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Title: Chapter 19. The future of the shortgrass steppe

item Burke, Ingrid
item Lauenroth, William
item Antolin, Michael
item Derner, Justin
item Milchunas, Daniel
item Morgan, Jack
item Stapp, Paul

Submitted to: Book Chapter
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: 12/10/2007
Publication Date: 8/5/2008
Citation: Burke, I.C., Lauenroth, W.K., Antolin, M.F., Derner, J.D., Milchunas, D.G., Morgan, J.A., Stapp, P. 2008. Chapter 19. The future of the shortgrass steppe. In: W.K. Lauenroth and I.C. Burke (eds.). Ecology of the shortgrass steppe: A long-term perspective. Oxford Univeristy Press, Oxford, England. pp. 484-510. Book Chapter.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: Where lies the future of the shortgrass steppe? In prior chapters, we have described the remarkable resilience of the shortgrass steppe ecosystem and its organisms to past drought and grazing, and their sensitivity to other types of change. Emerging from this analysis is the idea of vulnerability to two main forces: future changes in precipitation or water availability, and direct human impacts. What are the likely changes in the shortgrass steppe over the next several decades? Which of the changes are most likely to affect major responses in the plants, animals, and ecosystem services of the shortgrass steppe? In this chapter, we evaluate the current status of the shortgrass steppe and its potential responses to three sets of factors that will be driving forces for the future of the steppe: land use change, atmospheric change, and changes in diseases.