Highlights on some of the Jornada LTER research

Caliche is a layer of Calcium Carbonate that is laid down in layers under desert soils over eons. It can be used much like tree rings
as a window into the past to see how our climate has changed and what kinds of effects humans are having on the climate today.
Curtis Monger, LTER Co-Principal Investigator, describes some of his research.

 

Soil memory/climate change study at the Chihuahuan Desert Nature Park

Curtis Monger and several students worked with Asombro on a soil memory/climate change study at the Chihuahuan Desert Nature Park (CDNP). For this study and the NRCS soil survey of the Jornada Basin, two soil pits were opened just north of the CDNP-Jornada Experimental Range boundary and upslope of the pipeline. The purpose of the pits was to compare current erosion rates with erosion rates in the geological past, which provided information for Asombro students about how landscapes respond to climate change. These pits were also useful for a shrub-shrub dynamics Jornada Basin LTER study.