The University of Arizona

Improving the Effectiveness of Ecological Site Descriptions: General State-and-Transition Models and the Ecosystem Dynamics Interpretive Tool (EDIT)

Brandon T. Bestelmeyer, Jeb C. Williamson, Curtis J. Talbot, Greg W. Cates, Michael C. Duniway, Joel R. Brown


• State-and-transition models (STMs) are useful tools for management, but they can be difficult to use and have limited content.
• STMs created for groups of related ecological sites could simplify and improve their utility. The amount of information linked to models can be increased using tables that communicate management interpretations and important within-group variability.
• We created a new web-based information system (the Ecosystem Dynamics Interpretive Tool) to house STMs, associated tabular information, and other ecological site data and descriptors.
• Fewer, more informative, better organized, and easily accessible STMs should increase the accessibility of science information.

Keywords: database, ecological sites, management, soil survey.

Full Text: