Soil movement and vegetational changes over a forty-five year period in south-central New Mexico

TitleSoil movement and vegetational changes over a forty-five year period in south-central New Mexico
Publication TypeThesis
Year of Publication1981
AuthorsHennessy JThomas
Number of Pages108
Date Published1981
UniversityNew Mexico State University
CityLas Cruces, New Mexico
Thesis TypeM.S. Thesispp
Call Number00112
KeywordsBouteloua, dissertation, dissertations, eolian, process, landscape,vegetation change, Prosopis, dune formation, Prosopis, encroachment, shrub encroachment, soil, movement, soil,dune development, Sporobolus, theses, thesis, vegetation, changes in, Xanthocephalum
AbstractThe purpose of this study was to evaluate the vegetational changes and soil movement which accompanied the processes of mesquite (Prosopis glandulosa) spread and dune building on the Jornada Experimental Range in southwestern New Mexico. Two 259 ha grid systems and two belt transects were established in the mid-1930's. Both grid systems and transects were referenced to soil surface levels at that time and the transects were mapped in detail showing perennial plant species present and dune profiles and lateral extent. Using this early data for comparison, soil surface levels, plant species, and mesquite dune data were gathered in 1980. The results showed that a substantial amount of soil movement had occurred on all areas. While one area gained soil over the 45-year period, all other sites lost soil. An equation developed to determine the constitution of the loss showed that it was mostly in the fine sand and silt fractions.