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Inland fishes provide important ecosystem services to communities worldwide and are especially vulnerable to the impacts of climate change. Fish respond to climate change in diverse and nuanced ways, which creates challenges for practitioners of fish conservation, climate change adaptation, and management. Although climate change is known to affect fish globally, a comprehensive online, public database of how climate change has impacted inland fishes worldwide and adaptation or management practices that may address these impacts does not exist. We conducted an extensive, systematic primary literature review to identify peer-reviewed journal publications describing projected and documented examples of climate change...
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Tropical forests contain > 50% of the world’s known species (Heywood 1995), 55% of global forest biomass (Pan et al. 2011), and exchange more carbon (C), water and energy with the atmosphere than any other ecosystem type (e.g., Saugier et al. 2001). Despite their importance, there is more uncertainty associated with predictions of how tropical forests will respond to warming than for any other biome (Randerson et al. 2009). This uncertainty is of global concern due to the large quantity of C cycled by these forests and the high potential for biodiversity loss. Given the importance of tropical forests, decision makers and land managers around the globe need increased predictive capacity regarding how tropical forests...
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Advancing our mechanistic understanding of ecosystem responses to climate change is critical to improve ecological theories, develop predictive models to simulate ecosystem processes, and inform sound policies to manage ecosystems and human activities. Manipulation of temperature in the field, or the “ecosystem warming experiment,” has proved to be a powerful tool to understand ecosystem responses to changes in temperature. No comprehensive synthesis has been conducted since the last one more than 10 years ago. A new synthetic analysis is critically needed to advance our understanding of ecosystem responses to warming, to highlight experimental artifacts and appropriate interpretations, and to guide development...
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Shale gas is a key source of onshore domestic energy for the United States and production of this resource is increasing rapidly. Development and extraction of shale gas requires hydraulic fracturing, which entails horizontal drilling, perforation of steel casing and cement grout using explosive charges, and expansion of fractures using fluids under high pressure. Concern over potential environmental effects of shale gas development is growing and based on a recent review there is very little information in the scientific literature on potential environmental effects of hydraulic fracturing. We propose to conduct the first broad scale, data-based assessment of the potential effects of hydraulic fracturing on water...
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It is well know that every earthquake can spawn others (e.g., as aftershocks), and that such triggered events can be large and damaging, as recently demonstrated by L’Aquila, Italy and Christchurch, New Zealand earthquakes. In spite of being an explicit USGS strategic-action priority (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2012/1088; page 32), the USGS currently lacks an automated system with which to forecast such events and official protocols for disseminating the potential implications. This capability, known as Operational Earthquake Forecasting (OEF), could provide valuable situational awareness to emergency managers, the public, and other entities interested in preparing for potentially damaging earthquakes. With the various...
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There has been increasing attention placed on the need for water availability information at ungauged locations, particularly related to balancing human and ecological needs for water. Critical to assessing water availability is the necessity for daily streamflow time series; however, most of the rivers in the United States are ungauged. This proposal leverages over $1M currently allocated to the USGS National Water Census Program towards developing an integrated modeling approach to estimate daily streamflow at ungauged locations, with the ultimate goal of providing daily streamflow estimates at 160,000 ungauged catchments across the United States. By assembling a diverse and prolific group of international scientists,...
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Ecosystems are changing worldwide and critical decisions that affect ecosystem health and sustainability are being made every day. As ecologists, we have a responsibility to ensure that these decisions are made with access to the best available science. However, to bring this idea into practice, ecology needs to make a substantial leap forward towards becoming a more predictive science. Furthermore, even for basic, conceptual questions there is a lot to be gained by addressing problems from a forecasting perspective, with more frequent data-model comparisons helping to highlight misunderstandings and reframe long-standing questions. Ecological forecasting is occurring across a wide range of ecological sub-disciplines,...
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Amphibian populations are declining globally at unprecedented rates but statistically rigorous identification of mechanisms is lacking. Identification of reasons underlying large-scale declines is imperative to plan and implement effective conservation efforts. Most research on amphibian population decline has focused on local populations and local factors. However, the ubiquity of declines across species and landscapes suggests that causal factors at a broader scale are also important. Elucidation of the mechanisms driving population change has lagged, mainly because data have been unavailable at continental scales. We propose to address this need by assembling data to answer questions about broad-scale drivers...
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Global hydroclimatic conditions have been significantly altered, over the past century, by anthropogenic influences that arise from warming global climate and also from local/regional anthropogenic disturbances. There has been never been an effort that has systematically analyzed how the spatio-temporal variability of land-surface fluxes vary in natural and human-altered watersheds globally. This synthesis study will adapt and extend the classical Budyko framework to quantify the role of drivers - changing climate and local human disturbances - in altering flow regimes and in creating urban heat island episodes over the globe. An allied goal is to develop parsimonious hydroclimatic models that explain the spatio-temporal...
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Migratory species may provide more ecosystem goods and services to humans in certain parts of their range than others. These areas may or may not coincide with the locations of habitat on which the species is most dependent for its continued population viability. This situation can present significant policy challenges, as locations that most support a given species may be in effect subsidizing the provision of services in other locations, often in different political jurisdictions. The ability to quantify these spatial subsidies could be used to develop economic incentives that internalize the costs and benefits of protecting migratory species, enhancing cross-jurisdictional cooperative management. Targeted payments...
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Non-native insect invasions increasingly cause widespread ecological and economic damage in natural and agricultural ecosystems. Non-native insects specialized for feeding on specific plant groups are particularly problematic as they can potentially eliminate an entire genus of native plant species across a wide area. For example, emerald ash borer has killed hundreds of millions of ash trees in North America since its accidental introduction from Asia, including more than 99% of all trees in forests near the epicenter of the invasion. However, most introduced insects do not become high-impact pests. Our goal is to develop a framework that allows us to predict whether non-native herbivorous insects in natural ecosystems...
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Freshwater mussels are an important component of freshwater ecosystems. They can filter a large amount of water, affecting both water clarity and water chemistry. Their shells provide physical habitat for other organisms, they re-direct necessary nutrients to the bottom of the water column, and their excreted material can enhance the growth of algae and macroinvertebrates. However, dramatic declines of freshwater mussels have occurred due to habitat loss, destruction and modification, pollution, and invasive species. One mussel species in Texas (Texas Hornshell) has been listed as endangered under the Endangered Species Act and several other species are candidates for listing. Changes in precipitation patterns...
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Societal water-use estimates were required for the other four components of the Coastal Carolinas focus area study. Estimates of water withdrawals related to the societal water use included categories of public supply, self-supplied domestic, industrial, thermoelectric power, irrigation for crops and golf courses, livestock, mining, and aquaculture. Estimates for wastewater returns to surface water bodies were also needed for the surface-water modeling component of the project. These estimates were derived from site-specific data when available or disaggregated from county level information previously published in the USGS series of national water-use reports. These reports were facilitated by the USGS National...
Categories: Project
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There are few resources that provide managers cross-scale information for planning climate adaptation strategies for species and taxa at risk. Appropriate allocation of resources requires an understanding of mechanisms influencing a species’ risk to global change. Dr. Griffis-Kyle will produce a manuscript for peer-reviewed publication and create content for web pages that can be included on the Desert LCC website that provide modules on amphibian climate adaptation strategies. This work is associated with addressing Desert LCC Critical Management Question 4: Physiological Stress of Climate Change and follows a webinar that Dr. Griffis-Kyle presented for the Desert LCC’s CMQ 4 team, titled “Climate and Desert Amphibian...
Categories: Data, Project; Types: Map Service, OGC WFS Layer, OGC WMS Layer, OGC WMS Service; Tags: 2014, AZ-01, AZ-02, AZ-03, AZ-04, All tags...
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Nitrogen deposition is altering forest dynamics, terrestrial carbon storage, and biodiversity. However, our ability to forecast how different tree species will respond to N deposition, especially key response thresholds, is limited by a lack of synthesis across spatial scales and research approaches. To develop our best understanding of N deposition impact on tree growth and survival, we will integrate plot-­‐ level studies describing plant growth and survival responses to N inputs and plant-­‐ available soil nutrients with a continental scale analysis across a N deposition gradient. Our primary outcome will be estimates of tree response to N deposition with explicit representation of uncertainty and the identification...
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The past decade has seen improvements in computational efficiency, seismic data coverage, and communication technology - driven by societal expectation for timely, accurate information. While aspects of earthquake research have taken advantage of this evolution, the adoption of improvements in earthquake monitoring has not been fully leveraged. In real-time monitoring, earthquakes are characterized in a vacuum, without building upon our knowledge of past events. New data types may help characterize earthquakes more quickly and accurately. New opportunities exist for rapidly communicating information. With these advances, global seismic monitoring can improve the quality and timeliness of information shared with...
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Models that predict the flow of rivers and streams are critically important for planning flood control, hydropower, and reservoir operations, as well as for management of fish and wildlife populations. As temperatures and precipitation regimes change globally, the need to improve and develop these models for a wider spatial coverage and higher spatial fidelity becomes more imperative. Currently, one of the biggest impediments to developing robust streamflow knowledge is incomplete understanding of the range of timescales over which water is stored (e.g., in snowpack, soils, and groundwater) in watersheds, as well as the processes and factors that control those storage timescales. This working group will address...
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Pinyon pine woodlands are among the most widespread and iconic vegetation types in the western United States and support recreation, resource extraction, grazing, and cultural enrichment. However, severe drought conditions have recently caused dramatic mortality of pinyon pines, creating concern about the long-term impact of increasing aridity on the viability of pinyon woodlands. Ecological transformations, or regime shifts, are rapid reorganizations of an ecosystem’s species composition, governing processes, and functions. The goal of this project is to investigate ecological transformation across the Western U.S, characterize the environmental drivers of these changes in vegetation, and apply those insights...
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Many animal species have unique characteristics that allow them to survive during winter. For example, the snowshoe hare changes its fur color from brown to white to camouflage better in winter months, and the ruffed grouse roosts under the snow to stay warm and hidden in winter. These winter-adapted species, however, are facing new challenges as climate change is resulting in shorter winters and rapid declines in snowpack. Shorter winters pose a significant threat to winter-adapted species that are used to living in, under, or on top of a protective blanket of snow. Wildlife managers are tasked with conserving these species, yet studies understanding how specific management actions can enhance species' ability...
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Natural resource managers are confronted with the pressing challenge to develop conservation plans that address complex ecological and societal needs against the backdrop of a rapidly changing climate. Climate change vulnerability assessments (CCVAs) provide valuable information that helps guide management and conservation actions in this regard. An essential component to CCVAs is understanding adaptive capacity, or the ability of a species to cope with or adjust to climate change. However, adaptive capacity is the least understood and evaluated component of CCVAs. This is largely due to a fundamental need for guidance on how to assess adaptive capacity and incorporate this information into conservation planning...


map background search result map search result map Animal Migration and Spatial Subsidies: Establishing a Framework for Conservation Markets Fish and Climate Change (FiCli) Database: Informing climate change adaptation and management actions for freshwater fishes Climate Adaptation Strategies for Desert Amphibians Paper and Web Modules Mapping the Risk of Ecological Transformation Across Pinyon Woodlands and the U.S. West Assessing the Impacts of Rapid Rainfall Shifts (“Whiplashes” and “Boomerangs”) on Freshwater Mussels in Central Texas Managing and Promoting the Resiliency of Winter-Adapted Species to Climate Change Evaluating Species’ Adaptive Capacity in a Changing Climate: Applications to Natural-Resource Management in the Northwestern U.S. Animal Migration and Spatial Subsidies: Establishing a Framework for Conservation Markets Evaluating Species’ Adaptive Capacity in a Changing Climate: Applications to Natural-Resource Management in the Northwestern U.S. Managing and Promoting the Resiliency of Winter-Adapted Species to Climate Change Assessing the Impacts of Rapid Rainfall Shifts (“Whiplashes” and “Boomerangs”) on Freshwater Mussels in Central Texas Climate Adaptation Strategies for Desert Amphibians Paper and Web Modules Mapping the Risk of Ecological Transformation Across Pinyon Woodlands and the U.S. West Fish and Climate Change (FiCli) Database: Informing climate change adaptation and management actions for freshwater fishes