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Weekly Highlights


From: Gabrielle Boudreaux Bodin
Subject: Weekly Highlights, USGS National Wetlands Research Center, May 23, 2013

Departmental/Bureau News - Current

Gulf of Mexico Science: Phil Turnipseed, NWRC Director, will welcome Ben Scaggs, U.S. EPA Gulf of Mexico Program (GMPO) Director, along with several of his staff, to the NWRC May 29 and 30. GMPO is a non-regulatory consortium focused on protecting, maintaining, and restoring the health and productivity of the Gulf of Mexico. Turnipseed will give an overview of the incredible science ongoing and planned at the NWRC followed by presentations on land change/modeling (Brady Couvillion), the Coastwide Reference Monitoring System (Sarai Piazza), and adaptive management (Greg Steyer). The group will be briefed on activities of the Spatial Analysis Branch, the Landscape Conservation Cooperatives, the Gulf Coast Joint Venture, National Wetlands Inventory work for NRDA, and monitoring and characterization of feral hogs (Scott Wilson). An overview of the NWRC Advanced Applications Team’s projects (Craig Conzelmann) will conclude the morning session. Research Ornithologist Wylie Barrow will start the afternoon session with a presentation on work his group is involved with using NEXRAD Doppler Radar to track migratory bird patterns. Ecologists Mike Osland and Hardin Waddle will explain their work involving wetland modeling and amphibian research monitoring, respectively. Scaggs is expected to tour NWRC’s facilities and accompany researchers into the field for a site visit to the Buffalo Cove area, a cypress-tupelo forest in the Atchafalaya Basin. (Phil Turnipseed; Lafayette, La.; 337-266-8501)

Amphibian Occupancy Trends: NWRC Research Ecologist Hardin Waddle is part of the team that developed the first-ever quantitative estimate of how fast frogs, toads and salamanders in the United States are disappearing from their habitats. Amphibians have been a national conservation concern for some time. As indicator species, they are sensitive to specific environmental factors and their fate can help predict the health of the ecosystem. The new report, Trends in Amphibian Occupancy in the United States, was published in PLoS ONE, an open-access journal. (Hardin Waddle; Lafayette, La.; 337-266-8671)

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