Cooperative Research Units
Education, Research And Technical Assistance For Managing Our Natural Resources
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A heads up view of aquatic ecosystem sustainability: understanding the terrestrial landscape scale impacts of urbanization on aquatic biota

Hughes Creek (southeast Australia)


September 2012 - August 2015


This work on environmental and societal sustainability has two main objectives: 1) Examine how patterns of stream fish and insect community composition relate to watershed-scale versus landscape-scale land-use patterns. 2) Examine how land-use development scenarios impact the suitability of land acquisition strategies for conserving stream fish and insect communities. Objective 1 takes a multi-scale approach to understanding how land-use patterns relate to stream fish and insect community structure by using existing community data and GIS analysis of land-use patterns. Objective 2 will take an interdisciplinary approach to understanding how different land acquisition strategies benefit stream fish and insect populations while maintaining economic growth and societal needs. The work will incorporate land-use development models. The results from objective 2 will be transformed into a decision-support system (DSS) developed to aid agency personnel with land acquisition activities.

Research Products and Activities


  • Smith, R.F. and A.H. Roy. 2014. Landscape and watershed predictors of insect and fish assemblage in Massachusetts streams. Annual Meeting of the New England Association of Environmental Biologists, 26-28 March 2014, Burlington, VT.
  • Smith, R.F. and A.H. Roy. 2014. How watershed and landscape land use are related should guide investigations of dispersal by stream biota in urbanizing landscapes. Third Symposium on Urbanization and Stream Ecology, 15-17 May 2014, Portland, Oregon.
  • Smith, R.F. and A.H. Roy. 2014. Thinking outside the shed: Examining landscape characteristics as part of management strategies for sustaining stream ecosystems. Joint Aquatic Sciences Meeting, 18-22 May 2014, Portland, OR.
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Current Staff

Federal Staff: 95

Masters Students: 240

Phd Students: 143

Post Docs: 52

University Staff: 245

5 Year Summary

Students graduated: 702

Scientific Publications: 1948

Presentations: 4253



  • Allison RoyCo-Principal Investigator
  • Robert SmithPrincipal Investigator
  • Elizabeth BrabecCo-Principal Investigator
  • Laura McPhersonStudent
  • Alison TenhulzenStudent
  • Robert RyanCo-Principal Investigator

Funding Agencies

  • National Science Foundation/GEO


Cooperative Research Units Program Headquarters Cooperators

  1. U.S. Geological Survey