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Climate and weather have long been noted as playing key roles in wildfire activity, and global warming is expected to exacerbate fire impacts on natural and urban ecosystems. Predicting future fire regimes requires an understanding of how temperature and precipitation interact to control fire activity. Inevitably this requires historical analyses that relate annual burning to climate variation. Fuel structure plays a critical role in determining which climatic parameters are most influential on fire activity, and here, by focusing on the diversity of ecosystems in California, we illustrate some principles that need to be recognized in predicting future fire regimes. Spatial scale of analysis is important in that...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Geoscience Canada
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Satellite derived rainfall products are useful for drought and flood early warning and overcome the problem of sparse, unevenly distributed and erratic rain gauge observations, provided their accuracy is well known. Mozambique is highly vulnerable to extreme weather events such as major droughts and floods and thus, an understanding of the strengths and weaknesses of different rainfall products is valuable. Three dekadal (10-day) gridded satellite rainfall products (TAMSAT African Rainfall Climatology And Time-series (TARCAT) v2.0, Famine Early Warning System NETwork (FEWS NET) Rainfall Estimate (RFE) v2.0, and Climate Hazards Group InfraRed Precipitation with Stations (CHIRPS)) are compared to independent gauge...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Remote Sensing
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The Herman Pit, once a mercury mine, is an impoundment located in an active geothermal area. Its acidic waters are permeated by hundreds of gas seeps. One seep was sampled and found to be composed of mostly CO2 with some CH4 present. The δ13CH4 value suggested a complex origin for the methane: i.e., a thermogenic component plus a biological methanogenic portion. The relatively 12C-enriched CO2 suggested a reworking of the ebullitive methane by methanotrophic bacteria. Therefore, we tested bottom sediments for their ability to consume methane by conducting aerobic incubations of slurried materials. Methane was removed from the headspace of live slurries, and subsequent additions of methane resulted in faster removal...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Microorganisms
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Marine phosphorites are known to concentrate rare earth elements and yttrium (REY) during early diagenetic formation. Much of the REY data available are decades old and incomplete, and there has not been a systematic study of REY distributions in marine phosphorite deposits that formed over a range of oceanic environments. Consequently, we initiated this study to determine if marine phosphorite deposits found in the global ocean host REY concentrations of high enough grade to be of economic interest. This paper addresses continental-margin (CM) and open-ocean seamount phosphorites. All 75 samples analyzed are composed predominantly of carbonate fluorapatite and minor detrital and authigenic minerals. CM phosphorites...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Minerals
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Evapotranspiration estimation has benefitted from recent advances in remote sensing and GIS techniques particularly in agricultural applications rather than urban environments. This paper explores the relationship between urban vegetation evapotranspiration (ET) and vegetation indices derived from newly-developed high spatial resolution WorldView-2 imagery. The study site was Veale Gardens in Adelaide, Australia. Image processing was applied on five images captured from February 2012 to February 2013 using ERDAS Imagine. From 64 possible two band combinations of WorldView-2, the most reliable one (with the maximum median differences) was selected. Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) values were derived...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Remote Sensing
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The formation of oriented thermokarst lakes on the Arctic Coastal Plain of northern Alaska has been the subject of debate for more than half a century. The striking elongation of the lakes perpendicular to the prevailing wind direction has led to the development of a preferred wind-generated gyre hypothesis, while other hypotheses include a combination of sun angle, topographic aspect, and/or antecedent conditions. A spatio-temporal analysis of oriented thermokarst lake gyres with recent (Landsat 8) and historical (Landsat 4, 5, 7 and ASTER) satellite imagery of the Arctic Coastal Plain of northern Alaska indicates that wind-generated gyres are both frequent and regionally extensive. Gyres are most common in lakes...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Remote Sensing
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Vegetation and land-cover changes are not always directional but follow complex trajectories over space and time, driven by changing anthropogenic and abiotic conditions. We present a multi-observational approach to land-change analysis that addresses the complex geographic and temporal variability of vegetation changes related to climate and land use. Using land-ownership data as a proxy for land-use practices, multitemporal land-cover maps, and repeat photography dating to the late 19th century, we examine changing spatial and temporal distributions of two vegetation types with high conservation value in the southwestern United States: grasslands and riparian vegetation. In contrast to many reported vegetation...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Land
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Highly pathogenic avian influenza H5N1 remains a serious concern for both poultry and human health. Wild waterfowl are considered to be the reservoir for low pathogenic avian influenza viruses; however, relatively little is known about their movement ecology in regions where HPAI H5N1 outbreaks regularly occur. We studied movements of the ruddy shelduck (Tadorna ferruginea), a wild migratory waterfowl species that was infected in the 2005 Qinghai Lake outbreak. We defined their migration with Brownian Bridge utilization distribution models and their breeding and wintering grounds with fixed kernel home ranges. We correlated their movements with HPAI H5N1 outbreaks, poultry density, land cover, and latitude in the...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Viruses
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Seagrass meadows, one of the world’s most widespread and productive ecosystems, provide a wide range of services with real economic value. Worldwide declines in the distribution and abundance of seagrasses and increased threats to coastal ecosystems from climate change have prompted a need to acquire baseline data for monitoring and protecting these important habitats. We assessed the distribution and abundance of eelgrass (Zostera marina) along nearly 1200 km of shoreline on the lower Alaska Peninsula, a region of expansive eelgrass meadows whose status and trends are poorly understood. We demonstrate the effectiveness of a multi-scale approach by using Landsat satellite imagery to map the total areal extent of...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Remote Sensing
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This manuscript evaluates the U.S. Recreational Water Quality Criteria (RWQC) of 2012, based upon discussions during a conference held 11–13 March 2013, in Honolulu, Hawaii. The RWQC of 2012 did not meet expectations among the research community because key recommended studies were not completed, new data to assess risks to bathers exposed to non-point sources of fecal indicator bacteria (FIB) were not developed, and the 2012 RWQC did not show marked improvements in strategies for assessing health risks for bathers using all types of recreational waters. The development of the 2012 RWQC was limited in scope because the epidemiologic studies at beach sites were restricted to beaches with point sources of pollution...
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Land cover modeling is used to inform land management, but most often via a two-step process, where science informs how management alternatives can influence resources, and then, decision makers can use this information to make decisions. A more efficient process is to directly integrate science and decision-making, where science allows us to learn in order to better accomplish management objectives and is developed to address specific decisions. Co-development of management and science is especially productive when decisions are complicated by multiple objectives and impeded by uncertainty. Multiple objectives can be met by the specification of tradeoffs, and relevant uncertainty can be addressed through targeted...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Land
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The Class Amphibia is one of the most severely impacted taxa in an on-going global biodiversity crisis. Because amphibian reproduction is tightly associated with the presence of water, climatic changes that affect water availability pose a particularly menacing threat to both aquatic and terrestrial-breeding amphibians. We explore the impacts that one facet of climate change—that of extreme variation in precipitation—may have on amphibians. This variation is manifested principally as increases in the incidence and severity of both drought and major storm events. We stress the need to consider not only total precipitation amounts but also the pattern and timing of rainfall events. Such rainfall “pulses” are likely...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Biology
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Despite being the driest inhabited continent, Australia has one of the highest per capita water consumptions in the world. In addition, instead of having fit-for-purpose water supplies (using different qualities of water for different applications), highly treated drinking water is used for nearly all of Australia’s urban water supply needs, including landscape irrigation. The water requirement of urban landscapes, and particularly urban parklands, is of growing concern. The estimation of ET and subsequently plant water requirements in urban vegetation needs to consider the heterogeneity of plants, soils, water and climate characteristics. Accurate estimation of evapotranspiration (ET), which is the main component...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Remote Sensing
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Wetland mapping at the landscape scale using remotely sensed data requires both affordable data and an efficient accurate classification method. Random forest classification offers several advantages over traditional land cover classification techniques, including a bootstrapping technique to generate robust estimations of outliers in the training data, as well as the capability of measuring classification confidence. Though the random forest classifier can generate complex decision trees with a multitude of input data and still not run a high risk of over fitting, there is a great need to reduce computational and operational costs by including only key input data sets without sacrificing a significant level of...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Remote Sensing
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Global climate change poses challenges to areas such as low-lying coastal zones, where sea level rise (SLR) and storm-surge overwash events can have long-term effects on vegetation and on soil and groundwater salinities, posing risks of habitat loss critical to native species. An early warning system is urgently needed to predict and prepare for the consequences of these climate-related impacts on both the short-term dynamics of salinity in the soil and groundwater and the long-term effects on vegetation. For this purpose, the U.S. Geological Survey’s spatially explicit model of vegetation community dynamics along coastal salinity gradients (MANHAM) is integrated into the USGS groundwater model (SUTRA) to create...
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In the Santa Cruz Watershed, located on the Arizona-Sonora portion of the U.S.-Mexico border, an international wastewater treatment plant treats wastewater from cities on both sides of the border, before discharging it into the river in Arizona. These artificial flows often subsidize important perennial surface water ecosystems in the region. An explicit understanding of the benefits of maintaining instream flow for present and future generations requires the ability to assess and understand the important trade-offs implicit in water-resource management decisions. In this paper, we outline an approach for modeling and visualizing impacts of management decisions in terms of rare terrestrial and aquatic wildlife,...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Water
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Genetic diversity within species provides the raw material for adaptation and evolution. Just as regions of high species diversity are conservation targets, identifying regions containing high genetic diversity and divergence within and among populations may be important to protect future evolutionary potential. When multiple co-distributed species show spatial overlap in high genetic diversity and divergence, these regions can be considered evolutionary hotspots. We mapped spatial population genetic structure for 17 animal species across the Mojave Desert, USA. We analyzed these in concurrence and located 10 regions of high genetic diversity, divergence or both among species. These were mainly concentrated along...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Diversity
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Using a panel of genes stimulated by oil exposure in a laboratory study, we evaluated gene transcription in blood leukocytes sampled from sea otters captured from 2006–2012 in western Prince William Sound (WPWS), Alaska, 17–23 years after the 1989 Exxon Valdez oil spill (EVOS). We compared WPWS sea otters to reference populations (not affected by the EVOS) from the Alaska Peninsula (2009), Katmai National Park and Preserve (2009), Clam Lagoon at Adak Island (2012), Kodiak Island (2005) and captive sea otters in aquaria. Statistically, sea otter gene transcript profiles separated into three distinct clusters: Cluster 1, Kodiak and WPWS 2006–2008 (higher relative transcription); Cluster 2, Clam Lagoon and WPWS 2010–2012...
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In previous studies, we demonstrated in mice and prairie dogs that simultaneous administration of two recombinant raccoon poxviruses (rRCN) expressing Yersinia pestis antigens (F1 and V307-a truncated version of the V protein) provided superior protection against plague challenge compared to individual single antigen constructs. To reduce costs of vaccine production and facilitate implementation of a sylvatic plague vaccine (SPV) control program for prairie dogs, a dual antigen construct is more desirable. Here we report the construction and characterization of a novel RCN-vectored vaccine that simultaneously expresses both F1 and V307 antigens. This dual antigen vaccine provided similar levels of protection against...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Vaccines
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Hydrologic science has largely built its understanding of the hydrologic cycle using contemporary data sources (i.e., last 100 years). However, as we try to meet water demand over the next 100 years at scales from local to global, we need to expand our scope and embrace other data that address human activities and the alteration of hydrologic systems. For example, the accumulation of human impacts on water systems requires exploration of incompletely documented eras. When examining these historical periods, basic questions relevant to modern systems arise: (1) How is better information incorporated into water management strategies? (2) Does any point in the past (e.g., colonial/pre-European conditions in North America)...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Water


    map background search result map search result map Influence of multi-source and multi-temporal remotely sensed and ancillary data on the accuracy of random forest classification of wetlands in northern Minnesota High spatial resolution WorldView-2 imagery for mapping NDVI and its relationship to temporal urban landscape evapotranspiration factors Framing scenarios of binational water policy with a tool to visualize, quantify and valuate changes in ecosystem services Movements of wild ruddy shelducks in the Central Asian Flyway and their spatial relationship to outbreaks of highly pathogenic avian influenza H5N1 Evolutionary hotspots in the Mojave Desert Spatio-temporal analysis of gyres in oriented lakes on the Arctic Coastal Plain of northern Alaska based on remotely sensed images High spatial resolution WorldView-2 imagery for mapping NDVI and its relationship to temporal urban landscape evapotranspiration factors Framing scenarios of binational water policy with a tool to visualize, quantify and valuate changes in ecosystem services Evolutionary hotspots in the Mojave Desert Influence of multi-source and multi-temporal remotely sensed and ancillary data on the accuracy of random forest classification of wetlands in northern Minnesota Spatio-temporal analysis of gyres in oriented lakes on the Arctic Coastal Plain of northern Alaska based on remotely sensed images Movements of wild ruddy shelducks in the Central Asian Flyway and their spatial relationship to outbreaks of highly pathogenic avian influenza H5N1