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USGS Postdoctoral Researcher Studying Effects of Dam Removal on Marine Ecosystems

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Melissa Foley has joined the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Pacific Coastal and Marine Science Center as a postdoctoral researcher in the USGS Mendenhall Research Fellowship Program.

Melissa Foley
Above: Melissa Foley [larger version]

Melissa received her Ph.D. in marine ecology from the University of California, Santa Cruz, where her research focused on the movement of materials across the land-sea interface and the influences of land-based materials on nearshore marine-ecosystem structure and functioning. After earning her Ph.D., Melissa was an early career fellow at Stanford University's Center for Ocean Solutions, where she worked on the center's Ecosystem Health Initiative.

Melissa is focusing her USGS postdoctoral work on how two large dam removals on the Elwha River in the State of Washington will affect marine ecosystems.

"The timing of her hiring could not be more perfect," said USGS geologist Jon Warrick, one of Melissa's co-advisors, "because we are just beginning to see large changes in the Elwha nearshore morphology from the massive releases of sediment into the river."

Melissa's postdoctoral work will focus mostly on the patterns and impacts of turbidity, sedimentation, and nutrient flux related to the dam removals—a focus that will make her work applicable to other large-scale restoration and sediment-management activities around the world.

In addition to Warrick, Melissa's co-advisors are Amy Draut (USGS), Chris Magirl (USGS), Jennifer Bountry (U.S. Bureau of Reclamation), and Matt Beirne (Lower Klallam Elwha Tribe).

Welcome, Melissa!

Related Websites
USGS Science to Support the Elwha River Restoration Project

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Juvenile Surf Smelt and Sand Lance in Central Puget Sound, Washington

Groundbreaking Gas Hydrate Research

Interactive Tool for Assessing Climate-Change Impacts

Sooty Shearwater Migration on Display

Future of Pacific Northwest Seagrasses in a Changing Climate

Staff USGS Postdoctoral Researcher Studying Effects of Dam Removal


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