Coyote Willow Mowing Project : Biological Summary Report

Metadata Updated: October 10, 2019

The primary goal of the project is to enhance/promote the establishment, growth, spread, and survival of willow species (primarily coyote willow). Many stands/patches of willow habitat on Alamosa NWR have died over the past 14 years. Refuge biologists suspect that changes in hydrologic conditions (i.e., drought, altered hydro-periods and volume of flows in the Rio Grande, and reduced groundwater levels) are the primary causes. Additionally, coyote willow, which is the dominant species in these locations, is a relatively short lived species and many of these stands are old and have simply died. As a result, there are many decadent stands/patches of willow throughout the riparian corridor. Like many vegetation species, when a build-up of decadent vegetation occurs, it restricts the establishment, growth, spread, and overall vigor of young plants. Refuge biologists suspect that the dead willow in these stands are restricting the growth of young plants due to competition for space and light as well as other factors.

Refuge staff decided to mow (using a skid steer with an attached hydro-axe) portions of the riparian habitat with the expectation that this will provide a “release” for existing small plants and will encourage the establishment and spread of new plants. Evidence suggests that mowing and prescribed burning conducted during the appropriate times (e.g., non-growing season) can improve riparian willow habitat conditions (Rea and Gillingham 2007). All mowing activities took place outside the breeding season for Southwestern Willow Flycatchers and Yellow-billed Cuckoo.

This report summarizes the results of this willow mowing project.

Access & Use Information

Public: This dataset is intended for public access and use. License: No license information was provided. If this work was prepared by an officer or employee of the United States government as part of that person's official duties it is considered a U.S. Government Work.

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Metadata Created Date May 1, 2019
Metadata Updated Date October 10, 2019

Metadata Source

Harvested from DOI CKAN Harvest Source

Additional Metadata

Resource Type Dataset
Metadata Created Date May 1, 2019
Metadata Updated Date October 10, 2019
Publisher Fish and Wildlife Service
Unique Identifier FWS_ServCat_83377
Brent Frakes
Maintainer Email
Public Access Level public
Bureau Code 010:18
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