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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

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Emily Kachergis

Post Doc
Research Ecologist

High Plains Grasslands Research Station

CHEYENNE, WY, 82009-8899

Phone: (307) 772-2433 ext. 105                 


Research    Publications




 B.A. with High Honors


Wesleyan University, Middletown, CT


 Earth and Environmental Science
Undergraduate Thesis:  Heavy Metal Bioaccumulation in Connecticut Stream Fishes



Colorado State University, Ft. Collins, CO

Ecology (Forest, Rangeland and Watershed Stewardship)

 Dissertation:  An Alternate State Approach to Range Management in the Sagebrush Steppe 



The goal of my research is to identify and develop rangeland management practices that promote resilient ranches and ecosystems.  I combine ecological and social approaches to work towards this goal, including monitoring of rangeland plants and soils, analyses of historical data, interviews, and participatory workshops.  My past research has focused on developing models for rangeland management decision-making based on ecological data and local knowledge in northwestern Colorado sagebrush steppe.  I worked as part of an inter-disciplinary team to integrate multiple benefits (including forage production and erosion resistance) associated with different ecosystem states into economic decision-making tools that identify trade-offs in managing rangelands for production and conservation.  

With the Rangeland Resources Research Unit, my research explores the process and effects of ranch enterprise-level decision-making.  I am investigating factors affecting decision-making through on-ranch interviews and a survey in partnership with the Wyoming Stock Growers Association.  I am also evaluating outcomes of grazing management decisions on Wyoming ranches through measurements of rangeland ecosystem attributes.  I will link these decisions and outcomes to levels of benefits that Wyoming rangelands provide to society, including livestock and forage production. 


Derner, J., E. Kachergis and J. Reeves. 2013 Rangeland Research Roundup: So what? Who cares?CowCountry, Spring 18-19.

Kachergis, E., J. D. Derner, L. M. Roche, K. W. Tate, M.N. Lubell, R. D. Mealor, and J. Magagna. 2013. Characterizing Wyoming ranching operations: Natural resource goals, management practices and information sources.Natural Resources 4:45-54.

Kachergis, E., M. E. Rocca and M. E. Fernandez-Gimenez.  In Press.  Comparison of species and trait-based approaches for describing sagebrush steppe response to range management.  Applied Vegetation Science.

Kachergis, E., M. E. Fernandez-Gimenez,and M. E. Rocca. 2012. Differences in plant species composition as evidence of alternate states in the sagebrush steppe.  Rangeland Ecology & Management 65:486-497.

Pritchett, J., E. Kachergis, J. Parsons, M. Fernandez-Gimenez, and J. Ritten. 2012. Home on a transitioning range: A ranch simulation game demonstrating STMs. Rangelands 34:53-59.

Kachergis, E., M. E. Rocca and M. E. Fernandez-Gimenez. 2011.  Indicators of ecosystem function identify alternate states in the sagebrush steppeEcological Applications 21: 2781-2792.

Knapp, C. N., M. E. Fernandez-Gimenez, E. Kachergis, and A. Rudeen. 2011.  Evaluation and integration of local knowledge and ecological data-driven state-and-transition models.  Rangeland Ecology & Management 64:158-170.

Knapp, C. N., M. E. Fernandez-Gimenez, and E. Kachergis. 2010.  The role of local knowledge in state and transition model development.  Rangelands 32:31-36.

Last Modified: 8/11/2016
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