A Spatial Model to Prioritize Sagebrush Landscapes in the Intermountain West for Restoration

Meinke, C.W., S.T. Knick and D. A. Pyke

Publication Date:

We prioritized landscapes for restoring Sagebrush habitats within the intermountain western region of the United States using geographic information system (GIS) modeling techniques to identify areas meeting a set of conditions based on (1) optimum abiotic and biotic conditions favorable for revegetation of Sagebrush; (2) potential to increase connectivity of Sagebrush habitats in the landscape to benefit wildlife; (3) location of population strongholds for Greater Sage-Grouse (Centrocercusurophasianus, a species of conservation concern); and (4) potential impediments to successful restoration created by Cheatgrass (Bromustectorum, an invasive exotic annual grass). Our results represent an integral component in a hierarchical framework after which site-specific locations for treatments can be focused within high-priority areas. Using this approach, long-term restoration strategies can be implemented that combine local- scale treatments and objectives with large-scale ecological processes and priorities.

Resource Type:
Peer-reviewed Article

Restoration Ecology