Open Access. Powered by Scholars. Published by Universities.®

Desert Ecology Commons

Open Access. Powered by Scholars. Published by Universities.®

489 Full-Text Articles 705 Authors 117,443 Downloads 41 Institutions

All Articles in Desert Ecology

Faceted Search

489 full-text articles. Page 1 of 11.

Extreme, Positive Geomorphic Change In A Historically Degraded Desert River: Implications For Imperiled Fishes, Tansy T. Remiszewski 2022 Utah State University

Extreme, Positive Geomorphic Change In A Historically Degraded Desert River: Implications For Imperiled Fishes, Tansy T. Remiszewski

All Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Rivers comprise some of the most unique and biodiverse ecosystems on the planet with their waters supporting both human societies as well as the organisms that make these rivers their home. Large rivers like the Colorado are often highly regulated and diverted in order to support human residence in arid regions like the desert Southwest, and these water diversions often have dramatic, negative impacts on the natural flow regime of the river. These impacts leave large reaches of the river dry, reduce the river’s capacity to transport sediment, cause channel and habitat homogenization, and significantly reduce the amount of suitable …


An Integral Projection Modeling Approach To Understanding Demographic Effects Of Multispecies Mutualisms, ALEXANDRA CAMPBELL 2022 Illinois State University

An Integral Projection Modeling Approach To Understanding Demographic Effects Of Multispecies Mutualisms, Alexandra Campbell

Annual Symposium on Biomathematics and Ecology Education and Research

No abstract provided.


Discovering Novel Polyextremotolerant Fungi, And Determining Their Ecological Role Within The Biological Soil Crust Consortium, Erin Carr 2022 University of Nebraska-Lincoln

Discovering Novel Polyextremotolerant Fungi, And Determining Their Ecological Role Within The Biological Soil Crust Consortium, Erin Carr

Dissertations and Theses in Biological Sciences

The ecological niche of polyextremotolerant fungi within oligotrophic ecosystems such as biological soil crusts has not yet been determined. These fungi persist in locations where nutrients are depleted while simultaneously surrounded by autotrophic microbes such as algae and cyanobacteria. Yet it has not been shown that they are engaging in any exchange of nutrients the way lichens do. However, there is seemingly no other way for these fungi to obtain vital nutrients, such as carbon or nitrogen, other than from these microbes. Here we have isolated polyextremotolerant fungi from cold desert biological soil crusts which are a microbial biofilm that …


3d Library From Body Size From Unconventional Specimens: A 3d Geometric Morphometrics Approach To Fishes From Ancestral Pueblo Contexts, Jonathan Dombrosky, Thomas F. Turner, Alexandra Harris, Emily Lena Jones 2022 University of New Mexico - Main Campus

3d Library From Body Size From Unconventional Specimens: A 3d Geometric Morphometrics Approach To Fishes From Ancestral Pueblo Contexts, Jonathan Dombrosky, Thomas F. Turner, Alexandra Harris, Emily Lena Jones

Anthropology Faculty & Staff Publications

Animal body size estimation from zooarchaeological specimens often relies on specific, one-dimensional (i.e., conventional) measures from skeletal elements. Here, we introduce an animal body size estimation technique for archaeological fishes that relies on 3D reference scans and the calculation of centroid size, a standard 3D geometric morphometric proxy measure for organism size. Centroid size-based estimations on whole caudal vertebrae are strongly correlated with a widely accepted measure (i.e., centrum width), but the scalability and flexibility of the centroid size-based approach allows for use on a wide variety of fragmented remains. We use zooarchaeological fish remains (subfamily Ictiobinae) from late pre-Hispanic …


Socio-Economic Factors Of Environmental Problems, Manzura Kamalova, D. Shakenov 2022 National University of Uzbekistan named after Mirzo Ulugbek

Socio-Economic Factors Of Environmental Problems, Manzura Kamalova, D. Shakenov

Karakalpak Scientific Journal

People consciously and intensively rebuild their nature according to their own needs, creating rural and urban areas in which they live. People care about the quality of life in the context of the unity of nature and culture. Social is a relatively new discipline that deals with urban space and environmental issues. One way to imagine what is beneficial to people is to find out what is economically best for the person. The article examines the economic factors that form the attitude towards social ecology in Kazakhstan. The article concludes that society should cooperate to achieve common things, both for …


A Stillness In The Desert? Engaging The Public Through An Immersive Exploration Of Southwest Soundscapes, Julian Kilker, Thomas Bjelic 2022 University of Nevada, Las Vegas

A Stillness In The Desert? Engaging The Public Through An Immersive Exploration Of Southwest Soundscapes, Julian Kilker, Thomas Bjelic

Creative Collaborations

The pandemic highlighted the anthropocentric nature of soundscapes, while the recent popularity of electric cars, quadcopters, and “noise cancellation” earbuds demonstrated how consumer products can rapidly change our awareness of sound. While light pollution is already extensively addressed in scholarly research, popular works such as The End of Night, and public engagement such as The International Dark Sky Association, the complex interplay of sound, natural resources, and public engagement is still emerging, particularly in creative fields.

Two UNLV scholars and artists are collaborating on this project: Julian Kilker, who specializes in visual and emerging technology research, and Tom Bjelic, who …


The Aboveground And Belowground Growth Characteristics Of Juvenile Conifers In The Southwestern United States, N. L. Pirtel, R. M. Hubbard, J. B. Bradford, T. E. Kolb, M. E. Litvak, Scott Abella, S. L. Porter, Matthew Petrie 2021 University of Nevada, Las Vegas

The Aboveground And Belowground Growth Characteristics Of Juvenile Conifers In The Southwestern United States, N. L. Pirtel, R. M. Hubbard, J. B. Bradford, T. E. Kolb, M. E. Litvak, Scott Abella, S. L. Porter, Matthew Petrie

Life Sciences Faculty Publications

Juvenile tree survival will play an important role in the persistence of coniferous forests and woodlands in the southwestern United States (SWUS). Vulnerability to climatic and environmental stress declines as trees grow, such that larger, more deeply rooted juveniles are less likely to experience mortality. It is unclear how juvenile conifers partition the aboveground and belowground components of early growth, if growth differs between species and ecosystem types, and what environmental factors influence juvenile carbon allocation above- or belowground. We developed a novel data set for four juvenile conifer groups (junipers, piñon pines, ponderosa pines, firs; 1121 juveniles sampled, 221 …


Monitoring Mammals At Multiple Scales: Case Studies From Carnivore Communities, Kadambari Devarajan 2021 University of Massachusetts Amherst

Monitoring Mammals At Multiple Scales: Case Studies From Carnivore Communities, Kadambari Devarajan

Doctoral Dissertations

Carnivores are distributed widely and threatened by habitat loss, poaching, climate change, and disease. They are considered integral to ecosystem function through their direct and indirect interactions with species at different trophic levels. Given the importance of carnivores, it is of high conservation priority to understand the processes driving carnivore assemblages in different systems. It is thus essential to determine the abiotic and biotic drivers of carnivore community composition at different spatial scales and address the following questions: (i) What factors influence carnivore community composition and diversity? (ii) How do the factors influencing carnivore communities vary across spatial and temporal …


Dietary Shifts Related To Water Availability And The Demographic Response To Changing Prey Abundance Of Carnivores In The West Desert, Utah, Ashley E. Hodge 2021 Utah State University

Dietary Shifts Related To Water Availability And The Demographic Response To Changing Prey Abundance Of Carnivores In The West Desert, Utah, Ashley E. Hodge

All Graduate Theses and Dissertations

The decrease in number and range of North American large carnivores, has often all owed smaller carnivores ( < 15 kg) to fill the role of the top predator. This has favored some carnivores such as coyotes (Canis latrans), who have expanded their distribution. Other small carnivores such as kit foxes (Vulpes macrotis) have experienced a range shrinkage and their population status throughout the United States is a concern. Historically, western U.S. natural resource management agencies installed artificial water sources to assist desert wildlife, but some researchers believe the access to water allowed more coyotes to live in Utah’s West Desert. In the late-1980s, research proposed that without free drinking water, coyotes would have to triple …


Effects Of Wetland Management And Associated Abiotic Factors On Rare Plant Communities Of Spring-Fed Arid Wetlands, Antonio Cantu de Leija 2021 Louisiana State University and Agricultural and Mechanical College

Effects Of Wetland Management And Associated Abiotic Factors On Rare Plant Communities Of Spring-Fed Arid Wetlands, Antonio Cantu De Leija

LSU Master's Theses

Spring-fed arid wetlands support high biological productivity and are hotspots for endemism and distribution of rare plants, making them areas of high conservation value. These systems are driven by complex interactions among groundwater discharge and the geomorphic and climatic features of the setting, which provide gradients of edaphic conditions, particularly soil moisture and salinity that influence the presence and abundance of rare plant communities. However, spring-fed arid wetlands are at particular risk of increases in salinity and drier hydrological regimes due to anthropogenic activities. Such alterations to abiotic conditions may jeopardize the distribution and abundance of rare plants by exceeding …


The Effects Of Climate And Demographic History In Shaping Genomic Variation Across Populations Of The Desert Horned Lizard (Phrynosoma Platyrhinos), Keaka Farleigh, Sarah A. Vladimirova, Christopher Blair, Jason T. Bracken, Nazila Koochekian, Drew R. Schield, Daren C. Card, Nicholas Finger, Jonathan Henault, Adam D. Leaché, Todd A. Castoe, Tereza Jezkova 2021 Miami University - Oxford

The Effects Of Climate And Demographic History In Shaping Genomic Variation Across Populations Of The Desert Horned Lizard (Phrynosoma Platyrhinos), Keaka Farleigh, Sarah A. Vladimirova, Christopher Blair, Jason T. Bracken, Nazila Koochekian, Drew R. Schield, Daren C. Card, Nicholas Finger, Jonathan Henault, Adam D. Leaché, Todd A. Castoe, Tereza Jezkova

Publications and Research

Species often experience spatial environmental heterogeneity across their range, and populations may exhibit signatures of adaptation to local environmental characteristics. Other population genetic processes, such as migration and genetic drift, can impede the effects of local adaptation. Genetic drift in particular can have a pronounced effect on population genetic structure during large-scale geographic expansions, where a series of founder effects leads to decreases in genetic variation in the direction of the expansion. Here, we explore the genetic diversity of a desert lizard that occupies a wide range of environmental conditions and that has experienced post-glacial expansion northwards along two colonization …


Habitat Heterogeneity Affects The Thermal Ecology Of The Federally Endangered Blunt-Nosed Leopard Lizard, Nicole Gaudenti 2021 California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo

Habitat Heterogeneity Affects The Thermal Ecology Of The Federally Endangered Blunt-Nosed Leopard Lizard, Nicole Gaudenti

Master's Theses

Global climate change is already contributing to the extirpation of numerous species worldwide, and sensitive species will continue to face challenges associated with rising temperatures throughout this century and beyond. It is especially important to evaluate the thermal ecology of endangered ectotherm species now so that mitigation measures can be taken as early as possible. A recent study of the thermal ecology of the federally endangered Blunt-Nosed Leopard Lizard (Gambelia sila) suggested that they face major activity restrictions due to thermal constraints in their desert habitat, but that large shade-providing shrubs act as thermal buffers to allow them …


Some (Im)Material Girls, Living In (Im)Material Worlds, With Seeds, Stars, And Shit, Matthew Weiderspon 2021 CUNY Hunter College

Some (Im)Material Girls, Living In (Im)Material Worlds, With Seeds, Stars, And Shit, Matthew Weiderspon

Theses and Dissertations

This writing situates material and gestural vocabularies cultivated in my artwork in relation to my lived experience; primarily my rural upbringing in Colorado. Scattered floor dispersals, calling sounds, and bodily movements desire reconsiderations of hope in precarity through a disorientation of place, association, scale, and language.


Interactive Effects Of Soil And Browsing On Big Sagebrush: Implications For Restoration Success, Kyle Nehring 2021 Utah State University

Interactive Effects Of Soil And Browsing On Big Sagebrush: Implications For Restoration Success, Kyle Nehring

All Graduate Plan B and other Reports

Heterogeneity in landscape conditions (e.g., soil types) precludes a “one size fits all” management strategy across large landscapes. New management approaches that explicitly account for heterogeneous landscapes (and the variable conditions therein) will be required to maintain habitat quality. In particular, we require an improved mechanistic understanding of how the outcomes of conservation and restoration actions are contingent upon a) contextual abiotic factors (e.g., moisture availability mediated by soils and precipitation) and b) their interactions with biotic factors (e.g., browsing wildlife).

We propose to answer fundamental questions about how big sagebrush (Artemisia tridentata), the foundational species for sagebrush …


Anthropogenic And Climatic Factors Interact To Influence Reproductive Timing And Effort, Susannah S. French, Geoffrey Smith 2021 Utah State University

Anthropogenic And Climatic Factors Interact To Influence Reproductive Timing And Effort, Susannah S. French, Geoffrey Smith

Browse all Datasets

Reproduction, although absolutely essential to a species’ persistence, is in itself challenging. As anthropogenic change increasingly affects every landscape on Earth, it is critical to understand how specific pressures impact the reproductive efforts of individuals, which directly contribute to the success or failure of populations. However, organisms rarely encounter a single burden at a time, and the interactions of environmental challenges can have compounding effects. Disentangling environmental and physiological pressures is difficult because they are often context-dependent and not generalizable, but long-term monitoring across variable landscapes and weather patterns can improve our understanding of these complex interactions. We tested the …


Data From: Recovery From Discrete Wound Severities In Side-Blotched Lizards (Uta Stansburiana): Implications For Energy Budget, Locomotor Performance, And Oxidative Stress, Susannah S. French, Spencer B. Hudson 2021 Utah State University

Data From: Recovery From Discrete Wound Severities In Side-Blotched Lizards (Uta Stansburiana): Implications For Energy Budget, Locomotor Performance, And Oxidative Stress, Susannah S. French, Spencer B. Hudson

Browse all Datasets

Wounding events (predation attempts, competitive combat) result in injuries and/or infections that induce integrated immune responses for the recovery process. Despite the survival benefits of immunity in this context, the costs incurred may require investment to be diverted from traits contributing to immediate and/or future survival, such as locomotor performance and oxidative status. Yet, whether trait constraints manifest likely depends on wound severity and the implications for energy budget. For this study, food intake, body mass, sprint speed, and oxidative indices (reactive oxygen metabolites, antioxidant capacity) were monitored in male side-blotched lizards (Uta stansburiana) healing from cutaneous wounds of discrete …


Diversity, Ecology And Therapeutic Properties Of The Medicinal Plants In Ziban Region (Algeria), Nouidjem Yassine, Hadjab Ramzi, Khammar Hichem, Merouani Sakina, Bensaci Etayeb 2021 Department of Natural and Life Sciences, University of M’Sila, Algeria

Diversity, Ecology And Therapeutic Properties Of The Medicinal Plants In Ziban Region (Algeria), Nouidjem Yassine, Hadjab Ramzi, Khammar Hichem, Merouani Sakina, Bensaci Etayeb

Journal of Bioresource Management

With the aim to assess the floristic population diversity, distribution and therapeutic properties in the Ziban region (Algeria), a survey was conducted along two successive study years in the main area. The objective of this study was to contribute to the knowledge and description of this plant groups with exhaustive inventory spontaneous vegetation. In order to study the dynamics of medicinal plants, we used a quantitative method based essentially on the classic technique of linear surveys and floristic inventory using the minimum area method. The results showed that the floristic procession of medicinal plants is represented by 21 species belonging …


Seed Bank Composition Within Two Sagebrush Communities: A Comparison Of Drought, Microsite, And Aboveground Community Effects, Allison Marie Nunes 2021 Cal Poly Humboldt

Seed Bank Composition Within Two Sagebrush Communities: A Comparison Of Drought, Microsite, And Aboveground Community Effects, Allison Marie Nunes

Cal Poly Humboldt theses and projects

Soil seed banks are critical biodiversity repositories for many dryland plant communities. Understanding how environmental factors alter seed bank composition can provide valuable information on ecological processes within a community and be useful for creating land management strategies. Using the seedling emergence method, I characterized the seed bank of two adjacent dryland plant communities that vary in dominant sagebrush species, structure, and function. Specifically, within an Artemisia arbuscula dominated community and Artemisia cana dominated community, I assessed the influence of three environmental factors on each seed bank: experimentally imposed drought, shrub microsites (compared to interspaces), and aboveground vegetation. Within the …


A Desert Tortoise–Common Raven Viable Conflict Threshold, Kerry L. Holcomb, Peter S. Coates, Brian G. Prochazka, Timothy Shields, William I. Boarman 2021 U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

A Desert Tortoise–Common Raven Viable Conflict Threshold, Kerry L. Holcomb, Peter S. Coates, Brian G. Prochazka, Timothy Shields, William I. Boarman

Human–Wildlife Interactions

Since 1966, common raven (Corvus corax; raven) abundance has increased throughout much of this species’ Holarctic distribution, fueled by an ever-expanding supply of anthropogenic resource subsidies (e.g., water, food, shelter, and nesting substrate) to ecoregion specific raven population carrying capacities. Consequently, ravens are implicated in declines of both avian and reptilian species of conservation concern, including the California (USA) endangered and federally threatened Mojave desert tortoise (Gopherus agassizii; desert tortoise). While ravens are a natural predator of desert tortoises, the inter-generational stability of desert tortoise populations is expected to be compromised as annual juvenile survival is …


Influence Of Anthropogenic Subsidies On Movements Of Common Ravens, Adam E. Duerr, Peter H. Bloom, Kerry Ross, Tricia A. Miller, Melissa A. Braham, Amy L. Fesnock, Todd E. Katzner 2021 Bloom Research Inc. and Conservation Science Global, Inc.

Influence Of Anthropogenic Subsidies On Movements Of Common Ravens, Adam E. Duerr, Peter H. Bloom, Kerry Ross, Tricia A. Miller, Melissa A. Braham, Amy L. Fesnock, Todd E. Katzner

Human–Wildlife Interactions

Anthropogenic subsidies can benefit populations of generalist predators such as common ravens (ravens; Corvus corax), which in turn may depress populations of many types of species at lower-trophic levels, including desert tortoises (Gopherus agassizii) or greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus). Management of subsidized ravens often has targeted local breeding populations that are presumed to affect species of concern and ignored “urban” populations of ravens. However, little is known about how ravens move, especially in response to the presence of anthropogenic subsidies. Therefore, subsidized ravens from distant populations that are not managed may influence local prey. To …


Digital Commons powered by bepress