How I Joined the Wood-in-the-Water Choir

Not everyone knows from an early age what they want to do when they grow up. I did. Raised in a small coastal Maine town that was home base for marine and estuarine research and with an affinity for the outdoors, I knew I was destined to pursue a career in marine biology. Right out…  More 

Generalist No More

Although the Yazoo Darter (Etheostoma raneyi) was previously thought to be a habitat generalist able to thrive in a variety of conditions, U.S. Forest Service scientists Kenneth Sterling and Melvin Warren guessed differently. “Literature suggested the darter was a generalist, but details at small spatial scales were lacking for its sand-bottom stream habitat in the…  More 

Coldwater Fish in Warming Streams

Scientists and managers are concerned about the future of trout in the southern Appalachian Mountains, but what about anglers? Over 100,000 people enjoy trout fishing in north Georgia. U.S. Forest Service scientist J. Michael Bowker recently coauthored a study about how trout anglers perceive climate change risks to trout. The study was led by Ramesh…  More 

Heat and Acid Could Squeeze Trout Out of Southern Appalachian Streams

A newly published research study that combines effects of warming temperatures from climate change with stream acidity projects average losses of around 10 percent of stream habitat for coldwater aquatic species for seven national forests in the southern Appalachians – and up to a 20 percent loss of habitat in the Pisgah and Nantahala National…  More 

The Future of Streams: Using Air Temperature to Model Stream Warming

Stream temperatures affect the health of aquatic animals as well as many other biological and ecological processes. However, finding out whether – or how much – streams are warming has been difficult, as long-term temperature data does not exist for many waterways. A new U.S. Forest Service Southern Research Station (SRS) study shows that long-term historic…  More 

Cold Water for Trout

Joint research by SRS and the U.S. Geological Survey The names of southern rivers—Roanoke, French Broad, Neuse, Apalachicola, Tar, Tennessee—are nothing if not evocative. As you read them, you may think first of the long human history of the area—or picture the lazy flow of summer water—but the rivers and streams of the southeastern United…  More 

Science Synthesis: Climate Change and Warmwater Species

Warmwater animal species—including freshwater fish, snails, mussels, and crayfish—can be loosely defined as those that prefer fairly high temperatures.  Warmwater fish for example, have temperature preferences above about 77 degrees.  Still, there are upper limits to the temperatures even warmwater species can live with, beyond which physiological processes break down and susceptibility to disease increases. Climate…  More