Critical wildlife habitat supporting mule deer, antelope, and sage grouse in high elevation rangeland and sagebrush ecosystems of southwest Wyoming is threatened by an expanding population and energy exploration and development. Our objective was to evaluate native shrub species establishment for restoration after disturbance. In October 2005, on a well-pad disturbance, 16 accessions of 12 native shrub species were drill-seeded in single species plots in a randomized complete block design with four replications. Also, two seed mixtures (Bridger and Shell) of grass, forb, and shrub species were broadcast- or drill-seeded, and one seed mixture (Shell) was hydro-seeded to separate areas outside of the replicated plots. Densities were sampled in September 2007. By 2007, nine of the 16 shrub accessions established in the replicated plots. Atriplex aptera had the greatest establishment at six plants/m2 followed by Atriplex canescens at four plants/m2. Establishment of the other seven accessions was similar and ranged from two to 0.4 plants/m2. Where the Bridger mix was broadcast seeded, Artemisia tridentata ssp. wyomingensis, Atriplex aptera, and Krascheninnikovia lanata establishment was estimated at 10,000, 6,770, and 1,120 plants/ha, respectively. Where drill seeded, establishment of the three shrubs was 0, 4,480, and 2,240 plants/ha, respectively. Where the Shell mix was broadcast seeded, Artemisia tridentata ssp. wyomingensis, Krascheninnikovia lanata, and Atriplex canescens establishment was estimated at 21,300, 4,500, and 4,500 plants/ha, respectively. Where drill seeded, establishment for the three species was 7,800, 10,000, and 1,100 plants/ha, respectively. Where the Shell mix was hydro-seeded, only Krascheninnikovia lanata established at 1,100 plants/ha.
Jacobs, James S.; Winslow, Susan R.; Clause, Karen J.; and Hybner, Roger
"Seeded Native Shrub Establishment on Disturbed Sites in Southwestern Wyoming,"
Natural Resources and Environmental Issues:
Vol. 16, Article 22.
Available at: http://digitalcommons.usu.edu/nrei/vol16/iss1/22