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Publications

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

Filter Total Items: 226

Influences of environmental and anthropogenic features on greater sage-grouse populations, 1997-2007

The Greater Sage-Grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus), endemic to western North Amer-ica, is of great conservation interest. Its popula-tions are tracked by spring counts of males at lek sites. We explored the relations between trends of Greater Sage-Grouse lek counts from 1997 to 2007 and a variety of natural and anthropogenic fea-tures. We found that trends were correlated with several habitat fea

Restoring and rehabilitating sagebrush habitats

Less than half of the original habitat of the Greater Sage-Grouse (Centrocercus uropha-sianus) currently exists. Some has been perma-nently lost to farms and urban areas, but the remaining varies in condition from high quality to no longer adequate. Restoration of sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) grassland ecosystems may be pos-sible for resilient lands. However, Greater Sage-Grouse require a wide varie

Data resources for range-wide assessment of livestock grazing across the sagebrush biome

The data contained in this series were compiled, modified, and analyzed for the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) report "Range-Wide Assessment of Livestock Grazing Across the Sagebrush Biome." This report can be accessed through the USGS Publications Warehouse (online linkage: http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2011/1263/). The dataset contains spatial and tabular data related to Bureau of Land Management (BLM)

A common-garden study of resource-island effects on a native and an exotic, annual grass after fire

Plant-soil variation related to perennial-plant resource islands (coppices) interspersed with relatively bare interspaces is a major source of heterogeneity in desert rangelands. Our objective was to determine how native and exotic grasses vary on coppice mounds and interspaces (microsites) in unburned and burned sites and underlying factors that contribute to the variation in sagebrush-steppe ran

Mapping surface disturbance of energy-related infrastructure in southwest Wyoming--An assessment of methods

We evaluated how well three leading information-extraction software programs (eCognition, Feature Analyst, Feature Extraction) and manual hand digitization interpreted information from remotely sensed imagery of a visually complex gas field in Wyoming. Specifically, we compared how each mapped the area of and classified the disturbance features present on each of three remotely sensed images, incl

Effects of land cover and regional climate variations on long-term spatiotemporal changes in sagebrush ecosystems

This research investigated the effects of climate and land cover change on variation in sagebrush ecosystems. We combined information of multi-year sagebrush distribution derived from multitemporal remote sensing imagery and climate data to study the variation patterns of sagebrush ecosystems under different potential disturbances. We found that less than 40% of sagebrush ecosystem changes involve

Multi-scale remote sensing sagebrush characterization with regression trees over Wyoming, USA: laying a foundation for monitoring

agebrush ecosystems in North America have experienced extensive degradation since European settlement. Further degradation continues from exotic invasive plants, altered fire frequency, intensive grazing practices, oil and gas development, and climate change – adding urgency to the need for ecosystem-wide understanding. Remote sensing is often identified as a key information source to facilitate e

Assessing long-term variations in sagebrush habitat: characterization of spatial extents and distribution patterns using multi-temporal satellite remote-sensing data

An approach that can generate sagebrush habitat change estimates for monitoring large-area sagebrush ecosystems has been developed and tested in southwestern Wyoming, USA. This prototype method uses a satellite-based image change detection algorithm and regression models to estimate sub-pixel percentage cover for five sagebrush habitat components: bare ground, herbaceous, litter, sagebrush and shr

Nesting success and resource selection of greater sage grouse in South Dakota: Chapter 8

Declines of Greater Sage-Grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) in South Dakota are a concern because further population declines may lead to isolation from populations in Wyoming and Montana. Furthermore, little information exists about reproductive ecology and resource selection of sage grouse on the eastern edge of their distribution. We investigated Greater Sage-Grouse nesting success and resource

Selecting sagebrush seed sources for restoration in a variable climate: ecophysiological variation among genotypes

Big sagebrush (Artemisia tridentata) communities dominate a large fraction of the United States and provide critical habitat for a number of wildlife species of concern. Loss of big sagebrush due to fire followed by poor restoration success continues to reduce ecological potential of this ecosystem type, particularly in the Great Basin. Choice of appropriate seed sources for restoration efforts is

Land use and habitat conditions across the southwestern Wyoming sagebrush steppe: development impacts, management effectiveness and the distribution of invasive plants

For the past several years, USGS has taken a multi-faceted approach to investigating the condition and trends in sagebrush steppe ecosystems. This recent effort builds upon decades of work in semi-arid ecosystems providing a specific, applied focus on the cumulative impacts of expanding human activities across these landscapes. Here, we discuss several on-going projects contributing to these effor

Crucial nesting habitat for gunnison sage-grouse: A spatially explicit hierarchical approach

Gunnison sage-grouse (Centrocercus minimus) is a species of special concern and is currently considered a candidate species under Endangered Species Act. Careful management is therefore required to ensure that suitable habitat is maintained, particularly because much of the species' current distribution is faced with exurban development pressures. We assessed hierarchical nest site selection patte