Ecosystem Impacts of Exotic Annual Invaders in the Genus Bromus

  • Matthew J. GerminoEmail author
  • Jayne Belnap
  • John M. Stark
  • Edith B. Allen
  • Benjamin M. Rau
Part of the Springer Series on Environmental Management book series (SSEM)


An understanding of the impacts of exotic plant species on ecosystems is necessary to justify and guide efforts to limit their spread, restore natives, and plan for conservation. Invasive annual grasses such as Bromus tectorum, B. rubens, B. hordeaceus, and B. diandrus (hereafter collectively referred to as Bromus) transform the structure and function of ecosystems they dominate. Experiments that prove cause-and-effect impacts of Bromus are rare, yet inferences can be gleaned from the combination of Bromus-ecosystem associations, ecosystem condition before/after invasion, and an understanding of underlying mechanisms. Bromus typically establishes in bare soil patches and can eventually replace perennials such as woody species or bunchgrasses, creating a homogeneous annual cover. Plant productivity and cover are less stable across seasons and years when Bromus dominates, due to a greater response to annual climate variability. Bromus’ “flash” of growth followed by senescence early in the growing season, combined with shallow rooting and annual habit, may lead to incomplete use of deep soil water, reduced C sequestration, and accelerated nutrient cycling. Litter produced by Bromus alters nearly all aspects of ecosystems and notably increases wildfire occurrence. Where Bromus has become dominant, it can decrease soil stability by rendering soils bare for months following fire or episodic, pathogen-induced stand failure. Bromus-invaded communities have lower species diversity, and associated species tend to be generalists adapted to unstable and variable habitats. Changes in litter, fire, and soil properties appear to feedback to reinforce Bromus’ dominance in a pattern that portends desertification.


Bromus Annual exotic grasses Ecosystems Desertification Feedbacks 



Patti Haggerty assisted with map production for figures. Any use of trade names is for descriptive purposes only and does not imply endorsement by the US Government.


  1. Abella SR, Craig DJ, Chiquoine LP et al (2011) Relationships of native desert plants with red brome (Bromus rubens): toward identifying invasion-reducing species. Invasive Plant Sci Manag 4:115–124CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Adair EC, Burke IC (2010) Plant phenology and life span influence soil pool dynamics: Bromus tectorum invasion of perennial C3–C4 grass communities. Plant Soil 335:255–269CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Allen E (1988) Some trajectories of succession in Wyoming sagebrush grassland: implications for restoration. In: Allen E (ed) The reconstruction of disturbed arid lands. West Press, Boulder, CO, pp 89–110Google Scholar
  4. Allen EB, Steers RJ, Dickens SJ (2011) Impacts of fire and invasive species on desert soil ecology. Rangeland Ecol Manag 64:450–462CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Amatangelo KL, Dukes JS, Field CB (2008) Responses of a California annual grassland to litter manipulation. J Veg Sci 19:605–612CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Anderson JE, Inouye RS (2001) Landscape-scale changes in plant species abundance and biodiversity of a sagebrush steppe over 45 years. Ecol Monogr 71:531–556CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Arjo WM, Gese EM, Bennett TJ et al (2007) Changes in kit fox-coyote-prey relationships in the Great Basin Desert, Utah. West N Am Naturalist 67:389–401CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Austreng AC (2012) The carbon budget impact of sagebrush degradation. MS thesis, Boise State University, Boise, IDGoogle Scholar
  9. Bachen D (2014) Cheatgrass invasion of sagebrush steppe: impacts of vegetation structure on small mammals. MS thesis, Montana State University, Bozeman, MOGoogle Scholar
  10. Bagchi S, Briske DD, Bestelmeyer BT et al (2013) Assessing resilience and state-transition models with historical records of cheatgrass Bromus tectorum invasion in North American sagebrush-steppe. J Appl Ecol 50:1131–1141Google Scholar
  11. Balch JK, Bradley BA, D’Antonio CM et al (2013) Introduced annual grass increases regional fire activity across the arid western USA (1980–2009). Glob Change Biol 19:173–183CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Bangert R, Huntly N (2010) The distribution of native and exotic plants in a naturally fragmented sagebrush-steppe landscape. Biol Invasions 12:1627–1640CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Bansal S, Sheley RL, Blank B et al (2014) Plant litter effects on soil nutrient availability and vegetation dynamics: changes that occur when annual grasses invade shrub-steppe communities. Plant Ecol 215:367–378CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Belnap J (2003) Factors influencing nitrogen fixation and nitrogen release in biological soil crusts. In: Belnap J, Lange OL (eds) Biological Soil Crusts: Structure, Function, and Management. Springer-Verlag, Berlin, Germany, pp 241–261Google Scholar
  15. Belnap J (2011) Biological phosphorus cycling in dryland regions. In: Bünemann EK, Oberson A, Frossard E (eds) Phosphorus in action: biological processes in soil phosphorus cycling, vol 26. Springer Science and Business Media, New York, NY, pp 371–406CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Belnap J, Phillips SL (2001) Soil biota in an ungrazed grassland: response to annual grass (Bromus tectorum) invasion. Ecol Appl 11:1261–1275CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Belnap J, Phillips SL, Sherrod SK et al (2005) Soil biota can change after exotic plant invasion: does this affect ecosystem processes? Ecology 86:3007–3017CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Belnap J, Stark JM, Rau BJ (2015) Soil moisture and biogeochemical factors influence the distribution of annual Bromus species. In: Germino MJ, Chambers JC, Brown CS (eds) Exotic brome-grasses in arid and semiarid ecosystems of the Western USA: causes, consequences, and management implications. Springer, New York, NY (Chapter 8)Google Scholar
  19. Billings W (1990) Bromus tectorum, a biotic cause of ecosystem impoverishment in the Great Basin. In: Woodwell G (ed) The earth in transition: patterns and processes of biotic impoverishment. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, pp 301–310Google Scholar
  20. Blank RR (2008) Biogeochemistry of plant Invasion: a case study with downy brome (Bromus tectorum). Invasive Plant Sci Manag 1:226–239CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Blank RR, Morgan T, Clements CD et al (2013) Bromus tectorum L. invasion: changes in soil properties and rates of bioturbation. Soil Sci 178:281–290Google Scholar
  22. Bolton H, Smith JL, Wildung RE (1990) Nitrogen mineralization potentials of shrub-steppe soils with different disturbance histories. Soil Sci Soc Am J 54:887–891CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Booth MS, Stark JM, Caldwell MM (2003) Inorganic N turnover and availability in annual- and perennial-dominated soils in a northern Utah shrub-steppe ecosystem. Biogeochemistry 66:311–330CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Booth MS, Stark JM, Rastetter E (2005) Controls on nitrogen cycling in terrestrial ecosystems: a synthetic analysis of literature data. Ecol Monogr 75:139–157CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Boxell J, Drohan PJ (2009) Surface soil physical and hydrological characteristics in Bromus tectorum L. (cheatgrass) versus Artemisia tridentata Nutt. (big sagebrush) habitat. Geoderma 149:305–311CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Bradley BA, Houghtonw RA, Mustard JF et al (2006) Invasive grass reduces aboveground carbon stocks in shrublands of the Western US. Glob Change Biol 12:1815–1822CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Brooks ML (1999) Habitat invasibility and dominance by alien annual plants in the western Mojave Desert. Biol Invasions 1:325–337CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Brooks ML (2000) Competition between alien annual grasses and native annual plants in the Mojave Desert. Am Midl Nat 144(1):92–108CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Brooks ML, Esque TC (2002) Alien plants and fire in desert tortoise (Gopherus agassizii) habitat of the Mojave and Colorado deserts. Chelonian Conserv Biol 4:330–340Google Scholar
  30. Brooks ML, Matchett JR (2003) Plant community patterns in unburned and burned blackbrush (Coleogyne ramosissima Torr.) shrublands in the Mojave Desert. West N Am Nat 63:283–298Google Scholar
  31. Brooks ML, Matchett JR (2006) Spatial and temporal patterns of wildfires in the Mojave Desert, 1980–2004. J Arid Environ 67:148–164CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Brooks ML, Zouhar K (2008) Plant invasions and fire regimes. In: Zouhar K, Kapler Smith J et al. (eds) Wildland fire in ecosystems: effects of fire on flora. Gen Tech Rep RMRS-GTR-42. USDA, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station, Fort Collins, CO, pp 33–45Google Scholar
  33. Brooks ML, D'Antonio CM, Richardson DM et al (2004) Effects of invasive alien plants on fire regimes. Bioscience 54:677–688CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Brooks ML, Belnap J, Brown CS et al (2015) Exotic annual Bromus invasions – comparisons among species and ecoregions in the Western United States. In: Germino MJ, Chambers JC, Brown CS (eds) Exotic brome-grasses in arid and semiarid ecosystems of the Western USA: causes, consequences and management implications. Springer, New York, NY (Chapter 2)Google Scholar
  35. Busby RR, Passchke MW, Stromberger ME et al (2012) Seasonal variation in arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi root colonization of cheatgrass (Bromus tectorum), an invasive winter annual. J Ecosyst Ecogr S8-001Google Scholar
  36. Chambers JC, Roundy BA, Blank RR et al (2007) What makes Great Basin sagebrush ecosystems invasible by Bromus tectorum? Ecol Monogr 77:117–145CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Chambers JC, Bradley BA, Brown CS et al (2014) Resilience to stress and disturbance, and resistance to Bromus tectorum L. invasion in cold desert shrublands of western North America. Ecosystems 17:360–375CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Chambers JC, Germino MJ, Belnap J et al (2015) Plant community resistance to invasion by Bromus species – the roles of community attributes, Bromus interactions with plant communities, and Bromus traits. In: Germino MJ, Chambers JC, Brown CS (eds) Exotic brome-grasses in arid and semiarid ecosystems of the Western USA: causes, consequences, and management implications. Springer, New York, NY (Chapter 10)Google Scholar
  39. Cline J, Uresk D, Rickard W (1977) Comparison of soil water used by a sagebrush-bunchgrass and a cheatgrass community. J Range Manag 30:199–201CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Connelly J, Rinkes E, Braun C (2011) Characteristics of greater sage-grouse habitats: a landscape species at micro and macro scales. Stud Avian Biol 38:69–83Google Scholar
  41. Corbin J, Dyer A, Seabloom E (2007) California grasslands: ecology and management. In: Stromberg MR, Corbin JD, D’Antonio CM (eds) California grasslands: ecology and management. UC Press, Berkeley, pp 156–168Google Scholar
  42. Cox RD, Preston KL, Johnson RF et al (2014) Influence of landscape-scale variables on vegetation conversion to exotic annual grassland in southern California, USA. Glob Ecol Conserv 2:190–203CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Craddock GW, Pearse CK (1938) Surface run-off and erosion on granitic mountain soils of Idaho as influenced by range cover, soil disturbance, slope, and precipitation intensity. USDA 482:1–14Google Scholar
  44. D’Antonio CM, Vitousek PM (1992) Biological invasions by exotic grasses, the grass fire cycle, and global change. Ann Rev Ecol Syst 23:63–87CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Davies KW, Nafus AM (2013) Exotic annual grass invasion alters fuel amounts, continuity and moisture content. Int J Wildland Fire 22:353–358CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Davies KW, Bates JD, James JJ (2009) Microsite and herbaceous vegetation heterogeneity after burning Artemisia tridentata steppe. Oecologia 159:597–606CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. Davies KW, Boyd CS, Beck JL et al (2011) Saving the sagebrush sea: an ecosystem conservation plan for big sagebrush plant communities. Biol Conserv 144:2573–2584CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. DeFalco LA, Detling JK, Tracy CR et al (2001) Physiological variation among native and exotic winter annual plants associated with microbiotic crusts in the Mojave Desert. Plant Soil 234:1–14CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. DeFalco LA, Fernandez GCJ, Nowak RS (2007) Variation in the establishment of a non-native annual grass influences competitive interactions with Mojave Desert perennials. Biol Invasions 9:293–307CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. Dickens SJM, Allen EB (2014a) Soil nitrogen cycling is resilient to invasive, exotic annuals following restoration of coastal sage scrub. J Arid Environ 110:12–18CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Dickens SJM, Allen EB (2014b) Exotic plant invasion alters chaparral ecosystem resistance and resilience pre- and post-wildfire. Biol Invasions 16:1119–1130CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. Dickens SJM, Allen EB, Santiago LS et al (2013) Exotic annuals alter the variation in coastal sage scrub soil chemical and biological characteristics. Soil Biol Biochem 58:70–81CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  53. Dighton J (1983) Phosphatase production by mycorrhizal fungi. Plant Soil 71:455–462CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  54. Earnst SL, Holmes AL (2012) Bird-habitat relationships in interior Columbia Basin shrubsteppe. Condor 114:15–29CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  55. Egerton-Warburton LM, Allen EB (2000) Shifts in arbuscular mycorrhizal communities along an anthropogenic nitrogen deposition gradient. Ecol Appl 10:484–496CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  56. Esque TC (1994) Diet and diet selection of the desert tortoise (Gopherus agassizii) in the northeast Mojave Desert. MS thesis, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, COGoogle Scholar
  57. Esque TC, Búrquez AM, Schwalbe CR et al (2002) Fire ecology of the Sonoran Desert tortoise. In: Van Devender TR (ed) The Sonoran Desert tortoise: natural history, biology, and conservation. Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum and University of Arizona Press, Tucson, AZ, pp 312–333Google Scholar
  58. Esque TC, Drake KK, Nussear KE (2014) Water and food acquisition and their consequences on life history and metabolism of North American tortoises. In: Rostal D, Mushinsky H, McCoy ED (eds) Ecology of North American tortoises. Johns Hopkins Press, Baltimore, MD, pp 85–96Google Scholar
  59. Evans RD, Belnap J (1999) Long-term consequences of disturbance on nitrogen dynamics in an arid ecosystem. Ecology 80:150–160CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  60. Evans RA, Young JA (1970) Plant litter and establishment of alien annual weed species in rangeland communities. Weed Sci 18:697–703Google Scholar
  61. Evans RA, Young JA (1972) Microsite requirements for establishment of annual rangeland weeds. Weed Sci 20:350–356Google Scholar
  62. Evans RD, Rimer R, Sperry L et al (2001) Exotic plant invasion alters nitrogen dynamics in an arid grassland. Ecol Appl 11:1301–1310CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  63. Freeman ED, Sharp TR, Larsen RT et al (2014) Negative effects of an exotic grass invasion on small-mammal communities. Plos One 9:e108843CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  64. Frossard E, Brossard M, Hedley MJ et al (1991) Reactions controlling the cycling of P in soils. In: Tiessen H (ed) Phosphorus in the global environment: transfers, cycles, and management. Wiley, England, p 325Google Scholar
  65. Gano K, Rickard W (1982) Small mammals of a bitterbrush-cheatgrass community. Northwest Sci 56:1–7Google Scholar
  66. Gasch CK, Enloe SF, Stahl PD et al (2013) An aboveground-belowground assessment of ecosystem properties associated with exotic annual brome invasion. Biol Fertil Soils 49:919–928CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  67. Germnio MJ, Chambers JC, Brown CS (2015) Introduction: exotic annual Bromus in the Western US. In: Germino MJ, Chambers JC, Brown CS (eds) Exotic brome-grasses in arid and semiarid ecosystems of the Western USA: causes, consequences, and management implications. Springer, New York, NY (Chapter 1)Google Scholar
  68. Gill RA, Burke IC (1999) Ecosystem consequences of plant life form changes at three sites in the semiarid United States. Oecologia 121:551–563CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  69. Gopalani S (2004) Changes in soil phosphorus caused by Bromus tectorum in four contrasting Mojave Desert soils and in comparison with Hilaria jamesii in a Canyonlands soil. Unpub MS thesis, University of Denver, Denver, COGoogle Scholar
  70. Griffith AB (2010) Positive effects of native shrubs on Bromus tectorum demography. Ecology 91:141–154CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  71. Gundale MJ, Sutherland S, DeLuca TH (2008) Fire, native species, and soil resource interactions influence the spatio-temporal invasion pattern of Bromus tectorum. Ecography 31:201–210CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  72. Hall LK (2012) Effect of cheatgrass on abundance of the North American deermouse (Peromyscus maniculatus). Southwest Nat 57:166–169CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  73. Hansen KK (1999) Cheatgrass (Bromus tectorum L.) invasion in relation to phosphorus sources and availability in Canyonlands National Park, Utah. PhD dissertation, University of Denver, Denver, COGoogle Scholar
  74. Hasselquist NJ, Germino MJ, Sankey JB et al (2011) Aeolian nutrient fluxes following wildfire in sagebrush steppe: implications for soil carbon storage. Biogeosciences 8:3649–3659CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  75. Hawkes CV, Wren IF, Herman DJ et al (2005) Plant invasion alters nitrogen cycling by modifying the soil nitrifying community. Ecol Lett 8:976–985CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  76. Hawkes CV, Belnap J, D’Antonio C et al (2006) Arbuscular mycorrhizal assemblages in native plant roots change in the presence of invasive exotic grasses. Plant Soil 281:369–380CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  77. Hironaka M (1961) The relative rate of root development of cheatgrass and medusahead. J Range Manag 14:263–267CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  78. Hooker TD, Stark JM (2008) Soil C and N cycling in three semiarid vegetation types: response to an in situ pulse of plant detritus. Soil Biol Biochem 40:2678–2685CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  79. Hooker TD, Stark JM, Norton U et al (2008) Distribution of ecosystem C and N within contrasting vegetation types in a semiarid rangeland in the Great Basin, USA. Biogeochemistry 90:291–308CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  80. Hoover AN, Germino MJ (2012) A common-garden study of resource-island effects on a native and an exotic, annual grass after fire. Rangel Ecol Manag 65:160–170CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  81. Hulbert LC (1955) Ecological studies of Bromus tectorum and other annual bromegrasses. Ecol Monogr 25:181–213CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  82. Hulme PE, Pysek P, Jarosik V et al (2013) Bias and error in understanding plant invasion impacts. Trends Ecol Evol 28:212–218CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  83. Humphrey LD, Schupp EW (2004) Competition as a barrier to establishment of a native perennial grass (Elymus elymoides) in alien annual grass (Bromus tectorum) communities. J Arid Environ 58:405–422CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  84. Jennings WB (2002) Diet selection by the desert tortoise in relation to the flowering phenology of ephemeral plants. Chelonian Conserv Biol 4:353–358Google Scholar
  85. Johnson GD, Boyce MS (1990) Feeding trials with insects in the diet of sage grouse chicks. J Wildlife Manag 54:89–91CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  86. Jones R, Chambers JC, Johnson DW et al (2015a) Effect of repeated burning on plant and soil carbon and nitrogen in cheatgrass (Bromus tectorum) dominated ecosystems. Plant Soil 386:47–64CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  87. Jones R, Chambers JC, Board DI et al (2015b) Understanding the role of resource limitation in restoration of sagebrush ecosystems dominated by cheatgrass – a mechanistic approach. Ecosphere 6:Art107Google Scholar
  88. Jurinak JJ, Dudley LM, Allen MF et al (1986) The role of calcium-oxalate in the availability of phosphorus in soils of semiarid regions – a thermodynamic study. Soil Sci 142:255–261CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  89. Kelrick MI, MacMahon JA (1985) Nutritional and physical attributes of seeds of some common sagebrush-steppe plants – some implications for ecological theory and management. J Range Manag 38:65–69CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  90. Kleiner EF, Harper K (1977) Occurrence of four major perennial grasses in relation to edaphic factors in a pristine community. J Range Manag 30:286–289CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  91. Klemmedson JO, Smith JG (1964) Cheatgrass (Bromus tectorum L.). Bot Rev 30:226–262CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  92. Knapp PA (1996) Cheatgrass (Bromus tectorum L) dominance in the Great Basin Desert – History, persistence, and influences to human activities. Glob Environ Change 6:37–52CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  93. Knight WG (1991) Chemistry of arid region soils. In: Skujins J (ed) Semiarid lands and deserts soil resource and reclamation. Marcel Dekker, New York, NY, pp 111–142Google Scholar
  94. Knight W, Dudley L, Jurinak J (1992) Oxalate effects on solution phosphorus in a calcareous soil. Arid Land Res Manag 6:11–20Google Scholar
  95. Lajtha K, Schlesinger WH (1988) The biogeochemistry of phosphorus cycling and phosphorus availability along a desert soil chronosequence. Ecology 69:24–39CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  96. Larrison EJ, Johnson DR (1973) Density changes and habitat affinities of rodents of shadscale and sagebrush associations. Great Basin Nat 33:255–264Google Scholar
  97. Liao C, Peng R, Luo Y et al (2008) Altered ecosystem carbon and nitrogen cycles by plant invasion: a meta-analysis. New Phytol 177:706–714CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  98. Link SO, Gee GW, Downs JL (1990) The effect of water stress on phenological and ecophysiological characteristics of cheatgrass and Sandberg's bluegrass. J Range Manag 43:506–513CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  99. Link SO, Keeler CW, Hill RW et al (2006) Bromus tectorum cover mapping and fire risk. Int J Wildland Fire 15:113–119CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  100. Mack RN (1981) Invasion of Bromus tectorum L. into Western North America: an ecological chronicle. Agro-Ecosystems 7:145–165CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  101. McArthur ED, Sanderson SC, Webb BL (1994) Nutritive quality and mineral content of potential desert tortoise food plants. Research Paper INT-473. USDA, Forest Service, Intermountain Research Station, Ogden, UT, p 26Google Scholar
  102. McCrary MD, Bloom PH (1984) Lethal effects of introduced grasses on red-shouldered hawks. J Wildlife Manag 48:1005–1008CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  103. Medica PA, Eckert SE (2007) Gopherus agassizii, desert tortoise. Food/mechanical Injury. Natural history notes. Herpetol Rev 38:446–448Google Scholar
  104. Miller ME, Belnap J, Beatty SW et al (2006) Performance of Bromus tectorum L. in relation to soil properties, water additions, and chemical amendments in calcareous soils of southeastern Utah, USA. Plant Soil 288:1–18CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  105. Miller ME, Bowker MA, Reynolds RL et al (2012) Post-fire land treatments and wind erosion – Lessons from the Milford Flat Fire, UT, USA. Aeolian Res 7:29–44CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  106. Monaco TA, Hardegree SP, Pellant M et al (2015) Assessing restoration and management needs for ecosystems invaded by exotic annual Bromus species. In: Germino MJ, Chambers JC, Brown CS (eds) Exotic brome-grasses in arid and semiarid ecosystems of the Western USA: causes, consequences, and management implications. Springer, New York, NY (Chapter 12)Google Scholar
  107. Morris KA, Stark JM, Bugbee B et al (accepted) Root exudates and senescence of cheatgrass and crested wheatgrass contribute to nitrogen cycling in the rhizosphere. OecologiaGoogle Scholar
  108. Murray RB (1971) Grazing capacity, sheep gains: cheatgrass, bunchgrass ranges in southern Idaho. J Range Manag 24:407–410CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  109. Murray R, Klemmedson J (1968) Cheatgrass range in southern Idaho: seasonal cattle gains and grazing capacities. J Range Manag 21:308–313CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  110. Nagy KA, Henen BT, Vyas DB (1998) Nutritional quality of native and introduced food plants of wild desert tortoises. J Herpetol 32:260–267CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  111. Newbold TAS, Carpenter GC (2005) Desert horned lizard (Phrynosoma platyrhinos) locomotor performance: the influence of cheatgrass (Bromus tectorum). Southwest Nat 50:17–23CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  112. Norton JB, Monaco TA, Norton JM et al (2004) Soil morphology and organic matter dynamics under cheatgrass and sagebrush-steppe plant communities. J Arid Environ 57:445–466CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  113. Norton U, Mosier A, Morgan J et al (2008) Moisture pulses, trace gas emissions and soil C and N in cheatgrass and native grass-dominated sagebrush-steppe in Wyoming, USA. Soil Biol Biochem 40:1421–1431CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  114. Norton U, Saetre P, Hooker TD et al (2012) Vegetation and moisture controls on soil carbon mineralization in semiarid environments. Soil Sci Soc Am J 76:1038–1047CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  115. Ogle SM, Ojima D, Reiners WA (2004) Modeling the impact of exotic annual brome grasses on soil organic carbon storage in a northern mixed-grass prairie. Biol Invasions 6:365–377CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  116. Ostoja SM, Schupp EW (2009) Conversion of sagebrush shrublands to exotic annual grasslands negatively impacts small mammal communities. Divers Distrib 15:863–870CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  117. Ostoja SM, Schupp EW, Sivy K (2009) Ant assemblages in intact big sagebrush and converted cheatgrass-dominated habitats in Tooele County, Utah. West North Ame Nat 69:223–234Google Scholar
  118. Paez RA (2011) Opinion on Adams et al. vs. United States of America and DuPont, United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, No. 10-35611, D.C. No. v. 4:03-cv-00049-BLW OPINION, Filed 8 SeptemberGoogle Scholar
  119. Parker SS, Schimel JP (2010) Invasive grasses increase nitrogen availability in California grassland soils. Invasive Plant Sci Manag 3:40–47CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  120. Patterson R (1952) The sage grouse in Wyoming. Sage Books, Denver, COGoogle Scholar
  121. Peek MS, Leffler AJ, Ivans CY et al (2005) Fine root distribution and persistence under field conditions of three co-occurring Great Basin species of different life form. New Phytol 165:171–180CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  122. Piemeisel RL (1951) Causes affecting change and rate of change in a vegetation of annuals in Idaho. Ecology 32:53–72CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  123. Prater MR, DeLucia EH (2006) Non-native grasses alter evapotranspiration and energy balance in Great Basin sagebrush communities. Agr Forest Meteorol 139:154–163CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  124. Prater MR, Obrist D, Arnone JA et al (2006) Net carbon exchange and evapotranspiration in postfire and intact sagebrush communities in the Great Basin. Oecologia 146:595–607CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  125. Prevey JS, Germino MJ, Huntly NJ et al (2010) Exotic plants increase and native plants decrease with loss of foundation species in sagebrush steppe. Plant Ecol 207:39–51CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  126. Pyke DA, Beck JL, Brooks ML et al (2015) Land uses, fire, and invasion – exotic annual Bromus and human dimensions. In: Germino MJ, Chambers JC, Brown CS (eds) Exotic brome-grasses in arid and semiarid ecosystems of the Western USA: causes, consequences, and management implications. Springer, New York, NY (Chapter 11)Google Scholar
  127. Rao LE, Matchett JR, Brooks ML et al (2015) Relationships between annual plant productivity, nitrogen deposition and fire size in low-elevation California desert scrub. Int J Wildland Fire 24:48–58CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  128. Rau BM, Johnson DW, Blank RR et al (2011) Transition from Sagebrush steppe to annual Grass (Bromus tectorum): influence on belowground carbon and nitrogen. Rangel Ecol Manag 64:139–147CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  129. Reever Morghan KJ, Corbin JD, Gerlach J (2007) Water relations. In: Stromberg MR, Corbin JD, D’Antonio CM (eds) California grasslands: ecology and management. UC Press, Berkeley, CA (Chapter 7)Google Scholar
  130. Reisner MD, Grace JB, Pyke DA et al (2013) Conditions favouring Bromus tectorum dominance of endangered sagebrush steppe ecosystems. J Appl Ecol 50:1039–1049CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  131. Richardson KA, West SD, Gitzen RA (2013) Cheatgrass (Bromus tectorum) dominates cheek pouch contents of the great basin pocket mouse (Perognathus parvus). West N Am Nat 73:158–167CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  132. Rieder JP, Newbold TAS, Ostoja SM (2010) Structural changes in vegetation coincident with annual grass invasion negatively impacts sprint velocity of small vertebrates. Biol Invasions 12:2429–2439CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  133. Rimer RL, Evans RD (2006) Invasion of downy brome (Bromus tectorum L.) causes rapid changes in the nitrogen cycle. Am Midl Nat 156:252–258CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  134. Robertson IC, Klemash D (2003) Insect mediated pollination in slickspot peppergrass, Lepidium papilliferum L. (Brassicaceae), and its implications for population viability. West N Am Nat 63:333–342Google Scholar
  135. Rowe HI, Brown CS (2008) Native plant growth and seedling establishment in soils influenced by Bromus tectorum. Rangel Ecol Manag 61:630–639CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  136. Rowland RH, Turner FB (1964) Correlation of the local distributions of Dipodomys microps and D. merriami and of the annual grass Bromus rubens. Southwest Nat 9:56–61CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  137. Ryel RJ, Ivans CY, Peek MS et al (2008) Functional differences in soil water pools: a new perspective on plant water use in water-limited ecosystems. In: Progress in botany, vol 69. Springer, pp 397–422Google Scholar
  138. Saetre P, Stark JM (2005) Microbial dynamics and carbon and nitrogen cycling following re-wetting of soils beneath two semi-arid plant species. Oecologia 142:247–260CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  139. Salo LF, McPherson GR, Williams DG (2005) Sonoran Desert winter annuals affected by density of red brome and soil nitrogen. Am Midl Nat 153:95–109CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  140. Sankey JB, Glenn NF, Germino MJ et al (2010) Relationships of aeolian erosion and deposition with LiDAR-derived landscape surface roughness following wildfire. Geomorphology 119:135–145CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  141. Schaeffer SM, Ziegler SE, Belnap J et al (2012) Effects of Bromus tectorum invasion on microbial carbon and nitrogen cycling in two adjacent undisturbed arid grassland communities. Biogeochemistry 111:427–441CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  142. Schroeder MA, Young JR, Braun CE (1999) Sage grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus). In: Poole A, Gill F (eds) The Birds of North America, vol 425. Birds of North America, Philadelphia, PA, p 28Google Scholar
  143. Sigueenza C, Corkidi L, Allen EB (2006) Feedbacks of soil inoculum of mycorrhizal fungi altered by N deposition on the growth of a native shrub and an invasive annual grass. Plant Soil 286:153–165CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  144. Singer MJ, Shainberg I (2004) Mineral soil surface crusts and wind and water erosion. Earth Surf Process 29:1065–1075CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  145. Smart DR, Stark JM, Diego V (1999) Resource limitations to nitric oxide emissions from a sagebrush-steppe ecosystem. Biogeochemistry 47:63–86Google Scholar
  146. Sperry LJ, Belnap J, Evans RD (2006) Bromus tectorum invasion alters nitrogen dynamics in an undisturbed arid grassland ecosystem. Ecology 87:603–615CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  147. Stark JM, Hart SC (1997) High rates of nitrification and nitrate turnover in undisturbed coniferous forests. Nature 385:61–64CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  148. Stark JM, Norton JM (2015) The invasive annual cheatgrass increases nitrogen availability in 24-year-old replicated field plots. Oecologia 177:799–809CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  149. Stark JM, Hooker T, Saetre P et al (2006) Changes in soil nitrogen and carbon cycling in big sagebrush ecosystems following exotic grass introduction and invasion. Ecol Soc Am Abstracts Merida, MexicoGoogle Scholar
  150. Steenhof K, Yensen E, Kochert MN et al (2006) Populations and habitat relationships of Piute ground squirrels in southwestern Idaho. West N Am Nat 66:482–491CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  151. Stewart G, Hull A (1949) Cheatgrass (Bromus tectorum L.) – an ecologic intruder in southern Idaho. Ecology 30:58–74CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  152. Svejcar T, Sheley R (2001) Nitrogen dynamics in perennial- and annual-dominated arid rangeland. J Arid Environ 47:33–46CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  153. Turkowski FJ (1975) Dietary adaptability of the desert cottontail. J Wildlife Manag 39:748–756CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  154. Van Horne B, Schooley RL, Sharpe PB (1998) Influence of habitat, sex, age, and drought on the diet of Townsend’s ground squirrels. J Mammal 79:521–537CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  155. VanHorne B, Olson GS, Schooley RL et al (1997) Effects of drought and prolonged winter on Townsend’s ground squirrel demography in shrubsteppe habitats. Ecol Monogr 67:295–315CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  156. Verburg PSJ, Arnone JA, Obrist D et al (2004) Net ecosystem carbon exchange in two experimental grassland ecosystems. Glob Change Biol 10:498–508CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  157. Wagenbrenner NS, Germino MJ, Lamb BK et al (2013) Wind erosion from a sagebrush steppe burned by wildfire: measurements of PM10 and total horizontal sediment flux. Aeolian Res 10:25–36CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  158. Wallestad R, Eng RL (1975) Foods of adult sage grouse in central Montana. J Wildlife Manag 39:628–630CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  159. Weber CF, King GM, Aho K (2015) Relative abundance of and composition within fungal orders differ between cheatgrass (Bromus tectorum) and sagebrush (Artemisia tridentata)-associated soils. Plos One 10:e0117026CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  160. West NE, Yorks TP (2006) Long-term interactions of climate, productivity, species richness, and growth form in relictual sagebrush steppe plant communities. West N Am Nat 66:502–526CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  161. Whisenant SG (1990) Changing fire frequencies on Idaho’s Snake River Plains: ecological and management implications. In: McArthur ED, Romney EM, Smith SD et al (eds) Symposium on cheatgrass invasion, shrub die-off, and other aspects of shrub biology and management, 5–7 April 1989. Gen Tech Rep INT-276. USDA, Forest Service, Intermountain Research Station, Ogden, UT, pp 4–10Google Scholar
  162. Wilcox BP, Turnbull L, Young MH et al (2012) Invasion of shrublands by exotic grasses: ecohydrological consequences in cold versus warm deserts. Ecohydrology 5:160–173CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  163. US Fish and Wildlife Service (2003) Recovery plan for the quino checkerspot butterfly (Euphydryas editha quino).
  164. Wolkovich EM, Bolger DT, Cottingham KL (2009) Invasive grass litter facilitates native shrubs through abiotic effects. J Veg Sci 20:1121–1132CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  165. Wood YA, Meixner T, Shouse PJ et al (2006) Altered ecohydrologic response drives native shrub loss under conditions of elevated nitrogen deposition. J Environ Qual 35:76–92CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  166. Wylie B (2012) Mapping cheatgrass dieoff in the Northern Great Basin using ecosystem performance modeling. Final report to Northwest Climate Science Center.
  167. Yensen E, Quinney DL, Johnson K et al (1992) Fire, vegetation changes, and population fluctuations of Townsend’s ground squirrels. Am Midl Nat 128:299–312CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  168. Zouhar K (2003) Bromus tectorum. In: Fire Effects Information System [Online]. USDA, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station, Fire Sciences Laboratory.

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Matthew J. Germino
    • 1
    Email author
  • Jayne Belnap
    • 2
  • John M. Stark
    • 3
  • Edith B. Allen
    • 4
  • Benjamin M. Rau
    • 5
  1. 1.US Geological SurveyForest and Rangeland Ecosystem Science CenterBoiseUSA
  2. 2.US Geological SurveySouthwest Biological Science CenterMoabUSA
  3. 3.Department of Biology, and the Ecology CenterUtah State UniversityLoganUSA
  4. 4.Department of Botany and Plant SciencesUniversity of California, RiversideRiversideUSA
  5. 5.US Department of Agriculture, Forest ServiceSouthern Research StationAikenUSA

Personalised recommendations