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USGS Open File Report 02-208

Ecological Evaluation of the Abundance and Effect of Elk Herbivory in Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado, 1994-1999

Table of Contents
Executive Summary

Part I - Empirical Findings

Chapter One: Dynamics of Interacting Elk Populations Within and Adjacent to Rocky Mountain National Park

Chapter Two: Long-Term Changes in Willow Distribution on the Winter Range of Rocky Mountain National Park

Chapter Three: Vegetation Responses to Natural Regulation of Elk in Rocky Mountain National Park

Chapter Four: Factors Influencing Plant Productivity in Shrub Communities on Elk Winter Range of Rocky Mountain National Park: Experiments on Elk Herbivory, Water Availability and Burning

Chapter Five: Changes Induced by Elk Herbivory in the Aboveground Biomass Production and Distribution of Willow (Salix monticola Bebb): Their Relationship with Plant Water, Carbon, and Nitrogen Dynamics

Chapter Six: Effects of Herbivory and Proximity to Surface Water on C and N Dynamics on the Elk Winter Range in Rocky Mountain National Park

Chapter Seven: Carbon and Water Relations of Salix monticola in Response to Winter Browsing and Changes in Surface Water Hydrology: An Isotopic Study Using ´13C and ´18O

Chapter Eight: Isotopic Evidence of the Effects of Herbivory and Landscape Position on Plant Nitrogen Sources in a Riparian Ecosystem

Chapter Nine: Response of Tannins and Phenolics of Willows to Simulated Herbivory, Water Dynamics, and Ambient Elk Herbivory on the Elk Winter Range of Rocky Mountain National Park

Chapter Ten: Influence of Elk Grazing on Soil and Nutrients in Rocky Mountain National Park

Chapter Eleven: Sustainability of Vegetation Communties Grazed by Elk in Rocky Mountain National Park

Chapter Twelve: Ecological Evaluation of Potential Overabundance of Ungulates in U.S. National Parks: A Case Study

Part II - Modeling

Executive Summary of Model-Based Assessment of Elk in the Rocky Mountain National Park Ecosystem


Did You Know?

a photo of a butterfly researcher looking through binoculars

The Nerd Herd (aka research volunteers) gave more than 4,500 hours to the park in 2009. These citizen scientists help monitor the health of our resources including bears, elk, plants, hummingbirds, glaciers, and butterflies. More...