NatureServe Explorer logo.An Online Encyclopedia of Life
Search
Ecological Association Comprehensive Report: Record 1 of 1 selected.
See All Search Results    View Glossary
<< Previous | Next >>

Atriplex confertifolia - Sarcobatus vermiculatus Shrubland
Translated Name: Shadscale Saltbush - Greasewood Shrubland
Unique Identifier: CEGL001313
Classification Approach: International Vegetation Classification (IVC)
Summary: This shrub association is found scattered in saline soils on valley floors, alluvial terraces and alluvial fans across the Colorado Plateau and western Wyoming. Elevations range from 1350 to 2257 m, slopes range from level to moderately steep (1-65% slopes), and sites can be oriented to any aspect. Substrates are typically fine-textured and poorly drained soils such as clays, clay loams and silt loams. Total vegetation cover ranges from less than 20% to more than 50%, with the higher values tending to occur in shrublands located on valley floors and alluvial terraces. The open shrub stratum generally consists primarily of Sarcobatus vermiculatus shrubs with between 1 and 20% cover. Atriplex confertifolia shrubs are scattered throughout the canopy, with between 1 and 5% cover. Other shrubs present with minor cover include Gutierrezia sarothrae and Suaeda moquinii (= Suaeda torreyana). The often sparse herbaceous layer is variable and can have as much as 35% cover. This layer tends to reflect a degree of disturbance; common species include Achnatherum hymenoides, Astragalus nuttallianus, Bromus tectorum, Lappula occidentalis, Lepidium densiflorum, Plantago patagonica, and Sphaeralcea parvifolia. Sparse nonvascular species are generally present on the soil surface and may have as much as 95% cover in undisturbed sites.



Classification

Classification Confidence: Low

Vegetation Hierarchy
Class 3 - Desert & Semi-Desert
Subclass 3.B - Cool Semi-Desert Scrub & Grassland
Formation 3.B.1 - Cool Semi-Desert Scrub & Grassland
Division 3.B.1.Ne - Western North American Cool Semi-Desert Scrub & Grassland
Macrogroup Great Basin Saltbush Scrub
Group Intermountain Shadscale - Saltbush Scrub
Alliance Shadscale Saltbush Scrub

This is the revised vegetation hierarchy. For more information see Classification Sources and usnvc.org.

Similar Associations
Unique Identifier Name
CEGL001304 Atriplex confertifolia / Pleuraphis jamesii Shrubland



Related Concepts from Other Classifications

Related Subnational Community Units
These data are subject to substantial ongoing revision and may be out of date for some states.
In the U.S., contact the state Heritage Program for the most complete and up-to-date information at: http://www.natureserve.org/natureserve-network.
Information from programs in other jurisdictions will be posted when they are made available.
Subnation Concept Name Relationship to Standard Confidence Reference
Oregon Atriplex confertifolia - Sarcobatus vermiculatus / (Oryzopsis hymenoides) Equivalent Certain Kagan et al. 2004


Other Related Concepts
Related Concept Name: Atriplex confertifolia-Sarcobatus vermiculatus
Relationship: = - Equivalent
Reference: Bourgeron, P. S., and L. D. Engelking, editors. 1994. A preliminary vegetation classification of the western United States. Unpublished report. The Nature Conservancy, Western Heritage Task Force, Boulder, CO. 175 pp. plus appendix.
Related Concept Name: Sarcobatus vermiculatus - Atriplex jonesii - Sporobolus airoides Map Legend Unit
Relationship: = - Equivalent
Reference: Miller, D. A., D. A. Mouat, and B. D. Treadwell. 1977. Remote sensing analysis and literature survey pertaining to the vegetation of the Petrified Forest National Park. Report of work performed under NASA and the National Park Service. 48 pp.

Ecological Systems Placement

Ecological Systems Placement
Ecological System Unique ID Ecological System Name
CES302.749 Sonora-Mojave Mixed Salt Desert Scrub
CES304.780 Inter-Mountain Basins Greasewood Flat
CES304.784 Inter-Mountain Basins Mixed Salt Desert Scrub


NatureServe Conservation Status
Global Status: G5 (23Feb1994)
Rounded Global Status: G5 - Secure

Distribution
Color legend for Distribution Map
United States Distribution: AZ, CA, CO, NV, OR, UT, WY
Global Distribution: United States
Global Range: This shrub association is found scattered in saline soils on valley floors, alluvial terraces and alluvial fans across the Colorado Plateau, in Arizona and Colorado and extends west into California and Nevada.

U.S. Forest Service Ecoregions
Domain Name: Dry Domain
Division Name: Temperate Desert Division
Province Name: Intermountain Semi-Desert and Desert Province
Province Code: 341 Occurrence Status: Confident or certain
Section Name: Northern Canyon Lands Section
Section Code: 341B Occurrence Status: Confident or certain
Province Name: Intermountain Semi-Desert Province
Province Code: 342 Occurrence Status: Confident or certain
Section Name: Bear Lake Section
Section Code: 342E Occurrence Status: Confident or certain


Vegetation

Vegetation Summary: This open shrubland occurs in saline habitats and usually has relatively low cover of vegetation. However, total vegetation cover ranges from less than 15% to more than 100%, with the higher values tending to occur in shrublands located on valley floors and alluvial terraces. Upland sites tend to have sparser vegetation. The shrub stratum is less than 1 m tall and is composed of Sarcobatus vermiculatus (1-20% cover) with Atriplex confertifolia shrubs scattered throughout the canopy (1-5% cover). Other shrubs present with minor cover include Artemisia tridentata, Atriplex gardneri, Chrysothamnus viscidiflorus, Ericameria nauseosa, Gutierrezia sarothrae, Opuntia spp., Sclerocactus parviflorus, Symphoricarpos oreophilus, and Suaeda moquinii (= Suaeda torreyana). The herbaceous layer is variable but can have as much as 35% cover. This layer tends to reflect a degree of disturbance; common species include grasses Achnatherum hymenoides, Leymus cinereus, Pleuraphis jamesii, Poa fendleriana, Sporobolus airoides, and forbs such as Astragalus jejunus, Astragalus nuttallianus, Eriogonum brevicaule, Lappula occidentalis, Lepidium densiflorum, Physaria condensata, Plantago patagonica, and Sphaeralcea parvifolia. Exotic species such as Bromus tectorum and Iva axillaris are often present in disturbed stands. Mosses and ground lichens are generally present and may have as much as 95% cover in undisturbed sites.

Vegetation Composition (incomplete)
Species Name Rounded Global Status Growth Form Stratum Charact-
eristic
Dominant Constant
Cover Class %
Con-
stancy
%
Atriplex confertifolia   Broad-leaved deciduous shrub Short shrub/sapling
 
 
Sarcobatus vermiculatus   Broad-leaved deciduous shrub Short shrub/sapling
 
 
Suaeda moquinii   Broad-leaved evergreen shrub Short shrub/sapling    
 
 
Opuntia polyacantha   Succulent shrub Short shrub/sapling    
 
 
Astragalus nuttallianus   Flowering forb Herb (field)    
 
 
Iva axillaris   Flowering forb Herb (field)      
 
 
Lappula occidentalis   Flowering forb Herb (field)    
 
 
Lepidium densiflorum   Flowering forb Herb (field)    
 
 
Bromus tectorum   Graminoid Herb (field)    
 
 


Environmental Setting

Wetland Indicator: N
Environmental Summary: This mixed shrub association is found in habitats across the Colorado Plateau and in western Wyoming. It occurs in habitats that are significantly saline, either because of poor drainage or high levels of salts in the soil. Miller et al. (1977) report this association as occurring in low-lying, internally drained areas such as abandoned stream channels. Recent plot data from eastern Utah, western Colorado and western Wyoming indicate that habitat for this association includes badland toeslopes, alluvial fans and stream terraces, especially those that exhibit ponding as well as low-lying areas on valley floors. Elevations range from 1350 to 2257 m. Sites range from level to moderate and occasionally steep (to 33) and can be oriented to any aspect. Substrates are well-drained to poorly drained soils with clay, clay loam, silt loam and sandy loam texture that are typically derived from alluvium, but they may include eolian sand. Soil surface typically has high cover of bare ground with low cover of litter and biological crust.


Dynamic Processes

Dynamics: Grazing has affected these communities by removing much of the native grass component and allowing weedy forbs to become dominant.


Plot Sampling & Classification Analysis

Plots stored in VegBank


Authors/Contributors
Concept Author(s): Western Ecology Group
Element Description Edition Date: 12Nov2008
Element Description Author(s): J. Coles, mod. K.A. Schulz

Ecological data developed by NatureServe and its network of natural heritage programs (see Local Programs) and other contributors and cooperators (see Sources).


References
  • Bourgeron, P. S., and L. D. Engelking, editors. 1994. A preliminary vegetation classification of the western United States. Unpublished report. The Nature Conservancy, Western Heritage Task Force, Boulder, CO. 175 pp. plus appendix.

  • CNHP [Colorado Natural Heritage Program]. 2003. Unpublished data. List of Elements and Elcodes converted and entered into Biotics Tracker 4.0. Colorado Natural Heritage Program, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO.

  • CNHP [Colorado Natural Heritage Program]. 2006-2010a. Tracked natural plant communities. Colorado Natural Heritage Program, Colorado State University, Fort Collins. [http://www.cnhp.colostate.edu/tracking/communities.html].

  • Clark, D., M. Dela Cruz, T. Clark, J. Coles, S. Topp, A. Evenden, A. Wight, G. Wakefield, and J. Von Loh. 2009. Vegetation classification and mapping project report, Capitol Reef National Park. Natural Resource Report NPS/NCPN/NRTR--2009/187. National Park Service, Fort Collins, CO. 882 pp.

  • Driscoll, R. S., D. L. Merkel, D. L. Radloff, D. E. Snyder, and J. S. Hagihara. 1984. An ecological land classification framework for the United States. Miscellaneous Publication No. 1439. USDA Forest Service, Washington, DC. 56 pp.

  • Fenemore, R. M., Jr. 1970. Plant succession in a receding lake bed in the western Great Basin. Unpublished thesis, University of Nevada, Reno.

  • Friesen, B. A., S. Blauer, K. Landgraf, J. Von Loh, J. Coles, K. Schulz, A. Tendick, A. Wight, G. Wakefield, and A. Evenden. 2010. Vegetation classification and mapping project report, Fossil Butte National Monument. Natural Resource Technical Report NPS/NCPN/NRTR--2010/319. National Park Service, Fort Collins, CO. 552 pp. [http://biology.usgs.gov/npsveg/fobu/foburpt.pdf]

  • Kagan, J. S., J. A. Christy, M. P. Murray, and J. A. Titus. 2000-2004. Classification of native vegetation of Oregon. Oregon Natural Heritage Program, Portland. 63 pp.

  • Miller, D. A., D. A. Mouat, and B. D. Treadwell. 1977. Remote sensing analysis and literature survey pertaining to the vegetation of the Petrified Forest National Park. Report of work performed under NASA and the National Park Service. 48 pp.

  • Peterson, E. B. 2008. International Vegetation Classification alliances and associations occurring in Nevada with proposed additions. Nevada Natural Heritage Program, Carson City, NV. 348 pp.

  • Romme, W. H., K. D. Heil, J. M. Porter, and R. Fleming. 1993. Plant communities of Capitol Reef National Park, Utah. USDI National Park Service, Technical Report NPS/NAUCARE/NRTER-93/02. Cooperative Park Studies Unit, Northern Arizona University. 37 pp.

  • Von Loh, J., K. Landgraf, A. Evenden, T. Owens, S. Blauer, and M. Reid. 2007. Vegetation classification and mapping project report, Colorado National Monument. Natural Resource Report NPS/NCPN/NRTR--2007/061. National Park Service, Fort Collins, CO. 564 pp.

  • Western Ecology Working Group of NatureServe. No date. International Ecological Classification Standard: International Vegetation Classification. Terrestrial Vegetation. NatureServe, Boulder, CO.


Use Guidelines and Citation

The Small Print: Trademark, Copyright, Citation Guidelines, Restrictions on Use, and Information Disclaimer.

Note: All species and ecological community data presented in NatureServe Explorer at http://explorer.natureserve.org were updated to be current with NatureServe's central databases as of October 2015.
Note: This report was printed on

Trademark Notice: "NatureServe", NatureServe Explorer, The NatureServe logo, and all other names of NatureServe programs referenced herein are trademarks of NatureServe. Any other product or company names mentioned herein are the trademarks of their respective owners.

Copyright Notice: Copyright © 2015 NatureServe, 4600 N. Fairfax Dr., 7th Floor, Arlington Virginia 22203, U.S.A. All Rights Reserved. Each document delivered from this server or web site may contain other proprietary notices and copyright information relating to that document. The following citation should be used in any published materials which reference the web site.

Citation for data on website including State Distribution, Watershed, and Reptile Range maps:
NatureServe. 2015. NatureServe Explorer: An online encyclopedia of life [web application]. Version 7.1. NatureServe, Arlington, Virginia. Available http://explorer.natureserve.org. (Accessed:

Citation for Bird Range Maps of North America:
Ridgely, R.S., T.F. Allnutt, T. Brooks, D.K. McNicol, D.W. Mehlman, B.E. Young, and J.R. Zook. 2003. Digital Distribution Maps of the Birds of the Western Hemisphere, version 1.0. NatureServe, Arlington, Virginia, USA.

Acknowledgement Statement for Bird Range Maps of North America:
"Data provided by NatureServe in collaboration with Robert Ridgely, James Zook, The Nature Conservancy - Migratory Bird Program, Conservation International - CABS, World Wildlife Fund - US, and Environment Canada - WILDSPACE."

Citation for Mammal Range Maps of North America:
Patterson, B.D., G. Ceballos, W. Sechrest, M.F. Tognelli, T. Brooks, L. Luna, P. Ortega, I. Salazar, and B.E. Young. 2003. Digital Distribution Maps of the Mammals of the Western Hemisphere, version 1.0. NatureServe, Arlington, Virginia, USA.

Acknowledgement Statement for Mammal Range Maps of North America:
"Data provided by NatureServe in collaboration with Bruce Patterson, Wes Sechrest, Marcelo Tognelli, Gerardo Ceballos, The Nature Conservancy-Migratory Bird Program, Conservation International-CABS, World Wildlife Fund-US, and Environment Canada-WILDSPACE."

Citation for Amphibian Range Maps of the Western Hemisphere:
IUCN, Conservation International, and NatureServe. 2004. Global Amphibian Assessment. IUCN, Conservation International, and NatureServe, Washington, DC and Arlington, Virginia, USA.

Acknowledgement Statement for Amphibian Range Maps of the Western Hemisphere:
"Data developed as part of the Global Amphibian Assessment and provided by IUCN-World Conservation Union, Conservation International and NatureServe."

NOTE: Full metadata for the Bird Range Maps of North America is available at:
http://www.natureserve.org/library/birdDistributionmapsmetadatav1.pdf.

Full metadata for the Mammal Range Maps of North America is available at:
http://www.natureserve.org/library/mammalsDistributionmetadatav1.pdf.

Restrictions on Use: Permission to use, copy and distribute documents delivered from this server is hereby granted under the following conditions:
  1. The above copyright notice must appear in all copies;
  2. Any use of the documents available from this server must be for informational purposes only and in no instance for commercial purposes;
  3. Some data may be downloaded to files and altered in format for analytical purposes, however the data should still be referenced using the citation above;
  4. No graphics available from this server can be used, copied or distributed separate from the accompanying text. Any rights not expressly granted herein are reserved by NatureServe. Nothing contained herein shall be construed as conferring by implication, estoppel, or otherwise any license or right under any trademark of NatureServe. No trademark owned by NatureServe may be used in advertising or promotion pertaining to the distribution of documents delivered from this server without specific advance permission from NatureServe. Except as expressly provided above, nothing contained herein shall be construed as conferring any license or right under any NatureServe copyright.
Information Warranty Disclaimer: All documents and related graphics provided by this server and any other documents which are referenced by or linked to this server are provided "as is" without warranty as to the currentness, completeness, or accuracy of any specific data. NatureServe hereby disclaims all warranties and conditions with regard to any documents provided by this server or any other documents which are referenced by or linked to this server, including but not limited to all implied warranties and conditions of merchantibility, fitness for a particular purpose, and non-infringement. NatureServe makes no representations about the suitability of the information delivered from this server or any other documents that are referenced to or linked to this server. In no event shall NatureServe be liable for any special, indirect, incidental, consequential damages, or for damages of any kind arising out of or in connection with the use or performance of information contained in any documents provided by this server or in any other documents which are referenced by or linked to this server, under any theory of liability used. NatureServe may update or make changes to the documents provided by this server at any time without notice; however, NatureServe makes no commitment to update the information contained herein. Since the data in the central databases are continually being updated, it is advisable to refresh data retrieved at least once a year after its receipt. The data provided is for planning, assessment, and informational purposes. Site specific projects or activities should be reviewed for potential environmental impacts with appropriate regulatory agencies. If ground-disturbing activities are proposed on a site, the appropriate state natural heritage program(s) or conservation data center can be contacted for a site-specific review of the project area (see Visit Local Programs).

Feedback Request: NatureServe encourages users to let us know of any errors or significant omissions that you find in the data through (see Contact Us). Your comments will be very valuable in improving the overall quality of our databases for the benefit of all users.

Copyright 2015
NatureServe
-->
Version 7.1 (2 February 2009)
Data last updated: October 2015