Unified Interior Regions

Arizona

The Southwest Region includes California, Nevada, and Arizona. The Regional Office, headquartered in Sacramento, provides Center oversight and support, facilitates internal and external collaborations, and works to further USGS strategic science directions.

States L2 Landing Page Tabs

Filter Total Items: 140
Date published: March 18, 2018
Status: Active

AzWSC Capabilities: Hydrologic Gravity Monitoring

Gravity is a measurement of mass: the greater an object's mass, the stronger its gravitational pull. By measuring changes in gravity over time, inferences can be made about changes in mass. In hydrology, this can be used to study water in the subsurface. If the amount of groundwater in a particular area increases over time, through processes such as infiltration of rainfall or aquifer recharge...

Date published: October 30, 2017
Status: Active

Process-based Approaches for Ecological Restoration of Degraded Drylands

Surface disturbances ranging from military training, recreation, energy exploration and development, and wildfires impact a large majority of federal lands in the western US, but the ecological and economic impacts are poorly understood. Explore this webpage to learn how Dr. Lesley DeFalco and her research team are currently evaluating and refining conventional approaches for post-fire...

Contacts: Lesley DeFalco
Date published: October 30, 2017
Status: Active

Native Plant Materials for Ecological Restoration of Degraded Drylands

There is a growing consensus among resource managers to use native plant materials for ecological restoration of degraded drylands. Some plant species may be suitable for re-introduction across broad environmental gradients. Other species may fail under narrower conditions, or their re-introduction may have genetic consequences for local ecotypes, particularly when adapting to future climate...

Contacts: Lesley DeFalco
Date published: October 30, 2017
Status: Active

Conservation of Rare, Sensitive, and At-risk Desert Plant Species

The Mojave Desert is among the hottest and driest of the North American drylands, but in spite of these extreme conditions, and in part because of them, a diverse flora exists. This diversity of rare, endemic, and endangered species is threatened by the complex interaction between fluctuating climate and human-mediated disturbances. USGS studies have identified rare species “hotspots” for...

Contacts: Lesley DeFalco
Date published: October 3, 2017

Colorado Plateaus Regional Groundwater Availability

Pilot phase

This study is in a pilot phase during fiscal years 2017 and 2018. The purpose of the pilot phase is to identify possible technical challenges of using the USGS code GSFLOW for simulating groundwater and surface-water flow in the Colorado Plateau principal aquifer system. During the pilot phase, the project will evaluate GSFLOW in the San Juan River Basin (...

Date published: September 20, 2017

Land Treatment Digital Library

The LTDL was created by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) to catalog information about land treatments on Federal lands in the western United States for all interested parties. The flexible framework of the library allows for the storage of a wide variety of data in different formats. The LTDL currently stores previously established land treatments or what often are called legacy data. The...

Date published: August 5, 2017
Status: Active

RestoreNet: Distributed Field Trial Network for Dryland Restoration

U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) researchers and land managers are co-producing a network of restoration field trial sites on DOI and surrounding lands in the southwestern U.S. The network systematically tests restoration treatments across a broad range of landscape, soil, and climate conditions. Each site in the network is used to test suitable seed mixes and treatments that promote plant...

Contacts: Seth Munson, Molly McCormick, Katie Laushman, Rebecca Mann, Mike Duniway, Ph.D., Brad Butterfield, Elise Gornish, Loralee Larios, Akasha Faist, Helen Rowe, Christopher Lortie, Caroline A. Havrilla
Date published: August 4, 2017
Status: Active

Occurrence and Potential Risk of Microplastics in Lake Mead and the Delaware River

There is mounting evidence that microplastics present a significant threat to aquatic organisms. Microplastics – defined as plastic particles less than 5 mm in diameter – come from many different sources, including synthetic textiles, industrial waste products, personal care products, and the breakdown of litter, car tires, and other objects. This study will assess the occurrence of...

Date published: April 25, 2017
Status: Active

National Water-Quality Program Monitoring Networks, Arizona, 2013-2023

The Arizona Water Science Center collects water-quality data from stream and aquifer sites in networks that are part of the National Water-Quality Program (NWQP) and the National Stream Quality Accounting Network (NASQAN).

Date published: April 13, 2017
Status: Active

Ecosystem Modelling and Decision Support

The Ecosystem Modelling and Decision Support Project seeks to understand how drivers of ecosystem change like wildfire, drought, and land use affected past spatial and temporal patterns of vegetation communities and wildlife. Research methods involve 1) analyzing field-collected information (e.g. long-term plot/transect data, repeat photography) on soils, vegetation, and/or wildlife with...

Date published: April 12, 2017
Status: Active

Hydrocarbon Monitoring in Response to Personal Watercraft Regulation at Glen Canyon National Recreation Area

Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) contamination related to watercraft use is one of the most significant water-quality issues affecting Lake Powell at Glen Canyon National Recreation Area (GLCA). Water quality in Lake Powell is important as the lake is a water source for public and agricultural consumption. In addition, more than 2 million people visit GLCA annually, and most of these...

Date published: April 12, 2017
Status: Active

Identification and Analysis of Points of Diversion along the Lower Colorado River in Support of Decree Accounting

 In the United States, the Colorado River Compact of 1922 apportions the waters of the Colorado River between the upper basin States and the lower basin States (U.S. Congress, 1948, p. A17-A22). The requirement for participation of the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and the Bureau of Reclamation (BOR) is stated in Article V. Water in the lower Colorado River is apportioned among the States of...

Filter Total Items: 240
December 14, 2014

USGS on Campus

In a documentary style, this video discusses the close relationship between the USGS Arizona Water Science Center and the University of Arizona. Students and Scientists collaborating for the future development of each other.

October 28, 2014

Measuring Water Levels in a Flowing Well

This video demonstrates how to measure low pressure hydraulic head in a flowing well.

Earth As Art image of Utah, Arizona
October 4, 2014

Cloud Lightning

What looks like lightning arcing through an ominous cloud is actually a dry landscape of rocky buttes in southern Utah and northeastern Arizona. River channels flow north from Arizona into the San Juan River. The light vertical feature at the top of the image is referred to as Comb Ridge, a jagged fold in the Earth's crust called a monocline.

  • Collection: Earth
...
September 16, 2014

Hurricane Odile, AZ Flooding September 2014, USGS at Work

This video shows the flooding that occurred in Arizona from the remnants of Hurricane Odile, while explaining the different techniques for high flow measurements.

August 14, 2014

Measuring Groundwater with Steel Tape

This video demonstrates how to measure water levels in wells using a graduated steel tape.

August 14, 2014

Measuring Groundwater with Electric Tape

This video demonstrates how to measure water levels in wells using an electric tape.

August 13, 2014

Redington Stream Flow

This video shows the process of taking a stream flow measurement using a bridge crane and current meter.

https://pubs.usgs.gov/fs/2018/3032/fs20183032.pdf
April 1, 2014

Changes in Earth's Gravity Reveal Changes in Groundwater Storage

Did you know that changes in the amount of water in aquifers cause small changes in Earth’s gravitational field? When the amount of groundwater in an aquifer changes, either by recharge or by discharge to surface water or wells, the gravitational acceleration at the land surface also changes. In this photo, USGS Research Hydrologist Jeff Kennedy is making measurements of

...
Attribution: Water Resources
March 19, 2014

Minute 319 Pulse Flow

The minute 319 pulse flow experiment flood in the Lower Colorado River Delta allows scientists the opportunity to study many different aspects of a flood. With the help of CSAs we had the opportunity to actually back calculate the roughness value at the times that our technicians in Yuma measured discharge.

November 30, 2013

Gravity Recharge Monitoring

Time-lapse Microgravity Monitoring of Artificial Recharge
This video shows a series of clips collected in 2013 during the SAVSARP gravity experiment.

October 7, 2013

Animal Interactions at Wind Energy Facilities – Gray Fox

There were two documented gray fox visits at the burrows, making them the third most documented predator. Gray foxes are implicated predators of various life stages of desert tortoises, but it is difficult to catch them in the act. In this case, a gray fox approaches a burrow, and thoroughly investigates the burrow mouth. The fox develops an arch in its tail (slight

October 5, 2013

Animal Interactions at Wind Energy Facilities – Western Spotted Skunk

There was one documented skunk event captured on camera - the least documented predator. Here, a western spotted skunk is thoroughly investigating the burrow of one of the marked female tortoises in the study population. Western spotted skunks are known predators of turtle eggs. The skunk investigated the area within the burrow for a full minute before it appears outside

Filter Total Items: 192
USGS science for a changing world logo
December 19, 2011

The U.S. Geological Survey has named ecologist David Lytle the director of its ‪Southwest Biological Science Center, headquartered in Flagstaff.

“Rapid growth, changes in land use, and limited rainfall in the southwest region of the U.S. create challenges for natural resource management,” remarked USGS director Marcia McNutt. 

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December 1, 2011

More than 280 million acre-feet of groundwater has been withdrawn from the Mississippi embayment aquifer system between 1870-2007, according to a new water modeling tool developed by the U.S. Geological Survey.

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October 25, 2011

The sand dunes among which Navajos have eked out austere livings for generations are growing fast and becoming mobile as the climate changes, says U.S. Geological Survey geologist Dr. Margaret Hiza Redsteer, whose interviews with elders and historical research augment her decade-long research on Navajo Nation land.

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October 21, 2011

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. – The sand dunes among which Navajos have eked out austere livings for generations are growing fast and becoming mobile as the climate changes, says U.S. Geological Survey geologist Dr. Margaret Hiza Redsteer, whose interviews with elders and historical research augment her decade-long research on Navajo Nation land.

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October 12, 2011

A dust storm that rolled across the Arizona desert on Tuesday, October 4, 2011, effectively blinded motorists, leading to a large string of motor vehicle crashes, multiple injuries, and at least one death. 

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September 21, 2011

Over the last 70 years, groundwater in Arizona's alluvial basins was depleted by more than 74.5 million acre-feet, or approximately three times the maximum storage of Lake Powell. 

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August 25, 2011

To help Arizona communities prepare for flooding in the aftermath of severe wildfires, the U.S. Geological Survey has installed new stream gages as part of early flood-warning systems and developed maps to identify areas at possible risk of debris flows.

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June 17, 2011

As the largest fire in the history of the state of Arizona continues to burn, emergency managers and responders are using satellite data from a variety of instruments to plan both immediate firefighting containment strategies and mitigation efforts once the fires are out.

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June 9, 2011

The second largest fire in Arizona history, the Wallow Fire is graphically depicted by this Landsat image, taken June 7, which shows burning in the mountains of eastern Arizona near the border with New Mexico.

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May 13, 2011

Recent Landsat satellite data captured by the U.S. Geological Survey and NASA on May 10 show the major flooding of the Mississippi River around Memphis, Tenn. and along the state borders of Tennessee, Kentucky, Missouri, and Arkansas as seen from 438 miles above the Earth.

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April 12, 2011

A new groundwater model of the interconnected aquifers in central and northern Arizona was released today by the U.S. Geological Survey, following a multi-year development effort that involved the Arizona Department of Water Resources and regional cooperators.

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February 15, 2011

Forests should be managed according to their respective, specific fire ecology — not whole-scale fire suppression or one-size-fits-all plans — to optimize forest growth and stabilize carbon storage.