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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 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 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 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 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 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 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 WorkThe success of GLRI beach restoration projects must be assessed to determine whether goals of recipients are on track and identify any developing unforeseen consequences of restoration efforts. Implementation of multiple BMPs during restoration can make understanding the impacts of individual BMPs difficult. However, proper site selection and well-designed monitoring and assessment plan can overcome such difficulties. The urban beaches chosen for evaluation are at various stages of the restoration process and located in Indiana (Jeorse Park Beach), Illinois (63rd Street Beach), and Wisconsin (North Beach). Data used for evaluation include continuous monitoring and synoptic mapping of nearshore...
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Description of Work Determine the relative sensitivity of two species of amphibians (i.e. Wood Frogs Rana sylvatica, Cricket Frogs Acris crepitans blanchardi, American Toad Bufo americana) to exposure to acute and chronic levels of nitrate, nitrite and ammonia. This data will be used to evaluate the current ammonia criteria and for possible inclusion in the development of criteria for nitrite and nitrate.
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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.
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Description of Work This work will investigate linkages between sediment PCB concentrations and subsequent exposure in riparian organisms living on land next to the river and harbor. This is an extension of prior work at the site that has been used by the Manistique River and Harbor Remediation Team (comprised of managers and scientists from USEPA GLNPO, USEPA ORD, NOAA, USACOE, USGS and the state of Michigan) to guide plans for delisting activities. Riparian spiders are important mediators of contaminant flux from aquatic systems to nearby terrestrial habitats. Aquatic insects accumulate contaminants in their larval form, and transport these contaminants to terrestrial ecosystems in their adult bodies. Spiders...
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Description of Work The invasive form of Phragmites australis (common reed) is a well-established pest in many parts of the Great Lakes and the Atlantic, Gulf, and Pacific coasts, including designated Areas of Concern. New innovative control options that sustainably target the competitive advantage often enjoyed by Phragmites and other invasive plants will contribute to a broad Integrated Pest Management (IPM) strategy. This project targets the microorganisms that may help Phragmites spread and will employ a molecular genetic approach to silence the genes in Phragmites that give it a competitive edge over many native plants. This project helped build and will continue to be closely aligned with the Great Lakes Phragmites...
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Tree swallows, Tachycineta bicolor, were sampled across the Great Lakes basin in 2010-2015 to provide a system-wide assessment of current exposure to organic contaminants. These results provide information identified as critical by land managers and regulators to assess the ‘Bird or Animal Deformity or Reproductive Problems’ Beneficial Use Impairment. Eggs were collected from 69 sites across all five Great Lakes, including 27 Areas of Concern (AOCs), some with multiple sites, and ten sites not listed as an AOC. Concentrations of organic contaminants in eggs were quantified and compared to background and reproductive effect thresholds. Approximately one-third of the AOCs had geometric mean concentrations of total...
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Description of Work U. S. Geological Survey (USGS) will identify through this project significant sources and impacts of historical and newly emerging toxics to the Great Lakes ecosystem through broad surveillance as well as laboratory and field research of tree swallows and other bird species. USGS scientists will determine the amount of exposure to and the effects of historical and emerging contaminants in Great Lakes food chains. The data will inform regulators and provide guidance on removal of Beneficial Use Impairments at Area of Concern sites around the Great Lakes. Work supported under this project is quantifying exposure to, and effects of, both historical and emerging contaminants on Great Lakes food chains...
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Description of Work The work completed for this template will provide the following information: 1) Generate acute and chronic toxicity data for freshwater mussels and snails to enhance the protection of listed/endangered species in the GL basin; 2) Refine methods and conduct acute and chronic toxicity tests on amphibians; 3) Develop and test methods for conducting chronic toxicity tests for mayflies.
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Description of Work U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) scientists will assess the hydrology, water quality, and response to simulated changes in phosphorus loading of the Winnebago Pool Lakes, Wisconsin. Total annual phosphorus and total suspended sediment loads will be estimated at various monitored locations throughout the Upper Fox and Wolf River Watershed using a rating curve method or GCLAS with streamflow monitored by the USGS and water quality data collected by the Wisconsin DNR. Monitoring at three new sites was done as part of this study. Data from these three sites will be used to help calibrate the SWAT model for the basin. These loads will be supplied to the Cadmus Group, Inc. to help calibrate SWAT models...
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Description of Work The GLRI Rivermouths Project (template 82) is designed to enhance our understanding of how rivermouths function at both regional and local scales by 1) developing a rivermouth classification system, based on a broad scale database covering all Great Lakes rivermouths (>2000); 2) creating a science-based understanding of how the ecological structure and function of rivermouths are linked both to the landscapes they drain and to the Lakes with which they mix; and 3) increasing the public and scientific profile of these ecosystems by connecting researchers and natural resource managers through a collaborative dialog. The long-term goal is to provide enhanced guidance for restoration and rehabilitation...
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Description of Work U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) scientists are improving the health of the Great Lakes sport and commercial fisheries by documenting sources and the determining the processes that control mercury entering food webs, and helping to evaluate the implications for public health. Our scientists will provide decision-makers with a scientific understanding of mercury-source profiles, the relative importance of the various sources, and the expected environmental responses to Great Lakes wasters and fisheries to altered mercury loading and restoration actions. This information is intended to inform and maximize the benefit of the Great Lakes restoration program. The USGS will develop mercury and methylmercury...
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Description of Work U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) scientists will conduct fish sampling in Indiana to determine the main causes of impairment of Pigeon Creek. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and Indiana State agencies will use the data to evaluate ways to improve water quality. Fish assemblage data is needed to develop total maximum daily loads and implementation plans for impaired AOCs and tributaries in the Basin. Development of the TMDLs will include determining the sources of the pollutant, calculating loading allocations to ensure the designated uses will be met, and developing an implementation plan to achieve these allocations. TMDLs will address several pollutants including nutrients, sediment and...


map background search result map search result map Development of Watershed TMDLs in the Great Lakes Basin Mercury Cycling and Bioaccumulation in the Great Lakes AOC Decision Support Determine Baseline and Sources of Toxic Contaminant Loadings Data for Development of Watershed TMDLs in the Great Lakes Basin Birds as Indicators of Contaminant Exposure in the Great Lakes Enabling Discovery and Access to USGS Great Lakes Scientific Data Through Web-Based Applications Determination of the Sensitivity of Two Species of Amphibians to Toxicity From Nitrate, Nitrite and Ammonia Toxicity Testing for Stream Dwelling Amphibians, Mussels, and Mayflies Invasive Phragmites: Prevention, Monitoring, and Control Strategies in an Integrated Pest Management Framework 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 Characterizing Rivermouth Ecosystems Benthos & Plankton in Wisconsin's Lake Michigan AOCs Riparian Indicators of Contaminant Exposure and Potential PCB Sources at Manistique River and Harbor AOC Microplastics in Great Lakes Tributaries Birds as indicators of contaminants in the Great Lakes - Egg Contaminants Development of Watershed TMDLs in the Great Lakes Basin Data for Development of Watershed TMDLs in the Great Lakes Basin Jeorse Park Beach Contamination Riparian Indicators of Contaminant Exposure and Potential PCB Sources at Manistique River and Harbor AOC 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 Microplastics in Great Lakes Tributaries Toxicity Testing for Stream Dwelling Amphibians, Mussels, and Mayflies Mercury Cycling and Bioaccumulation in the Great Lakes AOC Decision Support Birds as Indicators of Contaminant Exposure in the Great Lakes Enabling Discovery and Access to USGS Great Lakes Scientific Data Through Web-Based Applications Determination of the Sensitivity of Two Species of Amphibians to Toxicity From Nitrate, Nitrite and Ammonia Invasive Phragmites: Prevention, Monitoring, and Control Strategies in an Integrated Pest Management Framework Determine Baseline and Sources of Toxic Contaminant Loadings Birds as indicators of contaminants in the Great Lakes - Egg Contaminants Characterizing Rivermouth Ecosystems