Skip to main content
ARS Home » Pacific West Area » Tucson, Arizona » SWRC » Docs » SWRC Bulletin (Summer 2010)

SWRC Bulletin (Summer 2010)
headline bar




The SWRC Bulletin

Sound Science for Water Decisions

Summer 2010

Latest Science Results (not yet published)

(click on title for more information)


Feedback between grass distribution and land surface form

Lidar remote sensing for forest canopy studies

Event-based Modeling of Fecal Coliform Concentrations in Runoff from Manured Fields

Evapotranspiration partitioning in semiarid creosotebush ecosystems: climate change implications of soil moisture control on shrubland transpiration

Short-term variations in rangeland soil moisture in response to low-tech erosion control structures

Projecting avian guild responses to restoration scenarios on a large dryland river (middle Rio Grande, New Mexico, U.S.A.)

Potential for extending Major Land Resource Area into Northern Mexico

Hydrologic response to precipitation pulses under and between shrubs in the Chihuahuan Desert, Arizona

Using TIMSAT with AVHRR imagery to analyze phenology in China from 1982 - 2006

The Emperor Needs Clothes - Improving Agricultural Economics Data Collection, Dissemination, and Analysis

Long-term runoff and sediment yields from small semi-arid watersheds in southern Arizona

Wind versus water erosion in a small semi-arid watershed on the Santa Rita Experimental Range in southeastern Arizona

Object-oriented classification to map impervious surfaces for hydrologic models

Improving Estimation of Riparian Land Surface Fluxes through Root zone Groundwater Interaction in Semiarid Environments

Cool-season ecosystems gas exchange of exotic and native desert grassland bunchgrasses

The relative controls of temperature, soil moisture, and plant functional group on soil CO2 efflux at diel, seasonal, and annual scales

Modeling erosion under future climates with the WEPP model

Headcut advance in a semiarid watershed in the southeastern United States

Soil moisture and ecosystem function responses of desert grassland varying in vegetative cover to a saturating precipitation pulse

Ecological Sites of the Walnut Gulch Experimental Watershed

Real-time Flash Flood Forecasting Using Weather Radar and a Distributed Rainfall-Runoff Model

Hydrologic and erosional responses to a drought-induced shift in a desert grassland community composition

Carbon dioxide exchange in a semidesert grassland responding to drought-induced vegetation change

Endogenous plant rhythms drive daily fluctuations of terrestrial CO2 exchange

Validation of Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer Soil Moisture Products

Confirmation of a distributed, physically-based ecohydrologic model in a semiarid region using high performance computing

Projecting avian response to linked changes in groundwater and riparian floodplain vegetation along a dryland river: a scenario analysis

The AGWA - KINEROS2 Suite of Modeling Tools in the context of watershed services valuation

The Use of Scenario Analysis to Assess Water Ecosystem Services in Response to future Land Use Change in the Willamette River Basin, Oregon

K2-O2 (KINEROS-Opus) Spatially Based Watershed Hydrologic and Biogeochemical Model

Patterns of grain-sized dependent sediment transport in low-ordered, ephemeral-channels

Temperature response curves of photosynthesis and ecosystem respiration across vegetation types

Repeat Photography using GigaPan Imagery in the San Simon Watershed, Arizona, USA

Bed-load and Morphological Evolution for Sediment Transport down Eroding Rills

Temperature and precipitation controls over leaf- and ecosystem--level CO2 flux along a woody plant encroachment gradient

Highlight from Recently Published Research:

View from Hereford Bridge of the San Pedro River Natural Conservation Area (SPRNCA) pre-(1984, left) and post- (1997, right) cattle removal (from Brookshire et al., 2010).


Natural scientists must evaluate how anthropogenic changes to hydrologic regimes alter ecological systems.  We have developed a hydro-bio-economic framework for the San Pedro River Region in Arizona, and we are developing a similar framework for the Middle Rio Grande of New Mexico. This system will translate management decisions into changes in ecosystem attributes which can be monetized providing a scientifically defensible management methodology housed within an easy to use Decision Support System.  For more information, click here.

Papers Published 2nd Half 2009 - 1st Half 2010:

V?squez-M?ndez, R., Ventura-Ramos, E., Oleschko, K., Hernandez-Sandoval, L., Parrot, J., Nearing, M.A. 2010. Soil Erosion and Runoff in Different Vegetation Patches from Semiarid Central Mexico. Catena. 80: 162-169. (828 KB PDF)


Xiao, J., Zhuang, Q., Law, B., Chen, J., Baldocchi, D., Cook, D., Oren, R., Richardson, A., Wharton, S., Ma, S., Martin, T., Verma, S., Suyker, A., Scott, R.L., Monson, R., Litvak, M., Hollinger, D., Sun, G., Davis, K.J., Bolstad, P., Burns, S., Curtis, P., Drake, B., Falk, M., Fischer, M., Foster, D., Gu, L., Hadley, J., Katul, G., Matamala, R., McNulty, S., Meyers, T., Munger, J.W., Moormets, A., Oechel, W., Paw U, K., Schmid, H., Starr, G., Torn, M., Wofsy, S. 2010. A continuous measure of gross primary production for the counterminous U.S. derived from MODIS and AmerFlux data. Remote Sensing of Environment. 114:576-591. (6.42 MB PDF)


Entekhari, D., Njoku, E., O'Neill, P., Kellogg, K., Crow, W., Edelstein, W., Entin, J., Goodman, S., Jackson, T., Johnson, J., Kimball, J., Peipmeier, J., Koster, R., McDonald, K., Moghaddam, M., Moran, M.S., Reichle, R., Shi, J., Spencer,M., Thurman, S. 2010. The Soil Moisture Active and Passive (SMAP) Mission. Proceedings of the IEEE . 98:5 704-716. (2.10 MB PDF)


Potts, D.L., Scott, R.L., Bayram, S., Carbonara, J. 2010. Woody plants modulate the temporal dynamics of soil moisture in a semi-arid mesquite savanna. Ecohydrology. 3:20-27. (1 MB PDF)


Jenerette, G.D., Scott, R.L., Huete, A.R. 2010. Functional differences between summer and winter season rain assessed with MODIS derived phenology in a semi-arid region. J. of Vegetation Science. 21:16-30. (499 KB PDF)


Schafer, K.V.R., Clark, K.L., Skowronski, N., Hamerlynck, E.P. 2010. Impact of insect defoliation as assessed with a canopy conductance constrained assimilation model. Global Change Biology. 16, 546-560, (338 KB PDF)


Polley, H.W., Emmerich, W.E., Bradford, J.A., Sims, P.L., Johnson, D.A., Saliendra, N,Z., Svejcar, T., Angell, R., Frank, A.B., Philips, R.L., Snyder, K.A., Morgan, J.A., Sanabria, J., Mielnick, P.C., Dugas, W.A. 2010. Precipitation Regulates the Response of Net Ecosystem CO2 Exchange to Environmental Variation on United States Rangelands. Rangeland Ecol Management 63:000-000.


Hamerlynck, E.P., Scott, R,L., Moran, M.S., Keefer, T.O., Huxman, T.E. 2010. Growing season ecosystem and leaf-level gas exchange of an exotic and native semiarid bunchgrass. Oecologia. 163:561-570 (499 KB PDF)


Scott, R.L. 2010. Using watershed balance to evaluate the accuracy of eddy covariance evaoporation measurements for three semiarid ecosystems. J. Ag. & Forest Meteorology. 150:219-225. (528 KB PDF)


Nearing, G.S., Moran, M.S., Holifield Collins, C., Thorp, K.R., Slack, S.C. 2010. An improved strategy for assimilating synthetic aperture radar imagery into modeled estimations of soil moisture through parameter optimization. Remote Sensing of Environment (857 KB PDF)


Brookshire, D.S., Goodrich, D.C., Dixon, M.D., Brand, A., Benedict, K., Lansey, K., Thacher, J., Broadbent, C., Stewart, S., McIntosh, M., Doosun, K. 2010. Ecosystem Services and Reallocation Choices: A Framework for Preserving Semi-Arid Regions in the Southwest. J. of Contemporary Water Research and Education. 144:60-74. (1.84 MB PDF)


Lizarraga-Celaya, C., Watt, C.J., Rodriguez, J.C., Garatuza-Payan, J., Scott, R.L., Saiz-Hernandez, J. 2010. Spatio-temporal variations in surface characteristics over the North American Monsoon region. Journal of Arid Environments. 74: 540-548. (620 KB PDF)


Perez-Ruiz, E.R., Garatuza-Payan, J., Watt, C.J., Rodriguez, J.C., Yepez, E.A., Scott, R.L. 2010. Carbon dioxide and water vapour exchange in a tropical dry forest as influenced by the North American Monsoon System (NAMS). J. of Arid Environments. 74: 556-563. (864 KB PDF)


McAuliffe, J.R., Hamerlynck, E.P. 2010. Perennial plant mortality in the Sonoran and Mojave Deserts in response to severe, multi-year drought. J. of Arid Environments. 74:885-896. (1.48 MB PDF)


Schaffner, M., Unkrich, C.L., Goodrich, D.C. 2010. Application of The KINEROS2 Site Specific Model to South-Central NY and Northeast PA: Forecasting Gaged and Ungaged Fast Responding Watersheds. NWS Eastern Region Technical Attachment No. 2010-01. (1.74 MB PDF)


Schnaffner, M., Smith, R. E., Quinton, J., Goodrich, D.C., Nearing, M.A. 2010. Soil-Erosion Models: Where do we Really Stand? Short Communication (Discussion) on the papers by Wainwright et al. (2008a, b, c). Earth Surface Processes and Landforms. P. 1-5. (92 KB PDF)


Svejcar,, Polley, H.W., Emmerich, W.E., Bradford, J.A., Sims, P.L., Johnson, D.A., Saliendra, N.Z., Svejcar, T., Angell, R., Frank, A.B., Phillips, R.L., Snyder, K.A., Morgan, J.A. 2009. Physiological and environmental regulation of interannual variability in CO2 exchange on rangelands in the western United States. Global Change Biology. 16: 90-1002,


Jenerette, G.D., Scott, R.L., Barron-Gafford, G.A., Huxman, T.E. 2009. Gross primary production variability associated with meteorology, physiology, leaf area, and water supply in contrasting woodland and grassland semiarid riparian ecosystems. J. Geophys. Res., 114, G04010, doi:10.1029/2009JG001074. (508 KB PDF)


Polyakov, V., Kimoto, A., Nearing, M.A., Nichols, M.H. 2009. Tracing sediment movement on semi-arid watershed using Rare Earth Elements. Soil Science Society of America. 73:1559-1565. (763 KB PDF)


Scott, R.L., Jenerette, G., Potts, D., Huxman, T. 2009. Effects of seasonal drought on net carbon dioxide exchange from a woody-plant-encroached semiarid grassland. Journal of Geophysical Research - Biogeosciences, 114, G04004. (642 KB PDF)


Shuttleworth, W.J., Serrat-Capdevila, A., Roderick, M.L., Scott, R.L. 2009. On the theory relating changes in area-average and pan evaporation. Quarterly Journal of the Royal Meteorological Society. 135: 1230-1247. (637 KB PDF)


Nichols, M.H., Ruyle, G.B., Nourbakhsh, I.R. 2009. Very High Resolution Panoramic Photography to Improve Conventional Rangeland Monitoring. Rangeland Ecology and Management. 62:579-582 .| (2.69 MB PDF)


Ritchie, J.R., Nearing, M.A., Rhoton, F. 2009. Sediment budgets and source determinations usng fallout Cesium-137 in a semiarid rangeland watershed, Arizona, USA. J. of Environmental Radioactivity. 100(8): 637-643 (1.04 MB PDF)


Our full publication list is available at:

Future Science Events:

Click here for information about workshops, including the 7th Annual RISE Symposium at University of Arizona on 2 October at UA - register now.

Rainfall Report:

WGEW and SRER data can be downloaded from the web site at
Geographic locations of the three precipitation records can be found at /ARSUserFiles/20221000/images/sw_az3.jpg


SWRC Scientists continue to win national awards and recognition, including a best-paper award for Shea Burns, a featured article about SWRC research by Mary Nichols, an OECD fellowship for Russ Scott, and new grants for SWRC research.  Click here for more information.

Staff News:    

Click here for SWRC news, including births, new hires, retirements, graduations, technology transfer and workshop reports.

SWRC Bulletin:

Contact the SWRC Research Leader, Dr. Mark Nearing at 520-670-6381 x152 or  Mailing address is USDA ARS SWRC, 2000 E. Allen Rd., Tucson, AZ 85719 and web address is  The SWRC Bulletin is online at /News/News.htm?modecode=53-42-45-00.

SWRC Mission:

To develop knowledge and technology to conserve water and soil in semi-arid lands.