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Weekly Highlights

MEMORANDUM

From: Gabrielle Boudreaux Bodin
Subject: Weekly Highlights, USGS National Wetlands Research Center, December 20, 2012  

Departmental/Bureau News - Current

  • Water Use Characteristics of Black Mangrove Communities: USGS NWRC research ecologists, Ken Krauss and Karen McKee, along with Mark Hester, a professor at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, co-authored a paper on water use characteristics of black mangrove communities that was published in the journal Ecohydrology. This study used a combination of sapflow measurements, leaf gas exchange techniques, and modeling to determine that mangrove vegetation may use less water during early growing season comparisons than salt marsh vegetation. Salt marsh vegetation is being replaced by mangroves in several locations near the latitudinal limit of mangroves, and this encroachment is likely to have important consequences for coastal ecosystem water budgeting. The study further indicates that mangrove ecosystems might also have an advantage over salt marshes during dry years because of an overall reduced water use requirement. Understanding the role that different vegetation types have in coastal water conservation is important for coastal zone managers to consider as vegetation regimes change with sea-level rise and decadal-scale warming. (Ken Krauss; Lafayette, La.; 337-266-8882)

  • Three Recognized for Years of Federal Service: Three USGS National Wetlands Research Center employees were recently recognized for their years of Federal service. Ecologist Jim Grace was recognized for 20 years of service, Administrative Assistant Jeniefer Pryor for 20 years of service, and Eric Pelletier for 10 years of service. (Phil Turnipseed; Lafayette, La.; 337-266-8501)

  • Gifted Students Learn About USGS Science: Thirty students from the Paul Breaux Middle School Gifted and Talented Program visited the USGS NWRC on December 18 and 20, to hear about migratory birds and other areas of USGS science. The students were treated to a special program on bird biology by Research Wildlife Biologist Clint Jeske, visited the radar lab to learn from Biologist Lori Randall how scientists track birds with radar, and were taught about lab analysis from Biologist John McCoy. They heard from Ecologist Ches Vervaeke how increased levels of CO2 affect wetland plants, learned about salamander research from Ecologist Brad Glorioso, and received a lesson on map creation from Geographer Chris Wells. NWRC supports and encourages the education of young people in the areas of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM). (Gabrielle Bodin; Lafayette, La.; 337-266-8655)

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