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United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) 2010

TARGETING RESTORATION OF DESERT GRASSLANDS TO MAXIMIZE BIODIVERSITY AT LANDSCAPE SCALES

Restoration Desert Grasslands

United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Research, Education & Economics Information System (REEIS)

Titre : TARGETING RESTORATION OF DESERT GRASSLANDS TO MAXIMIZE BIODIVERSITY AT LANDSCAPE SCALES

Identification : ILLU-875-613

Pays : Etats Unis

Durée : Jan 1, 2010 à Dec 31, 2013

Mots clés : chihuahuan desert ; new mexicobio ; diversity ; restoration ; shrub control ; herbicides ; creosotebush ; desert grasslands ; fragmentation ; bird communities ; keystone rodents ; adaptive management ; science education

Partenaire : UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS 2001 S. Lincoln Ave. URBANA,IL 61801

Objectifs
The dominant strategy for grassland restoration in the Chihuahuan Desert and in other rangelands involves shrub control using herbicides. However, our understanding of restoration processes, outcomes, and benefits for these ecosystems is limited. Our overall goal is to quantify responses by terrestrial plant and animal biodiversity to grassland restoration practices in the Chihuahuan Desert applied at landscape scales. We anticipate partial restoration success on many sites due to multiple constraints. We will embrace this variation in biodiversity responses as a means to target and refine future applications through adaptive management by our main extension partner, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM). We also seek to educate the local community in our rural study region so that future rangeland users have an appreciation of the multiple services that rangelands provide to guide long-term stewardship. Our project has tightly integrated research, extension, and education components with a set of interrelated objectives : (1) Measure short-term and long-term effects of herbicide treatments on distribution, abundance, viability, and diversity of multiple taxa including plants, birds, and keystone rodents. (2) Develop a mechanistic understanding of restoration responses and constraints by investigating communities and focal wildlife species. We will identify constraints to vegetation recovery and then construct predictive statistical models relating animal biodiversity responses to habitat structure and productivity. (3) Provide land management agencies with recommendations for targeting future sites and thus avoid costly treatments for areas with low potential to maintain or increase biodiversity. (4) Develop a practical monitoring scheme that can be used by land managers to assess shrub-control programs on additional areas and over longer time periods. (5) Create an education program on rangeland restoration and biodiversity for the local K-12 community through a partnership with the Asombro Institute for Science Education. Specific outputs from the project are directed at multiple target audiences : (1) Analysis of monitoring and experimental data on biodiversity responses to grassland restoration practices, and dissemination of knowledge to the broader scientific community via peer-reviewed publications, to the BLM and other stakeholders, and to K-12 teachers and students. (2) Initiating a geospatial database of restoration outcomes for the study region to be used by the BLM and other stakeholders. (3) Training of graduate students, undergraduate assistants, and BLM employees in ecological sampling and analysis. (4) Workshops with the BLM to allow for input on study design, interpretation, and effective application of results. (5) A K-12 education plan to enhance knowledge of rangeland conservation issues through curriculum development, teacher workshops, classroom programs, and the construction of an interpretive sign for a local nature park. This education plan will directly reach at least 4,000 K-12 students and 500 adults.

Présentation : USDA

Page publiée le 5 décembre 2015, mise à jour le 9 novembre 2017