Created to address critical research needs in the Southwestern U.S. the SBSC was formed on October 1, 2002 in Flagstaff, Arizona. The center has a staff of approximately 110 Federal employees and more than 40 university and contract employees. SBSC research includes water use and the effects of livestock grazing, wild land fires, invasive species, environmental contaminants, declining populations of native species, and urban development on the Southwest region. As a unit of the USGS, the mission of the Southwest Biological Science Center (SBSC) is to provide quality scientific information needed to conserve and manage natural and biological resources, with an emphasis on the species and ecosystems of the southwestern United States.
Specifically, SBSC's goals include the following:
* Evaluate responses of fauna and flora to natural and anthropogenic influences;
* Develop the biological knowledge needed to sustain and restore ecosystems;
* Develop tools for assessing status and trends of animal and plant populations;
* Use integrated, long-term research to model linkages among ecosystem components;
* Provide a scientific foundation for federal policies and management strategies related to natural resources in the arid southwest; and
* Disseminate the latest in technical information and research findings in a timely manner to client agencies, conservation organizations, and others responsible for the management of our Nation's natural resources.