Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center

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Our Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center's priority is to continue the important work of the Department of the Interior and the USGS, while also maintaining the health and safety of our employees and community.  Based on guidance from the White House, the CDC, and state and local authorities, we are shifting our operations to a virtual mode and have minimal staffing within our offices. 

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Migratory Bird Center of Excellence

Migratory Bird Center of Excellence

The Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center is known for its long history of meeting the migratory-bird research needs of Department of the Interior and the Nation.

NPWRC History

Meet the Northern Prairie Staff

Meet the Northern Prairie Staff

Our employee directory contains names, position titles, phone numbers, email addresses, and biographies of Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center staff.

Employee Directory

NPWRC Science Topics

Science conducted by Northern Prairie scientists can be grouped into six primary research topics:

Species Biology

Species Stressors

Management and Restoration

Invasive Species

Fish and Wildlife Disease

Climate and Land Use

NPWRC Science

News

Date published: April 5, 2021

Piping Plovers Breed Less and Move More in the Northern Great Plains

Piping plover breeding groups in the Northern Great Plains are notably connected through movements between habitats and show lower reproductive rates than previously thought, according to a new U.S. Geological Survey study. These new findings point to a need for further studies and suggest the species may show a higher extinction risk than currently presumed.
 

Date published: December 28, 2020

Chronic Wasting Disease: Can Science Save Our Dear Deer?

What’s in a name? Chronic wasting disease sounds ominous, too descriptive for comfort, almost impolite in its directness. It is, in fact, a truthful name for a disease and a real threat to North America’s cervids.

Date published: June 20, 2019

Honey Bee Helpers: It Takes a Village to Conserve a Colony

Do you eat fruits and vegetables? What about nuts? If so, you can thank an insect pollinator, usually a honey bee. These small insects play a major role in pollinating the world’s plants, including those we eat regularly. They also increase our nation’s crop values each year by more than 15 billion dollars.

Publications

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Year Published: 2021

U.S. Geological Survey—Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center 2019–20 research activity report

The mission of Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center is to provide scientific information needed to conserve and manage the Nation’s natural capital for current and future generations, with an emphasis on migratory birds, Department of the Interior trust resources, and ecosystems of the Nation’s interior. This report provides an overview of...

Sherfy, Mark H.
Sherfy, M.H., ed., 2021, U.S. Geological Survey—Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center 2019–20 research activity report: U.S. Geological Survey Circular 1481, 67 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/cir1481.

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Year Published: 2021

Balancing the need for seed against invasive species risks in prairie habitat restorations

Adequate diversity and abundance of native seed for large-scale grassland restorations often require commercially produced seed from distant sources. However, as sourcing distance increases, the likelihood of inadvertent introduction of multiple novel, non-native weed species as seed contaminants also increases. We created a model to determine an...

Larson, Jennifer L; Larson, Diane L.; Venette, Robert

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Year Published: 2021

The effects of management practices on grassland birds—Lark Sparrow (Chondestes grammacus)

Keys to Lark Sparrow (Chondestes grammacus) management include providing open grasslands with sparse-to-moderate herbaceous and litter cover and a woody component and allowing occasional burning or moderate grazing. Lark Sparrows have been reported to use habitats with 10–63 centimeters (cm) average vegetation height, 10–54 percent grass cover, 9–...

Shaffer, Jill A.; Igl, Lawrence D.; Johnson, Douglas H.; Sondreal, Marriah L.; Goldade, Christopher M.; Parkin, Barry D.; Euliss, Betty R.
Shaffer, J.A., Igl, L.D., Johnson, D.H., Sondreal, M.L., Goldade, C.M., Parkin, B.D., and Euliss, B.R., 2021, The effects of management practices on grassland birds—Lark Sparrow (Chondestes grammacus), chap. DD of Johnson, D.H., Igl, L.D., Shaffer, J.A., and DeLong, J.P., eds., The effects of management practices on grassland birds: U.S. Geological Survey Professional Paper 1842, 16 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/pp1842DD.