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Management Implications of Global Change for Great Plains Rangelands
- Morgan, Jack A., Derner, Justin D., Milchunas, Daniel G., Pendall, Elise
- Rangelands 2008 v.30 no.3 pp. 18
- rangelands, climate change, climatic factors, precipitation, drought, global warming, air temperature, plant response, plant growth, plant ecology, soil nutrients, soil fertility, forage quality, forage, plant communities, livestock production, range management, ecological succession, fire regime, Great Plains region
Encompassing about 85M hectares, the Great Plains of North America consists of shortgrass, mixed-grass, and tallgrass prairie. When placed in the context of global climate change, the Great Plains will be affected mainly by changes in moisture and temperature. The effects will however vary across the region. However, temperature changes will affect vegetation. As for precipitation, there will be increased rain in Canada and northeastern United States, while a decrease will be experienced in the southwestern United States. Projections show that rangelands are changing, most of which are tied to global change. As for the Great Plains, increased occurrence and severity of drought in the southern and central Great Plains has the potential to reduce stocking rates or season of grazing in the near future.