shrubs

Mega-Monsoon Experiment (MegaME) Vegetation Sampling Data from the Sevilleta National Wildlife Refuge, New Mexico (2014 - present)

Abstract: 

Shrub encroachment is a global phenomenon. Both the causes and consequences of shrub encroachment vary regionally and globally. In the southwestern US a common native C3 shrub species, creosotebush, has invaded millions of hectares of arid and semi-arid C4-dominated grassland. At the Sevilleta LTER site, it appears that the grassland-shrubland ecotone is relatively stable, but infill by creosotebush continues to occur.  The consequences of shrub encroachment have been and continue to be carefully documented, but the ecological drivers of shrub encroachment in the southwestern US are not well known.

One key factor that may promote shrub encroachment is grazing by domestic livestock. However, multiple environmental drivers have changed over the 150 years during which shrub expansion has occurred through the southwestern US. Temperatures are warmer, atmospheric CO2 has increased, drought and rainy cycles have occurred, and grazing pressure has decreased. From our prior research we know that prolonged drought greatly reduces the abundance of native grasses while having limited impact on the abundance of creosotebush in the grass-shrub ecotone. So once established, creosotebush populations are persistent and resistant to climate cycles. We also know that creosotebush seedlings tend to appear primarily when rainfall during the summer monsoon is well above average. However, high rainfall years also stimulate the growth of the dominant grasses creating a competitive environment that may not favor seedling establishment and survival. The purpose of the Mega-Monsoon Experiment (MegaME) is twofold. First, this experiment will determine if high rainfall years coupled with (simulated) grazing promote the establishment and growth of creosotebush seedlings in the grassland-shrubland ecotone at Sevilleta, thus promoting infill and expansion of creosotebush into native grassland. Second, MegaME will determine if a sequence of wet summer monsoons will promote the establishment and growth of native C4 grasses in areas where creosotebush is now dominant, thus demonstrating that high rainfall and dispersal limitation prevent grassland expansion into creosotebush shrubland. 

Data set ID: 

259

Core Areas: 

Additional Project roles: 

499
500
501
502

Keywords: 

Methods: 

Data Collection 

Vegetation and soil measurements are taken in the spring and fall each year. Spring measurements are taken in May when spring annuals have reached peak biomass for the growing season. Fall measurements are taken in either September or October when summer annuals and all perennial species have reached peak biomass for the growing season, but prior to killing frosts. Vegetation cover is measured to assess growth and survival of grasses and shrubs. Bare soil and litter covers are also measured to monitor substrate changes that occur within the plots.

One meter2 vegetation quadrats are used to measure the cover of all plants present in each m2.   There are 10 quads in each plot, checkered along on side of the plot.  There is a tag on one rebar of each quad with the representative quad number.  


General vegetation measurements 

The cover is recorded for each species of live plant material inside the quadrat.  Vegetation measurements are taken in two layers: a ground level layer that includes all grasses, forbs, sub-shrubs, and a litter and bare soil, and a “shrub” layer that includes the canopy of Larrea tridentata.  The purpose of this approach is to include Larrea canopies, while allowing the cover values of the ground level layer to sum to approximately 100%. The dead plant covers are not included in the measurement, thus the total amount may not equal 100%.  It is assumed that the remaining cover missing from the 100% is a combination of dead plant material.

 The quadrat boundaries are delineated by the 1 m2 PVC-frame placed above the quadrat.   Each PVC-frame is divided into 100 squares with nylon string.  The dimensions of each square are 10cm x 10cm and represent 1 % of the total quadrat area or cover.  The cover and height of all individual plants of a species that fall within the 1m2 quadrat are measured.  Cover is quantified by counting the number of 10cm x 10cm squares intercepted by all individual plants of a particular species, and/or partial cover for individual plants < 1%.


Vegetation cover measurements 

Cover measurements are made by summing the live cover values for all individual plants of a given species that fall within an infinite vertical column that is defined by the inside edge of the PVC-frame. This includes vegetation that is rooted outside of the frame but has foliage that extends into the vertical column defined by the PVC-frame.  Again, cover is quantified by counting the number of 10cm x 10cm squares intercepted by each species.  Do not duplicate overlapping canopies, just record the total canopy cover on a horizontal plane when looking down on the quadrat through the grid.

Larger cover values will vary but the smallest cover value recorded should never be below 0.1%.  When dealing with individual plants that are < 1.00%, round the measurements to an increment of 0.1.  Cover values between 1.00% and 10.00% should be rounded to increments of 1.0, and values > 10.00% are rounded to increments of 5.

Creosote 

Larrea tridentata canopy  is estimated using the portion of the canopy that falls within the quadrat.  The canopy edge is defined by a straight gravity line from the canopy to the ground (i.e. imagine a piece of string with a weight on the end being moved around the canopy edge).  ForLarrea seedlings the code LSEED is used and is a separate measurement from the Larrea canopy measurements. The cover measurement for LSEED is simply a count of individuals, not actual cover, as it is assumed that they would have a cover of < 1.00%.

Grasses 

To determine the cover of a grass clump, envision a perimeter around the central mass or densest portion of the plant excluding individual long leaves, wispy ends or more open upper regions of the plant.  Live tissue is frequently mixed with dead tissue in grass clumps. 

Forbs 

The cover of forbs is the perimeter around the densest portion of the plant.    Measure all foliage that was produced during the current season.

Cacti and Yucca 

The cover of cacti and yucca is made by estimating a perimeter around the densest portion of the plant and recorded as a single cover.  For cacti that consist of a cluster of pads or jointed stems (i.e., Opuntia phaecantha, Opuntia imbricata), estimate an average perimeter around the series of plant parts and record a single coverage measurement.

Vines 

Vine cover (and some forbs) is often convoluted. Rather than attempt to estimate cover directly, take a frequency count of 10X10X10cm cubes that the vine is present in. 

Seedlings 

As with other vegetation measurements, the smallest cover value for seedlings should never be <0.1%.  If the value of a seedling’s cover is less, round up to 0.1%.


Non-Vegetation cover measurements 

Materials other than vegetation that are measured in the drought plots include soil and litter.  

Soil 

Measure the cover of the area occupied by abiotic substrates.  Cover is quantified by summing the number of 10cm x 10cm squares intercepted by abiotic substrates.  Cover values < 10.00% should be rounded to increments of  and cover values > 10.00% should be recorded in increments of 5.  If there is no soil in the quadrat, record “SOIL” in the species column for that quadrat and record a “0” for cover.

Litter 

Measure the cover of the area occupied by litter, which is unattached dead plant material.  Cover is quantified by summing the number of 10cm x 10cm squares intercepted by abiotic substrates. Cover values < 10.00% should be rounded to increments of 1 and cover values > 10.00% should be recorded in increments of 5.  If there is no litter in the quadrat, record “LITT” in the species column for that quadrat and record a “0” for cover.


Clipping grass at Ecotone Site 

After measurements are taken at the Ecotone Site, grass is clipped down to the soil and removed from half of the quads in each plot. The goal is to assess the impact of competition on successful creosote seedling germination. The following quads, # 2, 4, 6, 7, and 10, get clipped in every plot at the ecotone site.


Water Addition 

The watering schedule varies based on seasonal rainfall. Our goal is to increase average monsoon precipitation (150mm) by 50%, so we shoot for a total of 225mm on the plots during the summer monsoon.

Data sources: 

sev259_megame_20161222.csv

Additional information: 

Additional Information on the personnel associated with the Data Collection:

Stephanie Baker 2014-present

Megan McClung 2014-present

Chandra Tucker 2014-present

Core Site Grid Quadrat Data for the Net Primary Production Study at the Sevilleta National Wildlife Refuge, New Mexico (2013- present)

Abstract: 

Begun in spring 2013, this project is part of a long-term study at the Sevilleta LTER measuring net primary production (NPP) across three distinct ecosystems: creosote-dominant shrubland (Site C), black grama-dominant grassland (Site G), and blue grama-dominant grassland (Site B). Net primary production is a fundamental ecological variable that quantifies rates of carbon consumption and fixation. Estimates of NPP are important in understanding energy flow at a community level as well as spatial and temporal responses to a range of ecological processes.

Above-ground net primary production is the change in plant biomass, represented by stems, flowers, fruit and and foliage, over time and incoporates growth as well as loss to death and decomposition. To measure this change the vegetation variables in this dataset, including species composition and the cover and height of individuals, are sampled twice yearly (spring and fall) at permanent 1m x 1m plots within each site. A third sampling at Site C is performed in the winter. The data from these plots is used to build regressions correlating biomass and volume via weights of select harvested species obtained in SEV999, "Net Primary Productivity (NPP) Weight Data." This biomass data is included in SEV999, "Seasonal Biomass and Seasonal and Annual NPP for Core Grid Research Sites."

Data set ID: 

289

Additional Project roles: 

450
451
452
453

Keywords: 

Methods: 

Sampling Quadrats:

Each sampling grid contains 40 1x1m quadrats in a 5x8 array. However, only 30 quadrats are sampled at each. These are quadrats 1-15 and 26-40. Thus, the middle two rows (i.e., 10 quadrats) are not sampled. Locating the Sampling Quadrats: Three core sites (B, G, and C) contain five rodent trapping and vegetation sampling webs. The vegetation grids are near these webs at each core site. At the blue grama site, the grid is located at the southern end of web 5, between webs 2 and 4. At the creosote site, the grid is east of web 3, near the road. At the black grama site, the grid is just northeast of web 5.

Collecting the Data:

Net primary production data is collected twice each year, spring and fall, for all sites. The Five Points Creosote Core Site is also sampled in winter. Spring measurements are taken in April or May when shrubs and spring annuals have reached peak biomass. Fall measurements are taken in either September or October when summer annuals have reached peak biomass but prior to killing frosts. Winter measurements are taken in February before the onset of spring growth.

Vegetation data is collected on a palm top computer. A 1-m2 PVC-frame is placed over the fiberglass stakes that mark the diagonal corners of each quadrat. When measuring cover it is important to stay centered over the vegetation in the quadrat to prevent errors caused by angle of view (parallax). Each PVC-frame is divided into 100 squares with nylon string. The dimensions of each square are 10cm x 10cm and represent 1 percent of the total area.

The cover (area) and height of each individual live (green) vegetative unit that falls within the one square meter quadrat is measured. A vegetative unit consists of an individual size class (as defined by a unique cover and height) of a particular species within a quadrat. Cover is quantified by counting the number of 10cm x 10cm squares filled by each vegetative unit.

Niners and plexidecs are additional tools that help accurately determine the cover a vegetative unit. A niner is a small, hand-held PVC frame that can be used to measure canopies. Like the larger PVC frame it is divided into 10cm x 10cm squares, each square representing 1% of the total cover. However, there are only nine squares within the frame, hence the name “niner.” A plexidec can help determine the cover of vegetative units with covers less than 1%. Plexidecs are clear plastic squares that are held above vegetation. Each plexidec represents a cover of 0.5% and has smaller dimensions etched onto the surface that correspond to 0.01%, 0.05%, 0.1%, and 0.25% cover.

It is extremely important that cover and height measurements remain consistent over time to ensure that regressions based on this data remain valid. Field crew members should calibrate with each other to ensure that observer bias does not influence data collection.

Cover Measurements:

Grasses-To determine the cover of a grass clump, envision a perimeter around the central mass or densest portion of the plant, excluding individual long leaves, wispy ends, or more open upper regions of the plant. Live foliage is frequently mixed with dead foliage in grass clumps and this must be kept in mind during measurement as our goal is to measure only plant biomass for the current season. In general, recently dead foliage is yellow and dead foliage is gray. Within reason, try to include only yellow or green portions of the plant in cover measurement while excluding portions of the plant that are gray. This is particularly important for measurements made in the winter when there is little or no green foliage present. In winter, sometimes measurements will be based mainly on yellow foliage. Stoloniferous stems of grasses that are not rooted should be ignored. If a stem is rooted it should be recorded as a separate observation from the parent plant.

Forbs, shrubs and sub-shrubs (non-creosote)-The cover of forbs, shrubs and sub-shrubs is measured as the horizontal area of the plant. If the species is an annual it is acceptable to include the inflorescence in this measurement if it increases cover. If the species is a perennial, do not include the inflorescence as part of the cover measurement. Measure all foliage that was produced during the current season, including any recently dead (yellow) foliage. Avoid measuring gray foliage that died in a previous season.

Cacti-For cacti that consist of a series of pads or jointed stems (Opuntia phaecanthaOpuntia imbricata) measure the length and width of each pad to the nearest cm instead of cover and height. Cacti that occur as a dense ball/clump of stems (Opuntia leptocaulis) are measured using the same protocol as shrubs. Pincushion or hedgehog cacti (Escobaria viviparaSchlerocactus intertextusEchinocereus fendleri) that occur as single (or clustered) cylindrical stems are measured as a single cover.

Yuccas-Make separate observations for the leaves and caudex (thick basal stem). Break the observations into sections of leaves that are approximately the same height and record the cover as the perimeter around this group of leaf blades. The caudex is measured as a single cover. The thick leaves of yuccas make it difficult to make a cover measurement by centering yourself over the caudex of the plant. The cover of the caudex may be estimated by holding a niner next to it or using a tape measure to measure to approximate the area.

Height Measurements:

Height is recorded as a whole number in centimeters. All heights are vertical heights but they are not necessarily perpendicular to the ground if the ground is sloping.

Annual grasses and all forbs-Measure the height from the base of the plant to the top of the inflorescence (if present). Otherwise, measure to the top of the green foliage.

Perennial grasses-Measure the height from the base of the plant to the top of the live green foliage. Do not include the inflorescence in the height measurement. The presence of live green foliage may be difficult to see in the winter. Check carefully at the base of the plant for the presence of green foliage. If none is found it may be necessary to pull the leaf sheaths off of several plants outside the quadrat. From this you may be able to make some observations about where green foliage is likely to occur.

Perennial shrubs and sub-shrubs (non-creosote)-Measure the height from the base of the green foliage to the top of the green foliage, ignoring all bare stems. Do not measure to the ground unless the foliage reaches the ground.

Plants rooted outside but hanging into a quadrat-Do not measure the height from the ground. Measure only the height of the portion of the plant that is within the quadrat.

Creosote Measurements till 2013:

To measure creosote (i.e., Larrea tridenta) break the observations into two categories:

1.)Small, individual clusters of foliage on a branch (i.e., branch systems): Measure the horizontal cover of each live (i.e., green) foliage cluster, ignoring small open spaces (keeping in mind the 15% guideline stated above). Then measure the vertical "height" of each cluster from the top of the foliage to a plane created by extending a line horizontally from the bottom of the foliage. Each individual foliage cluster within a bush is considered a separate observation.

2.) Stems: Measure the length of each stem from the base to the beginning of live (i.e., green) foliage. Calculate the cumulative total of all stem measurements. This value is entered under "height" with the species as "stem" for each quadrat containing creosote. All other variable receive a default entry of "1" for creosote stem measurements. Do not measure dead stems or areas of dead foliage. If in doubt about whether a stem is alive, scrape the stem with your fingernail and check for the presence of green cambium.

Creosote Measurements 2013 and after:

Each creosote is only measured as one total cover. Each quad that contains creosote will have one cover observation for each creosote canopy in quad.

Recording the Data:

Excel spreadsheets are used for data entry and file names should begin with the overall study (npp), followed by the date (mm.dd.yy) and the initials of the recorder (.abc). Finally, "g" for "grid," along with the site abbreviation, should be added (i.e., gc, gg, gb). The final format for sites B, G, and C should be as follows: npp_core.mm.dd.yy.abgg.xls. File names should be in lowercase.

Data sources: 

sev289_nppgridquadrat_20161214.csv

Additional information: 

Other researchers involved with collecting samples/data: Chandra Tucker (CAT; 04/2014-present), Megan McClung (MAM; 04/2013-present), Stephanie Baker (SRB; 2013-present), John Mulhouse (JMM; 08/2009-06/2013).

Pinon-Juniper (Core Site) Quadrat Data for the Net Primary Production Study at the Sevilleta National Wildlife Refuge, New Mexico (2003-present )

Abstract: 

This dataset contains pinon-juniper woodland quadrat data and is part of a long-term study at the Sevilleta LTER measuring net primary production (NPP) across four distinct ecosystems: creosote-dominant shrubland (Site C, est. winter 1999), black grama-dominant grassland (Site G, est. winter 1999), blue grama-dominant grassland (Site B, est. winter 2002), and pinon-juniper woodland (Site P, est. winter 2003). Net primary production is a fundamental ecological variable that quantifies rates of carbon consumption and fixation. Estimates of NPP are important in understanding energy flow at a community level as well as spatial and temporal responses to a range of ecological processes.

Above-ground net primary production is the change in plant biomass, represented by stems, flowers, fruit and and foliage, over time and incoporates growth as well as loss to death and decomposition. To measure this change the vegetation variables in this dataset, including species composition and the cover and height of individuals, are sampled twice yearly (spring and fall) at permanent 1m x 1m plots within each site. A third sampling at Site C is performed in the winter. The data from these plots is used to build regressions correlating biomass and volume via weights of select harvested species obtained in SEV157, "Net Primary Productivity (NPP) Weight Data." This biomass data is included in SEV182, "Seasonal Biomass and Seasonal and Annual NPP for Core Research Sites."

Data set ID: 

278

Core Areas: 

Additional Project roles: 

458
459
460
461

Keywords: 

Methods: 

Locating the Sampling Quadrats:

Site P, the pinon-juniper woodland site (Cerro Montosa), is set-up differently than the other core sites. In order to accommodate the different habitat types, groups of transects (i.e., "plots") were set up along north (N) and south (S) facing slopes as well as along vegas (V) and ridges (R). Transects on the first two plots consist of 40 quads each (10 quadrants for each of four habitat types). Plot one is slightly west of plot three and plot two is slightly west of the weather station. Plot three is located on a wide piedmont, which consists of four transects with five quadrats on each.

Collecting the Data:

Net primary production data is collected twice each year, spring and fall, for all sites. The Five Points Creosote Core Site is also sampled in winter. Spring measurements are taken in April or May when shrubs and spring annuals have reached peak biomass. Fall measurements are taken in either September or October when summer annuals have reached peak biomass but prior to killing frosts. Winter measurements are taken in February before the onset of spring growth.

Vegetation data is collected on a palm top computer. A 1-m2 PVC-frame is placed over the fiberglass stakes that mark the diagonal corners of each quadrat. When measuring cover it is important to stay centered over the vegetation in the quadrat to prevent errors caused by angle of view (parallax). Each PVC-frame is divided into 100 squares with nylon string. The dimensions of each square are 10cm x 10cm and represent 1 percent of the total area.

The cover (area) and height of each individual live (green) vegetative unit that falls within the one square meter quadrat is measured. A vegetative unit consists of an individual size class (as defined by a unique cover and height) of a particular species within a quadrat. Cover is quantified by counting the number of 10cm x 10cm squares filled by each vegetative unit.

Niners and plexidecs are additional tools that help accurately determine the cover a vegetative unit. A niner is a small, hand-held PVC frame that can be used to measure canopies. Like the larger PVC frame it is divided into 10cm x 10cm squares, each square representing 1% of the total cover. However, there are only nine squares within the frame, hence the name “niner.” A plexidec can help determine the cover of vegetative units with covers less than 1%. Plexidecs are clear plastic squares that are held above vegetation. Each plexidec represents a cover of 0.5% and has smaller dimensions etched onto the surface that correspond to 0.01%, 0.05%, 0.1%, and 0.25% cover.

It is extremely important that cover and height measurements remain consistent over time to ensure that regressions based on this data remain valid. Field crew members should calibrate with each other to ensure that observer bias does not influence data collection.

Cover Measurements:

Grasses-To determine the cover of a grass clump, envision a perimeter around the central mass or densest portion of the plant, excluding individual long leaves, wispy ends, or more open upper regions of the plant. Live foliage is frequently mixed with dead foliage in grass clumps and this must be kept in mind during measurement as our goal is to measure only plant biomass for the current season. In general, recently dead foliage is yellow and dead foliage is gray. Within reason, try to include only yellow or green portions of the plant in cover measurement while excluding portions of the plant that are gray. This is particularly important for measurements made in the winter when there is little or no green foliage present. In winter, sometimes measurements will be based mainly on yellow foliage. Stoloniferous stems of grasses that are not rooted should be ignored. If a stem is rooted it should be recorded as a separate observation from the parent plant.

Forbs, shrubs and sub-shrubs (non-creosote)-The cover of forbs, shrubs and sub-shrubs is measured as the horizontal area of the plant. If the species is an annual it is acceptable to include the inflorescence in this measurement if it increases cover. If the species is a perennial, do not include the inflorescence as part of the cover measurement. Measure all foliage that was produced during the current season, including any recently dead (yellow) foliage. Avoid measuring gray foliage that died in a previous season.

Cacti-For cacti that consist of a series of pads or jointed stems (Opuntia phaecantha, Opuntia imbricata) measure the length and width of each pad to the nearest cm instead of cover and height. Cacti that occur as a dense ball/clump of stems (Opuntia leptocaulis) are measured using the same protocol as shrubs. Pincushion or hedgehog cacti (Escobaria vivipara, Schlerocactus intertextus, Echinocereus fendleri) that occur as single (or clustered) cylindrical stems are measured as a single cover.

Yuccas-Make separate observations for the leaves and caudex (thick basal stem). Break the observations into sections of leaves that are approximately the same height and record the cover as the perimeter around this group of leaf blades. The caudex is measured as a single cover. The thick leaves of yuccas make it difficult to make a cover measurement by centering yourself over the caudex of the plant. The cover of the caudex may be estimated by holding a niner next to it or using a tape measure to measure to approximate the area.

Height Measurements:

Height is recorded as a whole number in centimeters. All heights are vertical heights but they are not necessarily perpendicular to the ground if the ground is sloping.

Annual grasses and all forbs-Measure the height from the base of the plant to the top of the inflorescence (if present). Otherwise, measure to the top of the green foliage.

Perennial grasses-Measure the height from the base of the plant to the top of the live green foliage. Do not include the inflorescence in the height measurement. The presence of live green foliage may be difficult to see in the winter. Check carefully at the base of the plant for the presence of green foliage. If none is found it may be necessary to pull the leaf sheaths off of several plants outside the quadrat. From this you may be able to make some observations about where green foliage is likely to occur.

Perennial shrubs and sub-shrubs (non-creosote)-Measure the height from the base of the green foliage to the top of the green foliage, ignoring all bare stems. Do not measure to the ground unless the foliage reaches the ground.

Plants rooted outside but hanging into a quadrat-Do not measure the height from the ground. Measure only the height of the portion of the plant that is within the quadrat. 

Creosote Measurements:

To measure creosote (i.e., Larrea tridenta) break the observations into two categories:

1.) Small, individual clusters of foliage on a branch (i.e., branch systems): Measure the horizontal cover of each live (i.e., green) foliage cluster, ignoring small open spaces (keeping in mind the 15% guideline stated above). Then measure the vertical "height" of each cluster from the top of the foliage to a plane created by extending a line horizontally from the bottom of the foliage. Each individual foliage cluster within a bush is considered a separate observation.

2.) Stems: Measure the length of each stem from the base to the beginning of live (i.e., green) foliage. Calculate the cumulative total of all stem measurements. This value is entered under "height" with the species as "stem" for each quadrat containing creosote. All other variable receive a default entry of "1" for creosote stem measurements.

Do not measure dead stems or areas of dead foliage. If in doubt about whether a stem is alive, scrape the stem with your fingernail and check for the presence of green cambium.

Recording the Data:

Excel spreadsheets are used for data entry and file names should begin with the overall study (npp), followed by the date (mm.dd.yy) and the initials of the recorder (.abc). Finally, the site abbreviation should be added (i.e., c, g, b, p). The final format for sites B, G, and C should be as follows: npp_core.mm.dd.yy.abc.xls. For site P, the file format should be npp_pinj.mm.dd.yy.abc.xls. File names should be in lowercase.

Data sources: 

sev278_npppinjquadrat_20161214.csv

Additional information: 

Other researchers involved with collecting samples/data: Chandra Tucker (CAT; 04/2014-present), Megan McClung (MAM; 04/2013-present), Stephanie Baker (SRB; 09/2010-present), John Mulhouse (JMM; 08/2009-06/2013), Amaris Swann (ALS; 08/2008-01/2013), Maya Kapoor (MLK; 08/2003 - 01/2005, 05/2010 - 03/2011), Terri Koontz (TLK; 02/2000 - 08/2003, 08/2006 - 08/2010), Yang Xia (YX; 01/2005 - 03/2010), Karen Wetherill (KRW; 02/2000 - 08/2009);  Michell Thomey (MLT; 09/2005 - 08/2008), Heather Simpson (HLS; 08/2000 - 08/2002), Chris Roberts (CR; 09/2001- 08/2002), Shana Penington (SBP; 01/2000 - 08/2000), Seth Munson (SMM; 09/2002 - 06/2004), Jay McLeod (JRM; 01/2006 - 08/2006); Caleb Hickman (CRH; 09/2002 - 11/2004), Charity Hall (CLH; 01/2005 -  01/2006), Tessa Edelen (MTE, 08/2004 - 08/2005).

Data updated 08/18/15: MOSQ changed to MUSQ3; ARPUP6 changed to ARPU9; SPWR changed to SPPO6; ambiguous Quercus species resolved by New Mexico Natural Heritage Program and updated.

Linking Precipitation and C3 - C4 Plant Production to Resource Dynamics in Higher Trophic Level Consumers: Plant Data (2005-2006)

Abstract: 

In many ecosystems, seasonal shifts in temperature and precipitation induce pulses of primary productivity that vary in phenology, abundance and nutritional quality.  Variation in these resource pulses could strongly influence community composition and ecosystem function, because these pervasive bottom-up forces play a primary role in determining the biomass, life cycles and interactions of organisms across trophic levels.  The focus of this research is to understand how consumers across trophic levels alter resource use and assimilation over seasonal and inter-annual timescales in response to climatically driven changes in pulses of primary productivity. We measured the carbon isotope ratios (d13C) of plant, arthropod, and lizard tissues in the northern Chihuahuan Desert to quantify the relative importance of primary production from plants using C3 and C4 photosynthesis for consumers.  Summer monsoonal rains on the Sevilleta LTER in New Mexico support a pulse of C4 plant production that have tissue d13C values distinct from C3 plants.  During a year when precipitation patterns were relatively normal, d13C measurements showed that consumers used and assimilated significantly more C4 derived carbon over the course of a summer; tracking the seasonal increase in abundance of C4 plants.  In the following spring, after a failure in winter precipitation and the associated failure of spring C3 plant growth, consumers showed elevated assimilation of C4 derived carbon relative to a normal rainfall regime. These findings provide insight into how climate, pulsed resources and temporal trophic dynamics may interact to shape semi-arid grasslands such as the Chihuahuan Desert in the present and future.

Data set ID: 

269

Additional Project roles: 

270

Core Areas: 

Keywords: 

Methods: 

Study site: 

This research was conducted on the Sevilleta LTER, located 100 km south of Albuquerque, New Mexico, which is an ecotonal landscape of Chihuahuan desert shrub and grasslands (Muldavin et al. 2008).  Data were collected from a 0.9 x 0.5km strip of land that encompassed a flat bajada and a shallow rocky canyon of mixed desert shrub and grassland dominated by the creosote bush (Larrea tridentata) and black grama grass (Bouteloua eriopoda). 

Tissue collection & sample preparation for stable isotope analysis:

From May to October of 2005 and 2006 we collected plant, lizard, and arthropod tissues for carbon stable isotope analysis. During mid-summer of 2005, we randomly collected leaf and stem samples from the 38 most abundant species of plants; these species produce over 90% of the annual biomass on our study site (see Appendix Table A).  Approximately 3.5 mg of plant material was then loaded into pre-cleaned tin capsules for isotope analysis.  

Data sources: 

sev269_plant_isotope_20140520.csv

Response of Larrea tridentata to a Natural Extreme Cold Event at the Sevilleta National Wildlife Refuge, New Mexico

Abstract: 

Shrub expansion into grasslands can cause abrupt changes in ecosystem processes. Creosote (Larrea tridentata) is a native shrub in warm, arid deserts of the southwestern US and has taken over C4 grasslands. A limited freeze tolerance is thought to dictate the northern boundary of creosote and the Sevilleta National Wildlife Refuge occurs near to the northern extent of creosote. Cold temperatures are known to damage creosote. In laboratory trials, temperatures of -25 for 1 hour lead to xylem damaging embolism in nearly 100% of stems and temperatures of -24 C lead to seedling death in the lab. Sevilleta LTER meteorological data from a station located within creosote shrublands indicated a low temperature of -20 C between 1999 and 2010. On February 3, 2011 temperatures hit record lows in central New Mexico, reaching -30 C at shrublands within the SNWR. To address how creosote responds to a natural extreme cold events, plots were established to monitor creosote initial response and regrowth following the cold event. Initial surveys will determine canopy death and subsequent surveys of the same individuals will allow us to determine how creosote responds to record cold temperatures.

Core Areas: 

Additional Project roles: 

45

Data set ID: 

244

Keywords: 

Methods: 

Plots were established at 6 locations across SNWR. Criteria for site selection included the presence of L. tridentata, flat terrain to limit microtopographic impacts, close proximity to existing meteorological stations, and variation in shrub density between sites. At each site, approximately 200 shrubs were evaluated within circular plots (20m in diameter) with the number of plots at each site varying in shrub density. Initial surveys to determine canopy death were conducted in early April 2011. These surveys consisted of tagging each shrub with an unique ID, estimating canopy death, and measuring maximum canopy height, maximum width and the perpendicular width to max width.

Additional information: 

Study Area 1:  

Study Area Name:  South Gate

Study Area Location: Located across the road from the met station located at South Gate.

Bounding Box:  

North Coordinate:  34.42

South Coordinate: 34.19

East Coordinate: -106.513

West Coordinate: -107.08

Study Area 2:  

Study Area Name: Microwave shrubland

Study Area Location: Located near the Microwave tower on the West side of the SNWR. Plots are located 100 to 200 m down the road just East of the tower towards Red Tank. Plots are on the West side of the road.

Bounding Box:  

North Coordinate: 34.42

South Coordinate: 34.19

East Coordinate: -106.518

West Coordinate: -107.08

Study Area 3:  

Study Area Name: BurnX shrubland site

Study Area Location: Located near Met station 52b, established near the burn enclosure (BurnX) Black Grama site.

Bounding Box:  

North Coordinate:  34.42

South Coordinate: 34.19

East Coordinate: -106.513

West Coordinate: -107.08

Plant phenology or life-history pattern changes seasonally as plants grow, mature, flower, and produce fruit and seeds. Plant phenology follows seasonal patterns, yet annual variation may occur due to annual differences in the timing of rainfall and ambient temperature shifts. Foliage growth and fruit and seed production are important aspects of plant population dynamics and food resource availability for animals.

Local Adaptation to Freezing in High and Low Latitude Populations of L. tridentata (Sevilleta National Wildlife Refuge, New Mexico; Higuerillas, Mexico) and L. divaricata (Bajada del Diablo and Chamical, Argentina) (2006-2009))

Abstract: 

If freezing limits establishment of warm desert shrubs at high latitudes, shrubland distributions may be altered as a result of rising global temperatures. However, variation in plant physiology and morphology can be observed across climate gradients and may be acted on by selection to produce adaptation to local climate conditions, thereby ameliorating low temperature stress. Freezing damage in evergreens is closely linked to vessel size distribution because larger xylem conduits are more likely to become air-filled during freezing. In addition, plastic variation, rather than genetic, may be responsible for differences in freezing tolerance among populations. In order to determine if local adaptation to freezing is present in two species of the genus Larrea, L. tridentata and L. divaricata, we investigated xylem vessel size distributions in field grown L. tridentata adults and saplings grown in a common garden from high latitude (Sevilleta National Wildlife Refuge) and low latitude (Higuerillas, Mexico) sites in the Chihuahuan Desert in North America. High latitude (Bajada del Diablo, Argentina) and low latitude (Chamical, Argentina) populations of Larrea divaricata were selected for investigation from the Monte Desert in South America.

Data set ID: 

227

Additional Project roles: 

310

Core Areas: 

Keywords: 

Methods: 

Field sample collection: Seed and wood samples were collected at two North American sites in the winter of 2006 and at two South American sites in the winter of 2008. Wood samples were wrapped in plastic to reduce dehydration. Following their return to the lab, wood samples were placed in a freezer until they could be analyzed. Seeds were sown within three weeks of collection.

Plant propagation: Seeds were germinated in the University of New Mexico research greenhouse within one month of collection and received only natural light. Seeds were sown in flats containing a 4:1:1 mixture of sand, peat, and perlite, then individual seedlings were transplanted to 1 L containers within seven days of germination. Seedlings were kept well-watered and received spray irrigation once or twice daily depending on temperatures and evaporative demand. One teaspoon of slow release fertilizer (Osmocote 14:14:14) was applied immediately after and every four months following transplanting.

Xylem vessel size distributions: Both field and lab samples were sectioned and imaged in June 2009. A total of 44,672 vessels from 72 branches were counted (eight branches from each field and greenhouse population). Wood was cut into sections 26 micrometer thick using a sliding microtome. Sections were stained with a 70% solution of toluidine blue and wet-mounted on a slide. Sections were magnified 100x and imaged using a digital camera attached to a dissecting microscope.

We defined four rings of equal diameter and took a single image of each ring. We counted all the vessels contained in the images of the four rings moving from the edge to the center of the section, making sure not to include individual vessels in more than one image. For each day that images were generated we also made an image of a micrometer scale. The image of the scale was opened in ImageJ and the function "Set Scale" was used to determine the number of micrometers/pixel. Images of xylem were then analyzed in ImageJ using the appropriate scale. They were inverted, then thresholded so that only the vessels were represented by colored pixels. To verify that the particles measured by ImageJ represented actual vessels a drawing of the measured particles, generated by the software, was compared to the original .jpg image.

When objects appeared in the thresholded image that did not correspond to intact vessels appearing in the original image, such as small cracks in the section or occasional torn vessels, these objects were manually erased and the analysis was redone. The image was analyzed using the "Analyze Particles" function, which determined an area and the x and y diameters of a best fit ellipse for each individual xylem vessel. We excluded particle measurements with shapes touching the edges of the image, exhibiting a circularity less than 0.1, or exhibiting a major diameter of the best fit elipse less than 7.5 micrometers, which corresponds to the lower size limit of vessels measured by Martinez-Villalta and Pockman (2002).

Instrument Name: Sliding Microtome.

Manufacturer: American Optics.

Model Number: 860.

Data sources: 

sev227_larreafreeze_20140106.txt

Master Plant Species Information Database for the Sevilleta National Wildlife Refuge, New Mexico (1989-1996)

Abstract: 

This data base contains taxonomic and ecological information for the plant species on the Sevilleta National Wildlife Refuge.

Core Areas: 

Data set ID: 

51

Additional Project roles: 

276

Keywords: 

Data sources: 

sev051_plantspecieslist_20140106.txt

Methods: 

SOURCE OF DATA FOR THIS DATA BASE - The original plant list was taken from Thomas Manthey's masters thesis (see reference list below). The following changes are made continuously to this list:

* Species are added. - This list is augmented by Sevilleta scientists as
plants new to the list are collected on the Sevilleta NWR.

* Some taxa are renamed. - Some older names for certain taxa are changed. For example, these conserved family names were replaced: Gramineae became Poaceae, Leguminosae became Fabaceae and Compositae became Asteraceae. The Ephedra were put into Ephedraceae instead of Gnetaceae. Krameria was moved from the Leguminosae to the
Krameriaceae. Additional changes will be logged in this file.

* Some plant species were taken off of the list - The original thesis plant list covered the Sevilleta National Wildlife refuge and the Ladron Mountains. Since this list is designed to represent only the Sevilleta Refuge proper, species that occur on the mountain and not on the Sevilleta were removed (These are listed below). There are still species in this data base that no doubt fall into this category but it is unreliable to say a plant does not occur in a certain place because you have not seen it and do not think that it is there. When thorough collections of the Sevilleta have been made then this list will more closely reflect the true list of plant species on the Sevilleta.  The collection field was added to this data base so the species that have been collected can be monitored.

* The photosynthetic_pathway, life-form and life cycle data were collected from the references listed below by Troy Maddux in 1989.  The abbreviation codes were produced by Troy Maddux in 1989 as well and existed as a separate file. The codes were put into this data base as a field when the data base was created in early 1992.

REFERENCE LIST

Correl, D.S., and M.C. Johnston. 1970. Manual of the Vascular plants
of Texas. Texas Research Foundation.

Edwards and Walker. 1983. C3,C4: Mechanisms, and cellular and
environmental regulation of photosynthesis. Blackwell Scientific
Publications.

Eickmeier, W.G. 1978. "Photosynthetic Pathway Distribution etc."
Photosynthetica. 12(3): 290-297.

Elmore, C.D. and Rex N. Paul. 1983. "Composite list of C4 Weeds".
Weed Science. Vol. 31: 686-692.

Manthey, G. Thomas. 1977. "A Floristic Analysis of the Sevilleta
National Wildlife Refuge and the Ladrone Mountains." Masters
Thesis, University of New Mexico.

Martin, W.C., and C.R. Hutchins. 1980. A Flora of New Mexico.
A.R. Gantner Verlag.

Mulroy, T.W., and P.W. Rundel. 1977. "Annual Plants: Adaptations
to Desert Environments". Bioscience. 27(2): 109-114.

Smith, B.N., and W.V. Brown. 1973. "The Kranz syndrome in the
Gramineae as indicated by carbon isotope ratios." American Journal
of Botany. 60(6): 505-513

Syvertsen, J.P. et al. 1976. "Carbon Reduction Pathways and Standing
Crop in Three Chihuahuan Desert Plant Communities." The Southwestern
Naturalist. 21(3): 311-320.

USDA Plants Database. http://plants.usda.gov/index.html

Waller, S.S. and J.K. Lewis. 1989. "Occurrence of C3 and C4
Photosynthetic Pathways in North American Grasses". Journal of Range
Management. 32(1): 12-28.

ARCHIVE HEADER LABELS (Width of that field in characters) -


Family(17) - This field contains the plant family to which each species belongs.

Photosynthetic_pathway(3) - This field represents the way in which plants fix carbon in the process of photosysthesis.

C3 = This is the Calvin/Benson cycle.
C4 = This is the Hatch/Slack pathway.
CAM = This represents Crassulacean Acid Metabolism
*Missing data are represented by a "na."

Life_cycle(3) - The life cycle field represents the longevity of a plant species.


a = annual
ab = annual or biennial
ap = annual or perennial
ap- = annual or short-lived perennial
b = biennial
bp = biennial or perennial
bp- = biennial or short-lived perennial
p- = short-lived perennial
p = perennial
*Missing data are represented by a "?"

Life_form(3) - This field represents the form or physiognomy of a plant species.

G = grass - Plants in the family Poaceae.
H = herb - Plants that have no woody tissue.(the distinction between This and subshrub can be fuzzy since woody tissue at the caudex (right at the ground) would technically be considered a subshrub but this is often overlooked when the plant is mostly herbaceous.)
HV = herbaceous vine - A climbing or trailing plant with no woody tissue
rp = root parasite - A plant which is parasitic on other plant's roots.
S = shrub - A woody plant that usually has several-to-many main branches. (See Tree for problems.)
sp = stem parasite - A plant that is parasitic on the stems of another plant.
ss = subshrub - A plant that is woody just near the base or a plant that is woody throughout its stem structure but smaller than a meter.
ST = shrub or tree - A plant that sometimes grows in a shrub-like form and sometimes grows as a (usually small) tree.
T = tree - A woody plant that generally has one main stem. The distinction between trees and shrubs can be dubious. For example, Juniperus monosperma (one-seeded juniper) is usually considered a tree even though it is generally multistemmed.
su = succulent - A plant with water-storage tissues.
V = vine - A climbing or trailing plant in which the woodiness is not known by the database manager.
WV = woody vine - A woody trailing or climbing plant.
*Missing data are represented by a "?".

Sspecies_code(5) - A four- or five-letter code which represents a particular plant species and is unique within the group of the Sevilleta plant species. This code is created by taking the first two letters of the genus and the first two letters of the specific epithet of a plant's scientific name to make a four-letter code. If duplicate four-letter codes are created then a number two was added to the less common of the two codes. (Troy Maddux, previous LTER plant specialist, decided which species were less common
on the Sevilleta National Wildlife Refuge.) If three duplicates occurred
then one code got a "2" after it and the next got a "3". Below is an example:

semu Senecio multicapitatus
semu2 Senecio multilobatus
semu3 Selaginella mutica

These abbreviations are used to represent plant species in field work and in data entry.

Sgenus(16) - The taxon of plant genus as it was known to Sevilleta LTER researchers. The genus and the species combined create the binomial which is the scientific name of a plant.

Sspecies(20) - The specific epithet of a plant and with the genus makes up the scientific name of a plant.

Svariety_subspecies(20) - Subspecific taxa including varieties and subspecies. They are represented thus:

Subspecies: subsp._ambiguus
Variety: var._scopulorum
Affinity: aff._grisea

Scommon_name(26) - The common or vernacular name for a plant species. These names are highly unreliable for delimiting a specific taxon but are useful in communication with those unfamiliar with the scientific names.
*Missing data are represented by a "na".

collection(3) - Indicates whether a speces has been collected on the Sevilleta by: Thomas Manthey, the Sevilleta LTER, or others.

m = Manthey Collection. (If the collection was made within the Sevilleta boundaries.)
s = Sevilleta LTER Collection.
o = Other Collection.
X = No known collection on the Sevilleta National Wildlife Refuge.

native(1) - Indicates whether the species is native or introduced to the Sevilleta National Wildlife Refuge.
y = Yes the plant is native.
n = No, not native.
X = Status unknown.

species_code(5) - A four- five- or six-letter code which represents a particular plant species and is unique within the North American continent per the John Kartesz group and as published by the USDA PLANTS database.

genus(16) - The taxon of plant genus as published by John Kartesz and the USDA PLANTS database. The genus, species, and variety or subspecies combined create a trinomial which is the scientific name of a plant.

species(20) - The specific epithet of a plant.  This, with the genus and variety or subspecies, comprises the scientific name of a plant.

author(?) - The published authority of the trinomial name as represented by John Kartesz and the USDA PLANTS database.

variety_subspecies(20) - The subspecific taxa, including varieties and subspecies. They are represented thus:

Subspecies: subsp._ambiguus
Variety: var._scopulorum
Affinity: aff._grisea

Kfamily(5) - The John Kartesz six character family abbreviation. Included for compatibility. Unnecessary in most applications.

common_name(26) - The common or vernacular name for a plant species. These are the names as published by John Kartesz and the USDA Plants database
*Missing data are represented by a "na".

Maintenance: 

Added Prosopis pubescens to the species list;18 September 1996; JBRUNT

Added Kartesz entries for Sevilleta species:
Astragalus nuttallianus var. ellisae
Atriplex argentea var. argentea
Erodium texanum
Euphorbia lata
Gilia mexicana
Hordeum jubatum var. jubatum
Ipomoea coccinea
Maurandya wislizeni
Oenothera cespitosa var. montana
Oenothera pallida subsp. trichocalyx
Oxybaphus glaber
Polygala obscura
Stellaria longipes
Verbesina encelioides
Delphinium virescens
Euphorbia dentata var. dentata
Euphorbia fendleri var. fendleri
Gaura parviflora
Greggia camporum var. camporum
Happlopappus spinulosus var. spinulosus
Happlopappus spinulosus var. scabrellus
Lactuca serriola var. serriola
Lesquerella gordonii var. gordonii
Lotus (X)_nummularius
Monroa squarrosa
Nama hispidum var. hispidum
Neolloydia intertexta var. intertexta
Opuntia violacea var. violacea
Orobanche multiflora var. multiflora
Panicum capillare var. capillare
Pericome caudata var. caudata
Phoradendron flavescens
Psilostrophe sparsiflora
Sphaeralcea coccinea subsp. coccinea
Sphaeralcea subhastata
Tidestromia lanuginosa var. lanuginosa
Verbena ciliata var. ciliata
Woodsia mexicana
18 September 1996; JBRUNT

Changed UMBELLIFERAE to APIACEAE; 16 August 1996 JBRUNT

Added Kartesz entries for our Sevilleta species:
Achillea lanulosa subsp. lanulosa
Arenaria saxosa var. saxosa
Aristida fendleriana
Aristida longiseta var. longiseta
Asclepias asperula subsp. asperula
ASter hesperius var. hesperius
Baileya multiradiata var. multiradiata
Brickellia grandiflora var. grandiflora
Cassia bauhinioides var. bauhinioides
Chenopodium desiccatum var. desiccatum
Coryphantha vivipara var. vivipara
Cryptantha jamesii var. jamesii
7 August 1996 JBRUNT

From gshore Sat May 18 17:32:29 1996
Date: Sat, 18 May 1996 17:32:28 -0600
From: gshore (Greg Shore)
To: jbrunt
Subject: plantlist
Cc: gshore
Status: RO

Some things that still need to be resolved are:

1. There are 17 records that don't have Kartesz information because
they didn't show up in Kartesz list. These records are indicated
by "???" values in the Kartesz fields.

2. There are 36 records that don't have Kartesz information because
Susan couldn't find entries for them in the Kartesz database
(she said most of these have variety names same as species name).
These records are indicated by "?" values in the Kartesz fields.

3. The variety field of mome needs looked at. Susan had this record
listed as Monarda fistulosa subsp._fistulosa_var._menthifolia

Cheerz,
Greg


*Added Collection and Native fields to the data base, also
*lined the columns up with their headers. 27 Feb 1992 T.M.
*3 Mar 1992 Changed Castilleja linaraefolia to Castilleja linearifolia. T.M.
*Changes made on 27 Jul 1992 by Troy Maddux.
The following abbreviation code changes were made
OLD CODE SPECIES NEW CODE
crhe Draba helleriana drhe
cyse Cyperus esculentus cyes
gode Hoffmanseggia densiflora hode
ocdi Oxybaphus diffusus oxdi
peed Pinus edulis pied
ipah Ipomopsis aggregata ipag
cere Centaurea repens cere2
* 19 Oct 1992 - Data for "Native" field added from a separate file. by Troy Maddux.
* 26 Oct 1992 - Explained the archive header labels in the documentation section - Troy Maddux.
* 28 Oct 1992 - Removed "s" or sevilleta collection from Lotus X nummularis - Troy Maddux.

********************LINES TAKEN OUT OF THIS FILE*********************
Took The following lines out of the data base 28 Feb 1992:
ACERACEAE C3 p T acne Acer negundo var._interius Box_elder X X
ACERACEAE na p ST acgl Acer glabrum var._neomexicanum New_Mexico_Maple X X
PINACEAE na p T pifl Pinus flexilis na Limber_pine X X
PINACEAE na p T pipo Pinus ponderosa na Ponderosa_pine X X
PINACEAE na p T psme Pseudotsuga menziesii na Douglas_Fir X X
CANNABINACEAE na p ss casa2 Cannabis sativa na Marijuana X X
FAGACEAE C3 p ST quga Quercus gambellii na Gambel_oak X X
FAGACEAE na p S quun Quercus undulata na Wavyleaf_oak X X
ROSACEAE na p S phmo Physocarpus monogynus na Nine_bark X X
Took The following lines out of the data base 3 Mar 1992:
CUPRESSACEAE C3 p T jude Juniperus deppeana na Alligator-bark_juniper X X
SALICACEAE na p T potr2 Populus tremuloides var._aurea na X X

********************LINES ADDED TO THIS FILE*************************
Added the following lines to the data base on 28 Feb 1992:
HYDROPHYLLACEAE na p su naca Nama carnosum na na X X
Added The following lines to the data base 3 Mar 1992:
EUPHORBIACEAE na a H acne Acalypha neomexicana na na s X
APOCYNACEAE na p H amfu Amsonia fugatei na Bluestar s X
ASTERACEAE na p Hss arfr Artemisia frigida na Estafiata m X
FABACEAE na p H asal Astragalus albulus na Cibola milk-vetch s X
NYCTAGINACEAE na a H bopu Boerhaavia purpurescens na Spiderling X X
FABACEAE na p H dawr Dalea wrightii na na s X
ASTERACEAE na b H grsq Grindelia squarrosa na Curlycup_gumweed s X
ASTERACEAE na bp- H maca Machaeranthera canescens na na s X
LOASACEAE C3 p H mehu Mentzelia humilis na Stick-leaf s X
POACEAE na p G paha Panicum hallii na na s X
ASTERACEAE na p H paly Parthenium lyratum na na s X
PORTULACACEAE C4 a su popa Portulaca parvula na na X X
ASTERACEAE na a H safl Sartwellia flaveriae na na s X
ASTERACEAE na b H toex2 Townsendia eximia na na m X
Added this line 28 Oct 1992 - Troy Maddux.
POACEAE na a G mufr Muhlenbergia fragilis na ms y
*24 Mar 1993 - Changed the header label "abbreviation" to the
label "species_code" to be more consistent with other data bases. The
species codes stne and stne2 were reversed. - Troy Maddux.
* 21 Jul 1993 - Code for Opuntia violacea was oppo was changed
to the correct opvi.
* 29 Mar 1994 - Added some common names to the data base. Troy
Maddux.
* 5 Aug 1994 - Changed "Opuntia erinaceae" to Opuntia erinacea by
Troy Maddux.
* 20 Sep 1994 - /// Added the following lines to this file. /// T.M.
////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
POLEMONIACEAE na a H gime Gilia mexicana na Mexican_gilia s y
POACEAE na a G brte Bromus tectorum na Downy_chess s n
VIOLACEAE na p H hyve Hybanthus verticillatus na Green_violet s y
POLYGALACEAE na p H poob Polygala obscura na Milkwort s y
ASCLEPIADACEAE na p H asin Asclepias involucrata na Dwarf_milkweed s y
EUPHORBIACEAE na p H eula Euphorbia lata na na X y
AIZOACEAE na a su trpo Trianthema portulacastrum na Horse_purslane X y
NYCTAGINACEAE na p H oxgl Oxybaphus glaber na Desert_four-o'clock X y
Also changed: "trpo" - Tragopogon porrifolius to "trpo2"
and put the common name "Desert-four_o'clock" on the Oxybaphus species.
////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
* 23 Sep 1994 - /// Added the following lines to this file. /// T.M.
POACEAE na a G trbe Tragus berteronianus na Bur_grass s y
////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
* 28 Sep 1995 - /// Added the following lines to this file. /// S.G.
GERANIACEAE na a H erte Erodium texanum na Alfilaria
LILIACEAE na p H alma Allium macropetalum na Wild_onion
SCROPHULARIACEAE na p V mawi Maurandya wislizeni na False_snapdragon
////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

* 30 July 1996 - /// Converted database to Kartesz names. Sevilleta
conserved names will remain in the database until all historical data
have been converted. Remaining entries to this log will be made from the
top down

1/22/98 - Added Photosynthetic pathway information for the following species:
-Equisetum laevigatum
-Bromus anomalus
-Bromus lanatipes
-Bromus tectorum
-Poa bigelovii
-Poa fendleriana
-Poa longiligula
-Poa reflexa
-Poa arida
-Agrostis semiverticillata
-Elymus canadensis
K. Taugher
1/29/98 - Added Photosynthetic pathway information for the following species:
-Carex filifolia
-Carex praegracilis
-Carex siccata
-Eleocharis macrostachya
-Juncus balticus
-Juncus bufonius
-Juncus interior
-Juncus mexicanus
-Juncus tenuis
-Juncus torreyi
-Rubus parviflorus
-Rubus strigosus
-Parthenocissus inserta
-Prunus serotina
-Prunus virginiana
-Quercus pungens
-Quercus turbinella
-Salix exigua
-Salix gooddingii
-Salix irrorata
-Fraxinus Pennsylvanica
-Pinus edulis
-Rhus trilobata
-Rhus trilobata var._pilosissima
-Trifolium repens
-Trifolium fendleri
-Medicago lupulina
-Achillea lanulosa
-Arabis fendleri
-Artemisia campestris
-Artemisia ludoviciana
-Artemisia ludoviciana subsp. ludoviciana
-Chrysopsis villosa
-Delphinium virescens
-Lepidium densiflorum
-Phlox mesoleuca
-Phlox nana
-Physalis virginiana
-Silene antirrhina
-Tragopogon dubius
-Verbascum thapsus
-Aster commutatus
-Aster hesperius
-Aster pauciflorus
-Aster spinosus
-Helianthus annuus
-Melilotus albus
-Solidago altissima
-Solidago wrightii
-Solidago sparsiflora
-Solidago missouriensis
-Asclepias asperula
-Asclepias engelmanniana
-Asclepias involucrata
-Asclepias latifolia
-Asclepias speciosa
-Asclepias subverticillata
-Solanum heterodoxum
-Solanum jamesii
-Solanum rostratum
-Cirsium megacephalum
-Cirsium neomexicanum
-Cirsium ochrocentrum
-Cirsium pulchellum
-Cirsium wheeleri
-Potentilla pensylvanica
-Erigeron bellidiastrum
-Erigeron divergens
-Erigeron flagellaris
-Erigeron nudiflorus
-Erigeron speciosus
-Erigeron subtrinervis
-Lithospermum cobrense
-Lithospermum incisum
-Lithospermim multiflorum
-Polygonum lapathifolium
-Oenothera caespitosa
-Oenothera coronopifolia
-Oenothera hookeri
-Oenothera pallida subsp. trichocalyx
-Oenothera pallida subsp. runcinata
-Plantago patagonica
-Oxalis alpina
-Oxalis violacea
-Gnaphalium chilense
-Physalis hederifolia
-Galium aparine
-Galium mexicanum
-Galium fendleri
-Antennaria marginata
-Petalostemum (Dalea) purpurea
-Petalostemum (Dalea) candida
-Senecio douglasii/flaccidus
-Senecio eurypterus
-Senecio multicapitatus
-Senecio multilobatus
-Senecio neomexicanus
-Senecio wootonii
-Apocynum medium
-Pedicularis centranthera
-Bidens frondosa
-Bidens heterosperma
-Epilobium ciliatum
-Epilobium saximontandum
-Lycopus americanus
-Rumex altissimus
-Rumex hymenosepalus
-Rumex mexicanus/salicifolius
-Rumex triangulivalvis/salicifolius
-Fragaria bracteata
-Tradescantia wrightii
-Tradescantia pinetorum
-Lycopus lucidus/asper
-Silene laciniata
-Silene plankii
-Silene wrightii
-Chenopodium graveolens
-Chenopodium neomexicanum
-Chenopodium rubrum
-Lepidium latifolium
-Lepidium montanum var. alyssoides
-Lepidium montanum var. angustifolium
-Penstemon ambiguus var. ambiguus
-Penstemon ambiguus var. laevissimus
-Penstemon fendleri
-Penstemon jamesii
-Penstemon virgatus
-Penstemon whippleanus
-Sporobolus flexuosus
-Sporobolus giganteus
-Sporobolus nealleyi
-Setaria macrostachya
-Aristida arizonica
-Aristida barbata/havardii
-Aristida divaricata
-Aristida fendleriana
-Aristida wrightii/purpurea var. wrightii
K. Taugher

2/10/98 - Added photosynthetic pathway information for the following
species:
-Allium macropetalum
-Astragalus nuttallianus var. austrinus
-Astragalus nuttallianus var. ellisae
-Brickellia californica
-Chamaesaracha coronopus
-Chamaesaracha sordida
K. Taugher

1/6/2005 Karen Wetherill updates:

Since the meta data was last updated in 1998, the following changes were made to the plant list:

Duplicates for the following species were removed:
AMAL, ARLAS, ARPUL, ARPUL, ECTRT, ERFL, EUDE4, GLBIB, GLBIB, ISPL, MALE3, MAPIP, MAPIP, PHCO, PHVIV4, PSTAT, PSTAT, STPA4

The following species were added:
CHGL13-Chamaisyce glyptosperma
DEWO-Delphinium wootonii
ERCI-Eragrostis cilianensis
FEAR2-Festuca arizonica
FEOV2-Festuca ovina
GUWR-Gutierrezia wrightii
OPEN3-Opuntia engelmannii
OPMA8-Opuntia macrocentra
SEDI3-Selinocarpus diffuses

Name changes were made as follows according to the USDA website.
http://plants.usda.gov/index.html:

ERPU8 is now DAPU7
HIJA is now PLJA
SAKA is now SATR12 (not a name change, but a previous misidentification)
SYCYH2 is now FUCYH
STNE2 is now HENE5
MIOB was removed, it is synonymous with MIAL4
MIDI5 was removed, it is synonymous with MILI3
OECEC2 is now OECAC2 (misspelling)
GAPA6 is now GAMO5
ARTEH is now ARTEG
ASFAC is now SYFAC
ASLAH2 is now SYLAH6
ASPA8 is now ALPA14
ASSUL is now SYDI2
BOBAB is now BOBA3
CECA6 is now CELO3
COHY is now COAMR
DAFE is now DAQU
ERAS2 is now ERCAC
EULU is now EUBR
FEOV2 is now FETR3
LEMU10 is now LEPAM
NITR is now NIOBO
ORMI2 is now PIMI7
SCAC is now SCACA
SCAM2 is now SCAM6
SCMA is now SCMA8
STCOC2 is now HECOC8
STRO3 is now ACRO7
BRFE is now BRFE2

2/22/2010 John Mulhouse updates:

Since the meta data was last updated in 2005, the following changes were made to the plant list.

Changes were made as follows according to the USDA website.
http://plants.usda.gov/index.html:

ASFAC is now SYFAC
ASLAH2 is now SYLAH6
ASPA8 is now ALPA14
ASSUL is now SYD12
ASWO2 is now ASALP
BOBAB is now BOBA3
BRFE is now BRFE2
CADR6 is now HODR
CAJA6 is now POJA5
CHNA2 is now ERNAN5
COHY is now COPA37
DAFE is now DAQU
ECCRC is now ECCR
ECFEF2 is now ECFEF3
ENPI is now ENPE4
ERPU8 is now DAPU7
EULU is now EUBR
GAPA6 is now GAMO5
GIRIA is now GIAC4
GISU is now ALSU9
GLWR is now GLBIC
GNST is now PSST7
HEVIH is now HEVIM3
JUBAM is now JUARL
LALAA3 is now LALAL3
LEMOA3 is now LEALA4
LEMU10 is now LEPAM
MACA2 is now PSAS2
MOME3 is now MOFIM2
MESCS is now MESC
NITR is now NIOBO
OECEC2 is now OECAC2
OPCL is now GRCL
OPERH is now OPPOH
OPFRF is now OPFR
OPIM is now CYIMI
OPPHP is now OPPH
OPTUD is now CYDA4
ORHY is now ACHY
ORMI2 is now PIMI7
PEPA2 is now PACOL
PHGRG is now MIGRG4
PHOC2 is now PHMI4
PHVIV4 is now PHCO14
POOLO is now POOL
SCAC is now SCACA
SCAM2 is now SCAM6
SCIND is now ECIN2
SCINI is now ECIN2
SCMA is now SCMA8
SENEN is now PANEN
SENE4 is now PANEN
SEMU2 is now SESPM
SEMU3 is now PAMU11
STCOC2 is now HECOC8
STLE4 is now ACLE9
STNE2 is now HENE5
STRO3 is now ACRO7
STTE2 is now STMIM
SPANC is now SPAN3
TRMA4 is now TRMA20
TAPA3 is now PHPA29
THRHM is now THMOM3

antelopehorns is now spider milkweed
conyza is now Coulter's horseweed
foothill_sagewort is now white_sagebrush
fringed_sagewort is now prairie_sagewort
galleta is now James' galleta
Great_Plains_falsewillow is now willow_baccharis
gypsum_moonpod is now lanceleaf_moonpod
gypsum_scorpionweed is now gypsum_phacelia
hairy_coldenia is now hairy_crinklemat
hairy_willowherb is now fringed_willowherb
iron_skyrocket is now iron_ipomopsis
James'_catseye is now James'_cryptantha
manyflowered_gilia is now manyflowered_ipomopsis
manyflowered_gromwell is now manyflowered_stoneseed
mesa_greggia is now bicolor_fanmustard
Mexican_campion is now cardinal_catchfly
Mexican_squawroot is now Mexican_cancer-root
na is now bristlecup_sandmat
na is now Gordon's_bladderpod
narrowleaf_gromwell is now narrowleaf_stoneseed
Oregongrape is now creeping_barberry
pineland_marshtail is now pineland_horseweed
skyblue_scorpionweed is now skyblue_phacelia
slimflower_muhly is now slender_muhly
smooththroat_gromwell is now smooththroat_stoneseed
tall_townsendia is now tall_Townsend_daisy
thicksepal_catseye is now thicksepal_cryptantha
threadleaf_groundsel is now threadleaf_ragwort
threeawn is now spidergrass

LORANTHACEAE is now VISCACEAE.
POLYPODIACEAE is now PTERIDACEAE.

Cleome serrulata is now in CAPPARACEAE not CAPPARIDACEAE.
Cuscuta pentagona var._pentagona is now in CUSCUTACEAE not CONVOLVULACEAE.
Cystopteris fragilis is now in DRYOPTERIDACEAE not POLYPODIACEAE.
Pellaea fendleri is now in POLYPODIACEAE not PTERIDACEAE.

Carex spp. are now "G" not "H".
Cyperus spp. are now "G" not "H".
Juncus spp. are now "G" not "H".

Dalea brachystachya is now "ab" not "a".
Descurainia incana subsp._incisa is now "b" not "a".
Eragrostis pectinacea is now "ap" not "a".
Erigeron bellidiastrum var._bellidiastrum is now "a" not "ab".
Erigeron divergens is now "b" not "bp-".
Eriogonum abertianum is now "a" not "ab".
Eriogonum annuum is now "ab" not "a".
Euphorbia spathulata is now "ap" not "ab".
Ipomoea coccinea is now "a" not "p".
Flaveria campestris is now "a" not "p".
Gaura suffulta subsp._nealleyi is now "a" not "b".
Tragopogon dubius is now "ab" not "p".
Verbena bracteata is now "ap-b" not "ap-".
Glandularia bipinnatifida var._bipinnatifida is now "ap" not "?".
Verbena neomexicana var._hirtella is now "p" not "?".
Schkuhria multiflora is now "a" not "p".
Bahia pedata is now "a" not "p".
Bidens tenuisecta is now "a" not "ap".
Boerhavia erecta is now "ap" not "a".
Chenopodium album is now "a" not "p".
Centaurium calycosum is now "ab" not "a".
Hedeoma oblongifolia is now "p" not "?".
Machaeranthera canescens subsp._canescens is now "abp" not "bp".
Malva neglecta is now "abp" not "ab".
Mentzelia laciniata is now "p" not "bp".
Mimulus guttatus is now "ap" not "p".
Pectis papposa is now "a" not "p".
Plantago lanceolata is now "abp" not "p".
Plantago major is now "p" not "ab".
Polygonum aviculare is now "ap" not "a".
Thelypodium wrightii is now "bp" not "b".
Sartwellia flaveriae is now "p" not "a".
Scorzonera laciniata is now "p" not "a".
Silene antirrhina is now "a" not "ab".
Sonchus oleraceus is now "a" not "p".
Castilleja minor is now "ap" not "a".
Juncus bufonius is now "a" not "p".

Carlowrightia linearifolia is now ss/H not S.
Castilleja integra is now ss/H/rp not Hrp.
Castilleja linariifolia is now ss/H/rp not Hrp.
Chrysothamnus pulchellus is now S/ss.
Coryphantha vivipara var._arizonica is now S/su not su.
Coryphantha vivipara var._radiosa is now S/su not su.
Coryphantha vivipara var._vivipara is now S/su not su.
Monardella odoratissima is now ss/H not H.
Nama carnosum is now ss/H.
Opuntia macrorhiza var._macrorhiza is now S/su not su.
Phragmites australis is now S/ss/G not G.
Portulaca oleracea is now H/su not su.
Portulaca halimoides is now H/su not su.
Sphaeralcea grossulariifolia subsp._pedata is now ss/H not ?.
Sphaeralcea incana ss/H not ss.
Sphaeralcea leptophylla is now ss/H not ?.
Sphaeralcea parvifolia is now ss/H not ?.
Sphaeralcea procera is now ss/H not ?.

Hackelia pinetorum is now "bp" not "p" and H not ss.
Orobanche ludoviciana subsp._multiflora is now "a" not "p" and Hrp not rp.
Portulaca pilosa is now "ap" not "a" and H/su not su.
Sphaeralcea coccinea subsp._coccinea is now "bp" not "p" and ss/H not H.
Sphaeralcea coccinea subsp._elata is now "bp" not "p" and ss/H not H.

Chamaesyce missurica var._intermedia is now Chamaesyce missurica na.
Fendlera rupicola var._falcata is now Fendlera rupicola na.
Petrophytum caespitosum is now Petrophyton caespitosum (misspelling) and ss not S.
Senna bauhinoides is now Senna bauhinioides (misspelling).

2003 Prescribed Burn Effect on Chihuahuan Desert Grasses and Shrubs at the Sevilleta National Wildlife Refuge, New Mexico: Shrub Recovery Study (2003-2009)

Abstract: 

Disturbance from fire can affect the abundance and distribution of shrubs and grasses in arid ecosystems. In particular, fire may increase grass and forb production while hindering shrub encroachment. Therefore, prescribed fires are a common management tool for maintaining grassland habitats in the southwest. However, Bouteloua eriopoda (black grama), a dominant species in Chihuahuan Desert grassland, is highly susceptible to fire resulting in death followed by slow recovery rates. A prescribed fire on the Sevilleta National Wildlife refuge in central New Mexico in 2003 provided the opportunity to study the effects of infrequent fires on shrub invasion in this region. This study was conducted along a transition zone where creosote bushes (Larrea tridentata) are encroaching on a black grama grassland.

Core Areas: 

Data set ID: 

164

Keywords: 

Purpose: 

To study the effects of infrequent fires on shrub invasion in Chihuahuan desert grassland.

Methods: 

Contact Burt Pendleton at the email address below for the methods/protocol for this study.

bpendleton01@fs.fed.us

Plots Definition:

Plots are a replicate and treatment from the previous study. The following codes define the plots listed in this study:  3 B-O and 4 B-O=burned open, 3 B-F and 4 B-F=burned fenced, 3 C-F and 4 C-F=control fenced, 3 C-O and 4 C-O=control open

Quads  Definition:

Quads are 3m by 4m and values range from 3099-3191. 

***2003 data were collected before the prescribed fire. All data from subsequent years were collected after the fire.

Data sources: 

sev164_burnxshrubs_20131203.txt

Instrumentation: 

Contact Burt Pendleton at the email address below for the methods/protocol for this study.

bpendleton01@fs.fed.us bpendleton01@fs.fed.us

Quality Assurance: 

Data were visually assessed for obvious errors.

Plant Litter Decomposition at the Sevilleta National Wildlife Refuge, New Mexico (1990-1998)

Abstract: 

The long-term goal of the decomposition study was to document the effects of climate variation on decomposition of major plant litter-types. The project began in 1989 and underwent changes of locations and litter types. The long-term litter types included black grama, Indian rice grass, juniper, and creosote.  Mass loss of the litter types can be compared to precipitation and other meteorological factors obtained at nearby locations.

Data set ID: 

12

Core Areas: 

Additional Project roles: 

289

Keywords: 

Data sources: 

sev012_ltdecomp_20130326.txt

Methods: 

Experimental Design:  

Setting up each location: 1989 through 1991:

The design of this decomposition study includes placement of three (3) primary litter-types (black grama, juniper, and indian rice grass) at seven (7) locations. Litter of each species was collected after senescence in the fall. The grasses were clipped from standing plants before the litter was on the ground. All material that was not produced during the previous growing season was discarded.  All reproductive parts were discarded. If there was any doubt about whether or not the material was produced that growing season, it was discarded. Juniper was collected from trees with senescent material or that had recently died and were still on the branch. Juniper litter consisted of only that material that still had bracts (woody stems without bracts were discarded). Pinyon was collected from trees that still retained senescent needles by shaking and capturing on a cloth or plastic sheet.  Branches of 4-wing saltbush were trimmed from bushes in October when material looked senescent and leaves were picked from the branches and air-dried. Creosote leaves were attempted to be collected by spreading sheets on the ground; however, litterfall is very episodic and not enough material could be collected. Thus, creosote was collected by cutting live plants and drying in a forced-air oven at 60 °C; then the freshly dried leaves were removed from the branch and any reproductive parts (seeds) were discarded. Yucca was collected by cutting leaves from a recently dead yucca plant. Cottonwood leaves were collected in plastic trays as they fell and before the fresh litter was rained on. Arizona fescue, douglas fir, ponderosa pine and aspen were collected by others and we do not know what methods were used.  All litters were sorted and damaged material or reproductive parts were discarded. Unless previously dried, litter was air-dried in the laboratory. Litter bags consisted of coated fiberglass window screen material cut into 12 by 7.5 sheets, which were folded in half and two of the edges folded over and stapled. Litter was inserted through the unstapled edge, which then was folded over and stapled. Each bag initially contained 5.00 g (4.95-5.05 g) of air-dried material. For each litter type, a total of 34 bags were prepared for placement at each location. All the litter bags of one species for an individual location were placed in a separate bag and the bag was sealed for transport the field.

At each location and for each species, the experimental design included placement of enough litter bags for three replicate bags per collection date; one collection at the time of placement, eight collections over a two year period, and 7 additional bags to allow for some mortality of bags (34 bags total per location).

When the litter bags were placed at each location, the location was marked with fence posts as a warning. Each location was identified by a color-coded marker. The color-coded markers for each location are as follows: location (1)=plain, (2)=tan, (3)=green, (4)=orange, (5)=orange/green, (6)=tan/green, (7)=green/tan, (8)=green/orange, and (9)=tan/orange.

Litter bags were placed on bare soil between plants at all times. Each litter bag was anchored by inserting a 16 penny nail through diagonal corners of the bag and into the ground.  Decomposition bags with creosote, blue grama, yucca (tethered, not bagged), and four-wing saltbush all were placed at the deep well location (location 2); and cottonwood at the Bosque del Apache (location 8).

In the fall of 1990, only 5 litter types (black grama, blue grama, juniper, creosote, and Indian ricegrass) were collected for placement in Feb. of 1991. Blue grama litter was only placed       at Deep Well, while the four other litter types were place at 4 locations (#2, 7, 10, 11). Litter was collected as described in the previous year and bags were placed on bare soil at each location.

In February of 1999, the Rio Salado and Red Tank sites did not get new litter bag placements; instead the new locations at Blue Springs and 5 points were established and the 4 common litter types were placed at these locations along with Deep Well and Cerro Montoso.

Sample Collection Methods:

For each individual location collection, three replicate bags are placed in zip-lock bags and are identified by species, field location, collector initials, and date of collection. A general maintenance survey of each location is done at this time by the collector(s). At the time of placement, three bags of each species were collected and placed into a gallon-sized zip-loc bag for transport to the lab. This method insured that each replicate was handled the same way with bouncing during transport and sample handling consistent for all samples. These three samples taken at the time of placement determine the starting (incubation in the field time 0) replicate litters. For each collection date, 28 gallon-size zip-lock bags were be needed.

Sample Analysis Methods:

Overview: 

Handling of the field samples involves three phases: (1) initial cleaning and oven-dry weight; (2) grinding and ash correction; and (3) chemical analyses. Once in the laboratory, field samples will come in with 3 replications/plant type in a bag labelled with the site, plant material, and collection date. In Phase 1, the samples are cleaned, oven dried at 60° C for a minimum of 24 hours, and oven-dry weight recorded. The  samples are then transferred to coin envelopes, ground on the Tecator grinder, and stored back in the coin envelope. In Phase 2, ground plant material is then used for ash-free weight determinations. In Phase 3, the remaining ground plant litter is used for chemical analyses.

Phase 1. 

WEIGHING 

1.  A zip-loc bag with field samples  is selected to begin weighing out. One mesh bag is selected and  this sample was arbitrarily assigned as a replicate number and Sample ID number. Any foreign material was removed from the outside of the bag, such as: differen plant material, mud, ROCKS, etc, making sure to lift up the side folds to release any trapped rocks.  The weighed and labelled weigh boat was placed on a sheet of paper and the contents of the bag were emptied into the weigh boat. This was repeated for all samples and the samples were placed in the oven. 

2.  Samples were dried for a minimum of 24 hours at 60° C. Samples were weighed and weights were recorded in the record book.  Samples were then placed into a coin envelope labelled with the collection date, site number, plant type, and Sample ID number.

GRINDING 

Plant material was ground in order to perform ash-free weight corrections and chemical  analyses. The only plant material needed to be ground using liquid N were: pinyon, juniper and creosote. All others were ground warm.

Phase 2. 

ASH-FREE WEIGHT CORRECTION METHOD 

Methods 1989 through 1991: 

ASH THE EMPTY CRUCIBLES: Line up a sufficient quantity (about 40) of the tall, narrow, numbered porcelain crucibles. Wipe them out with a Kimwipe. Load them into the muffle furnace making sure not to touch the oven sides or each other. Use the shelf to fit them all in. Close the muffle furnace. Turn on the exhaust fan. Turn the controller to 5.0, and turn the timer to 2 hours. After about 1.5 - 1.75 hours, check to verify that the temperature has or will reached 500 °C.  If it hasn't, add additional time to the controller. When it does hit 500 °C, it is hot enough and ready to shut off. Let cool, closed, overnight. The next day the crucibles can be removed and stored in a desiccator.

DRY THE GROUND MATERIAL: The ground material in their envelopes  was placed in a 60 °C oven for 24 hours prior to weighing out for ashing. When the crucibles are thoroughly cooled, weigh the empty crucible and then place out approximately 1 gram using the analytical balance (BE SURE TO MIX THE SAMPLE WELL BECAUSE PARTICLES TEND TO SEPARATE DURING STORAGE AND HANDLING) of ground material into the crucible, and then record the filled crucible weight on the data charts in the front of this book. Remember to weigh and include a blank (empty) crucible with each run.

ASH THE WEIGHED SAMPLE:  Using tongs, load the crucibles into the muffle furnace, making sure not to touch the oven sides or each other. Use the shelf to fit them all in. Close the muffle furnace. Turn on the exhaust fan. Turn the controller to 5.0, and turn the timer to 2 hours. After about 1.5 - 1.75 hours, check to verify that the temperature has reached 500 °C. If it hasn't, add an extra 15 minutes to the timing. When it does hit 500°C, and the timer has turned off the furnace, turn the controller to 2.0, and the timer to 2 hours. Let cool, closed, overnight.

WEIGH THE ASHED SAMPLES: Using tongs, remove the crucibles to a desiccator. When they are thoroughly cooled, use the same analytical balance and record the filled crucible weight on the data charts in the front of this book. Remember to weigh and include the blank (empty) crucible from each run. Dump out the ashed sample into the garbage, wiping the crucible with a Kimwipe if necessary. The crucibles are now ready to be filled again and fired. 

Methods after 1991: 

Ashing methods were changed in 1991 when the use of porcelain crucibles was replaced by use of disposable aluminum boats. All methods stayed the same EXCEPT: The disposable aluminum boats did not need to be 'tared' or fired before use. The clean boats were taken directly from the package and placed into use. To identify the boat, the SAMPLE ID # was 'written' (etched indented with a pencil-pen) on the bottom of the boat. The boat weight was recorded and the sample (WITH MIXING!) was added (about 1 gram). The rest of the procedures remained the same. If the muffle furnace was allowed to exceed 550 °C, the aluminum boats would melt and significant changes in their weight could occur. Blank boats are run with each operation to insure no significant loss-gain during firing.

Analytical Methods Used:

Kjeldahl Nitrogen and Phosphorus by Technicon Industrial Method No. 369-75A (Revised 8/21/75) Digestion and sample preparation for the analysis of total kjeldahl nitrogen and/or phosphorus in food and agricultural products using the technicon BD-20 Block digestor and Technicon Industrial Method 334-74A (revised 8/21/75) Individual/simultaneous determination on nitrogen and phosphorus in BD acid digests.

Percent Nitrogen and Percent Carbon were determined by High Temperature combustion, the resulting gases were eluted on a gas chromatography column and detected by thermal conductivity and integrated to yield carbon and nitrogen content.  Analyses were performed on a ThermoQuest CE Instruments NC2100 Elemental Analyzer, ThermoQuest Italia S.p.A., Rodano, Italy.  

Instrumentation: 

Study Instrumentation: ThermoQuest CE Instruments, NC2100, Elemental Analyzer (Nitrogen and Carbon).

Additional information: 

Site Name:: Location 1, Black Butte

Site Location: SW of gate on east side of black butte (north border of east side)

Site Coordinates: 34.40667735, -106.68647480, NAD83

Site Size: 5 x 5 m

Site Elevation: 1560.2 m

Site Soil: sandy

Site Name:: Location 2, Deep Well

Site Location: deep well, east side

Site Coordinates: 34.35277814, -106.69230409, NAD83

Site Size: 5 x 5 m

Site Elevation: 1605.07 m

Site Vegetation: black and blue grama

Site Name:: Location 3, Old 5 points

Site Location: 1 mile east-southeast of 5 points

Site Coordinates: 34.27395094, -106.67859413, NAD83

Site Size: 5 x 5 m

Site Elevation: 16.92.34 m

Site Name:: Location 4, Larrea

Site Location: between location 3 and the south boundary

Site Coordinates: 34.24100599, -106.74927778, NAD83

Site Size: 5 x 5 m

Site Elevation: 1617.05 m

Site Vegetation: Creosote

Site Name:: Location 5, Ocotillo

Site Location: Near south boundary

Site Coordinates: 34.22190529, -106.70410020, NAD83

Site Size: 5 x 5 m

Site Landform: south facing slope

Site Elevation: 1723.05 m

Site Vegetation: Ocotillo

Site Name:: Location 6, Sepultura Canyon

Site Location: Sepultura Canyon

Site Coordinates: 34.30220417, -106.62011595, NAD83

Site Size: 5 x 5 m

Site Landform: foothills of the Los Pinos

Site Elevation: 1872.44 m

Site Vegetation: grass-juniper savannah

Site Name:: Location 7, Cerro Montoso

Site Location: Cerro Montoso

Site Coordinates: 34.36851996, -106.53503075, NAD83

Site Size: 5 x 5 m

Site Elevation: 1970.74 m

Site Name:: Location 8, Bosque del Apache

Site Location: Bosque del Apache NWR, east side of Rio Grande

Site Coordinates: 

Site Size: 5 x 5 m

Site Vegetation: riparian forest

Site Name:: Location 9F, Magdelena Mountains Forest

Site Location: Magdelena Mountains, west of Socorro

Site Coordinates: 33.98152914, -107.18597909, NAD83

Site Size: 5 x 5 m

Site Elevation: 3187.6 m

Site Vegetation: High elevation forest-meadow

Site Name:: Location 9M, Magdelena Mountains Meadow

Site Location: Magdelena Mountains, west of Socorro

Site Coordinates: 33.99204766, -107.17438462, NAD83

Site Size: 5 x 5 m

Site Elevation: 3033.6 m

Site Vegetation: High elevation forest-meadow

Site Name:: Location 10, Rio Salado

Site Location: Rio Salado

Site Coordinates: 34.29572804, -106.92662418, NAD83

Site Size: 5 x 5 m

Site Elevation: 1509.54 m

Site Soil: sandy soil

Site Vegetation: Chihuahua desert with creosote dominant

Site Name:: Location 11, Red Tank

Site Location: Red Tank, in foothills of ladrone Peak

Site Coordinates: 34.39791210, -107.03647141, NAD83

Site Size: 5 x 5 m

Site Elevation: 1767.12 m

Site Vegetation: Great Basin grass-shrub

Site Name:: Location 12, Blue Springs

Site Location: Blue Springs, (lower goat draw), northeast corner of SNWR

Site Coordinates: 

Site Size: 5 x 5 m

Site Vegetation: grass-juniper savannah

Site Name:: Location 13, 5 points

Site Location: east of actual road junction near site of grassland-creosote webs

Site Coordinates: 34.33272200, -106.73100528, NAD83

Site Size: 5 x 5 m

Site Elevation: 1613.89 m

Site Vegetation: creosote

Description of Initial Study: 

The decomposition study began with litter grown during 1989, which was harvested in the fall of1989, prepared during the winter and placed in the field the following spring. The initial study was designed by Dr. J. Gosz and Dr. R. Parmenter with C.S. White the project manager. The basic design included placement of three (3) primary litter-types (black grama (Bouteloua gracilis), juniper (Juniperus monosperma), and Indian       rice grass (Oryzopsis hymenoides)) at seven (7) locations. The seven locations included: along an approximate north-south transect from grass habitat to creosote habitat, Location 1 = Black Butte; Location 2 = Deep Well; Location 3 = 1 mi. east of 5 points (central point along the transect representing a grass-juniper-creosote junction); Location 4 = between Location 3 and south boundary within a creosote stand (Larea); and Location 5 = south boundary at a stand of Ocotillo (Ocotillo); and along an approximate east transect from location 3; Location 6 = Sepultura Canyon; and Location 7 = Cerro Montoso (increasing favorable juniper habitat and into pinyon). There were two other locations off the Sevilleta NWR in the first year: Location 8 at the Bosque del Apache (which later was lost during a fire at that location); Location 9 in the Magdelena Mountains west of Socorro.

At all locations (except Bosque del Apache), litter of the three common species were included. Litter of different species were placed at locations where that litter may be dominant. The other litter types included: creosote (locations 2 and 4), blue grama (location 2), 4-wing saltbush (location 2), yucca (location 2), pinyon (location 7), cottonwood (location 8); and Arizona fescue, Douglas fir, Ponderosa pine, and aspen (location 9).

At each location and for each species, the experimental design included placement of enough bags for three replicate bags per collection date; one collection at the time of placement and eight additional collections over a two year period, and 7 additional bags to allow for some mortality of bags (34 bags total). Each bag initially contained 5.00 g +/- 0.05 g (4.95-5.05g) air-dried material. Bags were placed at each location in late February, 1990. Collections are projected to be made in: (1), May 1990 (2), July 1990 (3), Sept. 1990 (4), January 1991 (5, one-year), May 1991 (6), Sept 1991 (7), and January 1992 (8, two-year).

Changes in 1990: 

In 1990, litter was only placed at the Deep Well location (#2) and only litters of black grama, juniper, rice grass, creosote, blue grama and saltbush were used. It was decided that all the sites were not worth continuing because there were no other data associated with the site that could be used to explain why decomposition may or may not vary at that site versus and other site. Thus, the location with the most complete meteorological data was maintained (Deep Well, location 2).

Changes 1991 through 1998: 

Starting with litter collected in the fall of 1991 and continuing through litter collected in 1997, litter bags were placed at four (4) locations that represented the range of climates present on the Sevilleta and that were all near meteorological stations. Deep Well (location 2) and Cerro Montoso (location 7) were retained from the previous work because they were near meteorological stations. Cerro Montoso (location 7) represented a      pinyon-juniper forest, upper elevation climate (wettest of all locations), Deep Well (location 2) represented a short-grass prairie climate, a location near the Rio Salado (new, location 10) represented a Chihuahuan desert climate (driest of all locations), and Red Tank (new, location 11) represented a Great Basin grass-shrub climate. Deep Well and Cerro Montoso (location 1 and 7, respectively) are on the east side of the Sevilleta while Rio Salado and Red Tank (locations 10 and 11, respectively) are on the west.

At these four locations, black grama, creosote, Indian rice grass, and juniper litter were placed every spring. Blue grama litter also was placed at Deep Well to maintain a long-term blue and black grama comparison.

Changes in 1998: 

Beginning with placement of litter collected in the fall of 1998, efforts to conserve resources and to address changes across vegetation transition zones lead to addition of 2 new locations: Blue Springs (location 12), a juniper-short grass prairie mixture; and 5 points (location 13), a creosote area near the Deep Well short grass-desert grass area. No new litter was placed at Rio Salado and Red Tank (locations 10 and 11), but remaining     litter were collected for the 1 year decomposition measurement in Feb. of 1999 and will be collected again in Feb. of 2000 for the two year decomposition measurement. The four common litter types were placed at Cerro Montoso, Blue Springs, Deep Well, and 5 points (locations 7, 12, 2, and 13, respectively) with blue grama also at Deep Well.

Study Personnel: James R. Gosz; Carl White; John Craig; Doug Moore; John Dewitt; Todd Haagenstad; Lisa Apodoca; Erica Barner; Micky Boise; Kavita Patel; Steve Hofstad, Tze Sun Yong; Luis Guzman; Chris Thomas; David Wales; Kerry Carr; Deb Sena; Olivia Hopkins 

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