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Deborah M. Finch

Deborah Finch

Program Manager/Supervisory Biologist

333 Broadway SE, Suite 115
Albuquerque, NM 87102-3407
Contact Deborah M. Finch

Current Research

I focus much of my research on riparian and rangeland environments, specifically evaluating the effects of fire and the removal of invasive plant species and fuel loads to reduce the risk of fire and determine the effects of those measures on biological diversity, threatened, endangered and rare species, riparian resources, and interactions among different elements of ecosystems. I evaluate how processes and functions change and how managers can improve ecosystem conditions. I am also interested in restoration, including thinning, prescribed fire, and adaptation assistance. I am evaluating the impacts of natural resources management practices and natural effects, such as weather, climate, and fire on birds and mammals, and on threatened and endangered species populations, and I am interested in developing conservation techniques and tools to recover TES. In addition, I have worked with colleagues to develop a system for scoring vulnerability of species to climate change and have engaged in several regional species vulnerability assessments using this tool.

Research Interests

I also examine neotropical migratory birds in relationship to the effects of natural resource practices and natural phenomena. I am involved in Partners in Flight (PIF), an organization which she helped to develop. I am assessing the vulnerability of species to shifts in climate and have developed support tools that managers can use to assist species to adapt to changing conditions. More recently, I have started work in urban environments, gauging how federal agency decision-makers make management decisions on urban ecosystem services associated with open space in and near city environments.

Past Research

My research informs managers and scientists about how natural and anthropogenic disturbances and restoration affect species populations and productivity and provide guidance for mitigating negative effects. My publications and consultations are used by managers to solve problems, recover threatened and endangered species, develop monitoring protocols, and manage biological diversity.

Why This Research is Important

I was recognized for my contributions to the field of landbird conservation by PIF in 2006. PIF is a cooperative effort dedicated to combining, coordinating, and increasing public and private resources for the purpose of conserving bird populations in North and South America. I have served as leader for the Southwestern Willow Flycatcher Recovery Team and have published conservation assessments on many other species. I was a project leader for 15 years, managing a grasslands and riparian project and numerous scientists. I competed for and was awarded funds for the Middle Rio Grande Ecosystem Management Research Unit, a research effort that has produced 272 publications since 1994.


  • Humboldt State University, Arcata, CA, B.S., Wildlife Management, 1978
  • Arizona State University, Tempe, M.S., Zoology, 1981
  • University of Wyoming, Laramie, Ph.D., Zoology and Physiology, 1987
  • Awards

    Civil Rights and Cultural Transformation Award and Plaque, 2016
    Annual Awards. Rocky Mountain Research Station
    Elected Fellow, 2015
    American Ornithologists' Union
    Wings Across the Americas Award, 2012
    Research and Partnership Award for Outstanding Achievement in Conservation. Bird responses to invasive species, fire and fuel removal in vulnerable southwestern ecosystems
    National Grasslands Research and Technology Award, 2012
    For Group Leadership for Climate Change in the Great Plains workshop and managers meeting. National Grassland Council.
    Partners in Conservation Award, 2011
    For Scanning the Conservation Horizon: A Guide to Climate Change Vulnerability Assessment. In recognition of outstanding conservation achievements attained through collaboration and partnerships with individuals, communities, agencies and organizations.
    Rangeland Research and Development Award. Plaque, 2010
    "For lifetime achievement in rangeland research." Rangeland Research and Development and National Forest System. USDA Forest Service, Washington, DC.
    Merit Award and Plaque, 2010
    "For your dedication and commitment to excellent work as the Acting Assistant Director for the Pacific Southwest Research Station."
    Merit Award, 2009
    "For Outstanding Managerial and Technical Leadership as Acting Program Manager for the Forest and Woodland Ecosystems and the Grassland, Shrubland and Desert Ecosystems Science Programs". RMRS
    Merit Award, 2009
    "For Outstanding Managerial and Technical Leadership as Acting Program Manager for the Forest and Woodland Ecosystems and the Grassland, Shrubland and Desert Ecosystems Science Programs". RMRS
    Merit Award, 2009
    "For excellent long-term mentorship of postdocs, students, and employees and for oversight of the Santa Fe and Middle Rio Grande fuel projects. RMRS.
    Merit Award and Plaque, 2008
    "For exemplary leadership as Acting Wildlife Program Leader". USDA Forest Service, Research and Development, Washington Office.
    Letter of Commendation, 2008
    "For support for the Great Plains Riparian Forest Management Summit". National Agroforestry Center.
    Public Awareness & Education Award - Group, 2008
    For: developing "The Rocky Mountain Riparian Digest," an online outreach tool to market research from RMRS and collaborators. From New Mexico Riparian Council.
    Special Award, Etched Plate, 2007
    "For your Outstanding Leadership of RWU 4351". From Unit Employees of Rocky Mountain Research Station, Albuquerque Lab.
    Merit Award, 2006
    For your active role on the RMRS Invasives Meeting Team in planning and conducting the workshop...". USDA Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station.
    Cash Award and Plaque., 2006
    Best Technology Transfer Annual Award, "For RMRS-GTR-135, Assessment of Grassland Ecosystem Conditions in the American Southwest". USDA Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station
    PIF Investigations Award,, 2006
    for "Outstanding Contributions to Bird Conservation". Partners in Flight.
    Merit Award, 2006
    For exemplary efforts in managing 2 research work units through a difficult transition period... RMRS
    Investigations Award and Plaque, 2005
    Partners in Flight award. For exceptional service to landbird conservation.
    Merit Award, 2004
    For outstanding leadership of the R3/RMRS Grassland Assessment Team and in editing V.1. From Employees of the Albuquerque Forestry Sciences Laboratory.
    Merit Award, 2004
    For timely completion of RWU-4351 research charter and excellent Ecosystem Management Unit presentation . Rocky Mountain Research Station
    Award Plaque, 2004
    Civil Rights Award. USDA Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station.
    The New Mexico Riparian Council Research Award (statue), 2004
    For work on the Middle Rio Grande Fuels Reduction Study.
    Merit Award, 2003
    For strong leadership and high productivity of two research work units and for diversity and extent of external partnerships RMRS.
    Award Plaque, 2003
    Civil Rights Award. USDA Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station.
    Clarence Burch Recognition CashAward & Plaque, $15K, 2002
    For research on the Southwestern Willow Flycatcher. With Scott Stoleson. The Quivira Coalition.
    Certificate of Appreciation, 2002
    For your outstanding contributions to the success of the USDA Hurricane Mitch/Georges Reconstruction Project in Central America and the Caribbean.
    Cash Award & Certificate of Merit, 2001
    For your leadership of the technical team that produced Status, Ecology, and Conservation of the Southwestern Willow Flycatcher"
    Certificate of Appreciation, 2001
    For your contributions to the Southwestern Willow Flycatcher Recovery Team in drafting the Recovery Plan , U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
    Certificate of Appreciation, 1997
    Your involvement on the Terrestrial Ecology Team contributed toward the success of the Interior Columbia Basin Ecosystem Management Project."
    Cash Award & Certificate of Merit, 1997
    For outstanding effort and responsiveness in completing the manuscript Songbird Ecology in Southwestern Ponderosa Pine Forests
    Cash Award & Certificate of Merit, 1996
    For outstanding performance as Project Leader of RM-4351 for FY96.
    Cash Award & Certificate of Merit, 1996
    For your exceptional perseverance, strength, and achievement during unsettling transitional periods.
    Governor Appointment, 1995
    New Mexico Distinguished Public Service Award Council.
    Special Recognition Unit Cash Award and Plaque,, 1994
    Beneficial Use of Biosolids Awards Program, Environmental Protection Agency.
    Special Achievement Cash Award & Plaque, 1992
    "in recognition of your outstanding contribution to the conservation of Neotropical migratory birds through the Partners in Flight Program." Partners in Flight, Washington, D.C.
    Award Plaque, 1992
    for Co-chairing Program Committee, National Training Workshop, "Status and Management of Neotropical Migratory Birds".
    Cash Award and Plaque, 1991
    "in recognition of exemplary contribution and participation in developing the Biological Diversity Assessment for the Rocky Mountain Region as part of the amendment of the Rocky Mountain Regional Guide." USDA Forest Service, Region 2.
    Elective Member, 1991
    American Ornithologists' Union
    Certificate of Appreciation, 1991
    "for workshop assistance at the IV Congreso de Ornitologia Neotropical, Quito, Ecuador.
    Cash Award and Plaque, 1990
    "for demonstration of high professional skill leadership in drafting a Forest Service program for the conservation of Neotropical migratory birds. USDA Forest Service, Washington, D.C.
    Award of Excellence, 1988
    Presented to Employees of Forestry Sciences Lab, Laramie, WY by the Station Directorate.
    Outstanding Research Publication Cash Award & Plaque, 1984
    Parental Expenditure of Time and Energy in the Abert's Towhee", published in The Auk. Rocky Mountain Forest and Range Experiment Station, Fort Collins, CO.


    Finch, Deborah M.; Baldwin, Carolyn; Brown, David P.; Driscoll, Katelyn P.; Fleishman, Erica; Ford, Paulette L.; Hanberry, Brice; Symstad, Amy J.; Van Pelt, Bill; Zabel, Richard, 2019. Management opportunities and research priorities for Great Plains grasslands
    Johnson, R. Roy; Carothers, Steven W.; Finch, Deborah M.; Kingsley, Kenneth J.; Stanley, John T., 2018. Riparian research and management: Past, present, future: Volume 1
    Zhai, Xiajie; Zhao, Huan; Guo, Lizhu; Finch, Deborah M.; Huang, Ding; Liu, Kesi; Tang, Shiming; Yang, Yuejuan; Guo, Jianxin; Li, Jiahuan; Xie, Shu; Wang, Kun, 2018. The emergy of metabolism in the same ecosystem (maize) under different environmental conditions
    Finch, Deborah M.; Boyce, Douglas A.; Chambers, Jeanne C.; Colt, Chris J.; Dumroese, Kasten; Kitchen, Stanley G.; McCarthy, Clinton; Meyer, Susan E.; Richardson, Bryce A.; Rowland, Mary M.; ; Schwartz, Michael K.; Tomosy, Monica S.; Wisdom, Michael J., 2016. Conservation and restoration of sagebrush ecosystems and sage-grouse: An assessment of USDA Forest Service Science
    Finch, Deborah M.; Pendleton, Rosemary L.; Reeves, Matt C.; Ott, Jeffrey E.; Kilkenny, Francis F.; Butler, Jack L.; Ott, Jacqueline P.; Pinto, Jeremiah R.; Ford, Paulette L.; Runyon, Justin B.; Rumble, Mark A.; Kitchen, Stanley G., 2016. Rangeland drought: Effects, restoration, and adaptation [Chap. 8]
    Dumroese, Kasten; Pinto, Jeremiah R.; Finch, Deborah M., 2016. Restoring arid western habitats: Native plants maximize wildlife conservation effectiveness
    Thomey, Michell L.; Ford, Paulette L.; Reeves, Matthew C.; Finch, Deborah M.; Litvak, Marcy E.; Collins, Scott L., 2014. Climate change impacts on future carbon stores and management of warm deserts of the United States
    Thomey, Michell L.; Ford, Paulette L.; Reeves, Matt C.; Finch, Deborah M.; Litvak, Marcy E.; Collins, Scott L., 2014. Review of climate change impacts on future carbon stores and management of warm deserts of the United States
    Bagne, Karen; Friggens, Megan M.; Coe, Sharon J.; Finch, Deborah M., 2014. The importance of assessing climate change vulnerability to address species conservation
    Friggens, Megan M.; Loehman, Rachel A.; Holsinger, Lisa M.; Finch, Deborah M., 2014. Vulnerability of riparian obligate species to the interactive effect of fire, climate and hydrological change
    Cartron, Jean-Luc E.; Finch, Deborah M.; Hawksworth, David L.; Stoleson, Scott H., 2013. Nesting ecology and nest success of the Blue Grosbeak along two rivers in New Mexico
    Friggens, M.; Bagne, K.; Finch, Deborah M.; Falk, D.; Triepke, J.; Lynch, Ann M., 2013. Review and recommendations for climate change vulnerability assessment approaches with examples from the Southwest
    Friggens, Megan M.; Finch, Deborah M.; Bagne, Karen E.; Coe, Sharon J.; Hawksworth, David L., 2013. Vulnerability of species to climate change in the Southwest: terrestrial species of the Middle Rio Grande
    Boone, Christopher G.; Cook, Elizabeth; Hall, Sharon J.; Nation, Marcia L.; Grimm, Nancy B.; Raish, Carol B.; Finch, Deborah M.; York, Abigail M., 2012. A comparative gradient approach as a tool for understanding and managing urban ecosystems
    Davison, Jennifer E.; Coe, Sharon; Finch, Deborah M.; Rowland, Erika; Friggens, Megan M.; Graumlich, Lisa J., 2012. Bringing indices of species vulnerability to climate change into geographic space: an assessment across the Coronado national forest
    Finch, Deborah M.; Smith, Max; LeDee, Olivia; Cartron, Jean-Luc E.; Rumble, Mark A., 2012. Climate change, animal species, and habitats: Adaptation and issues (Chapter 5)
    Bagne, Karen; Friggens, Megan M.; Finch, Deborah M., 2011. A System for Assessing Vulnerability of Species (SAVS) to Climate Change
    Finch, Deborah M.; Bagne, Karen; Friggens, Megan M.; Smith, D. M.; Brodhead, K. M., 2011. A review of climate change effects on terrestrial rangeland birds
    Finch, Deborah M.; Friggens, Megan M.; Bagne, Karen, 2011. Case Study 3: Species vulnerability assessment for the Middle Rio Grande, New Mexico
    Pearson, Dean E.; Finch, Deborah M., 2011. V. Terrestrial vertebrates
    Bagne, Karen; Finch, Deborah M.; Friggens, Megan M., 2011. Vulnerability of amphibians to climate change: implications for rangeland management
    Bateman, Heather L.; Snell, Howard L.; Chung-MacCoubrey, Alice; Finch, Deborah M., 2010. Growth, activity, and survivorship from three sympatric parthenogenic whiptails (family Teiidae)
    Bateman, Heather; Chung-MacCoubrey, Alice; Finch, Deborah M., 2010. Snake, rattle, and roll: Investigating the snakes that live in the Bosque along the Middle Rio Grande
    Finch, Deborah M.; Pearson, Dean E.; Wunderle, Joseph; Arendt, Wayne, 2010. Terrestrial animals as invasive species and as species at risk from invasions
    Bateman, Heather L.; Chung-MacCoubrey, Alice; Snell, Howard L.; Finch, Deborah M., 2009. Abundance and species richness of snakes along the Middle Rio Grande riparian forest in New Mexico
    Chung-MacCoubrey, Alice; Bateman, Heather L.; Finch, Deborah M., 2009. Captures of Crawford's gray shrews (Notiosorex crawfordi) along the Rio Grande in central New Mexico
    Smith, Max; Finch, Deborah M.; Gunning, Christian; Jemison, Roy; Kelly, Jeffrey F., 2009. Post-wildfire recovery of riparian vegetation during a period of water scarcity in the southwestern USA
    Cartron, Jean-Luc E.; Hawksworth, David L.; Finch, Deborah M., 2008. First records of the Brown Creeper breeding along the middle Rio Grande in central New Mexico
    Bateman, Heather L.; Chung-MacCoubrey, Alice; Finch, Deborah M.; Snell, Howard L.; Hawksworth, David L., 2008. Impacts of non-native plant removal on vertebrates along the Middle Rio Grande (New Mexico)
    Finch, Deborah M.; Dold, Catherine eds., 2008. Middle Rio Grande Basin Research Report 2008
    Finch, Deborah M., 2008. Rocky Mountain Riparian Digest
    Cartron, Jean-Luc E.; Means, Michael D.; Hawksworth, David L.; Finch, Deborah M., 2007. Colonization of the eastern bluebird along the Rio Grande in New Mexico
    Smith, Max; Kelly, Jeff F.; Finch, Deborah M., 2006. Wildfire, Exotic Vegetation, and Breeding Bird Habitat in the Rio Grande Bosque
    Skagen, Susan K.; Kelly, Jeffrey F.; van Riper III, Charles; Hutto, Richard L.; Finch, Deborah M.; Krueper, David J.; Melcher, Cynthia P., 2005. Geography of spring landbird migration through riparian habitats in southwestern North America
    Finch, Deborah M.; Dahms, Cathy W., 2004. Purpose and Need for a Grassland Assessment
    Kelly, Jeffrey F.; DeLay, Linda S.; Finch, Deborah M., 2002. Density-dependent mass gain by Wilson's Warblers during stopover
    Finch, Deborah M.; Rothstein, Stephen I.; Boren, Jon C.; Graf, William L.; Holechek, Jerry L.; Kus, Barbara E.; Marshall, Robert M.; Pohl, Molly M.; Sferra, Susan J.; Sogge, Mark K.; Stromberg, Julie C.; Valentine, Bradley A.; Whitfield, Mary J.; Williams, Sartor O. III., 2002. Final recovery plan of the southwestern willow flycatcher (Empidonax traillii extimus)
    Kelly, Jeffrey F.; Atudorei, Viorel; Sharp, Zachary D.; Finch, Deborah M., 2002. Insights into Wilson's Warbler migration from analyses of hydrogen stable-isotope ratios
    Struempf, Heather M.; Finch, Deborah M.; Hayward, Gregory; Anderson, Stanley, 2001. Predicting nest success from habitat features in aspen forests of the central Rocky Mountains
    Stoleson, Scott H.; Shook, Roland S.; Finch, Deborah M., 2000. Breeding biology of Lucy's Warbler in southwestern New Mexico
    Finch, Deborah M.; Agyagos, Janie; McCarthey, Tracy; Marshall, Robert M.; Stoleson, Scott H.; Whitfield, Mary J., 2000. Chapter 10: Management recommendations
    Stoleson, Scott H.; Agyagos, Janie; Finch, Deborah M.; McCarthey, Tracy; Uyehara, Jamie; Whitfield, Mary J., 2000. Chapter 11: Research needs
    Cartron, Jean-Luc E.; Richardson, W. Scott; Finch, Deborah M.; Krueper, David J., 2000. Chapter 6: Research needs for the conservation of the cactus ferruginous pygmy-owl in Arizona
    Finch, Deborah M.; Kelly, Jeffrey F.; Cartron, Jean-Luc E., 2000. Chapter 7: Migration and winter ecology
    Cartron, Jean-Luc E.; Finch, Deborah M., 2000. Ecology and conservation of the cactus ferruginous pygmy-owl in Arizona
    Ford, Paulette L.; Finch, Deborah M., 1999. Amphibians and land use in the Chihuahuan Desert border region
    DeLay, Linda S.; Finch, Deborah M.; Brantley, Sandra; Fagerlund, Richard; Means, Michael D.; Kelly, Jeffrey F., 1999. Arthropods of native and exotic vegetation and their association with willow flycatchers and Wilson's warblers
    Kelly, Jeffrey F.; Smith, Rob; Finch, Deborah M.; Moore, Frank R.; Yong, Wang, 1999. Influence of summer biogeography on wood warbler stopover abundance
    Franzreb, Kathleen E.; Finch, Deborah M.; Wood, Petra Bohall; Capen, David E., 1999. Management strategies for the conservation of forest birds
    Thompson, Frank R. III; Finch, Deborah M.; Probst, John R.; Gaines, Glen D.; Dobkin, David S., 1999. Multi-resource and multi-scale approaches for meeting the challenge of managing multiple species
    Chavez-Leon, Gilberto; Finch, Deborah M., 1999. Rapid assessment of endemic bird areas in Michoacan, Mexico
    Yong, Wang; Finch, Deborah M., 1999. Response
    Finch, Deborah M.; Whitney, Jeffrey C., 1999. Rio Grande ecosystems: Proceedings introduction
    Finch, Deborah M.; Whitney, Jeffrey C.; Kelly, Jeffrey F.; Loftin, Samuel R., 1999. Rio Grande ecosystems: linking land, water, and people: Toward a sustainable future for the Middle Rio Grande Basin
    Stoleson, Scott H.; Finch, Deborah M., 1999. Unusual nest sites for southwestern Willow Flycatchers
    Garcia, Santiago; Finch, Deborah M.; Leon, Gilberto Chavez., 1998. Patterns of forest use and endemism in resident bird communities of north-central Michoacan, Mexico
    Yong, Wang; Finch, Deborah M.; Moore, Frank R.; Kelly, Jeffrey F., 1998. Stopover ecology and habitat use of migratory Wilson's Warblers
    Schweitzer, Sara H.; Finch, Deborah M.; Leslie, David M Jr., 1998. The brown-headed cowbird and its riparian-dependent hosts in New Mexico
    Tallman, Barbara; Finch, Deborah M.; Edminster, Carl; Hamre, Robert, 1998. The future of arid grasslands: identifying issues, seeking solutions
    Kelly, Jeffrey F.; Finch, Deborah M., 1998. Tracking migrant songbirds with stable isotopes
    Scurlock, Dan; Finch, Deborah M., 1997. A historical overview
    Yong, Wang; Finch, Deborah M., 1997. A partly albino Wilson's Warbler (Wilsonia pusilla)
    Finch, Deborah M.; Ganey, Joseph L.; Yong, Wang; Kimball, Rebecca T.; Sallabanks, Rex, 1997. Effects and interactions of fire, logging, and grazing
    Block, William M.; Finch, Deborah M.; Ganey, Joseph L.; Moir, William H., 1997. Summary (Songbird ecology in southwestern ponderosa pine forests: A literature review)
    Shaw, Douglas W.; Finch, Deborah M., 1996. Introduction
    Finch, Deborah M.; Domenici, Pete V.; Whitney, Jeffrey. C.; Harris, Steve; Shields, Brian; Crawford, Clifford S., 1996. Panel - Rio Grande restoration: Future directions
    Schweitzer, Sara H.; Finch, Deborah M.; Leslie, David M. Jr., 1996. Reducing impacts of brood parasitism by Brown-headed Cowbirds on riparian-nesting migratory songbirds
    Potter, Deborah A.; Finch, Deborah M., 1996. Rio Grande Basin Consortium: Mission, goals, and activities
    Mount, Joanne; Krausman, William; Finch, Deborah M., 1996. Riparian habitat change along the Isleta-Belen reach of the Rio Grande
    Finch, Deborah M.; Tainter, Joseph A., 1995. Ecology, diversity, and sustainability of the Middle Rio Grande Basin
    Hejl, Sallie J.; Hutto, Richard L.; Preston, Charles R.; Finch, Deborah M., 1995. Effects of silvicultural treatments in the Rocky Mountains
    Finch, Deborah M.; Tainter, Joseph A., 1995. Introduction: Ecosystem research in a human context [chapter 1]
    Finch, Deborah M.; Wolters, Gale L.; Yong, Wang; Mund, Mary Jean, 1995. Plants, arthropods, and birds of the Rio Grande [chapter 7]
    Block, William M.; Finch, Deborah M.; Brennan, Leonard A., 1995. Single-species versus multiple-species approaches for management
    Koford, Rolf R.; Dunning, John B. Jr.; Ribic, Christine A.; Finch, Deborah M., 1994. A glossary for avian conservation biology
    Tweit, Robert C.; Finch, Deborah M., 1994. Abert's Towhee: Pipilo aberti
    Finch, Deborah M.; Fletcher, Rick, 1994. Silvicultural effects on birds in the Rockies
    Finch, Deborah M.; Patton-Mallory, Marcia, 1993. Closing the gap between research and management
    Hutto, Richard L.; Hejl, Sallie J.; Preston, Charles R.; Finch, Deborah M., 1993. Effects of silvicultural treatments on forest birds in the Rocky Mountains: implications and management recommendations
    Finch, Deborah M.; Block, William M.; Fletcher, Reg A.; Fager, Leon F., 1993. Integrating neotropical migratory birds into Forest Service plans for ecosystem management
    Finch, Deborah M.; Wilson, Marcia; Roca, Roberto, 1992. Programa de conservacion para aves migratorias neotropicales
    Davis, Peter R.; Emerick, John C.; Finch, Deborah M.; Foster, Susan Q.; Monarch, John W.; Rush, Sandra; Thorne, Oakleigh II; Todd, Jeffrey, 1989. Proceedings IV: Issues and technology in the management of impacted wildlife; February 6-8, 1989; Glenwood Springs, CO
    Finch, Deborah M.; Anderson, Stanley H.; Hubert, Wayne A., 1987. Habitat suitability index models: Lark bunting
    Finch, Deborah M.; Ward, A. Lorin; Hamre, R. H., 1982. Comments in defense of symposia proceedings: Response to Bart and Anderson
    Richmond, Merle L.; Henny, Charles J.; Floyd, Randy L.; Mannan, William R.; Finch, Deborah M.; DeWeese, Lawrence R., 1979. Effects of sevin-4-oil, dimilin, and orthene on forest birds in northeastern Oregon
    The riparian vegetation along the upper Gila River in southwestern New Mexico has high richness of woody plants and extremely high densities of nesting birds including the Federally endangered and threatened species
    Rivers and streams of the American Southwest have been heavily altered by human activity, resulting in significant changes to disturbance regimes. Riparian vegetation in aridland floodplain systems is critically important as foraging, migrating, and breeding habitat to birds and other animal species. To conserve riparian ecosystems and organisms, understanding how plants and animals are affected by disturbance processes and multiple stressors is critical.
    Verde River above Horseshoe Dam in Arizona. Photo by D.M. Smith
    A frequently discussed function of aridland riparian ecosystems is the contribution of woody riparian plants to breeding bird habitat. The structurally diverse, species-rich vegetation along many southwestern streams supports high densities of territories and nest sites for a variety of birds including several species of high conservation priority.A frequently discussed function of aridland riparian ecosystems is the contribution of woody riparian plants to breeding bird habitat. The structurally diverse, species-rich vegetation along many southwestern streams supports high densities of territories and nest sites for a variety of birds including several species of high conservation priority.
    Female greater sage-grouse observed at a high-elevation mountain big sagebrush site, Inyo National Forest, CA, photo by Chris Balzotti, Stanford University, used with permission.
    The Rocky Mountain Research Station holds a long legacy in sagebrush and rangeland research dating back to the 1930s. With over 70 years of research on sagebrush ecosystem dynamics as well as mechanisms to manage for resilient and resistant sagebrush ecosystems, Forest Service scientists continue as a leading resource for providing sound science to the management of these landscapes.
    Reseracher holds Greater Sage-Grouse while radio-tagging it
    USDA Forest Service (FS) has been a leader for several decades in developing science and applications to support conservation and restoration of sagebrush ecosystems and sage-grouse populations. This spotlight describes an assessment that explains how and why understanding and supporting FS science is crucial for future management of sagebrush ecosystems.
    View of vegetative recovery five years after fire on a Colorado Plateau site includes scattered mountain big sagebrush plants that grew from seeds that survived the fire. (photo by Stanley Kitchen)
    This issue of the GSD Update takes a look at selected studies of the Grassland, Shrubland and Desert Ecosystems Science Program (GSD) that depict its strengths and focus areas. Significant results of recent research and science delivery by GSD scientists are highlighted related to 1) ecosystem resiliency, and native and invasive species management, and 2) the role of climate in species adaptation, restoration and management.
    The San Francisco Peaks in northern Arizona are sacred to many Native American groups.
    In August 2010, the Institute for Tribal Environmental Professionals (ITEP) and the Rocky Mountain Research Station began a collaborative project focused on tribal climate change issues in the Southwest. Project collaborators are coordinating with the Pacific Northwest and Northern Research Stations as part of the Agency's 2010 Coordinated Approach to Tribal Climate Change research project.
    In central New Mexico's Middle Rio Grande corridor, birds such as the blue grosbeak (Passerina caerulea), black-chinned hummingbird (Archilochus alexandri), and the endangered Southwestern willow flycatcher (Empidonax traillii extimus) nest in invasive exotic tree species. Researchers studied nesting success in areas dominated by native tree species such as willows, areas dominated by invasive species such as tamarisk, sites that burned, those not burned, and those where invasive species had been removed.
    The researchers are completing a series of riparian and groundwater-dependent ecosystem assessments for National Forests in the USFS Intermountain Region. Each assessment summarizes drivers, stressors, and current condition of these systems in relation to the natural range of variation within each forest. The reports directly inform the assessment phase of forest plan revision and continue to be produced on a schedule in line with the Region’s forest planning process.
    Rocky Mountain Research Station scientists are investigating how climate change, namely elevated levels of CO2, might impact invasive species and classical biological control of weeds.
    The aquatics synthesis project aimed to improve access and application of relevant climate change data for aquatic resource managers and researchers. The Southern Rockies Landscape Conservation Cooperative, recognizing the need for syntheses and tools for climate change adaptation, sponsored this effort.