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Classification
Scientific Name: Great Basin Xeric Mixed Sagebrush Shrubland
Unique Identifier: CES304.774
Classification Confidence: 2 - Moderate

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Summary: This ecological system occurs in the Great Basin on dry flats and plains, alluvial fans, rolling hills, rocky hillslopes, saddles and ridges at elevations between 1000 and 2600 m. Sites are dry, often exposed to desiccating winds, with typically shallow, rocky, non-saline soils. Shrublands are dominated by Artemisia nova (mid and low elevations), Artemisia arbuscula ssp. longicaulis, or Artemisia arbuscula ssp. longiloba (higher elevation) and may be codominated by Artemisia tridentata ssp. wyomingensis or Chrysothamnus viscidiflorus. Other shrubs that may be present include Atriplex confertifolia, Ephedra spp., Ericameria spp., Grayia spinosa, Lycium shockleyi, Picrothamnus desertorum, and Tetradymia spp. The herbaceous layer is likely sparse and composed of perennial bunchgrasses, such as Achnatherum hymenoides, Achnatherum speciosum, Achnatherum thurberianum, Elymus elymoides, or Poa secunda.

Classification Approach: International Terrestrial Ecological Systems Classification (ITESC)

Classification Comments: Diagnostic species for this Wyoming Basins ecological system, Artemisia nova and Artemisia arbuscula, are shared with three sagebrush dwarf-shrubland ecological systems from three ecoregions: Wyoming Basins Dwarf Sagebrush Shrubland and Steppe (CES304.794), Colorado Plateau Mixed Low Sagebrush Shrubland (CES304.762), and Great Basin Xeric Mixed Sagebrush Shrubland (CES304.774). Although there is overlap with two dominant species, regional differences in ecosystem processes, total species composition, and environmental variables support distinguishing four dwarf sagebrush ecological systems.

Component Associations
Association Unique ID Association Name
CEGL000994 Artemisia tridentata ssp. wyomingensis / Balsamorhiza sagittata Shrubland
CEGL001009 Artemisia tridentata ssp. wyomingensis / Pseudoroegneria spicata Shrubland
CEGL001040 Artemisia tridentata ssp. wyomingensis - Atriplex confertifolia Shrubland
CEGL001041 Artemisia tridentata ssp. wyomingensis / Bouteloua gracilis Shrubland
CEGL001043 Artemisia tridentata ssp. wyomingensis / Elymus elymoides Shrubland
CEGL001046 Artemisia tridentata ssp. wyomingensis / Achnatherum hymenoides Shrubland
CEGL001049 Artemisia tridentata ssp. wyomingensis / Poa secunda Shrubland
CEGL001050 Artemisia tridentata ssp. wyomingensis - Purshia tridentata / Pseudoroegneria spicata Shrubland
CEGL001051 Artemisia tridentata ssp. wyomingensis / Hesperostipa comata Shrubland
CEGL001052 Artemisia tridentata ssp. wyomingensis / Achnatherum thurberianum Shrubland
CEGL001344 Grayia spinosa / Artemisia nova / Achnatherum speciosum Shrubland
CEGL001350 Grayia spinosa / Achnatherum hymenoides Shrubland
CEGL001414 Artemisia arbuscula ssp. longiloba Shrubland
CEGL001415 Artemisia arbuscula ssp. longiloba / Pascopyrum smithii Shrub Grassland
CEGL001416 Artemisia arbuscula ssp. longiloba / Pseudoroegneria spicata Shrub Grassland
CEGL001417 Artemisia nova Shrubland
CEGL001418 Artemisia nova / Elymus elymoides Shrubland
CEGL001419 Artemisia nova - Gutierrezia sarothrae / Bouteloua gracilis - Pleuraphis jamesii Shrubland
CEGL001420 Artemisia nova / Pleuraphis jamesii Shrubland
CEGL001422 Artemisia nova / Achnatherum hymenoides Shrubland
CEGL001423 Artemisia nova / Poa secunda Shrubland
CEGL001424 Artemisia nova / Pseudoroegneria spicata Shrubland
CEGL001425 Artemisia nova / Hesperostipa comata Shrubland
CEGL001522 Artemisia arbuscula ssp. longiloba / Festuca idahoensis Shrub Grassland
CEGL001523 Artemisia arbuscula ssp. longiloba / Poa secunda Shrub Grassland
CEGL001534 Artemisia tridentata ssp. wyomingensis / Mixed Grasses Shrub Grassland
CEGL001535 Artemisia tridentata ssp. wyomingensis / Pseudoroegneria spicata Shrub Grassland
CEGL002698 Artemisia nova / Poa fendleriana Shrubland
CEGL002773 Artemisia nova - Ericameria nana Shrubland
CEGL002983 Artemisia arbuscula ssp. arbuscula - Artemisia tridentata ssp. wyomingensis / Festuca idahoensis Shrubland
CEGL002984 Artemisia arbuscula ssp. longicaulis - Grayia spinosa Shrubland
CEGL002985 Artemisia arbuscula ssp. longicaulis / Bromus tectorum Ruderal Shrubland
CEGL002986 Artemisia arbuscula ssp. longicaulis / Elymus elymoides Shrubland



Classifiers

Land Cover Class: Shrubland
Spatial Pattern: Large patch
Natural/Seminatural: No
Vegetated ( > 10% vascular cover):
Upland: Yes
Wetland: No
Isolated Wetland: No

Diagnostic Classifiers
Primary Classifier Secondary Classifier
Lowland Foothill
Shrubland (Shrub-dominated)  
Ridge/Summit/Upper Slope  
Aridic  
Low Artemisia spp.  

Non-diagnostic Classifiers
Primary Classifier Secondary Classifier
Montane Montane
Montane Lower Montane
Alluvial fan  
Alluvial plain  
Foothill(s)  
Hill(s)  
Piedmont  
Plain  
Plateau  
Sideslope  
Temperate Temperate Continental
Alkaline Soil  
Shallow Soil  

At-Risk Species Reported for this Ecological System
Scientific Name
  (Common Name)
NatureServe Global Status U.S. Endangered Species Act Status
Agastache cusickii
  (Cusick's Giant-hyssop)
G3G4  
Arabis bodiensis
  (Bodie Hills Rockcress)
G3  
Arabis falcifructa
  (Elko Rockcress)
G1G2  
Astragalus convallarius var. margaretiae
  (Margaret's Rushy Milkvetch)
G5T2  
Astragalus oophorus var. lonchocalyx
  (Pink Egg Milkvetch)
G4T2  
Centrocercus urophasianus
  (Greater Sage-Grouse)
G3G4  
Cercyonis pegala pluvialis
  (White River Wood-Nymph)
G5T2  
Cirsium brevifolium
  (Palouse Thistle)
G3  
Cryptantha compacta
  (Compact Cat's-eye)
G2G3  
Cusickiella quadricostata
  (Bodie Hills Cusickiella)
G2  
Cymopterus basalticus
  (Intermountain Wavewing)
G2  
Erigeron latus
  (Broad Fleabane)
G3  
Eriogonum anemophilum
  (Wind-loving Buckwheat)
G2G3  
Eriogonum crosbyae
  (Crosby's Buckwheat)
G3Q  
Eriogonum cusickii
  (Cusick's Buckwheat)
G2  
Eriogonum soredium
  (Frisco Buckwheat)
G1  
Lupinus holmgrenianus
  (Holmgren's Lupine)
G2  
Penstemon concinnus
  (Tunnel Springs Beardtongue)
G3  
Penstemon floribundus
  (Cordelia's Penstemon)
G1  
Penstemon idahoensis
  (Idaho Penstemon)
G2  
Penstemon pinorum
  (Pinyon Penstemon)
G1  
Phyciodes cocyta arenacolor
  (Steptoe Valley Checkerspot)
G5T1  
Polyctenium williamsiae
  (Williams' Combleaf)
G2Q  
Sclerocactus pubispinus
  (Great Basin Fishhook Cactus)
G3  
Stroganowia tiehmii
  (Tiehm's Stroganowia)
G2  
Thomomys bottae abstrusus
  (Fish Spring Pocket Gopher)
G5TH  
Trifolium owyheense
  (Owyhee Clover)
G2  

Vegetation Composition (incomplete)
Species Name Rounded Global Status Growth Form Stratum Char-
acter-
istic
Domi-nant Con-stant
Cover Class %
Con-
stancy
%
Chrysothamnus greenei G5 Broad-leaved deciduous shrub Shrub/sapling (tall & short)    
 
 
Chrysothamnus viscidiflorus G5 Broad-leaved deciduous shrub Shrub/sapling (tall & short)  
 
 
Artemisia tridentata ssp. wyomingensis T5 Broad-leaved evergreen shrub Shrub/sapling (tall & short)    
 
 
Artemisia papposa G4 Dwarf-shrub Short shrub/sapling      
 
 
Grayia spinosa G5 Broad-leaved deciduous shrub Short shrub/sapling    
 
 
Krascheninnikovia lanata G5 Broad-leaved deciduous shrub Short shrub/sapling    
 
 
Picrothamnus desertorum G5 Broad-leaved deciduous shrub Short shrub/sapling    
 
 
Artemisia arbuscula ssp. longicaulis T4 Broad-leaved evergreen shrub Short shrub/sapling    
 
 
Artemisia arbuscula G5 Broad-leaved evergreen shrub Short shrub/sapling    
 
 
Artemisia arbuscula ssp. longiloba T4 Broad-leaved evergreen shrub Short shrub/sapling    
 
 
Artemisia nova G5 Broad-leaved evergreen shrub Short shrub/sapling    
 
 
Ephedra nevadensis G5 Broad-leaved evergreen shrub Short shrub/sapling    
 
 
Ephedra viridis G5 Broad-leaved evergreen shrub Short shrub/sapling    
 
 
Opuntia pulchella G4 Succulent shrub Short shrub/sapling      
 
 
Sclerocactus pubispinus G3 Succulent shrub Short shrub/sapling      
 
 
Agastache cusickii G3 Flowering forb Herb (field)      
 
 
Arabis bodiensis G3 Flowering forb Herb (field)      
 
 
Arabis falcifructa G1 Flowering forb Herb (field)      
 
 
Arabis pulchra var. munciensis T4 Flowering forb Herb (field)      
 
 
Astragalus convallarius var. margaretiae T2 Flowering forb Herb (field)      
 
 
Astragalus oophorus var. lonchocalyx T2 Flowering forb Herb (field)      
 
 
Astragalus tetrapterus G4 Flowering forb Herb (field)      
 
 
Cirsium brevifolium G3 Flowering forb Herb (field)      
 
 
Cryptantha compacta G2 Flowering forb Herb (field)      
 
 
Cusickiella quadricostata G2 Flowering forb Herb (field)      
 
 
Cymopterus basalticus G2 Flowering forb Herb (field)      
 
 
Erigeron latus G3 Flowering forb Herb (field)      
 
 
Eriogonum anemophilum G2 Flowering forb Herb (field)      
 
 
Eriogonum crosbyae G3 Flowering forb Herb (field)      
 
 
Eriogonum cusickii G2 Flowering forb Herb (field)      
 
 
Eriogonum soredium G1 Flowering forb Herb (field)      
 
 
Hymenoxys lemmonii G4 Flowering forb Herb (field)      
 
 
Lupinus holmgrenianus G2 Flowering forb Herb (field)      
 
 
Mimulus latidens G4 Flowering forb Herb (field)      
 
 
Penstemon concinnus G3 Flowering forb Herb (field)      
 
 
Penstemon floribundus G1 Flowering forb Herb (field)      
 
 
Penstemon idahoensis G2 Flowering forb Herb (field)      
 
 
Penstemon pinorum G1 Flowering forb Herb (field)      
 
 
Penstemon seorsus G4 Flowering forb Herb (field)      
 
 
Polyctenium williamsiae G2 Flowering forb Herb (field)      
 
 
Stroganowia tiehmii G2 Flowering forb Herb (field)      
 
 
Trifolium owyheense G2 Flowering forb Herb (field)      
 
 
Achnatherum speciosum G5 Graminoid Herb (field)      
 
 
Achnatherum thurberianum G5 Graminoid Herb (field)    
 
 
Pseudoroegneria spicata ssp. spicata T5 Graminoid Herb (field)    
 
 


Animal Species Reported for this Ecological System
Scientific Name
  (Common Name)
Global Status U.S. Endangered Species Act Status Charact-
eristic
Exotic
Brachylagus idahoensis
  (Pygmy Rabbit)
G4      
Centrocercus urophasianus
  (Greater Sage-Grouse)
G3G4      
Cercyonis pegala pluvialis
  (White River Wood-Nymph)
G5T2      
Dipodomys panamintinus
  (Panamint Kangaroo Rat)
G5      
Lampropeltis pyromelana
  (Sonoran Mountain Kingsnake)
G4      
Phrynosoma platyrhinos
  (Desert Horned Lizard)
G5      
Phyciodes cocyta arenacolor
  (Steptoe Valley Checkerspot)
G5T1      
Pituophis catenifer
  (Gophersnake)
G5      
Rhinocheilus lecontei
  (Long-nosed Snake)
G5      
Sceloporus graciosus graciosus
  (Northern Sagebrush Lizard)
G5T5      
Sceloporus graciosus
  (Sagebrush Lizard)
G5      
Thomomys bottae abstrusus
  (Fish Spring Pocket Gopher)
G5TH      
Urocitellus mollis
  (Piute Ground Squirrel)
G5      
Uta stansburiana
  (Common Side-blotched Lizard)
G5      
Vireo vicinior
  (Gray Vireo)
G5      


Distribution
Color legend for Distribution Map
Nation: United States
United States Distribution: CA, IDpotentially occurs, NV, OR, UT, WY
Global Range: This system occurs in the Great Basin on dry flats and plains, alluvial fans, rolling hills, rocky hillslopes, saddles and ridges at elevations between 1000 and 2600 m.

Biogeographic Divisions
Division Code and Name Primary Occurrence Status
206-Mediterranean California C: Confident or certain
304-Inter-Mountain Basins C: Confident or certain

The Nature Conservancy's Conservation Ecoregions
Code Name Occurrence Status
11 Great Basin Confident or certain
12 Sierra Nevada Confident or certain
18 Utah High Plateaus Predicted or probable
6 Columbia Plateau Predicted or probable

MRLC 2000 Mapzones
Code Name Occurrence Status
4 Southern California Coastal Range Possible
6 Sierra Nevada Mountain Range Predicted or probable
7 Cascade Mountain Range Possible
9 Blue Mountain Region Confident or certain
10 Northwestern Rocky Mountains Confident or certain
12 Western Great Basin Confident or certain
13 Death Valley Basin Predicted or probable
16 Utah High Plateaus Confident or certain
17 Eastern Great Basin Confident or certain
18 Snake River Plain Confident or certain

National Mapping
ESLF Code (Ecological System Lifeform): 5256
ESP Code (Environmental Site Potential): 1079
EVT Code (Existing Vegetation Type): 2079

West Landfire Legend: Yes
East Landfire Legend: No

Authors/Contributors
Element Description Edition Date: 26Jan2016
Element Description Author(s): M.S. Reid and 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
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  • Belnap, J. 2001. Chapter 19: Factors influencing nitrogen fixation and nitrogen release in biological soil crusts. Pages 241-261 in: J. Belnap and O. L. Lange, editors. Biological soil crusts: Structure, function, and management. Springer-Verlag, Berlin.

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  • Hansen, P. L., and G. R. Hoffman. 1988. The vegetation of the Grand River/Cedar River, Sioux, and Ashland districts of the Custer National Forest: A habitat type classification. General Technical Report RM-157. USDA Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Forest and Range Experiment Station, Fort Collins, CO. 68 pp.

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  • Tirmenstein, D. 1999c. Artemisia tridentata ssp. tridentata. In: Fire Effects Information System [Online]. USDA Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station, Fire Sciences Laboratory (Producer). [http://www.fs.fed.us/database/feis/] (accessed 13 July 2007).

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