An updated vegetation map of the Corrales Bosque Preserve in Corrales, New Mexico was developed for this project using Hink and Ohmart community-structure survey protocol and vegetation classifications. The vegetation composition was analyzed and compared to the Middle Rio Grande Conservation Action Plan (MRG-CAP) rating criteria for dynamic mosaic vegetation, also known as the Dynamic Patch Mosaic (DPM). The DPM attribute indicates the mix of vegetation community types—the vegetation mosaic—that facilitates the best outcome for ecosystem resilience and biodiversity in the bosque. The updated vegetation community-structure types were used to classify each polygon into general vegetation types per the MRG-CAP, and an analysis was conducted using a pivot table in Microsoft Excel. Woodland is the most common type (433.7 acres; 71.16%), followed by shrubland (169.5 acres; 27.81%), meadow (6.2 acres; 1.01%), and marsh (0.1 acre; 0.02%). A status assessment of DPM riparian and wetland vegetation was completed based on the results of the vegetation analysis. The Corrales bosque received an overall rating of fair for the DPM attribute. Based on these results, recommendations were made on how to reach the future desirable status of wetland and riparian DPM vegetation according to the MRG-CAP. Densely vegetated woodlands and shrublands are increasing in the Corrales bosque, while meadows are decreasing, and wetlands remain extremely scarce. Young and emergent vegetation is rare due to the lack of regenerative processes caused by altered river hydrology, and it mostly occurs in dry or seasonally flooding river channels. Wildfire is a perennial and increasing risk. Without intervention, the Corrales bosque will become increasingly overgrown and prone to wildfire. Aging vegetation communities will continue to perish and, without young and emergent classes of native vegetation to replace them, ecological quality will diminish. ii Mitigating management decisions will be informed by community values and by the existing responsibilities and commitments of the MRGCD and other management entities. The updated vegetation dataset developed for this project, along with the vision set forth in the Corrales Bosque Preserve Habitat Management Plan and the MRG-CAP, can serve as a starting point for initiating management projects that will increase resilience in the preserve while protecting desirable habitats and bringing the vegetation composition closer to the desired mosaic.
vegetation map, Corrales Bosque Preserve, Corrales, New Mexico, vegetation classifications, riparian and wetland vegetation, mitigation management
Feldhahn, Brett. "An Update and Analysis of the Corrales Bosque Preserve Vegetation Map." (2018). https://digitalrepository.unm.edu/wr_sp/161