SWAP Habitat
Warm & Cool Desert Alkali-Saline Wetland
NVC Name
Warm & Cool Desert Alkali-Saline Wetland
SWAP General Vegetation Type
RIPARIAN WOODLANDS and WETLANDS
Desert Alkali-Saline Wetland [M082], primarily of the Chihuahuan Desert and Colorado Plateaus ecoregions, is dominated by salt-tolerant shrubs such as iodinebush (Allenrolfea occidentalis), big sagebrush, and saltbush (Atriplex spp.). The understory and intershrub spaces can be sparse or dominated by graminoids such as saltgrass (Distichlis spicata), spikerush (Eleocharis spp.), rushes (Juncus spp.), pickleweeds (Salicornia spp.), greasewood, and alkali sacaton. This wetland type occurs near drainages or on stream terraces or flats and may form rings around drying ponds or playas. Soils are alkaline to saline (depending upon soil moisture), which greatly affects species composition. Sites also experience intermittent, seasonal, or semi-permanent flooding, resulting in surface water retained into the growing season or throughout the year (except drought years). Sites that seasonally dry develop exposed mudflats, which are colonized by annual wetland vegetation.

Species that live in Warm & Cool Desert Alkali-Saline Wetland

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