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Northern Plains Grasslands Vulnerability Assessment

The Northern Plains Grasslands Vulnerability Assessment synthesizes the scientific literature about the vulnerability of the northern mixed-grass prairie to climate variability and change. A major ecosystem in the North American Great Plains, the mixed-grass prairie plays an important role in providing forage for livestock and wildlife, habitat for native species, and other ecosystem services, such as carbon storage, water filtration, and protection against soil erosion.

We are gathering information from published scientific studies about: the exposure of this important grassland ecosystem to a changing climate; the sensitivity of grass species, water quality, forage production, and animal health to climatic changes; and tools and practices (new or established) that may help ranchers and other stakeholders adapt their management. We will collect input and feedback from grassland managers and stakeholders about existing adaptation practices as well as knowledge gaps to help identify priorities for future research.

Location

Eastern Montana & Wyoming, and western North Dakota & South Dakota - focusing on the region covered by northern mixed-grass prairie.

Project Status

Ongoing

Partners

USDA Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station, USDA Northwest Climate Hub, North Central Climate Adaptation Science Center, Boise State University, Funding: USDA Forest Service, Office of Sustainability and Climate