Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government


Publications related to USGS sage-grouse and sagebrush steppe science are listed below.

Filter Total Items: 226

Weather affects post‐fire recovery of sagebrush‐steppe communities and model transferability among sites

Altered climate, including weather extremes, can cause major shifts in vegetative recovery after disturbances. Predictive models that can identify the separate and combined temporal effects of disturbance and weather on plant communities and that are transferable among sites are needed to guide vulnerability assessments and management interventions. We asked how functional group abundance responde

A chemical and bio‐herbicide mixture increased exotic invaders, both targeted and non‐targeted, across a diversely invaded landscape after fire

QuestionsInvasive‐plant treatments often target a single or few species, but many landscapes are diversely invaded. Exotic annual grasses (EAGs) increase wildfires and degrade native perennial plant communities in cold‐desert rangelands, and herbicides are thus sprayed to inhibit EAG germination and establishment. We asked how EAG target and non‐target species responded to an herbicide mixture spr

Sagebrush conservation strategy—Challenges to sagebrush conservation

The sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) biome, its wildlife, and the services and benefits it provides people and local communities are at risk. Development in the sagebrush biome, for many purposes, has resulted in multiple and often cumulative negative impacts. These impacts, ranging from simple habitat loss to complex, interactive changes in ecosystem function, continue to accelerate even as the need gr

Integrating ecosystem resilience and resistance into decision support tools for multi-scale population management of a sagebrush indicator species

Imperiled sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) ecosystems of western North America are experiencing unprecedented conservation planning efforts. Advances in decision-support tools operationalize concepts of ecosystem resilience by quantitatively linking spatially explicit variation in soil and plant processes to outcomes of biotic and abiotic disturbances. However, failure to consider higher trophic-level f

Estimating abiotic thresholds for sagebrush condition class in the western United States

Sagebrush ecosystems of the western United States can transition from extended periods of relatively stable conditions to rapid ecological change if acute disturbances occur. Areas dominated by native sagebrush can transition from species-rich native systems to altered states where non-native annual grasses dominate, if resistance to annual grasses is low. The non-native annual grasses provide rel

Data entry module and manuals for the Land Treatment Digital Library

Across the country, public land managers make decisions each year that influence landscapes and ecosystems within their jurisdictions. Many of these decisions involve vegetation manipulations, which often are referred to as land treatments. These treatments include removal or alteration of plant biomass, seeding of burned areas, application of herbicides, and other activities. Data documenting the

Land Treatment Digital Library

The Land Treatment Digital Library (LTDL) was created by the U.S. Geological Survey to catalog legacy land treatment information on Bureau of Land Management lands in the western United States. The LTDL can be used by federal managers and scientists for compiling information for data-calls, producing maps, generating reports, and conducting analyses at varying spatial and temporal scales. The LTDL

Validating a time series of annual grass percent cover in the sagebrush ecosystem

We mapped yearly (2000–2016) estimates of annual grass percent cover for much of the sagebrush ecosystem of the western United States using remotely sensed, climate, and geophysical data in regression-tree models. Annual grasses senesce and cure by early summer and then become beds of fine fuel that easily ignite and spread fire through rangeland systems. Our annual maps estimate the extent of the

An introduction and practical guide to use of the Soil-Vegetation Inventory Method (SVIM) data

Long-term vegetation dynamics across public rangelands in the western United States are not well understood because of the lack of large-scale, readily available historic datasets. The Bureau of Land Management’s Soil-Vegetation Inventory Method (SVIM) program was implemented between 1977 and 1983 across 14 western states, but the data have not been easily accessible. We introduce the SVIM vegetat

U.S. Geological Survey science for the Wyoming Landscape Conservation Initiative—2016 annual report

This is the ninth annual report highlighting U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) science and decision-support activities conducted for the Wyoming Landscape Conservation Initiative (WLCI). The activities address specific management needs identified by WLCI partner agencies. In fiscal year (FY) 2016, there were 26 active USGS WLCI science-based projects. Of these 26 projects, one project was new for FY20

Fusing MODIS with Landsat 8 data to downscale weekly normalized difference vegetation index estimates for central Great Basin rangelands, USA

Data fused from distinct but complementary satellite sensors mitigate tradeoffs that researchers make when selecting between spatial and temporal resolutions of remotely sensed data. We integrated data from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) sensor aboard the Terra satellite and the Operational Land Imager sensor aboard the Landsat 8 satellite into four regression-tree model

Methodological considerations of terrestrial laser scanning for vegetation monitoring in the sagebrush steppe

Terrestrial laser scanning (TLS) provides fast collection of high-definition structural information, making it a valuable field instrument to many monitoring applications. A weakness of TLS collections, especially in vegetation, is the occurrence of unsampled regions in point clouds where the sensor’s line-of-sight is blocked by intervening material. This problem, referred to as occlusion, may be