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Description of Work Since 2010, connecting channels have been included in each of the Great Lakes’ Lake Management Plans (LaMPs). Lake Ontario now includes both the Niagara River and the St. Lawrence River. The Niagara River is well characterized by a number of long-term programs, but because of the lack of tributary water-quality data, the St. Lawrence River and its tributaries constitute a data gap in the information needed for the Lake Ontario to fulfill its goals. Critical information needs, including basic water-quality parameters, total suspended solids, nutrients and flow data. These data are needed to aid in the identification of sources of nutrient and sediment loading to the St. Lawrence. The monitoring...
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Description of Work U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) is identifying the types and locations of emerging and legacy toxic contaminants in the water and sediments at 59 major tributaries to the Great Lakes (including many Area of Concern sites). This information is needed to help prioritize watersheds for restoration, develop strategies to reduce contaminants, and measure the success of those efforts in meeting restoration goals. The USGS contaminant and virus tributary monitoring network follows the National Monitoring Network for Coastal Waters design. The monitoring effort includes collecting emerging contaminant samples at 17 sites, a subset of the 30 nutrient monitoring sites; and for human viruses and other waterborne...
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Description of Work Benthos (benthic invertebrate) and plankton (phytoplankton/zooplankton) communities in Wisconsin's four Lake Michigan Areas of Concern (AOCs; Menominee River, Lower Green Bay and Fox River, Sheboygan River, and Milwaukee Estuary) and six non-AOCs will be quantified. The inclusion of non-AOC sites will allow comparison of AOC sites to relatively-unimpacted or less-impacted control sites with natural physical and chemical characteristics that are as close as possible to that of the AOCs. The community data within and between the AOCs and non-AOCs will be analyzed. This project is a cooperative agreement between the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (WDNR) and the US Geological Survey (USGS)....
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Description of Work USGS will conduct seasonal sampling of benthic invertebrates, zooplankton, prey fish, and their diets to complement the seasonal lower trophic level sampling by EPA. A point of emphasis is describing the vertical distribution of planktivores and their zooplankton prey, to fill a knowledge gap on these predator/prey interactions. These data will provide a more holistic understanding of how invasive-driven, food-web changes could be altering energy available to sport fishes in the Great Lakes and used to build bioenergetics models that can evaluate whether zooplankton dynamics are being driven by limited resources or excessive predation. Understanding the key drivers of zooplankton will provide...
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Description of Work USGS will conduct monthly samples of benthic invertebrates, zooplankton, and water quality as well as seasonal sampling of fish and fish diets. This project supports lower trophic sampling in Lake Erie and understanding food webs. An emphasis will be collecting samples from a nearshore to offshore design.
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Description of Work Jeorse Park Beach is located in East Chicago, Indiana, within the Grand Calumet River Area of Concern (AOC), which has been identified as having all 14 beneficial use designations impaired, including beach closings. Jeorse Park Beach has been identified as one of the most highly contaminated beaches in the nation, with annual beach closings due to bacterial contamination as high as 76% in 2010. Further, beach closings have steadily increased each year since beach monitoring was initiated in 2005 in response to the Beaches Environmental and Coastal Health (BEACH) Act. Beach closings represent an environmental, social, and economic burden, the alleviation of which require various remediation strategies...
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Description of Work U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) will provide easily accessible, centrally located, USGS biological, water resources, geological, and geospatial datasets for Great Lakes basin restoration activities coordinated with GLOS. Managers, partners and the public will be able to readily access this information in usable interactive formats to help plan and implement restoration activities. Building tools and infrastructure to support standard data access, efficient data discovery and dynamic mapping of watersheds and their hydrologic properties. Developing decision support tools to enhance scientific investigation or disseminate project findings, for example integrating hydrologic models with real-time...
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Description of Work To date many meetings have been attended and coalitions developed between USGS Water Mission area and NYSDEC and EPA region 2 which have spun off into several other monitoring and BUI delisting projects funded by Region 2 through the USGS/EPA IA. This has been a perfect example of leveraging USGS GLRI funds to develop additional GLRI-related program for the Lake Ontario LaMP partners, especially for tributary nutrient and sediment loading to Lake Ontario and helping collect and assess the data needed to remove BUI impairments at the Rochester Embayment and St. Lawrence/Massena AOCs for benthos and phytoplankton impairments.
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Description of Work Participation on the Lake Erie Lakewide Management Plan Workgroup and related subcommittees such as toxics, sources and loads, nutrients, and biodiversity. Attend meetings and conferences associated with LE LAMP activities. This includes The Lake Erie Millennium Network, CSMI, Ohio Phosphorus Task Force, and other meetings or workshops addressing nutrient and toxicity issues in Lake Erie. Communicate USGS activities in the Lake Erie Basin that can influence understanding or impact decision making.
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Description of Work In 2014-15 the U.S. Geological Survey and State University of New York at Fredonia characterized the quantity and morphology of floating microplastics in 29 Great Lakes tributaries in 6 states under different hydrologic conditions, wastewater effluent contributions, land uses, and seasons. Tributaries were sampled four times each, during high-flow and low-flow conditions. Samples were collected from the upper 20-30cm of the stream using a 0.33mm mesh neuston net. Microplastic particles were sorted by size, counted, and categorized as fibers/lines, pellets/beads, foams, films, and fragments. References 1. R. C. Thompson et al., Lost at Sea: Where Is All the Plastic? Science. 304, 838 (2004)....
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Description of Work USGS is creating forecasting tools for managers to determine how water withdrawals or other hydrologic or land use changes in watersheds may affect Great Lakes ecosystems. This project is determining fish distributions in Great Lakes tributaries and how changes in stream flow may affect them. This information will help guide restoration efforts to achieve maximum effectiveness and success. Estimates were produced using WATER - a TOPMODEL based tool that estimates streamflow at any point along the stream network. The pour point is selected using a point-and-click GUI that samples information about the basin using a geodatabase of topographic and soil data spatial layers.
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Description of Work The study will be implemented in two phases due to logistical constraints and the need to incorporate methods developed (and findings) from a comparable investigation underway in another AOC. The first phase will consist of site selection, methods refinement, work-plan development, subcontract assembly, site reconnaissance, and sediment collection which will be done mainly during FY2013. The second phase will consist of macroinvertebrate identification, sediment toxicity testing, data analysis and interpretation, and report preparation and review mainly during FY2014. In brief, we will generate bed sediment toxicity and benthic community data needed to test two related hypotheses that address...
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Description of Work USGS scientists will support EPA's year of intensive sampling around the Great Lakes to complement and expand upon EPA and other partner entities work. In 2013, on Lake Ontario USGS will sample the food web from a nearshore (20 m) to offshore (100 m) gradient where seasonal sampling of primary producers, benthic invertebrates, zooplankton, prey fish, sport fish, and their diets will occur. We will work closely with state management agencies and stakeholder groups to ensure that ecosystem models that emerge from this work explore relevant future management scenarios. Scientists will analyze the diets of the six species of trout and salmon currently occurring in Lake Ontario. This predator diet...
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Description of Work In 2011, the US EPA, USGS, and Canada’s DFO/EC continued the evolution of the strategy to conduct an “integrated’ (water quality to fish) spatially-consistent assessment for the entire lake in order to provide biomass estimates for each trophic level. A total of 54 sites were sampled during summer 2011. Water chemistry, nutrients, phytoplankton, zooplankton, benthic invertebrates, Mysis, and pelagic and benthic fish were collected at each site.
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Description of Work USGS scientists provide expertise, capacity and support for the implementation of Lakewide Management Plans (LaMPs) and the associated goals, objectives and targets for each of the Great Lakes, including Lake Superior. The LaMPs are critical binational groups that are important for promoting Great Lakes restoration. Specifically, LaMP efforts include compiling monitoring and research information into the Great Lakes web mapper (SiGL Mapper). The Mapper’s focus is on information that will result in recognition of areas where data are being collected, missing or sparse, and on areas where ecosystems are vulnerable.
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This project, a collaborative study involving the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and Heidelberg University, focuses on using multi-agency water monitoring data in the Lake Erie basin (fig. 1) and a USGS package of software tools (dataRetrieval and EGRET; Hirsch and De Cicco, 2015 ) to evaluate seasonal and annual phosphorus and nitrogen trends, and to relate observed trends to climate, streamflow, and land-use activities. EGRET utilizes a recently developed trend method, Weighted Regressions on Time, Discharge, and Season (WRTDS; Hirsch and others, 2010 ). WRTDS is designed to remove the effects of year-to-year streamflow variations on nutrient trends and provide improvements over prior conventional trend methods,...
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Description of Work U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) scientists are focusing on restoring natural water flow and ecological processes between coastal wetlands in the Ottawa National Wildlife Refuge (Ohio) and adjacent to Lake Erie to improve fish and wildlife habitat. This pilot project will develop approaches that will restore coastal wetland function and increase ecosystem resilience to be used as a model throughout the Great Lakes basin. USGS will focus on restoring natural hydrologic processes in diked coastal wetlands adjacent to Great Lakes waters to improve wetland functions like phosphorus retention and restoration of habitats for fish and wildlife. Sustainable approaches are being developed in the Maumee River...
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Description of Work USGS scientists will develop support to State partners for the removal of Beneficial Use Impairments (BUIs) such as fish consumption advisories, fish tumor presence, Eutrophication and unwanted algae, drinking water problems, beach health, and concentrations of PCBs in lake trout and walleyes. Areas of Concern (AOC) principles and guidelines were developed as an initial reference point from which appropriate restoration criteria could be developed. Stage 2 Remedial Action Plans (RAPs) were developed for each of these AOCs to address impairments to any one of 14 beneficial uses associated with these areas. Specific remediation actions are completed in order to restore the beneficial use. When...
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Description of Work Predictive models have been used at beaches to improve the timeliness and accuracy of recreational water-quality assessments over the most common current approach to water-quality monitoring, which relies on culturing fecal-indicator bacteria such as Escherichia coli (E. coli.)
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Description of Work USGS will conduct seasonal sampling of benthic invertebrates, zooplankton, prey fish, sport fish, and their diets to complement the seasonal lower trophic level sampling by EPA. This data will provide a more holistic understanding of how invasive-driven, food-web changes could be altering energy available to sport fishes in the Great Lakes and used to build a decision support tool that can explore how different scenarios (dreissenid control, nutrient reductions, changes in fish stocking) influence the biomass of economically important fisheries.


map background search result map search result map Benthic Communities and Sediment and Water Toxicity in the Rochester Embayment AOC Lakewide Management Plan Capacity Support by U.S. Geological Survey - LAKE ERIE Lakewide Management Plan Capacity Support by U.S. Geological Survey - LAKE ONTARIO AOC Decision Support Determine Baseline and Sources of Toxic Contaminant Loadings Enabling Discovery and Access to USGS Great Lakes Scientific Data Through Web-Based Applications Lake Ontario Component - Exploring changes in nutrient transfer within Great Lakes food webs: implications for fish production Cooperative Science and Monitoring Initiative (CSMI) - LAKE HURON New Strategies for Restoring Coastal Wetland Function, Maumee River Area of Concern Cooperative Science and Monitoring Initiative (CSMI) - LAKE ERIE Jeorse Park Beach Contamination Exploring changes in nutrient transfer within Great Lakes food webs: implications for fish production in Lake Michigan in support of CSMI 2010 Benthos & Plankton in Wisconsin's Lake Michigan AOCs Lakewide Management Plan Capacity Support by U.S. Geological Survey - LAKE SUPERIOR Developing and Implementing Predictive Models for Estimating Recreational Water Quality at Great Lakes Beaches in new York State Cooperative Science and Monitoring Initiative (CSMI) - LAKE SUPERIOR Microplastics in Great Lakes Tributaries Evaluation of stream nutrient trends in the Lake Erie drainage basin in the presence of changing patterns in climate, streamflow, land drainage, and agricultural practices Benthic Communities and Sediment and Water Toxicity in the Rochester Embayment AOC Lake Ontario Component - Exploring changes in nutrient transfer within Great Lakes food webs: implications for fish production New Strategies for Restoring Coastal Wetland Function, Maumee River Area of Concern Cooperative Science and Monitoring Initiative (CSMI) - LAKE ERIE Jeorse Park Beach Contamination Cooperative Science and Monitoring Initiative (CSMI) - LAKE HURON Lakewide Management Plan Capacity Support by U.S. Geological Survey - LAKE ONTARIO Developing and Implementing Predictive Models for Estimating Recreational Water Quality at Great Lakes Beaches in new York State Lakewide Management Plan Capacity Support by U.S. Geological Survey - LAKE ERIE Evaluation of stream nutrient trends in the Lake Erie drainage basin in the presence of changing patterns in climate, streamflow, land drainage, and agricultural practices Exploring changes in nutrient transfer within Great Lakes food webs: implications for fish production in Lake Michigan in support of CSMI 2010 Benthos & Plankton in Wisconsin's Lake Michigan AOCs Lakewide Management Plan Capacity Support by U.S. Geological Survey - LAKE SUPERIOR Cooperative Science and Monitoring Initiative (CSMI) - LAKE SUPERIOR Microplastics in Great Lakes Tributaries AOC Decision Support Enabling Discovery and Access to USGS Great Lakes Scientific Data Through Web-Based Applications Determine Baseline and Sources of Toxic Contaminant Loadings