Unified Interior Regions

Washington

Washington's Puget Sound is a complex ecosystem directly adjacent to a robust metropolitan area that scientists from the USGS Western Fisheries Research Center study. Recent surveys have looked at juvenile surf smelt, a key link in the food web that are consumed by predators such as salmon, orca, and many marine birds. 

Western Fisheries Research Center

Western Fisheries Research Center

Research at the WFRC focuses on the environmental factors responsible for the creation, maintenance, and regulation of fish populations including their interactions in aquatic communities and ecosystems. 

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Washington Water Science Center

Washington Water Science Center

The Water Science Center's mission is to collect, analyze and disseminate the impartial hydrologic data and information needed to wisely manage water resources for the people of the United States and the State of Washington.

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States L2 Landing Page Tabs

Filter Total Items: 265
Date published: January 1, 2005
Status: Completed

PNW Tribal Water Resources Assessment

Native American Tribes in western Washington need comprehensive water data in order to protect, restore, and manage their water resources. To understand the factors affecting water quality and quantity on a regional scale, the data must be collected and managed through a systematic, coordinated approach.

To help the Northwest Indian Fisheries Commission (NWIFC) to design a coordinated...

Date published: January 13, 2004
Status: Completed

Colville River Basin

The Colville River Basin is a 1,007-square-mile area located in Stevens County in northeastern Washington. Following the guidelines of Washington's Watershed Management Act of 1998, water-resource planning in the basin is being conducted within a Water Resources Inventory Area (WRIA).

Local citizens representing a wide range of water resource interest groups, together with local, state...

Contacts: Sue Kahle
Date published: January 12, 2004
Status: Completed

Water Resources of the Tulalip Indian Reservation

Future increases in population and development of the Tulalip Indian Reservation and neighboring areas would lead to increased pumping of ground water both on and off the Reservation. Increased pumpage in coastal and inland wells may decrease baseflows of streams and could affect fish-rearing operations in the Tulalip Creek watershed.

Contacts: Lonna M Frans
Date published: January 11, 2004
Status: Completed

Puyallup Streamflow Trends

Covering about 28 square miles along the lower reaches of the Puyallup River in Pierce County, the Puyallup Indian Reservation is located in the lowest part of the basin. For this reason, all water-related activities in the basin affect the Puyallup Tribe of Indians' water resources and fish.

Because of their important links to the Puyallup River, the Puyallup Tribe of Indians want to...

Contacts: Mark Mastin
Date published: January 10, 2004
Status: Completed

Satus Creek

After irrigating croplands, water returned to creeks and rivers in the Yakima River Basin can contribute compounds and materials that affect the quality of habitat. On lands of the Yakama Nation, Satus Creek receives water from the North Drain that brings with it sediment, nutrients, bacteria, and pesticides, degrading the aquatic habitat and posing a barrier for endangered fish in the creek...

Date published: January 8, 2004
Status: Completed

Urban Pesticide

Salmon and other aquatic life in the Puget Sound Basin need a healthy habitat to survive and to recover from historical declines, both in urban and agricultural settings. Yet, USGS studies in 1997 and 1998 found that more pesticides were found in urban streams than in agricultural streams, and that 9 out of 10 samples from urban streams had concentrations of insecticides exceeding levels...

Contacts: Lonna M Frans
Date published: January 7, 2004
Status: Completed

Puget Parks

Snow and ice are major sources of water for plants and animals in the parks and forests of the Puget Sound Basin, including Olympic, North Cascades, and Mt. Rainier National Parks, and Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie and Olympic National Forests. In the North Cascades National Park alone, there are more than 300 small glaciers that feed 245 mountain lakes and a myriad of streams, wetlands, and aquifers....

Date published: January 6, 2004
Status: Completed

GW/SW Interactions

Knowing the interactions of ground water and river water can help reduce the fluctuation of water supplies in alluvial (sediment-deposit) river basins.

To develop general principles of these interactions in order to identify and analyze them, the USGS is reviewing the results of the numerous studies of these interactions in Pacific Northwest basins. The review will describe common...

Date published: January 6, 2004
Status: Completed

Columbia Basin GWMA

More than 80 percent of drinking water in the mid-Columbia Basin comes from ground water. In Adams, Franklin, and Grant Counties, nitrate concentrations in water from about 20 percent of all drinking-water wells exceed the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency maximum contaminant level for nitrate. The three counties jointly formed the Columbia Basin Ground Water Management Area (GWMA) in...

Contacts: Lonna M Frans
Date published: January 5, 2004
Status: Completed

Geomorphic Mapping, Dosewallips River

Located on the east side of the Olympic Peninsula in Washington State, the Dosewallips River drains about 100 square miles into Dabob Bay, an arm of Hood Canal. The Dosewallips is home to two species listed under the federal Endangered Species Act: Puget Sound chinook and Hood Canal summer chum.

To help the Port Gamble S'Klallam tribe protect and enhance the aquatic habitat of the...

Contacts: Joseph Jones
Date published: January 4, 2004
Status: Completed

GW Recharge

Hydrologists increasingly rely on computer watershed models to estimate groundwater recharge from precipitation on a regional scale. The model parameters used in simulations of recharge are various climatic, hydrologic, and physical characteristics of a watershed or stream basin. To date, the watershed models have not been evaluated to determine which model parameters are the dominant controls...

Date published: January 3, 2004
Status: Completed

Lake Whatcom

Lake Whatcom, a large, natural lake in Whatcom County, is a source of drinking water for about 86,000 in the Bellingham area and a place for recreation. Elevated levels of mercury have been found in fish and sediment sampled from the lake. Possible sources of the mercury include atmospheric deposition, tributary discharges, landfills, dumpsites, and local mining operations.

To serve the...

Filter Total Items: 747
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Year Published: 2008

Decreased mortality of lake michigan chinook salmon after bacterial kidney disease challenge: Evidence for pathogen-driven selection?

In the late 1960s, Chinook salmon Oncorhynchus tshawytscha from the Green River, Washington, were successfully introduced into Lake Michigan. During spring from1988 to 1992, large fish die-offs affecting Chinook salmon occurred in the lake. Multiple ecological factors probably contributed to the severity of the fish kills, but the only disease...

Purcell, M.K.; Murray, A.L.; Elz, A.; Park, L.K.; Marcquenski, S.V.; Winton, J.R.; Alcorn, S.W.; Pascho, R.J.; Elliott, D.G.
Decreased mortality of lake michigan chinook salmon after bacterial kidney disease challenge: Evidence for pathogen-driven selection?; 2008; Article; Journal; Journal of Aquatic Animal Health; Purcell, M. K.; Murray, A. L.; Elz, A.; Park, L. K.; Marcquenski, S. V.; Winton, J. R.; Alcorn, S. W.; Pascho, R. J.; Elliott, D. G.

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Year Published: 2008

Fish assemblage, density, and growth in lateral habitats within natural and regulated sections of Washington's Elwha River prior to dam removal

We characterized seasonal fish assemblage, relative density, and growth in river margins above and between two Elwha River dams scheduled for removal. Fish assemblage and relative density differed in the lateral habitats of the middle-regulated and upper-unregulated sections of the Elwha River. Rainbow trout was the numerically dominant salmonid...

Connolly, P.J.; Brenkman, S.J.
Fish assemblage, density, and growth in lateral habitats within natural and regulated sections of Washington's Elwha River prior to dam removal; 2008; Article; Journal; Northwest Science; Connolly, P. J.; Brenkman, S. J.

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Year Published: 2008

Influence of dams on river-floodplain dynamics in the Elwha River, Washington

The Elwha dam removal project presents an ideal opportunity to study how historic reduction and subsequent restoration of sediment supply alter river-floodplain dynamics in a large, forested river floodplain. We used remote sensing and onsite data collection to establish a historical record of floodplain dynamics and a baseline of current...

Kloehn, K.K.; Beechie, T.J.; Morley, S.A.; Coe, H.J.; Duda, J.J.
Influence of dams on river-floodplain dynamics in the Elwha River, Washington; 2008; Article; Journal; Northwest Science; Kloehn, K. K.; Beechie, T. J.; Morley, S. A.; Coe, H. J.; Duda, J. J.

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Year Published: 2008

Lower Methow tributaries intensive effectiveness monitoring study. Interim report

Actions have been taken to replace diversion dams in lower Beaver Creek with a series of rock vortex weirs. Some of these diversion dams have been in place for over 100 years, and they have impaired or completely blocked upstream migration of fish. Three diversion dams were replaced in 2003 (Lower Stokes, Thurlow Transfer, and Upper Stokes), and a...

Martens, Kyle D.; Connolly, Patrick J.

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Year Published: 2008

Modeling rainfall conditions for shallow landsliding in Seattle, Washington

We describe the results from an application of a distributed, transient infiltration–slope-stability model for an 18 km2 area of southwestern Seattle, Washington, USA. The model (TRIGRS) combines an infinite slope-stability calculation and an analytic, one-dimensional solution for pore-pressure diffusion in a soil layer of finite...

Godt, Jonathan W.; Schulz, William H.; Baum, Rex L.; Savage, William Z.
Modeling rainfall conditions for shallow landsliding in Seattle, Washington; 2008; Article; Book; Landslides and engineering geology of the Seattle, Washington, area; Godt, Jonathan W.; Schulz, William H.; Baum, Rex L.; Savage, William Z.

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Year Published: 2008

Predicting recolonization patterns and interactions between potamodromous and anadromous salmonids in response to dam removal in the Elwha River, Washington State, USA

The restoration of salmonids in the Elwha River following dam removal will cause interactions between anadromous and potamodromous forms as recolonization occurs in upstream and downstream directions. Anadromous salmonids are expected to recolonize historic habitats, and rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) and bull trout (Salvelinus confluentus)...

Brenkman, S.J.; Pess, G.R.; Torgersen, C.E.; Kloehn, K.K.; Duda, J.J.; Corbett, S.C.
Predicting recolonization patterns and interactions between potamodromous and anadromous salmonids in response to dam removal in the Elwha River, Washington State, USA; 2008; Article; Journal; Northwest Science; Brenkman, S. J.; Pess, G. R.; Torgersen, C. E.; Kloehn, K. K.; Duda, J. J.; Corbett, S. C.

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Year Published: 2007

Pre-Restoration Habitat Use by Chinook Salmon in the Nisqually Estuary Using Otolith Analysis

INTRODUCTION The Nisqually Fall Chinook population is one of 27 stocks in the Puget Sound evolutionarily significant unit listed as threatened under the federal Endangered Species Act. The preservation of the Nisqually delta ecosystem coupled with extensive restoration of approximately 1,000 acres of diked estuarine habitat is identified as the...

Lind-Null, Angela; Larsen, Kimberly; Reisenbichler, Reginald
Pre-Restoration Habitat Use by Chinook Salmon in the Nisqually Estuary Using Otolith Analysis; 2007; OFR; 2008-1021; Lind-Null, Angela; Larsen, Kimberly; Reisenbichler, Reginald

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Year Published: 2007

Wind River Watershed Restoration: Annual report April 2006 to March 2007

This report summarizes work completed by U.S. Geological Survey’s Columbia River Research Laboratory (USGS-CRRL) in the Wind River subbasin during the period April 2006 through March 2007 under Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) contract 26922. During this period, we collected temperature, flow, and habitat data to characterize physical habitat...

Connolly, Patrick J.; Jezorek, Ian G.; Munz, Carrie S.

Filter Total Items: 865
August 5, 2015

D2 East Transect – 2015

Permanent Site: D2 East Transect; Depth: 12.1 Meters (39.8 Feet); Distance from river mouth: 0.3 Kilometers (0.2 Miles); Pre/Post Dam Removal: 4 years post-dam removal; Lat/Long: 48.15233001,-123.56829403; Site Description: This site is right off the mouth of the river. Substrate is mainly gravel. This year lots of dead clam shells (0:40, 1:03 seconds) are scattered along

Moon snails
August 5, 2015

Moon snails

Moon snails - Scuba divers from the U.S. Geological Survey’s Western Fisheries Research Center, Washington Sea Grant, EPA and the Lower Elwha Klallam Tribe collected data and images from a long-term study of the Elwha River dam removals and the resulting effects on the nearshore ecosystem.

Location: USGS, Western Fisheries Research

...
August 5, 2015

D2 West Transect – 2015

Permanent Site: D2 West Transect; Depth: 12.7 Meters (41.7 Feet); Distance from river mouth: 0.3 Kilometers (0.2 Miles); Pre/Post Dam Removal: 4 years post-dam removal; Lat/Long: 48.15233001,-123.56896603; Site Description: This site is right off the mouth of the river. Substrate is mainly gravel and cobble. This year lots of dead clam shells (0:18, 0:32 seconds) are

July 25, 2015

J1 East Transect – 2015

Permanent Site: J1 East Transect; Depth: 9.4 Meters (30.8 Feet); Distance from river mouth: 6.7 Kilometers (4.1 Miles) east; Pre/Post Dam Removal: 4 years post-dam removal; Lat/Long: 48.13607725,-123.47935008; Site Description: This site is medium depth. Substrates is mainly a gravel/sand mixture. Seaweed density has increased. Seven species of brown seaweed were recorded

July 25, 2015

J1 West Transect – 2015

Permanent Site: J1 West Transect; Depth: 9.2 Meters (30.2 Feet); Distance from river mouth: 6.6 Kilometers (4.1 Miles) east; Pre/Post Dam Removal: 4 years post-dam removal; Lat/Long: 48.13607725,-123.48002186; Site Description: Visibility was bad on this date and video is of poor quality. This site is medium depth. Substrates is mainly a gravel/sand mixture with some

July 24, 2015

H2 East Transect – 2015

Permanent Site: H2 East Transect; Depth: 8.1 Meters (26.7 Feet); Distance from river mouth: 2.6 Kilometers (1.6 Miles) east; Pre/Post Dam Removal: 4 years post-dam removal; Lat/Long: 48.15008216,-123.53210661; Site Description: This site is medium to shallow depth. Substrate is mainly gravel with some sand, cobble and an occasional boulder and has not changed since dam

July 24, 2015

4SP1 East Transect – 2015

Permanent Site: 4SP1 - East Transect; Depth: 5.5 Meters (17.9 Feet); Distance from river mouth: 0.8 Kilometers (0.5 Miles) East; Pre/Post Dam Removal: 4 years post-dam removal; Lat/Long: 48.15257, -123.556704; Site Description: The site has converted from gravel/cobble substrate to all sand. Seaweed is completely absent. 
 

July 24, 2015

F1 West Transect – 2015

Permanent Site: F1 West Transect; Depth: 6.6 Meters (21.7 Feet); Distance from river mouth: 1.3 Kilometers (0.8 Miles) east; Pre/Post Dam Removal: 4 years post-dam removal; Lat/Long: 48.15292999, -123.55078602; Site Description: The video is of poor quality. This is a shallow site. Substrate is still mainly sand with an occasional cobble. Woody debris is present (0:39 

July 24, 2015

H2 West Transect – 2015

Permanent Site: H2 West Transect; Depth: 7.7 Meters (25.2 Feet); Distance from river mouth: 2.6 Kilometers (1.6 Miles) east; Pre/Post Dam Removal: 4 years post-dam removal; Lat/Long: 48.15008216,-123.53277857; Site Description: This site is medium to shallow depth. Substrate is mainly gravel with some sand, cobble and an occasional boulder and has not changed since dam

July 24, 2015

F1 East Transect – 2015 - YouTube

Permanent Site: F1 East Transect; Depth: 6.3 Meters (20.7 Feet); Distance from river mouth: 1.3 Kilometers (0.8 Miles) east; Pre/Post Dam Removal: 4 years post-dam removal; Lat/Long: 48.15292999, -123.55011402; Site Description: This is a shallow site. Substrate is still mainly sand but some cobble is present (2:15, 2:27 seconds). The brown acid kelp Desmarestia spp. has

July 22, 2015

C1 West Transect – 2015

Permanent Site: C1 West Transect; Depth: Meters (Feet); Distance from river mouth: 0.7 Kilometers (0.4 Miles); Pre/Post Dam Removal: 4 years post-dam removal; Lat/Long: 48.14525225,-123.57361291; Site Description: Substrate is entirely sand. All seaweeds are absent. Woody debris is present (0:06 seconds). Invertebrates are scarce and are almost exclusively the ornate

July 22, 2015

E2 East Transect – 2015

Permanent Site: E2 East Transect; Depth: 14.8 Meters (48.5 Feet); Distance from river mouth: 0.9 Kilometers (0.5 Miles) east; Pre/Post Dam Removal: 4 years post-dam removal; Lat/Long: 48.15653002,-123.56130401; Site Description: This is one of our deeper sites. Substrate is mainly gravel/cobble with an occasional boulder. A lot of shell debris was present this year (1:12 

Filter Total Items: 377
USGS science for a changing world logo
May 18, 2011

Scientists at the U.S. Geological Survey’s Cascades Volcano Observatory rediscovered an old cache of satellite images captured on May 18-19, 1980, and linked them together to create a time-lapse movie of Mount St. Helens' eruptive ash cloud movement across the western United States.

USGS science for a changing world logo
May 16, 2011

May is Volcano Awareness Month in Washington state. As proclaimed by Gov. Chris Gregoire, scientists, safety officials and educators are encouraged to discuss the hazards of volcanoes with their communities. 

USGS science for a changing world logo
May 16, 2011

Marine biologists are gathering in Alaska this week to kick off a three-week expedition studying sea otters, as part of a joint U.S.-Canadian project to investigate the ecological health of the Pacific coastline.

The "Pacific Nearshore Project" is a multinational, multiagency project investigating sea otters as health indicators of coastal waters and marine resources from California nort

USGS science for a changing world logo
April 11, 2011

Over sixty U.S. Geological Survey scientists will present research results used by decision makers in the Pacific Northwest and the rest of the world at the Association of American Geographers Annual Meeting, April 12-16 in Seattle, Wash. USGS scientists use remote sensing, terrestrial lidar, and analysis of land-cover and land-use change to better understand the global impacts of climate change,

USGS science for a changing world logo
March 4, 2011

A new carbon model allows scientists to estimate sources and losses of organic carbon in surface waters in the United States. Study results indicate that streams act as both sources and sinks for organic carbon. 

USGS
December 6, 2010

CORVALLIS, Ore. — The U.S. Geological Survey has named Carol Schuler director of its Forest and Rangeland Ecosystem Science Center. 

USGS
December 2, 2010

TACOMA, Wash. — Increasing amounts of sediment in rivers draining from Mt. Rainier could greatly increase the flooding potential in the Puget Lowland, according to a report published by the U.S. Geological Survey.

USGS
August 25, 2010

TACOMA, Wash. — Washington’s only “benchmark” glacier continues to lose mass as a result of changes in climate, according to a report by the U.S. Geological Survey.

USGS
June 21, 2010

Washington and Oregon residents should not be alarmed to witness a low-flying aircraft over parts of southern Washington and northern Oregon in late-June through July. 

USGS
June 7, 2010

Groundwater levels of the Columbia Plateau have declined over the past 25 years in about 80 percent of the nearly 500 wells measured, according to a report published by the U.S. Geological Survey.

USGS
May 14, 2010

Vancouver, Wash. — On Sunday, May 18, 1980 at 8:32 a.m., the bulging north flank of Mount St. Helens slid away in a massive landslide -- the largest in recorded history.  Seconds later, the uncorked volcano exploded and blasted rocks northward across forest ridges and valleys, destroying everything in its path within minutes.

USGS
May 4, 2010

Volcano Kids activity room, new volcano poster, and memory book highlight this year's event.

Vancouver, Wash. — How would you like to have your picture taken in the crater of Mount St. Helens? Visitors to the Cascades Volcano Observatory during its annual open house this Saturday will be able to do just that, courtesy of a “green-screen”, and take advantage of many other...

Western Fisheries Research Center

Western Fisheries Research Center

Research at the WFRC focuses on the environmental factors responsible for the creation, maintenance, and regulation of fish populations including their interactions in aquatic communities and ecosystems. 

Go to Center

Washington Water Science Center

Washington Water Science Center

The Water Science Center's mission is to collect, analyze and disseminate the impartial hydrologic data and information needed to wisely manage water resources for the people of the United States and the State of Washington.

Go to Center