Science news and reports: Streamgages measure drought and earthquake impacts on water; Ocean Beach’s sand supply, gravel replenishment program in Nimbus Basin, CDFW seeking research projects on predation, and more science news …

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In science news this week, USGS streamgages measure drought and earthquake impacts on water; Ocean Beach’s sand supply dries up, leaving plovers squeezed; Gravel replenishment program in Nimbus Basin continues successful run; CDFW seeking research projects on watershed predation of threatened and endangered species; CDFW seeks public comment on wetland restoration program; native vegetation makes a comeback on Santa Cruz Island;  Urban waters record salt in our food, cement in our sidewalks; ENSO + Climate Change = Headache; GWP Perspectives Paper: ‘The Links Between Land Use and Groundwater’; Rules of thumb for climate change turned upside down: Wet and dry regions recalculated; and U. S. temperature extremes and the polar jet stream

http://www.usgs.gov/newsroom/images/2014_09_16/log_0_pres2.jpgStreamgages measure drought, earthquake impacts on water: While the national streamflow database is documenting evidence of California’s historic drought, the database is also confirming another recently seen hydrologic phenomenon: earthquake-induced increases in streamflow.  Rivers and streams across California are flowing at record lows. Streamflow data from 182 U.S. Geological Survey streamgages in California with at least 30 years of record, currently show that 62 percent of streamgages are recording flows less 25 percent of normal, and 44 percent are recording flows less than 10 percent of normal. At several streamgage sites, scientists have had to extend measurement scales and rating formulas that help calculate accurate streamflow, because of record low water flows.  Meanwhile, in the aftermath of the August 24 magnitude 6.0 South Napa Earthquake in California, water has begun to flow again in some previously-dry surrounding creeks, rivers and streams prompting many nearby residents to scratch their heads. … ”  Continue reading at the USGS here:  Streamgages Measure Drought, Earthquake Impacts on Water

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Ocean Beach’s sand supply dries up, leaving plovers squeezed:  “Marching north along Ocean Beach on the San Francisco coast, Dan Murphy stops and points his binoculars at a clutch of birds that look like cotton balls with beaks.  “There they are,” says Murphy, a veteran bird watcher and volunteer with the Golden Gate Audubon Society. “It’s a scarce flock.”  Four western snowy plovers, small shorebirds listed as threatened under the Endangered Species Act, trot back and forth across the sand. … ”  Read more from Bay-Nature here:  Ocean Beach’s sand supply dries up, leaving plovers squeezed

American River gravel USFWSGravel Replenishment Program in Nimbus Basin continues successful run:  “Work began on the American River August 4 for its yearly project to restore quality spawning and rearing habitat for harmed species such as Chinook salmon and steelhead. The tremendously successful program, officially called the 2014 American River Salmonid Spawning and Rearing Habitat Restoration Project, wrapped up its seventh year, despite yearly roadblocks, such as the current drought.  Every year since 2008, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Bureau of Reclamation (BOR) and its partners, designed and then implemented a gravel addition project in cooperation with other agencies’ involvement. … ”  Read more from USFWS Field Notes here:  BAY-DELTA FWO: 2014’s Gravel Replenishment Program in Nimbus Basin Continues Successful Run

CDFW Seeking Research Projects on Watershed Predation of Threatened and Endangered Species:  “The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) is announcing the public release of a proposal solicitation package (PSP) titled Research Regarding Predation on Threatened and/or Endangered Species in the Delta, Sacramento and San Joaquin Watersheds. CDFW has approximately $1 million available to award to grantees to conduct research as outlined in the PSP.  As a condition of funding, grantees must issue a publication-worthy final report at the conclusion of the three-year grant term. … ”  Continue reading at the Department of Fish and Wildlife here: CDFW Seeking Research Projects on Watershed Predation of Threatened and Endangered Species

https://cdfgnews.files.wordpress.com/2014/09/ybwa-wetland-lr.jpgCDFW seeks public comment on wetland restoration program:  “CDFW recently initiated its Wetlands Restoration Greenhouse Gas Reduction Grant Program, and is seeking public input on the development of a solicitation for projects to reduce greenhouse gases (GHG) and achieve co-benefits for fish and wildlife habitat. CDFW is seeking input on the geographic scope of projects, solicitation priorities, types of projects, methods of monitoring and quantifying GHG reduction, and proposal evaluation criteria for this solicitation. The project area is currently defined as the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta, coastal wetlands and mountain meadows. … ”  Read more from the Department of Fish and Wildlife here:  Department of Fish and Wildlife seeks public comment on wetland restoration program

Native vegetation makes a comeback on Santa Cruz Island:  “On islands, imported plants and animals can spell ecological disaster. The Aleutians, the Galápagos, the Falklands, Hawaii, and countless other archipelagoes have seen species such as rats, goats, brown tree snakes, and exotic grasses delivered by human visitors. Many of the newcomers have flourished to the point of driving unique island species extinct.  People are now trying to reverse the damage of these ill-advised translocations. Step one is obvious: eradicate the invaders. Step two, however, isn’t so clear. Experts argue over whether expensive, time-consuming, and labor-intensive restoration is necessary, or if simply removing non-natives is enough. ... ”  Read more from PhysOrg here: Native vegetation makes a comeback on Santa Cruz Island

Stream restoration involving reconnection of an urban waterway near Baltimore with its floodplain.A river runs through it: U.S. cities’ waterways show consistent patterns of evolution: Urban waters record salt in our food, cement in our sidewalks:Boston and Baltimore, San Juan and Tucson. What do they have in common?  The cities’ ecosystems, especially their waterways, are all threatened by road salt, dissolved concrete, sewage overflows and algae blooms, say urban ecologists publishing a series of 14 papers this week in a special issue of the journal Biogeochemistry. … “This synthesis brings the power of evolutionary biology to understanding ecosystem processes in urban environments, some of the most rapidly changing habitats globally,” says Saran Twombly, NSF LTER program director. ... ”  Continue reading at the National Science Foundation here: A river runs through it: U.S. cities’ waterways show consistent patterns of evolution

ENSO + Climate Change = Headache:  The ENSO blog writes: “One of the best things about this blog is the number of excellent comments we get on each post. And after spending some time reading your comments for inspiration, I’ve come to several conclusions. One: people really care about the forecast for this winter and two: people are curious about climate change’s impact on ENSO. While I cannot tell you about snow this winter (full disclosure: I love snow and hope for a lot… everywhere. Always.), I can discuss the impact this grand experiment we have started with our atmosphere—climate change—could have on ENSO.  In short, if you are someone who wants more or stronger ENSO events in the future, I have great news for you–research supports that. If you are someone who wants fewer or weaker ENSO events in the future, don’t worry–research supports that too. … ”  Continue reading at the ENSO blog here:  ENSO + Climate Change = Headache

GWP Perspectives Paper: ‘The Links Between Land Use and Groundwater’: Michael Campana at the Water Wired blog writes: “Is this awesome or what? From my friends at the Global Water Partnership: The Links Between Land Use and Groundwater, by Stephen Foster and Jan Cherlet.   From the blurb:  This paper argues that a common understanding of groundwater–land and Untitled land–groundwater interaction is needed to facilitate cross-sector dialogue on governance needs and management approaches, targeted at sustaining water resources and enhancing land productivity. ... ”  Continue reading and download the paper at the Water Wired blog here:  GWP Perspectives Paper: ‘The Links Between Land Use and Groundwater’

Rules of thumb for climate change turned upside down: Wet and dry regions recalculated: “With a new analysis of land regions, ETH climate researcher are challenging the general climate change precept that dry regions are getting drier and wet regions are getting wetter. In some regions they are encountering divergent trends.  Based on models and observations, climate scientists have devised a simplified formula to describe one of the consequences of climate change: regions already marked by droughts will continue to dry out in the future climate. Regions that already have a moist climate will experience additional rainfall. In short: dry gets drier; wet gets wetter (DDWW). … ”  Continue reading at Science Daily here:  Rules of thumb for climate change turned upside down: Wet and dry regions recalculated

U. S. temperature extremes and the polar jet stream:  “In our previous post, we described how very unusual the temperature extremes have been across the United States so far in 2014. We talked about how, for any given half-year period, you might see a large part of the country experiencing warm extremes or cold extremes, but generally not both. By contrast, January-July 2014 set a record for having large areas of both temperature extremes.  Looking back at what the atmosphere was doing during this time period quickly reveals at least part of what was going on: the polar jet stream got into a serious rut. … ”  Read more from the ENSO blog here: U.S. temperature extremes and the polar jet stream

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