What's New for the WNHP

Crowberry Bog research recently published
Our Crowberry Bog research was recently published in the journal Ecohydrology. Our article “Ecohydrological characteristics of a newly identified coastal raised bog on the western Olympic Peninsula, Washington State, USA” can be accessed here.

Revised vegetation classification for Mount Rainier, Olympic, and North Cascades National Parks
Tynan Ramm-Granberg and Joe Rocchio recently published a revised vegetation classification for Mount Rainier, Olympic, and North Cascades National Parks as part of a long-term partnership with the National Park Service (NPS). The classification draws on over 10 years of vegetation mapping data collected by NPS field crews, as well as decades of regional classification efforts by ecologists at WNHP, the US Forest Service, and elsewhere. Analyses provided support for most of the provisional plant associations in Crawford et al. (2009), while also revealing previously undescribed vegetation types that were not represented in the United States National Vegetation Classification (USNVC). Both provisional and undescribed types have since been submitted to the USNVC by WNHP staff through a peer-reviewed process. In addition to the summary report, revised keys and descriptions, environmental data, and synoptic/constancy tables are available.

Updates to the field manuals for applying rapid Ecological Integrity Assessments
Joe Rocchio and Tynan Ramm-Granberg recently published updated manuals for conducting Ecological Integrity Assessments, incorporating revisions from 5+ field seasons of vetting in upland and wetland ecosystems across Washington. These manuals provide a standardized method for rapidly assessing ecosystem condition across the diverse landscapes of our state. Methods and metrics were developed in collaboration with NatureServe and funded by U.S Environmental Protection Agency, Region 10 Wetland Development grants, along with support from Columbia Land Trust and the Washington Department of Natural Resources. The EIA manuals are available for download here.

47 additional Climate Change Vulnerability Index reports
WNHP botanist Walter Fertig recently completed an assessment of 47 vascular plant species identified as state endangered, threatened, or sensitive using the Climate Change Vulnerability Index (CCVI) developed by NatureServe. The CCVI is a standardized tool for ranking the vulnerability of plant or animal species to projected climate change based on their inherent sensitivity and capacity to adapt to shifting temperature and precipitation patterns. Each CCVI takes into account 29 indicators related to habitat specificity, dispersal ability, competition, pollination biology, and genetic diversity. The CCVI scores can be used to identify and prioritize species that are most are risk of extirpation due to climate change and help resource managers develop adaptation and mitigation strategies. The report was funded by the US Forest Service Region 6. You can read the full report here. The individual CCVIs can be accessed from the table on our Assessing Species Vulnerability page.