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Invasive plant cover in the Mojave Desert, 2009 - 2013

April 16, 2021

We assessed the impacts of co-occurring invasive plant species on fire regimes and postfire native communities in the Mojave Desert, western USA by analyzing the distribution and co-occurrence patterns of three invasive annual grasses known to alter fuel conditions and community structure: Red Brome (Bromus rubens), Cheatgrass (Bromus tectorum), and Mediterranean grass (Schismus spp.: Schismus arabicus and Schismus barbatus), and an invasive forb, red stemmed filaree (Erodium cicutarium) which can dominate postfire sites. The data provide the geographic location and abundance (percent cover) of the four invasive taxa throughout the Mojave Desert. We developed species distribution models (SDMs) for each of the four taxa and analyzed field plot data to assess the relationship between invasives and fire frequency, years postfire, and the impacts on postfire native herbaceous diversity.

These data support the following publication:
Underwood, E.C., Klinger, R.C. and Brooks M.L., 2019, Effects of invasive plants on fire regimes and postfire vegetation diversity in an arid ecosystem, Ecology and Evolution, 00:1-15. https://doi.org/10.1002/ece3.5650

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