Presentation on theme: "Proposed Indicators for Ecological Health & Diversity of Rangelands Rod Heitschmidt, USDA Agricultural Research Service, Miles City, MT and Linda Joyce,"— Presentation transcript:
Proposed Indicators for Ecological Health & Diversity of Rangelands Rod Heitschmidt, USDA Agricultural Research Service, Miles City, MT and Linda Joyce, USDA Forest Service, Fort Collins, CO
Objective Provide an overview of potential indicators for assessing the ecological health and diversity of the Nations rangeland ecosystems.
Indicator 1 – Extent of Rangeland Quantifies the total amount of rangeland by location.
Indicator 2 – Extent of Rangeland Area by Community Type Measure of diversity of rangeland communities.
Indicator 3 – Fragmentation of Rangeland by Size, Pattern, and Dispersion of Rangeland Community Types Spatial measure of community diversity across landscapes.
Indicator 4 – Fragmentation of Rangeland by Size Spatial measure of parcel size diversity across landscapes.
Indicator 5 – Extent of Rangeland Area by Management Practice Spatial measure of land-use diversity across landscapes.
Indicator 6 – Percentage Cover of Invasive and Other Non-native Plant Species of Concern Measure of area occupied by species that cause or are likely to cause economic or environmental harm or harm to human health.
Indicator 7 – Percent Cover by Vegetation Class (i.e., grass, grass-like, forbs, and shrubs) Measure of the structural diversity of rangeland communities.
Indicator 8 – Presence and Status of Threatened and Endangered Species and Other Species of Concern Identifies changes in populations of species of concern.
Indicator 9 – Rangeland Plant and Animal Species that Occupy a Small Portion of Their Former Geographic Range Potentially identifies sensitive indicator species that reflect past and on-going changes in the structure and function of rangelands.
Indicator 10 – Population Levels and Current Geographical Range of Representative Species A measure of past and on-going changes in structure and function of rangelands.
Indicator 11 – Primary Productivity One measure of ecological health of rangelands.
Indicator 12 – Soil Carbon to Nitrogen Ratio Measure of the ecological health of rangelands as it relates to productivity capacity, nutrient cycling, etc.
Indicator 13 – Depth to Shallow Groundwater Measure of the hydrological health of rangelands as it affects vegetation.
Indicator 14 – Natural Lake Levels Important measure of the ecological health and stability of rangeland ecosystems.
Indicator 15 – Riparian Condition Important measure of the ecological health and stability of rangeland ecosystems.
Indicator 16 – Changes in Fire Regimes Changes in the frequency, intensity, seasonality, and extent of rangeland fires reflect on-going changes in the sustainability of current rangelands.
The Challenge? To develop a meaningful, measurable set of indicators that is accepted by both our colleagues and the general public.