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Weekly Highlights


From: Gabrielle Boudreaux Bodin
Subject: Weekly Highlights, USGS National Wetlands Research Center, November 29, 2012  

Departmental/Bureau News - Current

  • Gulf of Mexico Alliance Federal Work Group Meeting: On November 29, USGS NWRC Branch Chief Scott Wilson and Ecologist Kate Spear will participate in the Gulf of Mexico Alliance’s Federal Workgroup teleconference and webinar. The meeting will include presentations and updates on Federal efforts in support of the Alliance. The Gulf of Mexico Alliance is a partnership of the five northern Gulf States, local organizations, and Federal agencies working to enhance the ecological and economic health of the Gulf of Mexico through increased regional collaboration. GOMA has identified priority issues that are regionally significant and can be effectively addressed through augmented cooperation. (Scott Wilson; Lafayette, La.; 337-266-8644)

  • NWRC Participates in GOMA PIT Meeting: USGS NWRC Spatial Analysis Branch Chief Scott Wilson and Ecologist Kate Spear will participate in the Gulf of Mexico Alliance Ecosystems Integration and Assessment Priority Issue Team meeting December 4-5, in New Orleans, Louisiana. Spear will present an update on the “Emergent Wetlands Status and Trends in the Northern Gulf of Mexico: 1950-2010” report, which will provide scientists, managers, and citizens with valuable baseline information on emergent wetlands along the Gulf of Mexico coast. Emergent wetlands provide habitat—including food, cover, breeding and molting grounds—and other life requirements for a multitude of species, many of them threatened or endangered. (Kate Spear; Lafayette, La.; 337-266-8645)

  • U.S. FWS Focal Species Discussions: On December 4, Gulf Coast Prairie Landscape Conservation Cooperative staff will present a webinar on the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s Focal Species Strategy. The meeting will provide a forum to discuss how the Focal Species process relates to the ongoing USFWS Surrogate Species process. Surrogate species are used to represent other species or aspects of the environment and are used for comprehensive conservation planning that supports multiple species and habitats within a defined landscape or geographic area. Focal species are species that have been selected as priorities due to their relative ecological significance, management significance, legal mandates, and feasibility of implementing long-term, landscape based adaptive management. By addressing the needs of focal species, other species are expected to benefit. The webinar will advance the work of the GCP LCC science team. (Gabrielle Boudreaux Bodin; Lafayette, La.; 337-266-8501)

  • USGS Cooperative Geospatial Research: On December 4, Geographer John Barras, with the USGS Coastal and Marine Geology Program, and USGS NWRC Director Phil Turnipseed, will meet to discuss geospatial analysis projects incorporating LiDAR and remote sensing. Barras has devoted much of his research in recent years to coastal process detection using terrestrial LiDAR. Turnipseed and Barras will discuss how the NWRC and CMGP can work together in the near and long-term future. LiDAR stands for light detection and ranging. Where radar uses radio waves as a form of measurement, LiDAR uses light. Terrestrial LiDAR uses a sensor that emits laser pulses and measures distance by how long it takes the reflected laser beam to bounce back to the instrument. It can provide very precise data, to millimeter accuracy, enabling scientists to build high-resolution 3-D models. LiDAR was recently used to map flooding from Hurricanes Isaac and Sandy. (Gabrielle Boudreaux Bodin; Lafayette, La.; 337-266-8501)

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