The Vegetation Ecology Program assesses the distribution, status, and trend of vegetation types across Alaska. This effort involves the ecological description, classification, mapping, and evaluation of vegetation types ranging from community-scale plant associations to landscape-scale biophysical settings.
Ecosystems and Plant Associations of Conservation Concern: Plant associations and biophysical settings that are naturally uncommon and support unique assemblages of flora and fauna are considered rare. Where these naturally uncommon systems are also threatened or declining they merit conservation. Provided here are descriptions, conservation status ranks, and distribution maps of terrestrial ecosystems that we consider to be of conservation concern in Alaska.
Plant Associations: Plant associations are assemblages of species that respond similarly to environmental conditions such as climate, geology, topography, hydrology, and soil. Provided here is a curated list of plant associations and their attendant conservation status ranks that have been formally described for Alaska.
Landcover Mapping: The description and distribution of landcover classes provides a necessary ecological inventory that can be used to monitor the status and trend of natural resources. Provided here are landcover mosaics and maps at both statewide and regional scales.
Vegetation Monitoring: Vegetation monitoring enables the efficient management of natural resources. Our program continues to develop vegetation monitoring protocols and field methods in cooperation state and federal agencies for a variety of ecoregions in Alaska.
Vegetation Classification: The standardized classification of vegetation attempts to organize the continuum of species occurring across a landscape into discrete, observable, taxonomic classes. Our program is actively involved in the crafting of the mid- and lower-level vegetation units of the National Vegetation Classification as they apply to arctic and boreal Alaska.