Desatoya Mountains Project and the Porter Canyon Experimental Watershed

photo of researcher at a monitoring station

Project Overview

Piñon (Pinus spp.) and juniper (Juniperus spp.) (PJ) currently occupy approximately 19 million hectars in the Intermountain West. Prior to 1860, approximately 66% of what is now woodland occurred as sagebrush plant communities.

This watershed scale project:

  • Documents the impact of PJ treatments in formerly sagebrush steppe communities on understory vegetation composition, hydrologic function, and surface runoff and soil erosion at the landscape scale.
  • Expands the snow monitoring component to understand snow dynamics and timing of plant phenology in cut and uncut treatments.
  • Secures expertise to analyze existing datasets.

Project Documents

Project Publications

Carroll, RWH, Huntington, JL, Snyder, KA, Niswonger, RG, Morton, C, Stringham, TK. 2016. Evaluating mountain meadow groundwater response to Pinyon-Juniper and temperature in a great basin watershed. Ecohydrol. 10(1792): doi:10.1002/eco.1792.

Theme: Climate Change, Plants, Soil and Site Stability, Water

Project start date: 5/1/2013

Fiscal year funded: 2013

Project status: Complete

Project managers: Dr. Keirith Snyder, USDA Forest Service