Regions

North Dakota

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Dakota Water Science Center: Hydrology, cooperation, and diversity in data collection for the Missouri, Souris, and Red River Basins including focusing on emerging environmental issues. Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center conducts applied research supporting policy and management decisions for partners on vulnerable prairie grassland and wetland ecosystems of global importance.

Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center

Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center

Science Center Link

North Dakota Water Science Center

North Dakota Water Science Center

Science Center Link

News

Image: Honey Bees Make Life Sweet
October 19, 2018

Do you eat fruits and vegetables? What about nuts? If so, you can thank an insect pollinator, usually a honey bee. These small insects play a major role in pollinating the world’s plants, including those we eat regularly. They also increase our nation’s crop values each year by more than 15 billion dollars.

USGS
February 6, 2018

March 6-8, 2018 at the National Energy Center of Excellence located on the campus of Bismarck State College in Bismarck, ND.

NPWRC Building
August 30, 2017

The public is invited to attend a free, family-friendly open house at a local U.S. Geological Survey center for ecology research on Saturday, September 16.  

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Screenshot of the Land Treatment Exploration Tool with proposed treatment drawn on screen.
Date Published: May 10, 2018
Status: Active

Land Treatment Exploration Tool

The Land Treatment ExplorationTool provides a practical resource for managers who are planning restoration and rehabilitation actions on public lands. The tool generates a variety of spatial products while being user friendly for all levels of GIS expertise, even to those with little or no experience.

Photo of Bird Bands in a Variety of Sizes and Types
Date Published: May 1, 2018
Status: Active

Bird Banding Laboratory

The Bird Banding Laboratory (BBL) is an integrated scientific program established in 1920 supporting the collection, archiving, management and dissemination of information from banded and marked birds in North America.  This information is used to monitor the status and trends of resident and migratory bird populations. Because birds are good indicators of the health of the environment, the...

Aerial view of the Williston Basin
Date Published: April 30, 2018
Status: Active

Williston and Powder River Basins Groundwater Availability Study

The development of two nationally important energy-producing areas, the Williston structural basin (containing the Bakken Formation) and Powder River structural basin, provide a critical opportunity to study the water-energy nexus within a groundwater context. Large volumes of water are needed for energy development in these basins. The hydraulically connected aquifers in the...

Slush in Yellowstone River at Billings required old-school AA meter
Date Published: April 28, 2018
Status: Active

Yellowstone River Basin Water-Quality Assessment

The Yellowstone River Basin (YELL) study-unit in Wyoming, Montana and North Dakota, is part of the U.S. Geological Survey's National Water-Quality Assessment (NAWQA) Program. The long-term goals of this program are to describe the status and trends in the quality of a large, representative part of the Nation's surface- and ground-water resources, and to provide a sound, scientific...

Yellowstone streamflow statistics study area map
Date Published: March 27, 2018
Status: Archived

Streamflow Statistics for Unregulated and Regulated Conditions for Selected Locations on the Yellowstone, Tongue, Powder, and Bighorn Rivers, Montana

Major floods in 1996-1997 on the Yellowstone River intensified public debate over the effects of human activities on the Yellowstone River. The Yellowstone River Conservation District Council partnered with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to conduct a cumulative-effects study on the Yellowstone. For that study, the USGS calculated streamflow statistics for unregulated (no development) and...

Energy - Bakken
Date Published: March 8, 2018

Mining and Energy

Scientists are examining a number of issues to characterize potential effects of unconventional oil and gas development in the Bakken Shale within the Williston Basin, located in ND, SD and MT. Research is building upon current/ongoing studies to implement new, innovative research including water quality, water availability, ecological effects, proppant sand, and induced seismicity.

Attribution: Midwest
Flood Scientists - Drayton
Date Published: March 8, 2018

Flood Response

Floods are the leading cause of natural disaster losses, and Midwest Region scientists are ready to respond. Flood inundation maps tied to USGS real-time stream gage data and National Weather Service flood forecast sites enable state and local communities to make timely operational and public safety decisions during floods.

USGS
Date Published: November 13, 2017
Status: Completed

Bridge Scour Publications

Publications about North and South Dakota bridge scour.

The Little Missouri River, flood plain
Date Published: August 30, 2017

Reconstructing Flow History From Riparian Tree Rings

Aquatic Systems Branch scientists analyze rings of riparian trees relating tree growth and establishment to historical flow. We then use the tree rings to reconstruct the flow in past centuries. Flow reconstructions discover the frequency and magnitude of past droughts and floods—information that is essential for management of rivers and water supplies. We also use downscaled climate...

Image: Missouri River
Date Published: August 17, 2017

Missouri River Basin Overveiw

Learn About the Missouri River Basin

USGS
Date Published: August 16, 2017

FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

Devils Lake Basin
Date Published: August 15, 2017

Droughts and Flooding in Devils Lake Basin

Learn about Past Droughts and Flooding that has Occured in the Devils Lake Basin.

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Web Application
/data-tools/land-treatment-exploration-tool

Land Treatment Exploration Tool

Screenshot of the Land Treatment Exploration Tool with proposed treatment drawn on screen.
May 3, 2018

The Land Treatment Exploration Tool is designed for resource managers to use when planning land treatments. The tool provides useful summaries of environmental characteristics of planned treatment areas and facilitates adaptive management practices by comparing those characteristics to other similar treatments within a specified distance or area of interest.  Provisional Software.

Water
/data-tools/yellowstone-river-basin-water-quality-assessment-data-tables-0

Yellowstone River Basin Water-Quality Assessment data tables

Yellowstone River Basin Water-Quality Assessment data tables
April 23, 2018

Data collected in the Yellowstone River basin since 1998 are available from this link. Data from the Yellowstone River Basin NAWQA study unit and other study units that overlap into Wyoming, such as the Upper Snake River, the Great Salt Lake Basins, and the South Platte River study units, also are available from the NAWQA Data Warehouse. 

Science Datasets
/data-tools/aerial-photographs-and-shape-files-gis-analysis-along-little-missouri-river-1939-1995

Shapefiles and Historical Aerial Photographs, Little Missouri River, 1939-2003

The Little Missouri River, flood plain
October 17, 2017

The data archive contains the aerial photographs and channel delineations used in our analysis. The images have been geo-referenced to the 1995 digital orthophoto quarter quadrangles as described by Miller and Friedman (2009). The channel delineations for all photo years (including 2003) and the delineation of the outer flood-plain boundary are stored as shapefiles.

Water
/data-tools/national-water-information-system-web-interface-nwisweb-0

National Water Information System web interface (NWISweb)

Application screenshot thumbnail
September 1, 2017

The National Water Information System (NWIS) web application provides access to real-time and historical surface-water, groundwater, water-quality, and water-use data collected at approximately 1.5 million sites across all 50 states.

Science Datasets
/data-tools/widespread-legacy-brine-contamination-oil-shales-reduces-survival-chorus-frog-larvae-data

Widespread Legacy Brine Contamination from Oil Shales Reduces Survival of Chorus Frog Larvae-Data

Boreal Chorus Frog
August 31, 2017

Survival of larval Boreal Chorus Frogs (Pseudacris maculata) reared on sediments from brine-contaminated wetlands and a control source.

Web Application
/data-tools/national-water-information-system-nwis-mapper

National Water Information System (NWIS) Mapper

NWIS Mapper screenshot
August 30, 2017

The NWIS mapper provides access to over 1.5 million sites contained in the USGS National Water Information System (NWIS), including sites where current and historical surface-water, groundwater, springs, and atmospheric data has been collected. Users can search by site type, data type, site number, or place.

Real-time Data
/data-tools/statewide-historic-water-quality-data

Statewide Historic Water-Quality Data

USGS
August 17, 2017

Field/lab samples, real-time data, and tutorial
 

Real-time Data
/data-tools/north-dakota-water-quality-data

North Dakota Water Quality Data

Example NWIS graph of real-time water quality monitoring
June 22, 2017

At selected surface-water and groundwater sites, the USGS maintains instruments that continuously record physical and chemical characteristics of the water including pH, specific conductance, temperature, dissolved oxygen, and percent dissolved-oxygen saturation. Supporting data such as air temperature and barometric pressure are also available at some sites.

Real-time Data
/data-tools/north-dakota-surface-water-data

North Dakota Surface Water Data

Example NWIS graph of real-time stream flow monitoring
June 22, 2017

Real-time, daily, peak-flow, field measurements, and statistics of current and historical data that describe stream levels, streamflow (discharge), reservoir and lake levels, surface-water quality, and rainfall in Wisconsin. Surface-water data are collected and stored as either discrete field-water-level measurements or as continuous time-series data from automated recorders.

Real-time Data
/data-tools/north-dakota-ground-water-data

North Dakota Ground Water Data

Example NWIS Graph of real-time groundwater-level monitoring
June 21, 2017

Data from wells, springs, test holes, tunnels, drains, and excavations in North Dakota; well location data includes information such as latitude and longitude, well depth, and aquifer. Groundwater level data are collected and stored as either discrete field-water-level measurements or as continuous time-series data from automated recorders.

GIS Data
/data-tools/structures-data

Structures Data

Structure datasets for the nation from The National Map
April 20, 2016

USGS data portray selected structures data, including the location and characteristics of manmade facilities. Characteristics consist of a structure's physical form (footprint), function, name, location, and detailed information about the structure. The types of structures collected are largely determined by the needs of the disaster planning and response and homeland security organizations.

GIS Data
/data-tools/boundaries

Boundaries Data

Boundaries datasets for the nation from The National Map.
April 19, 2016

Boundaries data or governmental units represent major civil areas including states, counties, Federal, and Native American lands, and incorporated places such as cities and towns.

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Digital Elevation Model in the Atchafalaya Basin, LA
April 19, 2016

The 3DEP products and services available through The National Map consist of standard digital elevation models (DEMs) at various horizontal resolutions, elevation source and associated datasets, an elevation point query service and bulk point query service. All 3DEP products are available, free of charge and without use restrictions.

Screen capture of the Red-Assiniboine SPARROW online mapper.
April 10, 2016

This mapper displays SPARROW nutrient load and yield data and the importance of various nutrient sources for the RARB, given nutrient inputs similar to 2002. Rankings can be shown by country, state/province, HUC4, HUC8, and catchment. Nutrient data can be explored using maps and interactive graphs and tables. Modeling results can be exported as an Excel spreadsheet or a geospatial dataset.

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Year Published: 2015

Petrology and diagenetic history of the upper shale member of the Late Devonian-Early Mississippian Bakken Formation, Williston Basin, North Dakota

The organic-rich upper shale member of the upper Devonian–lower Mississippian Bakken Formation (Williston Basin, North Dakota, USA) has undergone significant diagenetic alteration, irrespective of catagenesis related to hydrocarbon generation. Alteration includes precipitation of numerous cements, replacement of both detrital and authigenic...

Neil S. Fishman; Sven O. Egenhoff; Boehlke, Adam; Lowers, Heather A.
Fishman, N.S., Egenhoff, S.O., Boehlke, A., and Lowers, H.A., 2015, Petrology and diagenetic history of the upper shale member of the Late Devonian-Early Mississippian Bakken Formation, Williston Basin, North Dakota in Larsen, D., Egenhoff, S.O., Fishman, N.S., ed., Paying Attention to Mudrocks: Priceless!: Geological Society of America Special Papers, Vol. 515, p. 125-151. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1130/2015.2515(07)

Year Published: 2015

Quality and age of shallow groundwater in the Bakken Formation production area, Williston Basin, Montana and North Dakota

The quality and age of shallow groundwater in the Bakken Formation production area were characterized using data from 30 randomly distributed domestic wells screened in the upper Fort Union Formation. Comparison of inorganic and organic chemical concentrations to health based drinking-water standards, correlation analysis of concentrations with...

McMahon, Peter B.; Caldwell, Rodney R.; Galloway, Joel M.; Valder, Joshua F.; Hunt, Andrew G.
McMahon, P.B., Caldwell, R.R>, Galloway, J.M., Valder, J.F., and Hunt, A.G., 2014, Quality and age of shallow groundwater in the Bakken Formation Production Area, Williston Basin, Montana and North Dakota: Groundwater, DOI: 10.1111/gwat.12296

Year Published: 2010

Chemical and morphological comparison of erionite from Oregon, North Dakota, and Turkey

Erionite, a fibrous zeolite, occurs in pediment gravel deposits near Killdeer Mountain, North Dakota. Material from these pediment deposits has been excavated for use as roadbed throughout Dunn County, North Dakota. Erionite also occurs in the Cappadocian region of Turkey, where a link between malignant mesothelioma and inhalation of this mineral...

Lowers, Heather; Adams, David T.; Meeker, Gregory P.; Nutt, Constance J.
Chemical and morphological comparison of erionite from Oregon, North Dakota, and Turkey; 2010; OFR; 2010-1286; Lowers, Heather A.; Adams, David T.; Meeker, Gregory P.; Nutt, Constance J.

Year Published: 2010

Comparative morphology among northern populations of breeding Cooper's Hawks

Few studies at a broad geographical scale have characterized intraspecific variation in morphology of woodland hawks in the genus Accipiter. From 1999 to 2007 we investigated morphological variation in large samples of live Cooper's Hawks (A. cooperii) nesting in four study areas: coniferous woodland around Victoria, British Columbia, Canada...

Rosenfield, Robert N.; Rosenfield, Laura J.; Bielefeldt, John; Murphy, Robert K.; Stewart, Andrew C.; Stout, William E.; Driscoll, Timothy G.; Bozek, Michael A.

Year Published: 2004

Water-use data for the Red River of the North Basin, North Dakota, Minnesota, and South Dakota, 1979-2001

The Red River of the North, located in the north-central plains of the United States, plays an important role in population growth and economic development of the region. Because of recent and projected growth in population, industry, and agriculture in the Red River of the North Basin, alternatives to additional water resources will be needed to...

Macek-Rowland, Kathleen M.; Arntson, Allan D.; Ryberg, Karen R.; Dahl, Ann L.; Lieb, Amy
Water-use data for the Red River of the North Basin, North Dakota, Minnesota, and South Dakota, 1979-2001; 2004; OFR; 2004-1308; Macek-Rowland, Kathleen M.; Arntson, Allan D.; Ryberg, Karen R.; Dahl, Ann L.; Lieb, Amy

Year Published: 1991

Estimated use of water in North Dakota in 1985 and trends during 1960-85

Estimates of water use in North Dakota have been compiled by the U.S. Geological Survey every 5 years since 1950.  These estimates have been published in national summaries of water use (MacKichan, 1951, 1957; MacKichan and Kammerer, 1961; Murray, 1968; Murrary and Reeves, 1972, 1977; and Solley and others, 1983, 1987).  In this report,...

Wesolowski, Edwin A.
Estimated use of water in North Dakota in 1985 and trends during 1960-85; 1991; WRI; 89-4003; Wesolowski, Edwin A.

Year Published: 1990

National water summary 1987: Hydrologic events and water supply and use

Water use in the United States, as measured by freshwater withdrawals in 1985, averaged 338,000 Mgal/d (million gallons per day), which is enough water to cover the 48 conterminous States to a depth of about 2.4 inches. Only 92,300 Mgal/d, or 27.3 percent of the water withdrawn, was consumptive use and thus lost to immediate further use; the...

Carr, Jerry E.; Chase, Edith B.; Paulson, Richard W.; Moody, David W.
Attribution: Water, Central Midwest Water Science Center, Dakota Water Science Center, , , Kansas Water Science Center, Minnesota Water Science Center, Pennsylvania Water Science Center, Texas Water Science Center, Utah Water Science Center, Wisconsin Water Science Center, Water Resources, Water Availability and Use Science Program, Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Puerto Rico, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, U.S. Virgin Islands, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming, United States of America
National water summary 1987: hydrologic events and water supply and use; 1990; WSP; 2350; Carr, Jerry E.; Chase, Edith B.; Paulson, Richard W.; Moody, David W.

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Winter Streamflow Measurement at the Rush River at Amenia, ND (Streamgage 05060500)
February 12, 2019

Winter Streamflow Measurement at the Rush River at Amenia, ND

USGS Hydrologic Technician Chris Broz attempting to find flow at the Rush River at Amenia, ND (USGS streamgage 05060500).  It took the technicians an hour to dig through the snow drift under the wire weight gage just to get to the ice. Then they drilled holes in the ice so they could see if there was any water to measure. 

Image from an application that navigates users through USGS National Oil and Gas Assessment Provinces
November 14, 2018

National Oil and Gas Assessment Provinces

This is a graphic from the USGS National Oil and Gas Assessment Explorer application, which allows user to drill into 70 oil and gas assessment provinces throughout the United States.

Marshmallow-like Formations on Cannonball River at Regent, ND
April 3, 2018

Marshmallow-like Formations on Cannonball River at Regent, ND

Marshmallow-like formations were photographed on the Cannonball River at Regent, North Dakota (USGS streamgage 06350000) on April 3, 2018. Foam is produced naturally from organic material in the water in combination with turbulence resulting from water flowing over the weir. The cold temperatures allowed the foam to freeze into these unique marshmallow-like formations. 

Flow Measurement on Little Missouri River near Watford City, ND (06337000)
March 22, 2018

Flow Measurement on Little Missouri River

USGS Civil Engineer Brent Hanson measuring the streamflow of the Little Missouri River near Watford City, ND (streamgage 06337000). More information about this streamgage is available at https://waterdata.usgs.gov/nwis/uv/?site_no=06337000

Zero Streamflow at Souris River near Westhope, ND (05124000)
January 4, 2018

Zero Streamflow at Souris River near Westhope, ND (05124000)

USGS hydrologic technicians Kevin Baker (shown in the picture) and Jarvis Kaderlik found the Souris River near Westhope, ND (streamgage 05124000) to be at zero flow on January 4, 2018. More information on USGS streamgage 05124000 can be found at https://waterdata.usgs.gov/nwis/uv?

...
Streamflow Measurements Under Ice Using Acoustic Doppler Technology
December 31, 2017

Streamflow Measurements Under Ice Using Acoustic Doppler Technology

Hydrologic Technicians from USGS offices across North and South Dakota took part in training on how to make flow measurements under ice using acoustic Doppler technology. This technology increases measurement quality, while decreasing time, effort, and risk to the individuals making the measurements. The photograph was taken at USGS streamgage 05059300 Sheyenne River above

...
December 31, 2017

Streamflow Measurements Under Ice Using Acoustic Doppler Technology

Hydrologic Technicians from USGS offices across North and South Dakota took part in training on how to make flow measurements under ice using acoustic Doppler technology. This technology increases measurement quality, while decreasing time, effort, and risk to the individuals making the measurements. The photograph was taken at USGS streamgage 05059300 Sheyenne River above

...
Oil and Gas1
December 31, 2016

Well Drill in the Bakken Formation near Williston

Water truck in background is providing maintenance water to a producing well drilled in the Bakken Formation near Williston, North Dakota. 

Oil and Gas 2
December 31, 2016

Oil Wells in ND

Water is used for many direct aspects of unconventional oil and gas development including drilling, development, and maintenance of wells. (Photograph by Janet Carter, USGS)

ground squirrel eating fast as an animated GIF
October 28, 2016

Snacker

An animated GIF of a ground squirrel appearing to eat repeatedly, really fast. The animated GIF was created from a clip within a USGS video entitled, "USGS Pollinator Research and Monitoring."

Storm waves and surge eroded and overwashed artificial sand dunes
October 15, 2016

Oblique aerial photographs at North Topsail Beach, North Carolina

Location 3: Oblique aerial photographs at North Topsail Beach, North Carolina. Oblique aerial photographs collected before (top) and after (bottom) Hurricane Matthew. Storm waves and surge eroded and overwashed artificial sand dunes placed at the back of the beach to protect buildings and parking lots. The yellow arrows in each image point to the same features in both

...
Satellite image showing mining in North Dakota.
August 17, 2016

Landsat Monitors Mining at Center of North America Near Town of Center

Mining has been part of Center's history for more than a century. In August 1984, the Landsat 5 image shows significant surface mining of lignite coal just to the southeast of town, during a summer when drought had browned the countryside. Thirty-two years later, the mining activity moved to the southwest of Center. An additional mining operation also began near the Milton

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Image: Honey Bees Make Life Sweet
October 19, 2018

Do you eat fruits and vegetables? What about nuts? If so, you can thank an insect pollinator, usually a honey bee. These small insects play a major role in pollinating the world’s plants, including those we eat regularly. They also increase our nation’s crop values each year by more than 15 billion dollars.

USGS
February 6, 2018

March 6-8, 2018 at the National Energy Center of Excellence located on the campus of Bismarck State College in Bismarck, ND.

NPWRC Building
August 30, 2017

The public is invited to attend a free, family-friendly open house at a local U.S. Geological Survey center for ecology research on Saturday, September 16.  

Image shows a geologic map of the Lower 48
August 21, 2017

A carbonatite here, a glacial moraine there, a zig-zagging fault or two, even a behemoth of a batholith. The geology of the 50 States is an enormous patchwork of varied forms, beautiful in their variance but challenging to present as a single map.

USGS
February 22, 2017

Joyce E. Williamson, a native of South Dakota and a South Dakota School of Mines and Technology alumna, was selected as the director of the newly formed U.S. Geological Survey Dakota Water Science Center. Williamson is located in the center’s Rapid City, South Dakota, office. 

Map of the 48 contiguous states showing Microcystin concentrations
May 31, 2016

First-of-its-kind survey shows that algal toxins are found nationwide

USGS science for a changing world logo
March 14, 2016

A new, interactive tool can help managers make critical water-quality decisions in the Red River Basin of the United States and Canada.

Image:  Big Sagebrush Re-establishing 15 Years Post-wildfire Along the Boise Front Mountains
December 7, 2015

CORVALLIS, Ore. — Ecosystem restoration is complex and requires an understanding of how the land, plants, and animals all interact with each other over large areas and over time. Today, the U.S. Geological Survey published part two of a three-part handbook addressing restoration of sagebrush ecosystems from the landscape to the site level.

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