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The Sonoran Desert is the only place in the world where Saguaro cacti grow. It can take up to 100 years for a Saguaro cactus to grow an arm in areas of low precipitation. The Sonoran Desert receives more rainfall than any other desert, which is approximately 10 inches (25 centimeters) a year on average. In the 1800s, many people used the Gila River as a trail across Arizona. This trail became known as the Gila Trail. Arizona is large enough to fit all of New England plus the State of Pennsylvania inside of it. Arizona is the only State besides Hawai'i that does not observe Daylight Savings time. Santa Fe, New Mexico, is the highest capital city in the United States at almost 7,200 feet (2,286 meters) above sea level....
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A greater percentage of Alaskan residents fish (53 percent in 2011) than residents of any other State. Alaska’s largest private sector employer is commercial fishing with total annual landings of fish products of 79 billion pounds (36 million metric tons). Nearly all of these fish are from self-sustaining populations. In 1867, the United States Secretary of State William H. Seward offered Russia $7,200,000, or two cents per acre, for Alaska. The State of Rhode Island could fit into Alaska 425 times. Most of America's salmon, crab, halibut, and herring come from Alaska. The State's coastline extends more than 6,600 miles. Alaska is the largest State in the United States and is more than twice the size of Texas.
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The saltwater triggerfish, humuhumunukunukuapua'a, is Hawaii's State fish and is well known for its long name. Hawaii is the only State in the United States with a tropical rain forest. Hawaii is the most isolated population center on the face of the earth. Hawaii is 2,390 miles (3,846 kilometers) from California; 3,850 miles (6,196 kilometers) from Japan; 4,900 miles (7,886 kilometers) from China; and 5,280 miles (8,497 kilometers) from the Philippines. The Waialua River is one of five navigable rivers in Hawaii. It drains off Waialeale Mountain, which averages 488 inches (1,240 centimeters) of rain per year and is considered the wettest spot on earth. Honolulu is the largest city in the world (it has the longest...
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A total of 15 large dams have been constructed along the 1,040-mile (1,674-kilometer) Snake River from its headwaters in the Rocky Mountains to its mouth on Lake Wallula, a reservoir formed behind McNary Dam on the Columbia River. Compared to the lower Snake River, the rest of the Columbia River watershed, and most of the Rocky Mountain West, the Upper Snake ecoregion has a high level of unique organisms (endemism), especially among freshwater mollusks, such as snails and clams. There are at least 21 snail and clam species of special concern, including 15 that appear to exist only in single clusters. There are 14 fish species found in the Upper Snake region that are not present elsewhere in the Columbia River watershed,...
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The Columbia River is the fourth largest river by volume in North America, draining an area the size of France (670,000 square kilometers). There are 14 dams on the main stem of the Columbia River and more than 450 dams throughout the entire Columbia Basin. The dams on the Columbia River and its tributaries produce half of the electricity used in the Pacific Northwest. These dams have completely altered river habitat and significantly changed the river’s flow, water quality, and Pacific salmon spawning runs along with the survival of out-migrating smolts. By discharge, the Sacramento River is the second largest river on the west coast of the contiguous United States, after only the Columbia River, which has almost...
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Activity polygons for Flathead National Forest. Activities include timber harvests, planting, thinning, and other forest management and natural activities.
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There are nine large dams on the 652-mile (1,049-kilometer) Tennessee River. There are another 23 large dams on the tributaries to the Tennessee River. Protected areas in the region ensure the recovery of endangered and threatened species of animals and plants, including the Longnose Darter, Ozark Cavefish, and Ozark Cave Crayfish. Six large reservoirs were created by dams in the White River Basin, Arkansas, from 1911 through 1960 and required the displacement of a large number of people. Nearly 400 people in Baxter County, Arkansas, were displaced to make way for the reservoir created by the Norfork Dam. The town of Forsyth, Missouri, was relocated in its entirety to a spot 2 miles (3.2 kilometers) from its previous...
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Mississippi designated the Largemouth Bass as the official State fish in 1974, and it is the State freshwater fish in Florida, Alabama, and Georgia. The Pascagoula River is a unique resource because it is the only nearly completely free flowing (undammed) river in the region. With more than 10 cubic kilometers (2.4 cu mi) of water flowing per year into the Gulf of Mexico, it is the largest (by volume) undammed river in the contiguous 48 States. In fact, it is also the largest undammed river in the warm, humid region (Köppen climate classification zone), with southeastern Brazil claiming the second and third largest rivers in the climate zone. As a result, there continues to be a concerted effort to prevent dam construction...
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The Missouri River is the longest river (2,341 miles or 3,767 kilometers) in North America and, in this region, forms the boundary of South Dakota and Nebraska and, after being joined by the James River from the north, forms the Iowa/Nebraska boundary. The longest tributary of the Missouri is the Platte River (310 main-stem miles (499 kilometers) and 1,050 miles (1,690 kilometers) including the longest main tributary), which joins from the west. Nebraska has the largest aquifer (underground lake/water supply) in the United States, the Ogalala aquifer, and has more subsurface groundwater reserves than any other State in the continental United States. Nebraska’s name originates from an Oto Indian word meaning “flat...
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Approximately 90 percent of the drinking water for the Washington, D.C. area comes from the Potomac River. An average of approximately 486 million gallons (1.8 million cubic meters) of water is withdrawn from the Potomac River daily in the Washington area for water supply. This is equivalent to a mid-size river with a flow of 750 cubic feet per second. At 464 miles (747 kilometers) long, the Susquehanna River is the longest river on the American east coast that drains into the Atlantic Ocean. When its watershed area is included, it is the 16th largest river in the United States and the longest river in the continental United States without commercial boat traffic today. The Susquehanna River: is almost a mile (1.6...
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Minnesota is known as “The Land of 10,000 Lakes” and officially there are 11,842 lakes more than 10 acres (40,000 m²) in size. The prevalence of lakes has generated many repeat names. For example, there are more than 200 Mud Lakes, 150 Long Lakes, and 120 Rice Lakes. Minnesota's waters flow outward in three directions: 1) north to Hudson Bay in Canada; 2) east to the Atlantic Ocean; and 3) south to the Gulf of Mexico. Wisconsin and Michigan both have waters that flow east to the Atlantic Ocean and south to the Gulf of Mexico. Wetlands acreage present in 1850: 18.6 million acres (7.5 million hectares). Wetlands acreage present in 2008: 10.6 million acres (4.3 million hectares). Massive ice sheets at least 1 kilometer...
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The Connecticut River is the largest river in New England. It flows 410 miles (660 kilometers) from its source to the Long Island Sound. New Hampshire and Vermont share about two-thirds of the river's length, or 275 miles (443 kilometers). The Connecticut River: is named after the Pequot word “quinetucket,” meaning “long tidal river.” The European corruption of that begat “Connecticut.” provides 70 percent of all the freshwater entering Long Island Sound. The Connecticut River has more than 1,000 dams on its tributaries and 16 dams on its main stem, 12 of which are hydropower projects. Many of these dams are more than 100 years old. The first dinosaur tracks in North America were discovered in Triassic rocks...
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Invasive predatory Flathead Catfish are causing population declines of native Redbreast Sunfish and species of Bullhead and Madtom catfishes in Georgia, North Carolina, and South Carolina, along with issues for other migratory species, such as Alewife, Blueback Herring, and American Shad. The Georgia Department of Natural Resources maintains a program to control the population in the Satilla River, and North and South Carolina State fishery agencies have similar efforts and concerns. The Savannah River Basin is home to more than 75 species of rare plants and animals and 110 fish species. There are 18 Federally listed fish species in the Savannah River Basin—five are Federally listed as threatened and 13 are Federally...
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The Ohio River flows through or borders six States and is 981 miles (1,579 kilometers) long, starting at the confluence of the Allegheny and Monongahela Rivers in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and ending in Cairo, Illinois, where it flows into the Mississippi River. At the confluence, the Ohio River is considerably bigger than the Mississippi River. More than 25 million people, almost 10 percent of the U.S. population, live in the Ohio River Basin, and it is source of drinking water for more than 3 million people even though many sections do not meet water quality standards for bacteria and pathogens, PCBs, lead, mercury, metals, organics, and other pollutants. There are 20 dams on the Ohio River that are managed by...
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Texas has flown flags for six different nations, which complicates fisheries management in this region. Spain 1519-1685 France 1685-1690 Spain 1690-1821 Mexico 1821-1836 Republic of Texas 1836-1845 United States 1845-1861 Confederate States 1861-1865 United States 1865 to present More land is farmed in Texas than in any other State. Texas has 624 miles (1,024 kilometers) of coastline along the Gulf of Mexico. The Trinity River is 710 miles (1,140 kilometers) long and is the longest river that flows entirely within the State of Texas. Original Federal plans called for building 36 locks and dams from Trinity Bay near Houston to Dallas but only 7 were built. The Brazos River is translated as "The River of the Arms...


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