Dr. Sada's primary research interest examines the relationships between environmental factors and the structure and function of arid land aquatic invertebrate and vertebrate communities. He also works on aquatic mollusk biogeography and taxonomy, habitat preference of rare aquatic animals in springs, and designing management programs for isolated wetlands species. He recently completed inventorying more than 1,100 springs in Joshua Tree and Death Valley National Parks, Grand Canyon-Parashant National Monument, and Lake Mead National Recreation Area. In the late 1990s, he prepared the Owens Basin Wetland and Aquatic Species Recovery Plan, Inyo and Mono Counties, California, and inventoried Owens Valley, California, springs for the City of Los Angeles, Department of Water and Power.
Dr. Sada is an applied ecologist and often assists government agencies, public utilities, and private organizations develop strategies that minimize environmental influences of land-use practices. His current work includes examining effects of human and natural disturbances on aquatic macroinvertebrate abundance and community structure in arid land springs, spring inventories throughout Nevada and California, developing spring survey protocols for the National Park Service and Bureau of Land Management, and revising the recovery plan for the Shortnose and Lost River Suckers. In other recent work he has examined the effects of increased discharge on trout communities in Sierra Nevada streams, guided baseline studies to assess the efficacy of restoration programs in the lower Truckee River, conducted spring and springsnail surveys throughout large portions of the southwest, and organized and developed an environmental and biotic database of approximately 4000 springs in the arid west.