What s the reference
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What’s the Reference?. Applying the Technique: 6 Steps. Identify the Evaluation Area Obtain or develop Reference Worksheet Obtain or develop Evaluation Matrix Complete characterization worksheets Rate 17 indicators Rate the 3 Rangeland Health Attributes.

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What s the reference

What’s the Reference?


Applying the technique 6 steps

Applying the Technique: 6 Steps

  • Identify the Evaluation Area

  • Obtain or develop Reference Worksheet

  • Obtain or develop Evaluation Matrix

  • Complete characterization worksheets

  • Rate 17 indicators

  • Rate the 3 Rangeland Health Attributes


What s the reference1

Indicators. For each indicator, describe the potential for the site. Where possible, (1) use numbers, (2) include expected range of values for above- and below-average years, when appropriate & (3) cite data. Continue descriptions on separate sheet.

1. Number and extent of rills:

2. Presence of water flow patterns:

3. Number and height of erosional pedestals or terracettes:

What’s the Reference?

An Ecological Reference Worksheet is developed for eachecological siteusing soil surveys, ecological site descriptions, reference areas, research and expert knowledge.

Etc... for indicators 4-17


A unique reference is needed for each ecological site

A unique reference is needed for each Ecological Site

  • An ecological site is a kind of land with specific physical characteristics (soil, topography, climate) which differs from other kinds of land in its ability to produce distinctive kinds and amounts of vegetation in its’ response to management.

  • In other words, a kind of land with similar potential.

  • Other stratification systems can also be used at a broader scale.


What s the reference

Where does the information

come from?


What s the reference

Evaluation Area


Using soils to identify ecological sites

Using soils to identify ecological sites

An ecological site can include more than one soil series, provided that the soils are similar

A soil map unit can include more than one ecological site. Soil map units often include many different soils, with different potentials to support plant communities

Even a soil seriescan include more than one ecological site. Soil surface texture often varies within a soil series. Soil surface texture is very important in distinguishing ecological sites.


Map units

Map Units

  • Soils are grouped into soil mapping units because we often cannot map soils at the scale at which they vary

  • Same for ecological sites: in order to map ecological sites, they often must be combined into ecological site mapping units, just as soils are combined into soil mapping


A soil map unit what s on the map can be

A soil map unit (what’s on the map) can be:

  • An ASSOCIATION of two or more soil soils* that occur in a fairly repetitive and predictable pattern (e.g. low ridges & swales)

  • A COMPLEX of two or more soils* that usually do not occur in a predictable pattern (e.g. coarse and fine soils in a river floodplain)

  • A single soil series (but even these map units usually have “inclusions” too small to be mapped). Sometimes call a CONSOCIATION


What s the reference

What’s the Reference?

RANGE SUCCESSION MODEL

VEGETATION

0

25

50

75

100

Early successional

Climax

Condition scale

Poor Condition

Excellent Condition

Range Condition

(adapted from Westoby, Walker, Noy-Meir 1989)


State and transition model

State and Transition Model

Potential Natural

Community


Reference state

Reference State…

The state where the functional capabilities represented by soil and site stability, hydrologic function, and biotic integrity are performing at a near-optimum level under the natural disturbance regime.


Reference state1

Community A

Reference State

Community B

Community C


Generating the reference worksheet

Generating the reference worksheet

  • What do you need to define potential for an ecological site?


Generating the reference worksheet1

Generating the reference worksheet

  • What do you need to define potential for an ecological site?

    • Ecological Site Descriptions

Ecological Site Description

  • http://plants.usda.gov/esis


Generating the reference worksheet2

Generating the reference worksheet

  • What do you need to define potential for an ecological site?

    • Ecological Site Descriptions

    • Soil survey information


What s the reference

STATSGO Soil Mapping

Available at 1:250,000 scale

(http://soils.usda.gov)

SSURGO Soil Mapping

Available at 1:24,000 scale

(http://soils.usda.gov)


Generating the reference worksheet3

Generating the reference worksheet

  • What do you need to define potential for an ecological site?

    • Ecological Site Descriptions

    • Soil survey information

    • Ecological Reference Areas


Ecological reference area s

Ecological Reference Area(s)

“A landscape unit in which ecological processes are functioning within a normal range of variability and the plant community has adequate resistance to and resiliency from most disturbances”

Special Management Areas

Well-managed rangeland

Exclosures


Ecological reference area s1

Ecological Reference Area(s)

Verify soils

Communication area

Establish baseline studies


Generating the reference worksheet4

Generating the reference worksheet

  • What do you need to define potential for an ecological site?

    • Ecological Site Descriptions

    • Soil survey information

    • Reference sites

    • Expert knowledge

      (old timers and brilliant

      ecologists)


Generating the reference worksheet5

Generating the reference worksheet

  • What do you need to define potential for an ecological site?

    • Ecological Site Descriptions

    • Soil survey information

    • Ecological Reference Area(s)

    • Expert knowledge (old timers and brilliant ecologists)

    • Other data (e.g. from LTER and other long-term studies)


Generating the ecological reference worksheet

Generating the ecological reference worksheet

Capture

temporal and disturbance

variability!


Generating the ecological reference worksheet1

Generating the ecological reference worksheet

Reference Worksheet defines the “None to Slight” Category in the Evaluation Worksheet


No reference worksheet don t bother going to the field

No Reference Worksheet---don’t bother going to the field!


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