The Recovery of Microbiotic Crusts Following Post-Fire Rehabilitation on Rangelands of the Western Snake River Plain
Type of Culminating Activity
Master of Science in Interdisciplinary Studies, Plant Ecology and Soil Science
Maria C. Wicklow-Howard
Robert C. Rychert
Mark A. Seyfried
Microbiotic crusts occur as a thin layer of bryophytes (mosses and liverworts), lichens, microfungi, algae, and cyanobacteria in arid and semiarid plant communities world-wide (St. Clair & Johansen 1993). In Wyoming big sagebrush (Artemisia tridentata Nutt. ssp. wyomingensis Beetle & Young)/bunchgrass associations on the western Snake River Plain in southwestern Idaho, this biotic layer occupies the interspaces between shrubs and bunchgrasses, essentially forming a diminutive community within the confines of the vascular plant complex. In many cases, the microbiotic crust creates a rough, undulating or pedicelled microtopography, contributing to the complexity of the "microcommunity" (Harper & Marble 1988) via creation of numerous microhabitats.
Kaltenecker, Julienne Hilty, "The Recovery of Microbiotic Crusts Following Post-Fire Rehabilitation on Rangelands of the Western Snake River Plain" (1997). Boise State University Theses and Dissertations. 1072.