Ecological sites are a key management technology used to map and describe landscapes into discrete units based on ecological attributes. Ecological site descriptions are extensive data, models, and characterizations of each ecological site. The Jornada is a leading scientific program in the development of this important technology. Two recent documents related to ecological sites are:
Find out what 'state mapping' is.
The Jornada Basin Long Term Ecological Research program has been successfully funded by the National Science Foundation through 2018 (LTER VI proposal).
In 1980 the National Science Foundation established a network of sites across the US for long term study of ecological processes over long time periods and across large spaces. One of the original sites of this network of now 26 locations was in the Jornada Basin. Five of the resulting lessons learned from over three decades of study are:
Story map tells of the vegetation change on the Jornada 1915 → 1998
The Agriculture Research Service has selected ten existing, long-term research sites to formally link as a Long-Term Agro-Ecosystem Research (LTAR) network. The criteria for LTAR selection were 1) research productivity, 2) infrastructure capacity, 3) data richness, 4) data availability, 5) geographic coverage at various scales, 6) partnerships, and 7) institutional commitment. In February 2012, the Jornada Experimental Range was selected as one of this original cohort of ten sites. Materials we developed in response to selection criteria are: Introduction, Research Productivity, Infrastructure Capacity, Data Richness, Data Availability, Geographic Coverage, Partnerships, Institutional Commitment, Literature Cited. Research activities for this LTAR network are being developed now.
The Jornada is responsible for several long term data catalogs from research programs and locations around the US and the world. These catalogs store data of various types for access and use by the public and our research partners. Some data sets are open access and others require permitted access. Data are stored in these catalogs according to established procedures and policies.
EcoTrends - The EcoTrends project is a collaborative effort among state and federal agencies and institutions to make long-term ecological data easy to access, analyze, and compare within and across sites.
The Jornada is an international leader in the development of land assessment and monitoring protocols. The Jornada has developed a quantitative monitoring protocol, Monitoring Manual for Grassland, Shrubland and Savanna Ecosystems, that is being applied in the U.S. and at least four countries outside the U.S. The Jornada also co-authored the qualitative assessment protocol, Interpreting Indicators of Rangeland Health, which is being applied globally.
The selection and use of monitoring and assessment protocols are critical components of effective land management. These protocols provide information that can be used in the decision-making processes employed by a land owner or land manager. Techniques and technologies to reform the foundation for a land management knowledge system are described in the August 2011 issue of Rangelands. This special issue was sponsored by The Jornada in cooperation with BLM, NRCS, and TNC.
The Landscape Toolbox project began with two concepts: 1) there are many different techniques, tools, methods, data sources, and models available to aid rangeland management 2) with a few notable exceptions, these tools are not seeing widespread use. The reasons these tools are not being widely used are varied, but two reasons were a lack of general understanding as to what the different tools/methods did and when it was appropriate to use them and the absence of any sort of system to integrate different techniques into a workflow that could address management or monitoring objectives. As a result, the USDA-ARS Jornada Experimental Range and the Idaho Chapter of The Nature Conservancy are working with public and private land management partners to develop the Landscape Toolbox for describing and integrating ecological analysis and monitoring tools that are designed to enable better rangeland management at landscape scales. The goal of the Landscape Toolbox is to realize better ecosystem management by integrating existing and emerging field, remote sensing, and ecosystem modeling methods for rangeland assessment, monitoring, and planning.
JournalMap is an ecological literature search engine that empowers you to find relevant research based on location and biophysical variables as well as traditional keyword searches. All publications are geotagged based on reported location information and plotted on a world map showing where the research was conducted.