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Discovery

Drylands: Desolate, scorched, uninhabitable? Scientists say otherwise

cover of Frontiers in ecology journal

New ways of looking at dryland ecosystems are detailed in a special journal issue.

Credit: Ecological Society of America


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A shift from shrubland (left) to grassland (right) in the Chihuahuan Desert of New Mexico.

A shift from shrubland (left) to grassland (right) in the Chihuahuan Desert of New Mexico.

Credit: Curtis Monger, New Mexico State University


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The Organ Mountains are a backdrop for the Chihuahuan Desert and encroaching city of Las Cruces.

The Organ Mountains are a backdrop for the Chihuahuan Desert and encroaching city of Las Cruces.

Credit: Curtis Monger, New Mexico State University


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Livestock grazing  and cowboys

Livestock grazing was drylands' main ecosystem service to humans; the picture is changing.

Credit: NSF Jornada Basin LTER-USDA/ARS


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Roots from woody shrubs

Roots from woody shrubs dominate soil occupied by grasslands 100 years ago.

Credit: Curtis Monger, New Mexico State University


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perennial grasses in shrublands

Unexplained increases in perennial grasses in shrublands in part led to new drylands paradigms.

Credit: NSF Jornada Basin LTER-ARS


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