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What's New With WET?

Follow WET on Instagram (@salmon.underfoot) to see images from the team studying young salmon as they migrate out to sea along Seattle's new seawall!


Sampling juvenile salmon with a fyke net in a tidal channel of the Columbia River estuary.


WET conducts research investigating both natural and restored, enhanced and created wetlands and other shallow coastal ecosystems, emphasizing ecological and associated land-margin processes that sustain their structure and function. Our study sites are concentrated in Puget Sound (Washington State), the Columbia River estuary, coastal Oregon, San Francisco Bay, Sacramento/San Joaquin Delta, Kachemak Bay, Alaska, and other coastal estuaries of the Pacific Northwest region of North America. These studies are supported almost entirely by research grants and contracts, from various federal, state and local government funding sources.

We study ecosystem-, community- and habitat-level interactions, with particular emphasis on predator–prey relationships and the sources, organization and flow of organic matter through food webs. Recent research emphasis has stressed integration of such basic interactions to applied issues such as restoration, creation and enhancement of estuarine and coastal wetland ecosystems, ecological approaches to evaluating the success of anthropogenic stressors and manipulations, and the distribution of and ecosystem responses to non-indigenous species. WET research projects and initiatives fall into a variety of basic and applied ecological topics, as described in more detail in the WET Research Map Tour below. For more information on some of our Special Projects, and for access to data, click on Data.