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San Francisco Bay Estuary Priority Ecosystem Study

USGS scientists picking clams out of San Francisco Bay bottom sediments in box sieves.
USGS scientists picking clams out of San Francisco Bay bottom sediments in box sieves on board the USGS Research Vessel Polaris.

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Diverse organic and inorganic contaminants that vary widely in their environmental behavior, sources, and toxicity enter the San Francisco Bay estuary. Toxic substances enter the estuary in agricultural and urban runoff and in discharges from municipal wastewater facilities and industries. The study focuses on the movement, fate, and effect of contaminants from a variety of agricultural, industrial, and urban sources, such as pesticides and toxic trace elements, and on the effects of the highly varying hydrologic conditions in river--estuarine environments. Scientists are developing an approach to characterize the distribution of contamination and the resulting ecological effects that will be applied in similar environments elsewhere.

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  • Conceptual model for Potamocorbula amurensis: Thompson, J.K., and Parchaso, F., in Delta Regional Ecosystem Restoration Implementation Plan (DRERIP) Conceptual Models: Sacramento, Calif., California Department of Fish and Wildlife, Ecosystem Restoration Program (IN PRESS).

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