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We conduct impartial, multi- and interdisciplinary research and monitoring on a large range of natural-resource issues that impact the quality of life of citizens and landscapes of the Southeastern United States and the Caribbean region.

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crustose coralline algae
April 13, 2016

We bring together multidisciplinary expertise focused on developing tools and models to improve understanding of how healthy ecosystems function as well as how they respond to environmental changes and human impacts including ecosystem restoration. Research studies address coral reef, coastal wetland, benthic habitat and groundwater resources.

West Indian manatees
April 8, 2016

Population models developed by USGS are the primary decision-support tools used for status assessments, and rely on estimates of adult survival and reproduction rates from mark-recapture studies.

Rookery Bay NERR, FL, USA
April 8, 2016

Hydrologic restoration is one of several approaches to rehabilitate mangroves on a large-scale. USGS evaluates how solely restoring tidal hydrologic flows affect the recovery of mangroves in Florida. ...

Figure 1. Major study areas of the TFFW vegetation modeling system (Krauss et al., 2009)
April 8, 2016

As tidal freshwater forested wetlands - TFFWs - are influenced by salinty due to salt water intrusion, they may experience changes in plant community composition, growth, and productivity. Models are needed to predict vegetation community change or dieback, as well as changes in carbon sequestration and storage due to changing climate, drought, changes in freshwater discharge, elevated carbon...

Millions of landbirds migrate through the Gulf of Mexico
April 8, 2016

USGS uses weather surveillance radar data and landscape-scale habitat metrics to model bird-habitat connections along the western coast of the Gulf of Mexico.

Sampit River, SC, USA
April 8, 2016

Tidal freshwater forested wetlands - TFFWs - can be found in the upper intertidal areas of many estuaries and act as a transition between coastal marshes and bottomland hardwood wetlands. However, it is because of their location that makes them vulnerable to sea-level rise, and they are constantly transitioning to different wetland types. USGS addresses how various processes are affected in...

Illustration of two sites with marked differences in hydrology and nutrient concentrations
April 8, 2016

USGS research in the Florida Everglades will provide information on how environmental conditions and disturbances impact carbon storage in mangrove systems.

Figure 2. Current and proposed MR diversions in Louisiana deltaic wetlands. (Source: LaCPRA)
April 7, 2016

Coastal wetlands provide valuable ecosystem services such as wave attenuation, surge reduction, carbon sequestration, wastewater treatment, and critical habitats for endangered fish and wildlife species. However, wetland loss threatens the capacity of coastal wetlands to provide these ecosystem services.

The CRMS design includes a suite of sites that encompass a range of ecological conditions across the coast
April 7, 2016

The Coastwise Reference Monitoring System was designed to monitor the effectiveness of restoration actions at individual sites, as well as across the entire Louisiana coast. ...

Sampling permanent vegetation transects
April 7, 2016

Mangroves will compete with salt marsh plants in transitional areas, and recent studies have documented the expansion of mangroves into marsh habitats. To better understand the plant community dynamics in this transition zone, USGS scientists are tracking vegeation changes over time in south Florida. ...

2013 Wetland Type Map - Coastal Louisiana
April 7, 2016

this study will employ a space for time substitution to show long-term effects of rising sea-level and increasing salinity on vegetation community structure, primary production and decomposition. Productivity and decomposition rates will be estimated for four wetland plant community types defined by salinity zones and dominant plant species. ...

Marsh core, Barataria Basin, Louisiana
April 6, 2016

Will wetland vertical accretion rates be enough to keep up with the predicted rates of sea level rise? USGS looks at soil properties and geochronology in Louisiana wetlands. ...