Unified Interior Regions


Our biologists work with Preserve staff and volunteers to collect, examine, identify, measure, and count fish populations. Our sampling efforts have shown a healthy rainbow and brown trout population.

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States L2 Landing Page Tabs

Filter Total Items: 99
Date published: August 18, 2017
Status: Completed

Monitoring Mercury in Fish Tissue, Boise and Snake Rivers and Brownlee Reservoir

To meet National Pollution Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permitting requirements, the City of Boise will be responsible for collecting fish tissue samples for mercury analysis upstream of and downstream of their wastewater treatment facilities discharging to the lower Boise and Snake Rivers.

Mercury is a naturally occurring element that ultimately makes its way into aquatic...

Date published: August 8, 2017
Status: Completed

Wood River Valley Aquatic Biology and Habitat Assessment

Blaine County’s population nearly quadrupled from about 5,700 to 22,000 people between 1970 and 2010. Residents and resource managers of the Wood River Valley of south-central Idaho are concerned about the potential effects that population growth and the expected increased demand for water might have on the quantity and quality of the valley’s ground and surface waters. Increased water use has...

Date published: August 4, 2017
Status: Active

Selenium in the Blackfoot River Watershed

The upper Blackfoot River receives runoff from 12 large phosphate mines. Shale waste rock that is a byproduct of mining is highly enriched in naturally occurring selenium. At optimal concentrations, selenium can be a positive nutrient and antioxidant in mammals and fish. At elevated concentrations, however, it can damage fish and animal immune systems. As early as 1996, livestock deaths...

Date published: August 4, 2017
Status: Completed

Identifying Bull Trout Migration in the Upper Boise River Basin

In 1999, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) listed the bull trout (Salvelinus confluentus) as a threatened species. In 2010, the FWS designated critical habitat for the bull trout, including the upper Boise River basin. The Bureau of Reclamation (Reclamation) operates three reservoirs on the upper Boise River for irrigation and flood control. Reclamation and FWS have a need to understand...

Date published: August 4, 2017
Status: Active

Streamflow Evaluation for Water Right Claims for Wild and Scenic Rivers, Owyhee Canyonlands Wilderness

Several river segments in the Owyhee Canyonlands Wilderness have been designated as “Wild and Scenic” under the Omnibus Public Lands Management Act of 2009. This designation is intended to protect the “outstanding remarkable values” (ORVs) in this area—specifically fish and wildlife habitat, scenic and geological features, and recreational opportunities.

The Bureau of Land Management (...

Contacts: Ryan L Fosness
Date published: August 4, 2017
Status: Active

Mercury Cycling in the Hells Canyon Complex

The Hells Canyon Complex (HCC) is the largest privately owned hydroelectric power complex in the United States. Upstream are millions of acres of irrigated agricultural lands and Idaho’s largest metropolitan area clustered around the state capital Boise. Downstream lie confluences with the Salmon and Clearwater Rivers, critical habitat for threatened bull trout and fall chinook salmon.


Date published: August 4, 2017
Status: Active

Trace Elements in Streams Near the Stibnite Mining Area

Mining of stibnite (antimony sulfide), tungsten, gold, silver, and mercury near the town of Stibnite in central Idaho has left a legacy of trace element contamination in the East Fork of the South Fork of the Salmon River (EFSFSR) and its tributaries. Concentrations of arsenic, antimony, and mercury frequently exceed human health criteria and may impact threatened or endangered salmonid...

Date published: May 26, 2017
Status: Active

Coeur d'Alene Basin Water-Quality Monitoring

We partner with the EPA to conduct long-term water-quality and streamflow monitoring in the Coeur d’Alene River Basin, which has been widely impacted by historic mining activities.

Date published: April 13, 2017

Integrated Wildland Fire Science

The size and number of large wildland fires in the western United States have grown dramatically over the past decade, with a contingent rise in damages and suppression costs. This trend will likely continue with further growth of the wildland urban interface (WUI) into fire prone ecosystems, hazardous fuel conditions from decades of fire suppression, and a potentially increasing effect from...

Date published: April 12, 2017
Status: Active

Land Use and Climate Change Team

We are a research team focusing on understanding the rates, causes, and consequences of land change across a range of geographic and temporal scales. Our emphasis is on developing alternative future projections and quantifying the impact on environmental systems, in particular, the role of land-use change on ecosystem carbon dynamics.

We are interested in how land-use and climate...

Date published: April 11, 2017
Status: Active

Hydrogeologic and Geothermal Conditions of the Northwest Volcanic Aquifers

Although sparsely populated, this area in southeastern Oregon, northeastern California, northwestern Nevada, and southeastern Idaho has high geothermal heat flow that may be used to generate large amounts of electricity.

Date published: March 9, 2017
Status: Active

Estimating Seepage Rates of Streams, Ponds, and Lakes at the Camas National Wildlife Refuge

The Camas National Wildlife Refuge provides essential resting, feeding, and nesting habitat for waterfowl including migratory birds. A variety of other animals, large and small, are found there, too. Since the refuge was established in 1937, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) has been responsible for managing this vital resource.

Traditionally, Camas Creek and groundwater inflow...

Contacts: David M Evetts
Filter Total Items: 134
March 7, 2018

Yellowstone Volcano Observatory Scientists Host Facebook Live Event

USGS–Yellowstone Volcano Observatory Scientist-in-Charge Mike Poland, Deputy Scientist-in-Charge Wendy Stovall, and Chief Seismologist Jamie Farrell answer questions from the public about Yellowstone earthquakes, deformation, eruptive history, the magmatic plumbing system, and more, during a USGS Volcanoes Facebook Live event recorded on March 7, 2018, at the USGS–Cascades

Mowed linear fuel breaks along both sides of a gravel road
January 26, 2018

Mowed linear fuel breaks along both sides of a gravel road in Idaho

An example of mowed linear fuel breaks along both sides of a gravel road in southwestern Idaho

USGS hydrologist measuring groundwater level in a well
November 1, 2017

USGS hydrologist measuring groundwater level in a well

After receiving permission from the homeowner, a U.S. Geological Survey hydrologist measures the water level in a well.

USGS scientists collect a sediment sample from Brownlee Reservoir
September 28, 2017

USGS scientists collect a sediment sample from Brownlee Reservoir

Scientists from the U.S. Geological Survey and Idaho Power Company collected water, sediment, and biological samples from Brownlee Reservoir as part of an ongoing, cooperative study of mercury cycling in the Hells Canyon complex of reservoirs along the Snake River bordering Idaho and Oregon. The Idaho Department of Environmental Quality is also a partner in the study. 

Photo of a GPS device on the banks of the Kootenai River
September 27, 2017

GPS device on Kootenai River

A GPS device on the banks of the Kootenai River of northern Idaho, where USGS EROS researchers conducted topobathymetry surveys in 2017 using LiDAR and sonar equipment.A GPS device on the banks of the Kootenai River of northern Idaho, where USGS EROS researchers conducted topobathymetry surveys in 2017 using LiDAR and sonar equipment.

Color photo of boat on the Kootenai River
September 27, 2017

Boat on Kootenai River

A boat moves off the banks of the Kootenai River in northern Idaho. Researchers from USGS EROS conducted topobathymetry surveys of the river in 2017 using LiDAR and sonar equipment.

Color photo of Kootenai River, from a boat
September 26, 2017

Kootenai River from boat

A view of the Kootenai River in northern Idaho from a boat. USGS EROS researchers conducted topobathymetry surveys of the river in 2017 using LiDAR and sonar equipment.

July 5, 2017

Return of the Yellowstone Grizzly Bear

Yellowstone grizzly bears inhabit federal, state, tribal, and private lands, and long-term research requires careful coordination across governmental levels. The Interagency Grizzly Bear Study Team (IGBST) is an interdisciplinary group of scientists and biologists responsible for long-term monitoring and research efforts on grizzly bears in the Greater Yellowstone

USGS hydrologic technician collecting data with ADCP from a cableway
March 9, 2017

USGS hydrologic technician collecting data with ADCP from a cableway

USGS hydrologic technician Michael Allen collects streamflow data from the Boise River at streamgage station 13206000 using an acoustic Doppler current profiler.

Filter Total Items: 138
September 22, 2015

A comprehensive report published today by the U.S. Geological Survey provides new knowledge and tools to aid in the management of critical Columbia Plateau resources while coping with declines in groundwater levels and the uncertainties of climate change.

September 15, 2015

A new and highly effective approach to control a viral pathogen that affects threatened steelhead trout in an Idaho hatchery is documented in a new paper.

September 9, 2015

Climate change has a direct and evident impact on Native American tribal communities by disrupting local economies and traditional cultures. Members of tribes from across the United States will convene at the University of Idaho’s McCall Field Campus in June 2016 for the first-ever National Tribal Climate Boot Camp.

Image: USGS Documents 2015 Drought
September 8, 2015

U.S. Geological Survey hydrologic technicians are currently taking measurements from hundreds of streams and rivers across the western United States as part of a low flow study.

collage of scientists conducting science related to each mission are
September 8, 2015

BOISE, Idaho — The network of greater sage-grouse priority areas is a highly centralized system of conservation reserves. The largest priority areas likely can support sage-grouse populations within their boundaries, but smaller priority areas will need to rely on their neighbors in the surrounding network to sustain local populations, according to new research by the U.S. Geological Survey.

August 4, 2015

A new study now underway by the U.S. Geological Survey is exploring the groundwater resources and geothermal energy potential in drought-stricken areas of eastern Oregon and nearby parts of California, Idaho and Nevada.

Image: Measuring Water Levels in the Eastern Snake River Plain Aquifer
June 29, 2015

Last summer, water levels reached all-time lows in 177 wells used to monitor the eastern Snake River Plain aquifer at and near the Idaho National Laboratory.

Image: USGS Idaho Water Science Director Dr. Kyle Blasch
June 15, 2015

Dr. Kyle W. Blasch begins work today as the Director of the U.S. Geological Survey’s Idaho Water Science Center, headquartered in Boise.

Image: A Rainbow Trout Rests Among Substrate in Panther Creek
April 20, 2015

Once devoid of fish and most other aquatic life, central Idaho’s Panther Creek has mostly recovered from years of mining-related pollution according to a long-term study by scientists from the U.S. Geological Survey published in the journal Elementa.

Image: Female Golden Eagle with GPS-GSM Transmitter
April 8, 2015

Golden eagles in the Mojave Desert travel farther, to different areas, and at different times of the year than previously understood, according to research by the U.S. Geological Survey and partners from other federal agencies, academia and the private sector.