Southwest Biological Science Center
Variability in eddy sandbar dynamics during two decades of controlled flooding of the Colorado River in the Grand Canyon
Sandbars are iconic features of the Colorado River in the Grand Canyon, Arizona, U.S.A. Following completion of Glen Canyon Dam in 1963, sediment deficit conditions caused erosion of eddy sandbars throughout much of the 360 km study reach downstream from the dam. Controlled floods in 1996, 2004, and 2008 demonstrated that sand on the channel...Mueller, Erich R.; Grams, Paul E.; Hazel, Joseph E.; Schmidt, John C.
Landscape-scale processes influence riparian plant composition along a regulated river
Hierarchical frameworks are useful constructs when exploring landscape- and local-scale factors affecting patterns of vegetation in riparian areas. In drylands, which have steep environmental gradients and high habitat heterogeneity, landscape-scale variables, such as climate, can change rapidly along a river's course, affecting the relative...Palmquist, Emily C.; Ralston, Barbara; Merritt, David M.; Shafroth, Patrick B.
Quantifying animal movement for caching foragers: the path identification index (PII) and cougars, Puma concolor
Relocation studies of animal movement have focused on directed versus area restricted movement, which rely on correlations between step-length and turn angles, along with a degree of stationarity through time to define behavioral states. Although these approaches may work well for grazing foraging strategies in a patchy landscape, species that do...Ironside, Kirsten E.; Mattson, David J.; Theimer, Tad; Jansen, Brian; Holton, Brandon; Arundel, Terry; Peters, Michael; Sexton, Joseph O.; Edwards, Thomas C.
Hatching success and predation of Bog Turtle (Glyptemys muhlenbergii) eggs in New Jersey and Pennsylvania
Nest-site selection by most turtles affects the survival of females and their offspring. Although bog turtles (Glyptemys muhlenbergii) do not typically leave their wetlands for nesting, nest-site selection can impact hatching success and hatchling survival. Between 1974 and 2012, we monitored the fates of 258 bog turtle eggs incubated in the field...Zappalorti, Robert T.; Tutterow, Annalee M.; Pittman, Shannon E.; Lovich, Jeffrey E.
Estimating disperser abundance using open population models that incorporate data from continuous detection PIT arrays
Autonomous passive integrated transponder (PIT) tag antenna systems continuously detect individually marked organisms at one or more fixed points over long time periods. Estimating abundance using data from autonomous antennae can be challenging, because these systems do not detect unmarked individuals. Here we pair PIT antennae data from a...Dzul, Maria C.; Yackulic, Charles B.; Korman, Josh
Future soil moisture and temperature extremes imply expanding suitability for rainfed agriculture in temperate drylands
The distribution of rainfed agriculture is expected to respond to climate change and human population growth. However, conditions that support rainfed agriculture are driven by interactions among climate, including climate extremes, and soil moisture availability that have not been well defined. In the temperate regions that support much of the...Bradford, John B.; Schlaepfer, Daniel R.; Lauenroth, William K.; Yackulic, Charles B.; Duniway, Michael C.; Hall, Sonia A.; Jia, Gensuo; Jamiyansharav, Khishigbayar; Munson, Seth M.; Wilson, Scott D.; Tietjen, Britta
Riparian bird density decline in response to biocontrol of Tamarix from riparian ecosystems along the Dolores River in SW Colorado, USA
Biocontrol of invasive tamarisk (Tamarix spp.) in the arid Southwest using the introduced tamarisk beetle (Diorhabda elongata) has been hypothesized to negatively affect some breeding bird species, but no studies to date have documented the effects of beetle-induced defoliation on riparian bird abundance. We assessed the effects of tamarisk...Darrah, Abigail J.; van Riper, Charles
Variation in annual clutch phenology of desert tortoises (Gopherus morafkai) in the Sonoran Desert of Arizona
The phenology of egg production and oviposition in organisms affects survival and development of neonates and thus, both offspring and maternal fitness. In addition, in organisms with environmental sex determination, clutch phenology can affect hatchling sex ratios with attendant effects on population demography. The rapid rate of contemporary...Lovich, Jeffrey E.; Averill-Murray, Roy C.; Agha, Mickey; Ennen, Joshua R.; Austin, Meaghan
Biocrust ecology: Unifying micro- and macro-scales to confront global change
Biological soil crusts (biocrusts) are communities of microbes, lichens and bryophytes living at the soil surface in drylands (Fig. 1; Belnap et al., 2016). Biocrusts occur on all continents and can comprise a majority of cover in some systems (Belnap et al., 2016). While species diversity and distributions have long been a research focus,...Ferrenberg, Scott; Reed, Sasha C.
A coupled metabolic-hydraulic model and calibration scheme for estimating of whole-river metabolism during dynamic flow conditions
Conventional methods for estimating whole-stream metabolic rates from measured dissolved oxygen dynamics do not account for the variation in solute transport times created by dynamic flow conditions. Changes in flow at hourly time scales are common downstream of hydroelectric dams (i.e. hydropeaking), and hydrologic limitations of conventional...Payn, Robert A.; Hall, Robert O Jr.; Kennedy, Theodore; Poole, Geoff C; Marshall, Lucy A.
Building capacity in biodiversity monitoring at the global scale
Human-driven global change is causing ongoing declines in biodiversity worldwide. In order to address these declines, decision-makers need accurate assessments of the status of and pressures on biodiversity. However, these are heavily constrained by incomplete and uneven spatial, temporal and taxonomic coverage. For instance, data from regions...Schmeller, Dirk S.; Bohm, Monika; Arvanitidis, Christos; Barber-meyer, Shannon; Brummitt, Neil; Chandler, Mark; Chatzinikolaou, Eva; Costello, Mark J.; Ding, Hui; García-Moreno, Jaime; Gill, Mike; Haase, Peter; Jones, Miranda; Juillard, Romain; Magnusson, William E.; Martin, Corinne S.; McGeoch, Melodie A.; Mihoub, Jean-Baptiste; Pettorelli, Nathalie; Proença, Vânia; Peng, Cui; Regan, Eugenie; Schmiedel, Ute; Simsika, John P.; Weatherdon, Lauren; Waterman, Carly; Xu, Haigen; Belnap, Jayne
Short-term and long-term evapotranspiration rates at ecological restoration sites along a large river receiving rare flow events
Many large rivers around the world no longer flow to their deltas, due to ever greater water withdrawals and diversions for human needs. However, the importance of riparian ecosystems is drawing increasing recognition, leading to the allocation of environmental flows to restore river processes. Accurate estimates of riparian plant...Shanafield, Margaret; Jurado, Hugo Gutierrez; Burgueño, Jesús Eliana Rodríguez; Hernández, Jorge Ramírez; Jarchow, Christopher; Nagler, Pamela L.