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Date:10/5/2009

crease in wintering birds coincides with a general warming of temperatures in the North Pacific and Bering Sea. This warming can affect the availability of eelgrass, brants' primary food in their non-breeding season. Changing wind patterns might also make conditions less favorable for brant migration. For details and Pacific brant pictures check, out http://www.usgs.gov/newsroom/article.asp?ID=2302, or contact David Ward at dward@usgs.gov or (907) 786-7097.

Invading Island Applesnails

Invasive island applesnails have appeared again. USGS scientists have discovered island applesnail egg masses in Girard Park, Lafayette, La. These critters come from South America and likely started out as pets in aquariums. Once they invade the wild, they are difficult to get rid of. Island applesnails in Asia severely damage wetland plant communities and rice crops, and they are a potential vector for disease transmission to humans and animals. If this colony of snails spreads to the Vermilion River near Lafayette, they could invade rice crops as well as freshwater swamps and marshes. USGS scientists are experimenting with a variety of control options to recommend to state management agencies. For more information, visit http://www.nwrc.usgs.gov/invasive_species/nwrc_research.htm, or contact Jacoby Carter at carterj@usgs.gov or (337) 266-8620.

Toxic Snow Takes Toll on Tadpoles

Pesticides can travel hundreds of miles and turn up in some unexpected places. Scientists from the USGS and Southern Illinois University are linking declines in frog populations in the Sierra Nevada mountains with pesticides used on farms in the San Joaquin Valley. These pesticides can travel by wind to contaminate the snow falling in the Sierra Nevada.
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Contact: Kara Capelli
kcapelli@usgs.gov
703-648-5086
United States Geological Survey
Source:Eurekalert

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