National Park Service


Date of this Version



James, K. M. 2010. Vegetation community monitoring at Agate Fossil Beds National Monument, Nebraska: 1999-2009. Natural Resource Technical Report NPS/HTLN/NRTR—2010/351. National Park Service, Fort Collins, Colorado.


Vegetation community monitoring was conducted by the Heartland Inventory and Monitoring Network beginning in 1998 and concluded in 2009. During this period, eleven monitoring sites were established and sampled seven times. This report presents summary findings of that monitoring effort and concludes network vegetation monitoring efforts at Agate Fossil Beds National Monument. The Northern Great Plains Inventory and Monitoring Network will continue long-term vegetation monitoring at the park. The eleven monitoring sites were categorized into three community types: prairie sandreed – sand bluestem native prairie; needle-and-thread grass – blue grama – threadleaf sedge native prairie; and riparian community. A summary of the two native mixed-grass prairies is presented. Active management in areas with monitoring sites was nearly absent throughout the monitoring period. Therefore this report represents natural variability relative to weather and climate in the absence of active management.