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Scientific Investigations Report 2010-5133

Great Basin Integrated Landscape Monitoring Project

Conceptual Ecological Models to Guide Integrated Landscape Monitoring of the Great Basin

By D.M. Miller, S.P. Finn, Andrea Woodward, Alicia Torregrosa, M.E. Miller, D.R. Bedford, and A.M. Brasher

Thumbnail of and link to report PDF (1 MB)ABSTRACT

The Great Basin Integrated Landscape Monitoring Pilot Project was developed in response to the need for a monitoring and predictive capability that addresses changes in broad landscapes and waterscapes. Human communities and needs are nested within landscapes formed by interactions among the hydrosphere, geosphere, and biosphere. Understanding the complex processes that shape landscapes and deriving ways to manage them sustainably while meeting human needs require sophisticated modeling and monitoring.

This document summarizes current understanding of ecosystem structure and function for many of the ecosystems within the Great Basin using conceptual models. The conceptual ecosystem models identify key ecological components and processes, identify external drivers, develop a hierarchical set of models that address both site and landscape attributes, inform regional monitoring strategy, and identify critical gaps in our knowledge of ecosystem function. The report also illustrates an approach for temporal and spatial scaling from site-specific models to landscape models and for understanding cumulative effects. Eventually, conceptual models can provide a structure for designing monitoring programs, interpreting monitoring and other data, and assessing the accuracy of our understanding of ecosystem functions and processes.

First posted August 16, 2010

For additional information contact:
Director, Forest and Rangeland Ecosystem Science Center
U.S. Geological Survey
777 NW 9th Street
Corvallis, Oregon 97330

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Suggested citation:

Miller, D.M., Finn, S.P., Woodward, Andrea, Torregrosa, Alicia, Miller, M.E., Bedford, D.R., and Brasher, A.M., 2010, Conceptual ecological models to guide integrated landscape monitoring of the Great Basin: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2010-5133, 134 p.


Chapter 1. Conceptual Models for Landscape Monitoring

Chapter 2: Framework and System Models

Chapter 3: Subsystem Models for the Dry System

Chapter 4: Subsystem Models for the Wet System

Chapter 5: Integration Models

Chapter 6: Summary and Conclusions


References Cited


Appendix A. Ratings of System Drivers

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