water is one of seven science mission areas of the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). Water's mission is to collect and disseminate reliable, impartial, and timely information that is needed to understand the Nation's water resources.

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Filter Total Items: 163
Hardened Gages—Built to Survive
Date Published: June 23, 2017

1 June 2010

Hurricane season starts today, and the USGS Lower Mississippi Gulf Water Science Center is committed to collecting and providing the most up-to-date information before, during, and after the storms that are sure to come our way. When a hurricane or tropical storm is approaching, accurate and timely storm data are crucial in making good decisions regarding personal safety and...

Hurricane Irene, satellite view, NASA
Date Published: June 23, 2017

USGS Information and Links

Hurricane Hazards—A National Threat (fact sheet)

USGS Natural Hazards - Hurricanes

Hurricane Forecast Information

National Hurricane Center—(NWS)

Current Tropical Forecast Information

GOES-8 Atlantic Infrared Imagery

GOES-8 Atlantic Visible Imagery

Earth Scan Laboratory—(LSU)

GOES-8 Atlantic Infrared...

WERC marsh during a storm
Date Published: June 23, 2017

USGS Louisiana Coastal Sites

Hurricane season starts today, and the USGS Lower Mississippi Gulf Water Science Center is committed to collecting and providing the most up-to-date information before, during, and after the storms that are sure to come our way. When a hurricane or tropical storm is approaching, accurate and timely storm data is crucial in making good decisions regarding...

Hurricane Joaquin seen from space
Date Published: June 23, 2017

River and Coastal Forecasts

The USGS is not a forecasting agency, but the National Weather Service (NWS) is, and they make extensive use of the data we collect in their effort to provide you with the most accurate and up-to-date forecasts of many Louisiana rivers and streams, and weather along the coast. The links below will provide you with direct access to the NWS forecasts for...

Acoustic Doppler current profiler (ADCP) is connected to an onboard computer to measure streamflow.
Date Published: June 1, 2017

In the mid-1990s, a new technology emerged in the field of inland streamflow monitoring. The South Atlantic Water Science Center is making great use of the acoustic Doppler current profiler (ADCP). It was originally developed for oceanographic work, but was adapted for inland streamflow measurements. This instrument is transforming the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) streamgaging program.

Hydrologist collecting data on South Fork Coeur d'Alne River, Idaho
Date Published: May 26, 2017
Status: Active

We partner with the EPA to conduct long-term water-quality and streamflow monitoring and streamflow measurements in the Coeur d’Alene River Basin, which has been widely impacted by historic mining activities. We collect water-quality samples 2-4 times per year at 20 sites throughout the basin. Our scientists analyze these samples for metals, hardness, sediment, and nutrients. In addition, we ...

Lookout Point Dam
Date Published: May 18, 2017
Status: Completed

Hills Creek, Lookout Point, and Dexter Dams are located on the Middle Fork Willamette River upstream of Eugene in western Oregon, and are important resources managed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) for flood control, hydroelectric power, recreation, navigation, and irrigation. On the South Santiam River east of Albany in western Oregon, Green Peter and Foster Dams provide functions...

Contacts: Stewart Rounds
Crooked Canyon spring
Date Published: May 16, 2017
Status: Completed

Groundwater monitoring in the Deschutes Basin shows water-level declines are larger than might be expected from climate variations alone, raising questions regarding the influence of groundwater pumping, canal lining, and other human influences.

Contacts: Terrence Conlon
USGS: Science for a changing world
Date Published: May 11, 2017
Status: Completed

Henry Hagg Lake is a reservoir located in the foothills of the eastern slope of the Coast Range Mountains of northwestern Oregon. The lake is used for recreation in the summer and flood control in the winter.

Contacts: Stewart Rounds
wetland near greenway park
Date Published: May 11, 2017
Status: Active

In 1990, the USGS began assessing water-quality in the Tualatin River. Almost 30 years later, we are still monitoring conditions in the basin.

Contacts: Stewart Rounds
klamath river at keno reach
Date Published: May 9, 2017
Status: Active

The Klamath River from Link River to Keno Dam experiences poor water-quality conditions on a seasonal basis, creating inhospitable conditions for fish and other aquatic organisms. These problems led the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality to prepare a Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) plan to bring the river into compliance with water-quality standards. This study uses a hydrodynamic and...

Contacts: Annett Sullivan
beaver
Date Published: May 2, 2017
Status: Active

Beavers and their dams are common sights along creeks in the Tualatin River basin. Beaver help create diverse habitats for many other animals, including birds, fish, and amphibians. The USGS studying the affect beaver activity has on the amount and quality of water in local streams, so that agencies in the basin can make strategic management and habitat restoration decisions based on science...

Filter Total Items: 1,536
Year Published: 2017

Complex networks of functional connectivity in a wetland reconnected to its floodplain

Disturbances such as fire or flood, in addition to changing the local magnitude of ecological, hydrological, or biogeochemical processes, can also change their functional connectivity—how those processes interact in space. Complex networks offer promise for quantifying functional connectivity in watersheds. The approach resolves connections...

Larsen, Laurel G.; Newman, Susan; Saunders, Colin; Harvey, Judson
Attribution: Water
Larsen, L.G., Newman, S., Saunders, C., and Harvey, J.W., 2017, Complex networks of functional connectivity in a wetland reconnected to its floodplain, Water Resources Research, 53, 6089–6108, doi:10.1002/ 2017WR020375.

Year Published: 2017

Fine particle retention within stream storage areas at base flow and in response to a storm event

Fine particles (1–100 µm), including particulate organic carbon (POC) and fine sediment, influence stream ecological functioning because they may contain or have a high affinity to sorb nitrogen and phosphorus. These particles are immobilized within stream storage areas, especially hyporheic sediments and benthic biofilms. However, fine particles...

Drummond, J. D.; Larsen, L. G.; González-Pinzón, R.; Packman, A. I.; Harvey, Judson
Attribution: Water
Drummond, J.D., Larsen, L.G., Gonzalez-Pinzon, R., Packman, A.I. and Harvey, J.D., 2017, Fine particle retention within stream storage areas at base flow and in response to a storm event, Water Resources Research, 53, 5690–5705, doi:10.1002/2016WR020202.

Year Published: 2017

Plant diversity increases with the strength of negative density dependence at the global scale

Theory predicts that higher biodiversity in the tropics is maintained by specialized interactions among plants and their natural enemies that result in conspecific negative density dependence (CNDD). By using more than 3000 species and nearly 2.4 million trees across 24 forest plots worldwide, we show that global patterns in tree species diversity...

LaManna, Joseph A.; Mangan, Scott A.; Alonso, Alfonso; Bourg, Norman; Brockelman, Warren Y.; Bunyavejchewin, Sarayudh; Chang, Li-Wan; Chiang, Jyh-Min; Chuyong, George B.; Clay, Keith; Condit, Richard; Cordell, Susan; Davies, Stuart J.; Furniss, Tucker J.; Giardina, Christian P.; Gunatilleke, I.A.U. Nimal; Gunatilleke, C.V. Savitri; He, Fangliang; Howe, Robert W.; Hubbell, Stephen P.; Hsieh, Chang-Fu; Inman-Narahari, Faith M.; Janik, David; Johnson, Daniel J.; Kenfack, David; Korte, Lisa; Kral, Kamil; Larson, Andrew J.; Lutz, James A.; McMahon, Sean M.; McShea, William J.; Memiaghe, Herve R.; Nathalang, Anuttara; Novotny, Vojtech; Ong, Perry S.; Orwig, David A.; Ostertag, Rebecca; Parker, Geoffrey G.; Phillips, Richard P.; Sack, Lawren; Sun, I-Fang; Tello, J. Sebastian; Thomas, Duncan W.; Turner, Benjamin L.; Vela Diaz, Dilys M.; Vrska, Tomas; Weiblen, George D.; Wolf, Amy; Yap, Sandra; Myers, Jonathan A.
Attribution: Water
J.A. LaManna et al., 2017, Plant diversity increases with the strength of negative density dependence at the global scale, Science, 356, 6345, 1389-1392.

Year Published: 2017

Response of deep groundwater to land use change in desert basins of the Trans-Pecos region, Texas, USA: Effects on infiltration, recharge, and nitrogen fluxes

Quantifying the effects of anthropogenic processes on groundwater in arid regions can be complicated by thick unsaturated zones with long transit times. Human activities can alter water and nutrient fluxes, but their impact on groundwater is not always clear. This study of basins in the Trans-Pecos region of Texas links anthropogenic land use and...

Robertson, Wendy Marie; Böhlke, John Karl; Sharp, John M.
Attribution: Water
Robertson, W.M., Böhlke, J.K., and Sharp, J.M.Jr., 2017, Response of deep groundwater to land use change in desert basins of the Trans-Pecos region, Texas, USA: Effects on infiltration, recharge, and nitrogen fluxes. Hydrological Processes, v. 31, p. 2349-2364. http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/hyp.11178.

Year Published: 2017

Tracking the fate of nitrate through pulse-flow wetlands: A mesocosm scale 15N enrichment tracer study

Quantitative information about the fate of applied nitrate (NO3-N) in pulse-flow constructed wetlands is essential for designing wetland treatment systems and assessing their nitrogen removal services for agricultural and stormwater applications. Although many studies have documented NO3-N losses in wetlands, controlled experiments indicating the...

Messer, Tiffany L.; Burchell, Michael R.; Böhlke, John Karl; Tobias, Craig R.
Attribution: Water
Messer, T.L., Burchell, M.R., Böhlke, J.K., and Tobias, C.R., 2017, Tracking the fate of nitrate through pulse-flow wetlands: A mesocosm scale 15N enrichment tracer study. Ecological Engineering, v. 106, p. 597-608. DOI: 10.1016/j.ecoleng.2017.06.016

Year Published: 2017

On the probability distribution of daily streamflow in the United States

Daily streamflows are often represented by flow duration curves (FDCs), which illustrate the frequency with which flows are equaled or exceeded. FDCs have had broad applications across both operational and research hydrology for decades; however, modeling FDCs has proven elusive. Daily streamflow is a complex time series with flow values ranging...

Blum, Annalise G.; Archfield, Stacey A.; Vogel, Richard M.
Attribution: Water

Year Published: 2017

A hybrid machine learning model to predict and visualize nitrate concentration throughout the Central Valley aquifer, California, USA

Intense demand for water in the Central Valley of California and related increases in groundwater nitrate concentration threaten the sustainability of the groundwater resource. To assess contamination risk in the region, we developed a hybrid, non-linear, machine learning model within a statistical learning framework to predict nitrate...

Ransom, Katherine M.; Nolan, Bernard T.; Traum, Jonathan A.; Faunt, Claudia; Bell, Andrew M.; Gronberg, Jo Ann M.; Wheeler, David C.; Zamora, Celia; Jurgens, Bryant; Schwarz, Gregory E.; Belitz, Kenneth; Eberts, Sandra; Kourakos, George; Harter, Thomas
Attribution: Water

Year Published: 2017

Groundwater resources of the Devils Postpile National Monument—Current conditions and future vulnerabilities

This study presents an extensive database on groundwater conditions in and around Devils Postpile National Monument. The database contains chemical analyses of springs and the monument water-supply well, including major-ion chemistry, trace element chemistry, and the first information on a list of organic compounds known as emerging contaminants....

Evans, William C.; Bergfeld, Deborah
Attribution: Water
Evans, W.C., and Bergfeld, D., 2017, Groundwater resources of the Devils Postpile National Monument—Current conditions and future vulnerabilities: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2017–5048, 31 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/sir20175048.

Year Published: 2017

Archaeal diversity and CO2 fixers in carbonate-/siliciclastic-rock groundwater ecosystems

Groundwater environments provide habitats for diverse microbial communities, and although Archaea usually represent a minor fraction of communities, they are involved in key biogeochemical cycles. We analysed the archaeal diversity within a mixed carbonate-rock/siliciclastic-rock aquifer system, vertically from surface soils to subsurface...

Lazar, Cassandre Sara; Stoll, Wenke; Lehmann, Robert; Herrmann, Martina; Schwab, Valérie F.; Akob, Denise M.; Nawaz, Ali; Wubet, Tesfaye; Buscot, François; Totsche, Kai-Uwe; Küsel, Kirsten
Attribution: Water
Lazar, C. S.; Stoll, W.; Lehmann, R.; Herrmann, M.; Schwab, V. F.; Akob, D. M.; Nawaz, A.; Wubet, T.; Buscot, F.; Totsche, K.-U.; Küsel, K., Archaeal diversity and CO2 fixers in carbonate-/siliciclastic-rock groundwater ecosystems. Archaea 2017, 2017, 1-13, https://doi.org/10.1155/2017/2136287

Year Published: 2017

Application of an unstructured 3D finite volume numerical model to flows and salinity dynamics in the San Francisco Bay-Delta

A linked modeling approach has been undertaken to understand the impacts of climate and infrastructure on aquatic ecology and water quality in the San Francisco Bay-Delta region. The Delft3D Flexible Mesh modeling suite is used in this effort for its 3D hydrodynamics, salinity, temperature and sediment dynamics, phytoplankton and water-quality...

Martyr-Koller, R.C.; Kernkamp, H.W.J.; Van Dam, Anne A.; Mick van der Wegen; Lucas, Lisa; Knowles, N.; Jaffe, B.; Fregoso, T.A.
Attribution: Water
Martyr-Koller, R.C., Kernkamp, H.W.J., van Dam, A., van der Wegen, M., Lucas, L.V., Knowles, N., Jaffe, B., Fregoso, T.A., 2017, Application of an unstructured 3D finite volume numerical model to flows and salinity dynamics in the San Francisco Bay-Delta: Estuarine, Coastal and Shelf Science, 192, 86-107, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ecss.2017.04.024

Year Published: 2017

Analyzing cloud base at local and regional scales to understand tropical montane cloud forest vulnerability to climate change

The degree to which cloud immersion provides water in addition to rainfall, suppresses transpiration, and sustains tropical montane cloud forests (TMCFs) during rainless periods is not well understood. Climate and land use changes represent a threat to these forests if cloud base altitude rises as a result of regional warming or deforestation. To...

Van Beusekom, Ashley E.; González, Grizelle; Scholl, Martha A.
Attribution: Water
Van Beusekom, A. E., González, G., and Scholl, M. A.:, 2017, Analyzing cloud base at local and regional scales to understand tropical montane cloud forest vulnerability to climate change, Atmos. Chem. Phys., 17, 7245-7259, https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-17-7245-2017.

Year Published: 2017

Complex mixtures of Pesticides in Midwest U.S. streams indicated by POCIS time-integrating samplers

The Midwest United States is an intensely agricultural region where pesticides in streams pose risks to aquatic biota, but temporal variability in pesticide concentrations makes characterization of their exposure to organisms challenging. To compensate for the effects of temporal variability, we deployed polar organic chemical integrative samplers...

Van Metre, Peter C.; Alvarez, David; Mahler, Barbara J.; Nowell, Lisa H.; Sandstrom, Mark W.; Moran, Patrick W.
Attribution: Water
Environ Pollut. 2017 Jan;220(Pt A):431-440. doi: 10.1016/j.envpol.2016.09.085. Epub 2016 Sep 30.

The USGS produces many types of multimedia products. Use the links below to browse our offerings of photograph galleries, podcasts and sound files, videos, aerial photos, and posters related to water. The USGS Newsroom has a Web page that highlights the main collection of multimedia products.

Filter Total Items: 851
Image shows USGS scientists planning their water quality work on a whiteboard
August 31, 2017
A peek into a USGS planning meeting to coordinate water-quality sampling efforts in response to Harvey. This sampling effort is part of the federal government’s broad efforts to ensure public health and to support the state, tribal, and local response to the storm
August 31, 2017
Hurricane Harvey made landfall on August 25th. Over the next few days, record rain totals had devastated the area. At the USGS EROS Center, we study land change, operate the Landsat satellites, and maintain the longest, continuously acquired collection of images of the Earth's land surface. USGS EROS Center ( https://eros.usgs.gov/ )
Image shows a USGS scientist in a PFD servicing a water quality monitor on a lake
August 31, 2017
USGS scientist Lisa Ashmore services a water-quality monitor on Lake Houston. These instruments stayed afloat and collected data throughout the storm.
USGS scientist Lisa Ashmore services a water-quality monitor on Lake Houston. These instruments stayed afloat throughout Harvey.
August 31, 2017
USGS scientist Lisa Ashmore services a water-quality monitor on Lake Houston. These instruments stayed afloat and collected data throughout Harvey.
Image shows USGS scientists in PFDs taking water quality samples from Lake Houston
August 31, 2017
A USGS field crew takes water-quality samples on Lake Houston following Harvey.
A USGS scientist wearing a PFD measures flooding on the Guadalupe River
August 30, 2017
USGS scientist Alec MacDonald takes flood measurements on the Guadalupe River in Victoria, Texas.
Image shows flooding around a streamgage at Addicks Reservoir
August 29, 2017
USGS field crew measure reservoir water-level data at Addicks Reservoir, which are critical for helping the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers make informed reservoir operation decisions.
Image shows a USGS scientist in a PFD servicing a streamgage
August 29, 2017
USGS scientist Tom Pistillo services the streamgage at Addicks Reservoir to ensure that accurate reservoir water-level data are being measured, which are critical for helping the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and Harris County Flood Control District make informed reservoir operation decisions.
Image shows flooding at a streamgage site on Addicks Reservoir
August 29, 2017
USGS field crew measure reservoir water-level data at Addicks Reservoir, which are critical for helping the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers make informed reservoir operation decisions.
Image shows a USGS scientist in a PFD servicing a streamgage
August 29, 2017
USGS scientist Tom Pistillo wades through the waters of Barker Reservoir to ensure accurate reservoir water-level data are being measured, which are critical for helping the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and Harris County Flood Control District make informed reservoir operation decisions.
Image shows USGS scientists planning Hurricane Harvey response efforts
August 28, 2017
Planning meeting at the USGS Gulf Coast Office.
Image shows a police car in a flooded roadway in Texas
August 27, 2017
USGS field crews made multiple record high flood measurements on Aug. 27, including downstream of Addicks and Barker dam. Flood measurements near Addicks and Barker dam are critical for making public safety decisions, as 1.2 million people live downstream. USGS hydrologic technicians Eric Boeding and Robert Ellis measured the height and speed of floodwaters at the USGS streamgage site at Buffalo...
Filter Total Items: 351
USGS hydrologic technician Christopher Rowden verifies the accuracy of streamgage information at the Jacks Fork River.
April 30, 2017

Reporters: Do you want to interview USGS scientists as they measure flooding? Please contact Jennifer LaVista.

Low-flying helicopter survey
April 27, 2017

Starting on May 2 and lasting for about two days, a helicopter towing a large, cylindrical sensor will make low-level flights over parts of Cedar Rapids as part of a groundwater survey.

Walker Lake on a Spring day
April 24, 2017

USGS model simulations suggest that Walker Lake will rise by as much as 15 to 18 feet this year, the most in a single year in recorded history.

Hydrologic Regions of Alaska
April 14, 2017

While freshwater ecosystems cover only a small amount of the land surface in Alaska, they transport and emit a significant amount of carbon, according to new U.S. Geological Survey research. An invited feature article for Ecological Applications provides the first-ever major aquatic carbon flux assessment for the entire state. Carbon flux refers to the rate of carbon transfer between pools.

This image shows a damaged street sign and flood debris left behind by record flood waters of the Blanco River near Martindale,
April 10, 2017

The new “Water On-the-Go” mobile app gives the public easy access to current conditions in streams across Texas. This product was developed by the U.S. Geological Survey to help raise water awareness during both floods and normal conditions.

Little Plover River Wells
April 6, 2017

Both irrigation wells and municipal wells affect flows in the Little Plover River near Plover, Wisconsin, stretches of which ran dry in past years, according to a new scientific report.

Looking northeast along the Bear River Duck Club Canal toward the Wellsville Mountains. 
April 6, 2017

A new report illustrates how groundwater pumping can affect the amount of water available in streams within the Malad-Lower Bear River Area in Utah. The product was developed by the U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with the Utah Department of Natural Resources, Division of Water Rights.

Bath Creek, Bath County, VA
April 4, 2017

USGS provides a long-term look at changes in the quality of our nation’s rivers and streams

Image: Harmful Algal Blooms
March 31, 2017

Two decades of harmful algal bloom, nutrient and sediment research by the U.S. Geological Survey is helping to support Wichita’s long-term vision of a sustainable water supply into the future. Early warning indicators of harmful algal blooms have been developed for Cheney Reservoir, Kansas, according to a new USGS publication done in cooperation with the City of Wichita, Kansas.

Image: Redwater River, South Dakota
March 27, 2017

Media and the public are invited to attend a free meeting about South Dakota water issues on Thursday, April 6, in Rapid City, South Dakota. 

Santa Cruz River
March 27, 2017

Desert communities throughout the Southwest are putting water availability at the top of their municipal agendas.