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Shrub Steppe

Shrub Steppe

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Shrub Steppe

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  1. Shrub Steppe • Shrub over-story • Grass, forb under-story and microbiotic crust of mosses and lichens • Lost over ½ • Remaining fragmented and degraded

  2. Shrub Steppe Wildlife • Hundreds of species • Classes of Animals • 2 Reptiles,6 mammals,12 birds • Obligates, Generalists, Native and Exotic

  3. Reptiles • Turtles, Snakes and Lizards • Ectothermic • Dry scales • Shed their skin • Lizards have legs, claws and moveable eyelids

  4. Western Rattlesnake • Pit viper – our only venomous snake • Forked tongue • Stereo smell-taste and heat sensing • Have live young • Feed mostly on small mammals • Native, Generalist

  5. Sagebrush Lizard • External ears • Native, Obligate • Good eyesight – color • Can “drop” tail and grow another • Feed mostly on insects

  6. Mammals • Endothermic • Hair • Milk • Young are born alive

  7. Yellow-bellied Marmot • Marmots are rodents • Native, Generalist • Hibernate • Rocky areas • Hoary marmot – alpine areas

  8. White-tailed Jackrabbit • Jackrabbits are hares • Native, Generalist • Black-tailed and Snowshoe hares • Jackrabbits are important prey • Grayish white in winter

  9. Pygmy Rabbit • Native, Obligate • ½ size of CT without the tail • State and Federally Endangered (Columbia Basin) • Dig their own burrows

  10. Voles • Most have small round eyes, ears and bodies. • Sagebrush vole is an obligate • Others include: red-backed, montane, long tailed, and water vole • Dig long burrow systems

  11. Pocket Gopher • Rodent • Native, Generalist • Burrows • Water infiltration, Soil mixing • Feeds above and below ground

  12. Deer Mouse • Rodent • Native, Generalist • Omnivorous • Prey item • Hantavirus

  13. Birds • Endothermic • Feathers • Honey-Combed bones • Lay eggs • Most fly

  14. Sage Thrasher • Native, Obligate • March-August Winters from southern Nevada into Mexico • Negatively correlated with annual grass and Sandberg’s bluegrass

  15. Greater Sage-Grouse • Native, Obligate • Washington’s pop. < 77% since 1960. • State Threatened Federal Candidate

  16. Western Meadowlark • Native, Generalist • Widespread, Common • Year around resident or short distance migrant • Related to blackbirds • Feed on ground

  17. Golden Eagle • Native, Generalist • Lead poisoning • Chukar & Y.B. marmot • Cliffs and trees

  18. Great-Horned Owl • Native, Generalist • Long lived, large and powerful • Adapted to night hunting • Do not build their own nests

  19. Red-tailed Hawk • Native, Generalist • Year around resident • Expanded range

  20. California Quail • Native to N.A., Expanded range • Generalist • Does very well with people

  21. Wild Turkey • Native N.A. • Expanded Range • Generalist

  22. Rock Dove • Exotic, Generalist • Size and color varies • Cities, towns, agriculture

  23. Chukar • Exotic, Obligate • Western shrub steppe habitats • Great climbers

  24. Ring-necked Pheasant • Exotic, Generalist • Adapted to agricultural Areas