Unified Interior Regions

Region 5: Missouri Basin

USGS Science Centers in the Missouri Basin Region

For more information on what each center is doing in the Missouri Basin, please follow the links below!

Wyoming - Montana Water Science Center

Northern Rocky Mountain Science Center

Kansas Water Science Center

Nebraska Water Science Center

Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center

Dakota Water Science Center

Regions L2 Landing Page Tabs

Filter Total Items: 308
Slush in Yellowstone River at Billings required old-school AA meter
Date Published: April 28, 2018
Status: Active

Yellowstone River Basin Water-Quality Assessment

The Yellowstone River Basin (YELL) study-unit in Wyoming, Montana and North Dakota, is part of the U.S. Geological Survey's National Water-Quality Assessment (NAWQA) Program. The long-term goals of this program are to describe the status and trends in the quality of a large, representative part of the Nation's surface- and ground-water resources, and to provide a sound, scientific...

Tongue River Surface-Water-Quality Monitoring Network Site Map
Date Published: April 26, 2018
Status: Archived

Tongue River Surface-Water-Quality Monitoring Network

Coal-bed methane development is in the initial stages of exploration and production in the Tongue River watershed. Long-term monitoring is needed to provide information to evaluate any changes or trends in surface-water quality and support informed decisions about resource use and management. The goals of this monitoring program are to collect water-quality data and disseminate...

Assessment of Aquatic Communities in Northeastern Wyoming and Southeastern Montana Site Map
Date Published: April 26, 2018
Status: Archived

Assessment of Aquatic Communities in Northeastern Wyoming and Southeastern Montana

The Powder River Structural Basin (PRB) in northeastern Wyoming and southeastern Montana is an important source of energy resources for the United States. Resources developed from the basin include coal, oil, uranium, conventional natural gas, and within the last decade coal-bed natural gas (CBNG) which often is referred to as coal-bed methane. As of 2008, about 20,000 CBNG wells had been...

Diel Cycling of Trace Metals in Streams
Date Published: April 26, 2018
Status: Archived

Diel cycling of trace metals in streams

Historically, scientists have assumed that a properly collected water sample will provide an accurate assessment of constituent concentrations in a water body on a given day assuming constant hydrologic conditions.  However, an increasing body of evidence indicates that the concentration of many potentially toxic trace elements (such as arsenic, cadmium, copper, manganese, zinc) in streams can...

North Platte River
Date Published: March 28, 2018
Status: Active

Drought Conditions in Wyoming and Montana

The USGS monitors drought conditions at more than 300 streamgages across Wyoming and Montana. Low-flow conditions are expressed as percentiles comparing current (within the past few hours) instantaneous flow to historical daily mean flow for all days of the year.

Contacts: Kirk A Miller
Image: Little Missouri River
Date Published: March 27, 2018
Status: Active

Multi-century perspectives on current and future streamflow in the Missouri River Basin

The Missouri River system is the life-blood of the American Midwest providing water resources that drive agriculture, industry, hydroelectric power generation, and ecosystems. However, the Missouri River Basin (MRB) (Figure 1) is the only major river in the western U.S. for which hydrologic reconstructions from tree rings have not been generated in any systematic way. This knowledge gap is...

Contacts: Greg Pederson
Yellowstone streamflow statistics study area map
Date Published: March 27, 2018
Status: Archived

Streamflow Statistics for Unregulated and Regulated Conditions for Selected Locations on the Yellowstone, Tongue, Powder, and Bighorn Rivers, Montana

Major floods in 1996-1997 on the Yellowstone River intensified public debate over the effects of human activities on the Yellowstone River. The Yellowstone River Conservation District Council partnered with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to conduct a cumulative-effects study on the Yellowstone. For that study, the USGS calculated streamflow statistics for unregulated (no development) and...

Flint Creek
Date Published: March 26, 2018
Status: Active

Flooding and High-Flow Conditions in Wyoming and Montana

The USGS monitors flood and high-flow conditions at more than 300 streamgages across Montana and Wyoming.  Water level and flow information are used by the National Weather Service (NWS) to make accurate flood forecasts. High-flow conditions are expressed as percentiles comparing current (within the past few hours) instantaneous flow to historical daily mean flow for ...

Contacts: Kirk A Miller
Montana crest-stage gage network sites map
Date Published: March 21, 2018
Status: Active

Montana Crest-Stage Gage Network

The purpose of the crest-stage gage network is to inventory and monitor peak discharges throughout the state of Montana, with special emphasis on streams that may damage transportation infrastructure. Recorded data documenting peak streamflow at various sites within the state will be used by the Montana Department of Transportation to support assessments of culvert size, bridge construction,...

Estimated Nitrogen and Phosphorus Input to Fish Creek Watershed
Date Published: March 20, 2018
Status: Active

Geospatial Research and Development to Understand Hydrologic Processes

All natural phenomena have a spatial component. Remote sensing, GIS, and geostatistical methods can be used to evaluate the spatial components of hydrologic phenomena and understand characteristics, such as water quality, streamflow, and hydraulics.

Aerial photo of the prairie pothole region of North American
Date Published: March 15, 2018
Status: Active

Webinar: Projecting Climate Change Impacts on Wetland-Dependent Birds in the Prairie Pothole Region

View this webinar to learn how scientists are projecting the impacts of climate change on birds in the Prairie Pothole Region.

High Plains aquifer in South Dakota
Date Published: February 23, 2018
Status: Active

Groundwater-Flow Model for the High Plains Aquifer in South Dakota

Project Period: 2013-2018
Cooperators: Rosebud Sioux Tribe, Oglala Sioux Tribe
Project Chief: Kyle Davis

Contacts: Kyle W Davis
Filter Total Items: 96
October 26, 2016

The polygon (vector) feature class represents locatable mineral resource assessment tracts (tracts of land) associated with the Department of the Interior (DOI) Sagebrush Focal Areas (SFAs) in Montana, Wyoming and Utah, central Idaho, and the Oregon-Nevada-Idaho border area. The mineral-resources tracts are geographic areas that were assessed by the USGS and were determined

September 28, 2016

The point and polygon layers within this geodatabase represent locations of mineral occurrences, mines, mining and mineral districts and sites of active mineral exploration within or near the Department of the Interior (DOI) Sagebrush Focal Areas in Montana, Wyoming and Utah, central Idaho, and the Oregon-Nevada-Idaho border area. The data were compiled by the U.S. Geological Survey

Montana Fisheries O'Fallon Cr nr Mildred
September 5, 2016

These model output data are provided to accompany the forthcoming journal article Potential Effects of Climate Change on Streamflow for Seven Watersheds in Eastern and Central Montana.

August 4, 2016

These data are part of a larger USGS project to develop an updated geospatial database of mines, mineral deposits and mineral regions in the United States. Mine and prospect-related symbols, such as those used to represent prospect pits, mines, adits, dumps, tailings, etc., hereafter referred to as “mine” symbols or features, are currently being digitized on a st

July 29, 2016

In 2015, approximately 10 million acres of Federal lands across six western states were proposed for withdrawal from mineral entry by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) in order to conserve habitat critical for the greater sage-grouse. As a result, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) launched the Sagebrush Mineral-Resource Assessment (SaMiRA) project in late-2015 to provide BLM wit

Pytoplankton Data Map showing Cheney Reservoir near Cheney Kansas
July 6, 2016

This U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Data Release provides phytoplankton data collected from Cheney Reservoir, Kansas, during June 2001 through November 2015.

June 15, 2016

Maps of flood and high flow conditions within Kansas

June 15, 2016

WaterWatch displays maps, graphs, and tables describing real-time, recent, and past streamflow conditions for the United States, including flood and droughts. Real-time information generally is updated on an hourly basis.

June 15, 2016

WaterQualityWatch provides access to real time water-quality data collected in surface waters in Kansas, including streamflow, water temperature, specific conductance, pH, dissolved oxygen, turbidity, and nitrate.

June 15, 2016

Real-time, daily, peak-flow, field measurements, and statistics of current and historical data that describe stream levels, streamflow (discharge), reservoir and lake levels, surface-water quality, and rainfall in Kansas. Surface-water data are collected and stored as either discrete field-water-level measurements or as continuous time-series data from automated recorders.

May 24, 2016

From February 12 to March 8, 1981, EG and G Geometrics conducted an aeromagnetic survey in Montana for Anaconda Copper Company. A Piper Navajo aircraft was used to conducted the survey. The survey was flown along north-south flightlines spaced 660 feet at a nominal height of 450 feet above the terrain. Five uniformly spaced east-west tie-lines were also flown. During processing, the Interna

Structure datasets for the nation from The National Map
April 20, 2016

USGS data portray selected structures data, including the location and characteristics of manmade facilities. Characteristics consist of a structure's physical form (footprint), function, name, location, and detailed information about the structure. The types of structures collected are largely determined by the needs of the disaster planning and response and homeland security organizations.

Filter Total Items: 767
Satellite showing how fire scar is no longer present.
September 16, 2018

Cottonwood Fire, 2016

October 16, 2018, marks the two-year anniversary of the Cottonwood Fire in western South Dakota. The fire consumed a large swath of grassland near the community of Wall and just north of Badlands National Park.

Hallowat Creek abv Kletomus Ck, nr Olney (12355342) streamgage
September 11, 2018

Hallowat Creek abv Kletomus Ck, nr Olney (12355342) streamgage

Hallowat Creek abv Kletomus Ck, nr Olney (12355342) streamgage

Hallowat Creek abv Kletomus Ck, nr Olney (12355342) streamgage
September 11, 2018

Hallowat Creek abv Kletomus Ck, nr Olney (12355342) streamgage

Hallowat Creek abv Kletomus Ck, nr Olney (12355342) streamgage

September 11, 2018

An Introduction to Suomi-NPP NASA VIIRS Data Products

This video provides an introduction to new land data products from the joint National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite (VIIRS) satellite sensor aboard the Suomi-National Polar-orbiting Partnership (S-NPP). The Suomi-NPP NASA VIIRS data products discussed in the

Big Creek below Lookout Creek, near Apgar (site 12355347)
September 10, 2018

Big Creek below Lookout Creek, near Apgar (site 12355347)

Big Creek below Lookout Creek, near Apgar (site 12355347)

Satellite image showing how there is damage due to beetles in the Black Hills.
September 8, 2018

Beetle Damage in the Black Hills

Mountain pine beetles are about the size of a grain of rice, so of course we can’t see them from space in satellite images. What is visible is what the beetles can do to a pine forest. The washed-out pink color indicates large areas of standing dead or damaged trees.

September 7, 2018

Image of the Week - Lake Thompson

Many lakes in South Dakota’s Prairie Pothole Region are expanding. 

Lake Thompson in eastern South Dakota is one that has displayed remarkable change in recent decades.

Each week, the Earth Resources Observation and Science (EROS) Center highlights a new satellite image(s) featuring striking changes in the Earth's surface. Our images come from locations

August 21, 2018

Image of the Week - One Year Ago: Eclipse Darkens Nebraska

A total solar eclipse darkened the skies over the United States on Aug. 21, 2017.

Fourteen states were in the path of totality, a 70-mile-wide band under which the moon fully blocked the sun for just under three minutes.

Oshkosh, a town in the Nebraska Sandhills was a prime location for viewing the eclipse. This Landsat 7 image shows the town at 11:33 a.m.

Satellite image showing the eclipse.
August 21, 2018

One Year Ago: Total Eclipse Darkens Nebraska Sandhills

A total solar eclipse darkened the skies over the United States on Aug. 21, 2017.

Oshkosh, a town in the Nebraska Sandhills, was a prime location for viewing the eclipse. This Landsat 7 image shows the town at 11:33 a.m. local time on Aug. 18, 2016, a year before the total eclipse.

August 20, 2018


This short video provides a quick look at the Application for Extracting and Exploring Analysis Ready Samples (AppEEARS). AppEEARS provides a simple and efficient way to subset, transform, and visualize geospatial data distributed from a variety of federal archives. AppEEARS can be accessed by visiting https

Satellite image showing the lake size from 1972 until present.
August 11, 2018

Lake Thompson, South Dakota

Many lakes in South Dakota's Prairie Pothole Region are expanding. Lake Thompson in eastern South Dakota is one that has displayed remarkable change in recent decades.

July 19, 2018

Drilling an Ice Core

Researchers start drilling an ice core in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem.

Filter Total Items: 276
July 13, 2015

Wetland channels constructed in downtown Rapid City, South Dakota, effectively reduced many pollutants in stormwater runoff, according to a recent U.S. Geological Survey report.

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.

May 26, 2015

Aldo V. (Skip) Vecchia, a U.S. Geological Survey scientist, will be awarded the 2015 Jeanne E. Griffith Mentoring Award for his outstanding efforts mentoring junior staff.

Image: Road Overflow at White River Near Oglala
May 18, 2015

U.S. Geological Survey streamflow gages are recording major flooding on the White River and Cheyenne River as the result of recent snow and rain.  Field crews are measuring streamflow on the White River and the Cheyenne River and minor flooding at various sites throughout western South Dakota

Image: Bull Trout and Westslope Cutthroat Trout
May 12, 2015

Scientists have discovered that the diversity of a threatened native trout species will likely decrease due to future climate change. 

collage of scientists conducting science related to each mission are
May 12, 2015

The latest coal resource assessment of the Powder River Basin showcases the newly revised USGS’ assessment methodology, which, for the first time, includes an estimate of the reserve base for the entire basin.

May 5, 2015

Groundwater quality has not substantially changed since 2007 recharge activities began in the Equus Beds aquifer in Kansas, according to a new study by the U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with the City of Wichita, Kansas.

March 24, 2015

Media and the public are invited to attend a free meeting and field trips about South Dakota water issues on April 15 and 16 in Rapid City.

Image: Invasives Williston
March 23, 2015

The presence of non-native plant species is significantly greater adjacent to oil well pads than in non-developed areas of the Williston Basin, according to a first-of-its-kind U.S. Geological Survey study for this area.

February 25, 2015

A new interactive online tool to improve flood warnings and emergency management is now available in selected parts of Johnson County, Kansas, and Jackson County, Missouri. 

Filter Total Items: 191