Skip to main content


James E Lyons

Research Ecologist

Eastern Ecological Science Center

Office Phone: 301-497-5567
ORCID: 0000-0002-9810-8751

PTX - Gabrielson Office
12100 Beech Forest Road
Laurel , MD 20708

Supervisor: Julien Martin
Shorebird populations are in serious decline worldwide. Effective management of highly migratory shorebirds requires identifying and protecting crucial networks of connected staging and stopover sites between breeding and wintering areas that support vital habitat resources. Coastal beaches and estuaries are among the world’s most productive ecosystems and are disproportionately important to shorebirds. These ecosystems face myriad threats, including climate change and increasingly strong storms, development, human disturbance, and invasive species. Habitat loss to sea level rise and human development is a particularly dire threat. For managers to reverse population declines, it is essential to prioritize crucial...
Categories: Data
This data set was collected as part of a structured decision-making workshop designed to identify sources of uncertainty and articulate alternative hypotheses about prescribed fire in high marshes of the Gulf of Mexico. Workshop participants independently scored alternative hypotheses based on a standard rubric using an online system. Following the workshop, we used the scores to compute QVoI for each participant. We used QVoI to prioritize the sources of uncertainty based on their magnitude of uncertainty, relevance for decision making, and reducibility.
The Black Rail (Laterallus jamaicensis) is the most secretive of the secretive marsh birds and one of the least understood bird species in North America. The Eastern Black Rail (L. j. jamaicensis) is listed as endangered in five states along the Atlantic Coast and is under review for federal listing. Historical population size was likely in the tens of thousands but is now believed to be in the hundreds or low thousands (Watts 2016). Within the United States, Eastern Black Rails breed within three general geographic areas within the United States - the Atlantic Coast, the Gulf Coast and the Midwest-Great Plains. The Atlantic Coast has generally been considered to support the largest breeding population throughout...
Abstract (from Biological Reviews): In response to global habitat loss, many governmental and non‐governmental organizations have implemented land acquisition programs to protect critical habitats permanently for priority species. The ability of these protected areas to meet future management objectives may be compromised if the effects of climate change are not considered in acquisition decisions. Unfortunately, the effects of climate change on ecological systems are complex and plagued by uncertainty, making it difficult for organizations to prioritize research needs to improve decision‐making. Herein, we demonstrate the use of qualitative value of information analysis to identify and prioritize which sources...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation
These datasets were compiled during the development and application of an adaptive management framework for the conservation and recovery of Eastern Black Rails in the Atlantic Coast Joint Venture Region. The study is conducted in cooperation with the Eastern Black Rail Working Group of the Atlantic Coast Joint Venture. U.S. Geological Survey and the Atlantic Coast Joint Venture are working with partners to test alternative methods of manipulating coastal marsh and other wetland habitats to make them suitable for Black Rails with the long-term goal of stabilizing or reversing population declines. The objectives of this project are to develop an adaptive management framework that allows wetland managers to reduce...
View more...
ScienceBase brings together the best information it can find about USGS researchers and offices to show connections to publications, projects, and data. We are still working to improve this process and information is by no means complete. If you don't see everything you know is associated with you, a colleague, or your office, please be patient while we work to connect the dots. Feel free to contact