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Upper Midwest Environmental Sciences Center

November 2016 Activity Highlights
Upper Midwest Environmental Sciences Center
La Crosse, Wisconsin

Topics covered in the November activity report.

Awards and Scientific Achievements

USGS Scientists to Receive SETAC’s Government Service Award

Christine and Thomas Custer (UMESC) received the Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry’s (SETAC) Government Service Award, at the 7th Annual SETAC World Congress/SETAC North America 37th Annual Meeting, November 6-10, 2016, in Orlando, FL.  The press release associated with this award described the Custer’s contribution to environmental toxicology and chemistry as,
... the research and work that they have compiled jointly have had significant impact on natural resource damage assessments and remediation activities at the Department of the Interior and state agencies. The Custers have worked in avian ecotoxicology for decades, contributing to the research on contaminant exposure and effects on reproduction and other biomarkers in bird populations. They have championed the use of environmental chemistry and ecotoxicology in regulation and management and developed biomonitoring methodologies that have been internationally accepted.
For more information contact Christine and Thomas Custer at, and (Environmental Health).

USGS Scientist to Receive Recognition as an Exceptional Reviewer for the Journal, Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry

Richard Erickson was recognized as an exceptional reviewer for the journal Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry (ET&C), by the Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry (SETAC) at the 7th Annual SETAC World Congress/SETAC North America 37th Annual Meeting, November 6-10, 2016, in Orlando, FL. The list of the 15 exceptional reviewers appeared in the January 2017 issue of ET&C. Each reviewer was selected based on the quality and quality of their reviews, from a pool of 800+ reviewers.

Collaborative Science

Invited Seminar and Potential Research Collaborations, University of Minnesota’s Department of Soil, Water, and Climate

Teresa Newton presented an invited seminar on her research efforts with UMESC’s native mussel team to conserve and restore native freshwater mussels in the Upper Mississippi River, at the University of Minnesota, November 30, 2016.  While at the University Newton discussed the potential for collaborative efforts to evaluate the effects of ammonia on native mussels with Satish Gupta, Professor of Emerging Issues in Soil and Water (Teresa Newton,, Ecosystems).

Partner Meetings

Lake Michigan Coordination Council Meeting

Jenny Hanson and Jayme Stone participated in the Lake Michigan Monitoring Coordination Council (LMMCC) Fall 2016 Meeting at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee’s School of Freshwater Sciences, November 9-10, 2016. At the meeting there was presentations related to habitat-fisheries, contaminants-microplastics, and sustainability. There were breakout groups that discussed Lake Michigan and LMMCC priorities stemming from science and management issues, data needs, monitoring needs and opportunities. In addition to the presentations, updates were shared on the LAMP partnership and LMMCC’s focus/alignment with it and the Cooperative Science and Monitoring Initiative (CSMI) process (Jenny Hanson,, Ecosystems).

Publications and Tools

Linear regression best recovered trend estimates from aggregated LTRM data

Richard Erickson, Brian Gray (UMESC), and Eric Eager (UW-La Crosse) compared the ability of 3 state-space models, a simple linear regression model, and an autoregressive model to recover trends from simulated data and observed ("real") data from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ Upper Mississippi River Restoration (UMRR) Program's Long Term Resource Monitoring (LTRM) Element. The authors found the simple linear regression was best able to recover linear trend from the aggregated vegetation and fish data. The paper is available online at,XRNLRQ2R, the code is available at, and the raw data is available at (Richard Erickson,, Ecosystems).

Erickson, R.A., Gray, B.R., Eager, E.A. 2017. Estimating linear temporal trends from aggregated environmental monitoring data. Ecological Indicators. Vol. 74:62-72. DOI: 10.1016/j.ecolind.2016.10.036.

Scientific Meetings, Conferences, and Workshops

2016 North American SETAC Meeting

Christine Custer, Thomas Custer, and Richard Erickson gave a series of presentations at the 2016 Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry (SETAC) North America meeting in Orlando, FL, November 7-10, 2016.  Presentations included the following (Christine Custer or Richard Erickson, or, Environmental Health & Ecosystems).

Workshop: Modeling River Flow using the International River Interface Cooperative (IRIC) Interface

KathiJo Jankowski and Molly Van Appledorn attended the workshop, “Introduction to Modeling River Flow and Morphodynamics within the IRIC Interface,” November 16-17, 2016, at the Great Lakes Science Center in Ann Arbor, MI. The course is taught by Jonathan Nelson, Richard McDonald, and Paul Kinzel (GSTL), and covered a broad spectrum of hydraulic and sediment transport river modeling techniques.  Background information on the training class is available at, (Molly Van Appledorn,, Ecosystems).  


ET&C – Environmental Toxicology and Contaminants
GSTL – Geospatial Sciences technology Laboratory
IRIC – International River Interface Cooperative
LMMCC – Lake Michigan Monitoring Coordination Council
LTRM – Long Term Resource Monitoring
SETAC – Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry
UMESC – Upper Midwest Environmental Sciences Center
UMRR – Upper Mississippi River Restoration
UWL – University of Wisconsin at La Crosse

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