Nebraska Game and Parks Commission


Date of this Version



Steinauer, Gerry and Steve Rolfsmeier. October 28, 1997. Terrestrial Natural Communities of Nebraska - Version I. Nebraska Game and Parks Commission. 121 pp.


The Nebraska Natural Heritage Program has been collecting information and data including published literature, field observations and vegetation plot data over the last 10 years of development of Nebraska’s natural community classification. The classification contains 27 wetland and 36 upland communities including forest, woodland, shrubland, herbaceous, and sparsely vegetated (e.g. rock outcrop) types. The community types were distinguished primarily on plant species composition and to a lesser extent on soils, hydrology and geographic location. The classification contains descriptions of each community type that include dominant species, soils, range, and other ecological information. The classification is designed to be flexible enough to meet the science and conservation needs of the state’s various conservation agencies and organizations.

Portions of Nebraska have been extensively studied by ecologists and have numerous natural community types defined. Other areas of the state have been little studied and have fewer natural community types defined. The Nebraska Heritage Program will continue to conduct extensive statewide vegetation sampling and analysis to further refine the classification – adding new types, possibly deleting other types, and improve community descriptions.