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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.
22-23 March 2017 - Ten teams of fishery biologists sampled 28 sites amid unexpected wildfires in the Big Cypress National Preserve over the two day period. On the second day a reporter from the Miami Herald accompanied a ground crew team.
Dozens of species of non-native fishes are present in the freshwaters of Florida, and new species are discovered each year. Maintaining current information on the geographic ranges of all non-native fishes is a daunting task, as many jurisdictions are involved at the state, federal, and municipal levels. There is a need to coordinate sampling, research and management across jurisdictional...
USGS scientists have been involved for a number of years in the development and use of Structural Equation Modeling (SEM). This methodology represents an approach to statistical modeling that focuses on the study of complex cause-effect hypotheses about the mechanisms operating in systems. SEM is increasingly used in ecological and environmental studies and this site seeks to provide...
Human alteration of waterways has impacted the minimum and maximum streamflows in more than 86% of monitored streams nationally and may be the primary cause for ecological impairment in river and stream ecosystems. Restoration of freshwater inflows can positively affect shellfish, fisheries, habitat, and water quality in streams, rivers, and estuaries. Increasingly, state and local decision-...
A study involving suspended-sediment and turbidity monitoring at streamgaging stations near the segment of State Route 840 under construction between Fairview and Bending Chestnut.
The Tennessee (TENN) River Basin encompasses an area of 40,890 square miles, making it the largest tributary to the Ohio River. The Tennessee River flows through portions of seven states: Virginia, North Carolina, Tennessee, Alabama, Georgia, Mississippi, and Kentucky. To learn more please visit: http://tn.water.usgs.gov/lten/tenn.html
LMG-WSC hydrologist, in collaboration with Arkansas Natural Resource Commission scientist are analyzing stream channel geomorphic characteristics at 15 gaged stable stream sites in the Boston Mountains of Arkansas. Field data collection entails topographic surveys of selected stream reaches and analysis of bed and bar sediments. Topographic surveys, running from hundreds to thousands of feet,...
The Mississippi Alluvial Plain is one of the most productive agricultural regions in the Nation and depends on groundwater for irrigation. The MAP area constitutes the third largest area of irrigated cropland in the United States. The area is approximately 29,000 square miles (19 million acres) and includes parts of the States...
The Challenge: The DOI WaterSMART (Sustain and Manage America’s Resources for Tomorrow) initiative is developing data and tools to help water managers identify current and future water shortages, for humans and for freshwater ecosystems. Fishes, for example, can decline in diversity and abundance when streamflow becomes too low, for too long. However, ecologists find that effects of declining...
Invasive species are considered to be second only to habitat degradation in terms of negative impacts on the Earth’s ecosystems, and our scientists make up a significant proportion of the global expertise in the rapidly-growing problem of invasive reptiles.
The Daniel Beard Center in Everglades National Park provides the base for most of the field work done on the control of invasive reptiles by USGS Fort Collins Science Center staff. The team works in Everglades National Park, Big Cypress National Preserve, Crocodile Lake National Wildlife Refuge, and other parts of the Greater Everglades Ecosystem focusing on, among other species of concern,...
November 1 - 2, 2016 – Eight teams of fishery biologists from the US Geological Survey (USGS), US Fish and Wildlife Service - Peninsular Florida Fisheries Office and Welaka National Fish Hatchery (USFWS), the National Park Service (NPS), Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC), Florida International University (FIU), and Zoo Miami sampled 20 sites for non-native fishes in Palm...
Morphometric body condition indices of wild Florida manatees (Trichechus manatus latirostris)
In many species, body weight (W) increases geometrically with body length (L), so W/L3 provides a body condition index (BCI) that can be used to evaluate nutritional status once a normal range has been established. No such index has been established for Florida manatees (Trichechus manatus latirostris). This study was designed to determine a...Harshaw, Lauren T.; Larkin, Iskande V.; Bonde, Robert K.; Deutsch, Charles J.; Hill, Richard C.
Baseline reference range for trace metal concentrations in whole blood of wild and managed West Indian Manatees (Trichechus manatus) in Florida and Belize
The West Indian manatee (Trichechus manatus) is exposed to a number of anthropogenic influences, including metals, as they inhabit shallow waters with close proximity to shore. While maintaining homeostasis of many metals is crucial for health, there is currently no baseline reference range that can be used to make clinical and environmental...Takeuchi, Noel Y.; Walsh, Michael T.; Bonde, Robert K.; Powell, James A.; Bass, Dean A.; Gaspard, Joseph C.; Barber, David S.
Characterizing the early life history of an imperiled freshwater mussel (Ptychobranchus jonesi)
Conservation of imperiled species is frequently challenged by insufficient knowledge of life history and the environmental factors that affect various life stages. The larvae (glochidia) of most freshwater mussels in the family Unionidae are obligate ectoparasites of fishes. We describe the early life history of the federally endangered Southern...Mcleod, John; Jelks, Howard; Pursifull, Sandra; Johnson, Nathan A.
Development of an adaptive harvest management program for Taiga bean geese
This report describes recent progress in specifying the elements of an adaptive harvest program for taiga bean goose. It describes harvest levels appropriate for first rebuilding the population of the Central Management Unit and then maintaining it near the goal specified in the AEWA International Single Species Action Plan (ISSAP). This report...Johnson, Fred A.; Alhainen, Mikko; Fox, Anthony D.; Madsen, Jesper
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
Mechanisms of aquatic species invasions across the South Atlantic Landscape Conservation Cooperative region
The Nonindigenous Aquatic Species Database (NAS) information resource is an established central repository for spatially referenced biogeographic accounts of introduced aquatic species. The NAS website provides scientific reports, online/real-time queries, spatial data sets, distribution maps, fact sheets, and general information.Benson, Amy J.
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
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. We document...Rangoonwala, Amina; Jones, Cathleen E.; Ramsey, Elijah W.
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
Application of decision science to resilience management in Jamaica Bay
This book highlights the growing interest in management interventions designed to enhance the resilience of the Jamaica Bay socio-ecological system. Effective management, whether the focus is on managing biological processes or human behavior or (most likely) both, requires decision makers to anticipate how the managed system will respond to...Sanderson, E.W.; Solecki, W. D.; Waldman, J.R.; Paris, A. S.; Eaton, Mitchell; Fuller, Angela K.; Johnson, Fred A.; Hare, M. P.; Stedman, Richard C.
Baseline aquatic contamination and endocrine status in a resident fish of Biscayne National Park
This is a collection of data on the contamination of water, fish, and sediments in Biscayne National Park and in canals that discharge into the national park. The water data are estimations of their concentrations in water based on sampling with passive water samplers (semi-permeable membrane devices and polar organic chemical integrative samplers...Bargar, Timothy A.; Whelan, Kevin; Alvarez, David A.; Echols, Kathy R.; Peterman, Paul H.
Cape Lookout, North Carolina, 2012 National Wetlands Inventory Habitat Classification
In the face of sea level rise and as climate change conditions increase the frequency and intensity of tropical storms along the north-Atlantic Coast, coastal areas will become increasingly vulnerable to storm damage, and the decline of already-threatened species could be exacerbated. Predictions about response of coastal birds to effects of...Spear, Kathryn A.; Jones, William R.
Oblique aerial photograph near Rodanthe, NC, along the coast on August 30, 2011, three days after landfall of Hurricane Irene. A breach was carved through the barrier island, severing NC Highway 12. The storm surge was approximately 2 m high on the sound-side and was less on the ocean-side. Flow from the sound to the ocean may have played a role in cutting...
A colony of the soft coral known as the "bent sea rod" stands bleached on a reef off of Islamorada, Florida. Hard and soft corals are presently bleaching- losing their symbiotic algae – all over the coral reefs of the Florida Keys due to unusually warm ocean temperatures this summer. Months with waters warmer than 85 F have become more frequent in the last several decades...
This video was shot in Three Sisters Springs at the Crystal River National Wildlife Refuge, Florida. The footage was captured using a GoPro while conducting health check-ups and taking photography for population research on Jan. 30, 2014.
Dr. Bob Bonde, USGS and the dozens of volunteers who conduct annual manatee health
This image was taken at the Strong River at D'Lo, Mississippi by Shane Stocks who is a Hydrologic Technician out of the Jackson, MS office. Shane used an infared camera to take this long exposure shot of the river.
These Elkhorn corals (Acropora palmata) near Buck Island, U.S. Virgin Islands have died and collapsed into rubble. As coral reef structure degrades, valuable habitat for marine life is lost and nearby coastlines become more susceptible to storms, waves and erosion.
Time-averaged image, or “timex,” created by averaging the intensity of light recorded at each spot, or “pixel,” during a video taken at Duck, North Carolina, on September 1, 2015. Blurred white zones show where waves are breaking. Light band paralleling the shore marks an offshore sandbar. Dark bands extending away from the beach indicate rip channels. Researchers are...
Invasive Species biological science technician Michelle Collier holds an invasive black and white Tegu lizard.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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 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.
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
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.
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.