Park monitoring provides information about changes or trends in natural resources and is essential for managing parks "unimpaired for future generations." We track specific physical, chemical, and biological elements, or "vital signs," that represent the condition of park ecosystems or the effects of stressors to those ecosystems. This long-term monitoring involves following scientific protocols to take repeated measurements of natural resource vital signs over time.
The Vital Signs Monitoring Plan for the Chihuahuan Desert Network provides a detailed description of how we chose vital signs, and the strategy for implementing our monitoring program. Click on a vital sign below to learn more.