• View of the Monument across the Snake River

    Hagerman Fossil Beds

    National Monument Idaho

Trees and Shrubs




Wetland plants such as cattails and bulrush are plentiful along the Snake River. Native dry land vegetation, including big sagebrush and rabbitbrush, survives among the lava rock boulders.

Flora on the upland plateau was once a vast complex of Wyoming big sagebrush (Artemisia tridentata ver. wyomingensis) association. Some of the Monument's west boundary areas were cleared and now support common rabbitbrush (Chrysothamnus nauseosus), and introduced grasses and weeds.

Vegetation on the Monument’s bluffs is sparse in many areas due to the steepness of the slopes and low precipitation.

Greasewood (Sarcobatus vermiculatus) and rabbitbrush are the dominant shrubs where the soils are more alkaline. Scattered occurrences of four-wing saltbush (Atriplex species) occur where soils contain more calcite. Russian thistle (Salsola kali), the ubiquitous tumbleweed, predominates on disturbed sites.

Did You Know?

Sketch of the Hagerman Horse

The best known discovery is the Hagerman Horse, Equus simplicidens is the official Idaho state fossil. The Hagerman Horse Quarry, a national natural landmark, is recognized as one of the most important sites in the world related to the fossil history of the horse.