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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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The CWPPRA outreach staff at WARC speaking to a large group
June 22, 2016

The Coastal Wetlands Planning, Protection and Restoration Act (CWPPRA) is federal legislation enacted in 1990 designed to identify, prepare, and fund construction of coastal wetlands restoration projects.

Ornate Chorus Frog, Pseudacris ornata
June 17, 2016

Freshwater wetlands provide critical habitat for a diverse array of organisms, including many amphibians. Yet, under the threat of climate change, these habitats are among the most imperiled ecosystems on Earth.

Three pythons well camoflaged
June 16, 2016

Detecting invasive species at low densities or prior to population establishment is critical for successful control and eradication. For example, Burmese pythons occupy thousands of square kilometers of mostly inaccessible habitats.

Florida Manatee with a tracking devise attached
June 16, 2016

Long-term monitoring data in the Manatee Individual Photo-identification System (MIPS), developed and coordinated by WARC-Sirenia Project in collaboration with Florida’s Fish and Wildlife Research Institute and Mote Marine Laboratory, are the basis for modeling manatee demography rates....

Tagging a Gulf sturgeon
June 13, 2016

It's hard to imagine a better job than doing fieldwork with the USGS Coastal Ecology crew as they work to keep tabs on the Gulf sturgeon population....

Figure 2. Approximate boundaries of Chitimacha indigenous lands. Image courtesy Native American Law
June 2, 2016

This project will create a Climate Change Adaptation Plan for the Chitimacha Tribe of Louisiana (Chitimacha), serving as an implementable plan for coastal community adaptation to climate change that can be used as a model in other small communities.

Figure 2. Three Dimensional LAI Profiles.
May 26, 2016

While the historic focus of vegetation condition is the bulk live and dead compositions, these variables provide no information on the structure of vegetation (density and orientation). Canopy structure information is critical for monitoring status and trends, and essential in climate, weather, and ecological studies.

Bullseye snakehead (Channa marulius)
May 23, 2016

May 23, 2016 – Five teams of fishery biologists from the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC), the National Park Service (NPS), Florida Museum of Natural History (FLMNH), University of Florida (UF), and Florida International University (FIU) sampled 12 sites for non-native fishes in Broward and Miami-Dade counties in southeastern Florida...

Wading birds and shorebirds in TTINWR
May 11, 2016

The interior marshes of the Ten Thousand Islands National Wildlife Refuge (TTINWR) are currently negatively impacted by sea level rise through saltwater intrusion from the south which furthers mangrove encroachment into the freshwater marsh.

Live trapping of small mammals will be conducted within the PSRP footprint
May 11, 2016

The Picayune Strand Restoration Project (PSRP) is in the process of restoring pre-drainage hydrology to the southwest portion of the Greater Everglades ecosystem.

Small mammals make up a large proportion of python diet
May 11, 2016

The decline of mammal populations in Everglades National Park (ENP) over the last 20 years is likely to influence the ecology of the Everglades system and the likelihood of successful Everglades restoration.

Satellite image of study areas
May 11, 2016

As Greater Everglades restoration project implementation progresses, wetlands in near coastal areas may undergo changes in salinity, hydroperiod, and water depth.

Filter Total Items: 149
Marine ecoregion and Deepwater Horizon oil spill affect recruitment and population structure of a salt marsh snail
December 1, 2016

Marine ecoregion and Deepwater Horizon oil spill affect recruitment and population structure of a salt marsh snail

Marine species with planktonic larvae often have high spatial and temporal variation in recruitment that leads to subsequent variation in the ecology of benthic adults. Using a combination of published and unpublished data, we compared the population structure of the salt marsh snail, Littoraria irrorata, between the South Atlantic Bight and the...

Pennings, Steven C.; Zengel, Scott; Oehrig, Jacob; Alber, Merryl; Bishop, T. Dale; Deis, Donald R.; Devlin, Donna; Hughes, A. Randall; Hutchens, John J.; Kiehn, Whitney M.; McFarlin, Caroline R.; Montague, Clay L.; Powers, Sean P.; Proffitt, C. Edward; Rutherford, Nicolle; Stagg, Camille L.; Walters, Keith
Pennings, S.C., Zengel, S., Oehrig, J., Alber, M., Bishop, T.D., Deis, D.R., Devlin, D., Hughes, A.R., Hutchens, J.J., Jr., Kiehn, W.M., McFarlin, C.R., Montague, C.L., Powers, S., Proffitt, C.E., Rutherford, N., Stagg, C.L., and Walters, K., 2016, Marine ecoregion and the Deepwater Horizon oil spill affect recruitment and population structure of a salt marsh snail: Ecosphere, v. 7, no. 12, art. e01588, http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ecs2.1588.
Model description and evaluation of the mark-recapture survival model used to parameterize the 2012 status and threats analysis for the Florida manatee (Trichechus manatus latirostris)
November 30, 2016

Model description and evaluation of the mark-recapture survival model used to parameterize the 2012 status and threats analysis for the Florida manatee (Trichechus manatus latirostris)

This report provides supporting details and evidence for the rationale, validity and efficacy of a new mark-recapture model, the Barker Robust Design, to estimate regional manatee survival rates used to parameterize several components of the 2012 version of the Manatee Core Biological Model (CBM) and Threats Analysis (TA). The CBM and TA provide...

Langtimm, Catherine A.; Kendall, William L.; Beck, Cathy A.; Kochman, Howard I.; Teague, Amy L.; Meigs-Friend, Gaia; Peñaloza, Claudia L.
Langtimm, C.A., Kendall, W.L., Beck, C.A., Kochman, H.I., Teague, A.L., Meigs-Friend, Gaia, and Peñaloza, C.L., 2016, Model description and evaluation of the mark-recapture survival model used to parameterize the 2012 status and threats analysis for the Florida manatee (<i>Trichechus manatus latirostris</i>): U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2016–1163, 20 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/ofr20161163.
Characterization of Peak Streamflows and Flood Inundation of Selected Areas in Louisiana, Texas, Arkansas, and Mississippi from Flood of March 2016
November 29, 2016

Characterization of Peak Streamflows and Flood Inundation of Selected Areas in Louisiana, Texas, Arkansas, and Mississippi from Flood of March 2016

Heavy rainfall occurred across Louisiana, Texas, Arkansas, and Mississippi in March 2016 as a result of a slow-moving southward dip in the jetstream, funneling tropical moisture into parts of the Gulf Coastal States and the Mississippi River Valley. The storm caused major flooding in the northwestern and southeastern parts of Louisiana and in...

Brian K. Breaker, Kara M. Watson, Paul A. Ensminger, John B. Storm, and Claire E. Rose
Benson, M.A., and Dalrymple, Tate, 1967, General field and office procedures for indirect measurements: U.S. Geological Survey Techniques of Water-Resources Investigations, book 3, chap. Al, 30 p. [Also available at http://pubs.er.usgs.gov/publication/twri03A1.] Cohn, T.A., Lane, W.L., and Baier, W.G., 1997, An algorithm for computing moments-based flood quantile estimates when historical flood information is available: Water Resources Research, v. 33, no. 9, p. 2089–2096. Cohn, T.A., Lane, W.L., and Stedinger, J.R., 2001, Confidence intervals for Expected Moments Algorithm flood quantile estimates: Water Resources Research, v. 37, no. 6, p. 1695–1706. Di Liberto, Tom, 2016, “Maya Express” behind Gulf Coast soaking, accessed August 5, 2016, at https://www.climate.gov/news-features/event-tracker/maya-express-behind-gulf-coast-soaking. Durre, Imke, Squires, M.F., Vose, RS., Arguez, A., Applequist, S. and Yin, X., 2012, Computational procedures for the 1981–2010 normals—Precipitation, snowfall, and snow depth: National Climatic Data Center Report, 10 p. Fenneman, N.M., 1946, Physical divisions of the United States: U.S. Geological Survey map, scale 1:7,000,000, 1 sheet. Heal, E.N., and Breaker, B.K., 2016, Flood inundation extent and depth in selected areas of Louisiana, Texas, and Mississippi in March 2016: U.S. Geological Survey data release, https://doi.org/10.5066/F7T43R6C. Koenig, T.A., Bruce, J.L., O’Connor, J.E., McGee, B.D., Holmes, R.R., Jr., Hollins, Ryan, Forbes, B.T., Kohn, M.S., Schellekens, M.F., Martin, Z.W., and Peppler, M.C., 2016, Identifying and preserving high-water mark data: U.S. Geological Survey Techniques and Methods, book 3, chap. A24, 47 p. [Also available at http://dx.doi.org/10.3133/tm3A24.] Musser, J.W., Watson, K.M., Painter, J.A., and Gotvald, A.J., 2016, Flood-inundation maps of selected areas affected by the flood of October 2015 in central and coastal South Carolina: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2016 –1019, 81 p. [Also available at http://dx.doi.org/10.3133/ofr20161019.] National Centers for Environmental Information (NCEI), 2016a, accessed August 2, 2016, at http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/billions/events. National Centers for Environmental Information (NCEI), 2016b, accessed on August 2, 2016, at http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/sotc/national/201603. R Core Team, 2016, R: A language and environment for statistical computing: R Foundation for Statistical Computing, Vienna, Austria. Rantz, S.E., and others, 1982a, Measurement and computation of streamflow: U.S. Geological Survey Water-Supply Paper 2175, v. 1, 284 p. [Also available at http://pubs.usgs.gov/wsp/wsp2175/pdf/WSP2175_vol1a.pdf.] Rantz, S.E., and others, 1982b, Measurement and computation of streamflow: U.S. Geological Survey Water-Supply Paper 2175, v. 2, 631 p. [Also available at http://pubs.usgs.gov/wsp/wsp2175/pdf/WSP2175_vol2a.pdf.] Turnipseed, D.P., and Sauer, V.B., 2010, Discharge measurements at gaging stations: U.S. Geological Survey Techniques and Methods book 3, chap. A8, 87 p. [Also available at http://pubs.usgs.gov/tm/tm3-a8/.] Veilleux, A.G., Cohn, T.A., Flynn, K.M., Mason, R.R., Jr., and Hummel, P.R., 2014, Estimating magnitude and frequency of floods using the PeakFQ 7.0 program: U.S. Geological Survey Fact Sheet 2013–3108, 2 p. [Also available at http://pubs.usgs.gov/fs/2013/3108/.] Wagner, D.M., Krieger, J.D., and Veilleux, A.G., 2016, Methods for estimating annual exceedance probability discharges for streams in Arkansas, based on data through water year 2013: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2016–5081, 136 p. [Also available at http://dx.doi.org/10.3133/sir20165081.] Weather Channel, 2016, accessed August 5, 2016, at https://weather.com/storms/severe/news/historic-south-flooding-march-2016. Wood, S.N., 2004, Stable and efficient multiple smoothing parameter estimation for generalized additive models: Journal of the American Statistical Association, v. 99, p. 673–686. Wood, S.N., 2011, Fast stable restricted maximum likelihood and marginal likelihood estimation of semiparametric generalized linear models: Journal of the Royal Statistical Society, v. 73, p. 3–36.
Spatially explicit modeling in ecology: A review
November 22, 2016

Spatially explicit modeling in ecology: A review

The use of spatially explicit models (SEMs) in ecology has grown enormously in the past two decades. One major advancement has been that fine-scale details of landscapes, and of spatially dependent biological processes, such as dispersal and invasion, can now be simulated with great precision, due to improvements in computer technology. Many areas...

DeAngelis, Donald L.; Yurek, Simeon
DeAngelis, D.L., and Yurek, S., 2016, Spatially explicit modeling in ecology: a review: Ecosystems, First Online, http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10021-016-0066-z.
Inference of population structure and demographic history in Taxodium distichum, a coniferous tree in North America, based on amplicon sequence analysis
November 21, 2016

Inference of population structure and demographic history in Taxodium distichum, a coniferous tree in North America, based on amplicon sequence analysis

PREMISE OF THE STUDY: Studies of natural genetic variation can elucidate the genetic basis of phenotypic variation and the past population structure of species. Our study species, Taxodium distichum, is a unique conifer that inhabits the flood plains and swamps of North America. Morphological and ecological differences in two varieties, T...

Ikezaki, Yuka; Suyama, Yoshihisa; Middleton, Beth A.; Tsumura, Yoshihiko; Teshima, Kousuke; Tachida, Hidenori; Kusumi, Junko
Ikezaki, Y., Suyama, Y., Middleton, B.A., Tsumura, Y., Teshima, K., Tachida, H., and Kusumi, J., 2016, Inference of population structure and demographic history in Taxodium distichum, a coniferous tree in North America, based on amplicon sequence analysis: American Journal of Botany, http://dx.doi.org/10.3732/ajb.1600046.
Wetland shoreline recession in the Mississippi River Delta from petroleum oiling and cyclonic storms
November 17, 2016

Wetland shoreline recession in the Mississippi River Delta from petroleum oiling and cyclonic storms

We evaluate the relative impact of petroleum spill and storm surge on near-shore wetland loss by quantifying the lateral movement of coastal shores in upper Barataria Bay, Louisiana (USA), between June 2009 and October 2012, a study period that extends from the year prior to the Deepwater Horizon spill to 2.5 years following the spill.

Rangoonwala, Amina; Jones, Cathleen E.; Ramsey III, Elijah W.
Rangoonwala, A., Jones, C.E., and Ramsey, E.W., III, 2016, Wetland shoreline recession in the Mississippi River Delta from petroleum oiling and cyclonic storms: Geophysical Research Letters, Early View, http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/2016GL070624.
Using structural equation modeling to link human activities to wetland ecological integrity
November 15, 2016

Using structural equation modeling to link human activities to wetland ecological integrity

The integrity of wetlands is of global concern. A common approach to evaluating ecological integrity involves bioassessment procedures that quantify the degree to which communities deviate from historical norms. While helpful, bioassessment provides little information about how altered conditions connect to community response. More detailed...

Schweiger, E. William; Grace, James B.; Cooper, David; Bobowski, Ben; Britten, Mike
Schweiger, E.W., Grace, J.B., Cooper, D., Bobowski, B., and Britten, M., 2016, Using structural equation modeling to link human activities to wetland ecological integrity: Ecosphere, v. 7, no. 11, art. e01548, http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ecs2.1548.
Development of the oriental latrine fly, Chrysomya megacephala (Diptera: Calliphoridae), at five constant temperatures
November 15, 2016

Development of the oriental latrine fly, Chrysomya megacephala (Diptera: Calliphoridae), at five constant temperatures

Chrysomya megacephala (Fabricius) is a forensically important fly that is found throughout the tropics and subtropics. We calculated the accumulated development time and transition points for each life stage from eclosion to adult emergence at five constant temperatures: 15, 20, 25, 30, and 35 °C. For each transition, the 10th, 50th, and 90th...

Gruner, S. V.; Slone, D.H.; Capinera, J.L.; Turco, M. P.
Gruner, S.V., Slone, D.H., Capinera, J.L., and Turco, M.P., 2016, Development of the oriental latrine fly, Chrysomya megacephala (Diptera: Calliphoridae), at five constant temperatures: Journal of Medical Entomology, First Online, http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jme/tjw169.
Detection limits of quantitative and digital PCR assays and their influence in presence-absence surveys of environmental DNA
November 7, 2016

Detection limits of quantitative and digital PCR assays and their influence in presence-absence surveys of environmental DNA

A set of universal guidelines is needed to determine the limit of detection (LOD) in PCR-based analyses of low concentration DNA. In particular, environmental DNA (eDNA) studies require sensitive and reliable methods to detect rare and cryptic species through shed genetic material in environmental samples. Current strategies for assessing...

Hunter, Margaret; Dorazio, Robert M.; Butterfield, John S.; Meigs-Friend, Gaia; Nico, Leo; Ferrante, Jason
Hunter, M.E., Dorazio, R.M., Butterfield, J.S.S., Meigs-Friend, G., Nico, L.G., and Ferrante, J.A., 2016, Detection limits of quantitative and digital PCR assays and their influence in presence-absence surveys of environmental DNA: Molecular Ecology Resources, Accepted Online Early, http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/1755-0998.12619.
A landscape-scale assessment of above- and belowground primary production in coastal wetlands: Implications for climate change-induced community shifts
October 25, 2016

A landscape-scale assessment of above- and belowground primary production in coastal wetlands: Implications for climate change-induced community shifts

Above- and belowground production in coastal wetlands are important contributors to carbon accumulation and ecosystem sustainability. As sea level rises, we can expect shifts to more salt-tolerant communities, which may alter these ecosystem functions and services. Although the direct influence of salinity on species-level primary production has...

Stagg, Camille L.; Schoolmaster, Donald R.; Piazza, Sarai C.; Snedden, Gregg; Steyer, Gregory D.; Fischenich, Craig J; McComas, Robert W.
Stagg, C.L., Schoolmaster, D.R., Jr., Piazza, S.C., Snedden, G., Steyer, G.D., Fischenich, C.J., and McComas, R.W., 2016, A landscape-scale assessment of above- and belowground primary production in coastal wetlands: implications for climate change-induced community shifts: Estuaries and Coasts, First Online, http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s12237-016-0177-y.
Large reptiles and cold temperatures: Do extreme cold spells set distributional limits for tropical reptiles in Florida?
October 19, 2016

Large reptiles and cold temperatures: Do extreme cold spells set distributional limits for tropical reptiles in Florida?

Distributional limits of many tropical species in Florida are ultimately determined by tolerance to low temperature. An unprecedented cold spell during 2–11 January 2010, in South Florida provided an opportunity to compare the responses of tropical American crocodiles with warm-temperate American alligators and to compare the responses of...

Mazzotti, Frank J.; Cherkiss, Michael S.; Parry, Mark; Beauchamp, Jeff; Rochford, Mike; Smith, Brian J.; Hart, Kristen M.; Brandt, Laura A.
Mazzotti, F.J., Cherkiss, M.S., Parry, M., Beauchamp, J., Rochford, M., Smith, B., Hart, K., and Brandt, L.A., 2016, Large reptiles and cold temperatures: Do extreme cold spells set distributional limits for tropical reptiles in Florida?: Ecosphere, v. 7, no. 8, art. e01439, http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ecs2.1439.
Biomarkers reveal sea turtles remained in oiled areas following the Deepwater Horizon oil spill
October 18, 2016

Biomarkers reveal sea turtles remained in oiled areas following the Deepwater Horizon oil spill

Assessments of large-scale disasters, such as the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, are problematic because while measurements of post-disturbance conditions are common, measurements of pre-disturbance baselines are only rarely available. Without adequate observations of pre-disaster organismal and environmental conditions, it is impossible to assess...

Vander Zanden, Hannah B.; Bolten, Alan B.; Tucker, Anton D.; Hart, Kristen M.; Lamont, Margaret M.; Fujisaki, Ikuko; Reich, Kimberly J.; Addison, David S.; Mansfield, Katherine L.; Phillips, Katrina F.; Pajuelo, Mariela; Bjorndal, Karen A.
Vander Zanden, H.B., Bolten, A.B., Tucker, A.D., Hart, K.M., Lamont, M.M., Fujisaki, I., Reich, K.J., Addison, D.S., Mansfield, K.L., Phillips, K.F., Pajuelo, M., and Bjorndal, K.A., 2016, Biomarkers reveal sea turtles remained in oiled areas following the Deepwater Horizon oil spill: Ecological Applications, v. 26, no. 7, p. 2145-2155, http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/eap.1366.
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Michelle Collier of the USGS holding a black and white Tegu lizard.
2014 (approx.)
Invasive Species biological science technician Michelle Collier holds an invasive black and white Tegu lizard.
Coastal wetlands near Port Fourchon, Louisiana, in the northern Gulf of Mexico
2013 (approx.)
To understand how changes in rainfall and temperature might affect coastal wetlands in the northern Gulf of Mexico, USGS researchers conducted field studies at 10 estuaries in five states (Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida). The fieldwork took place in a variety of coastal wetland types, including mangroves, marshes, and salt flats.
Wading birds feed near wooden posts marking a research site in a Louisiana salt marsh
2013 (approx.)
To understand how changes in rainfall and temperature might affect coastal wetlands in the northern Gulf of Mexico, USGS researchers conducted field studies at 10 estuaries in five states (Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida). The fieldwork took place in a variety of coastal wetland types, including mangroves, marshes, and salt flats. At this site in Port Fourchon, Louisiana,...
A large boulder-shaped Massive Starlet coral on the sea floor in Dry Tortugas National Park
May 2012 (approx.)
Scientists used a core from this Massive Starlet ( Siderastrea siderea ) coral colony in Dry Tortugas National Park to reconstruct ocean temperatures going back to 1837. Photo: USGS
Oblique aerial photograph near Rodanthe, NC, looking south along the coast on August 30, 2011, three days after landfall of Hurr
August 30, 2011
Oblique aerial photograph near Rodanthe, North Carolina, looking south along the coast on August 30, 2011, three days after landfall of Hurricane Irene.
cientists collecting bed-sediment samples from Suwanee Creek, Georgia
May 23, 2007
U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) scientists collecting bed-sediment samples from Suwanee Creek, Gwinnett County, Georgia, on May 23, 2007.
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USGS logo
November 17, 2015

Fact sheets that detail information about parish water resources and water-use are available online for 34 of the state’s 64 parishes, with more coming soon.

USGS logo
November 10, 2015

A new interactive Flood Inundation Map to improve flood warnings and assist with emergency management along Big Creek in Alpharetta and Roswell, Georgia, was debuted during a ceremony today in Alpharetta’s Rock Mill Park.

Gator
October 28, 2015

Alligators and the Everglades go hand-in-hand, and as water conditions change in the greater Everglades ecosystem, gators are one of the key species that could be affected.

Satellite image of the Gulf of Mexico and coastline, Gulf Hypoxic Zone
October 19, 2015

Hypoxia sounds as bad as it is. It refers to an environment that is too low on oxygen to sustain most aerobic life, particularly an aquatic environment. Hypoxia is most problematic when it happens where oxygen is normally plentiful, because most living organisms require oxygen to continue living.

Image: USGS Scientist Inspects Streamgage During Flooding Event
October 5, 2015

Heavy rains and hazardous weather conditions are occurring in western South Carolina, with record flooding occurring and more expected over parts of the region over the next several days.

USGS logo
October 2, 2015

Currently, heavy rains and hazardous weather conditions are predicted for western North Carolina and most of South Carolina by the National Weather Service, with flooding possible over parts of the region over the next several days.

Image: Giant African Land Snail
July 9, 2015

The invasive giant African land snail is expanding its range in Miami, and with it, the range of the parasitic rat lungworm, according to new U.S. Geological Survey led research.

USGS logo
June 30, 2015

Cheryl J. Hapke begins work this week as the Director of the U.S. Geological Survey’s St. Petersburg Coastal and Marine Science Center.

Wading Birds in the Everglades, Florida
June 24, 2015

Wading bird numbers in the Florida Everglades are driven by water patterns that play out over multiple years according to a new study by the U.S. Geological Survey and Florida Atlantic University.

USGS logo
April 16, 2015

Many loggerhead sea turtles that nest in Dry Tortugas National Park head to rich feeding sites in the Bahamas after nesting, a discovery that may help those working to protect this threatened species

USGS logo
April 16, 2015

New genetic data suggest the red lionfish invasion in the Caribbean Basin and Western Atlantic started in multiple locations, not just one as previously believed, according to a new study led by the U.S. Geological Survey.

USGS logo
March 25, 2015

The U.S. Geological Survey’s National Wetlands Research Center in Lafayette and the Southeast Ecological Science Center in Gainesville, Florida will merge under the same leadership effective October 1, 2015.