Great Basin Naturalist


White fir (Abies concolor) appears to be invading vegetation dominated by big sagebrush (Artemisia tridentata) on the southeastern slopes of the Warner Mountains of extreme northeastern California. The time of initial tree establishment within the shrubs was determined by increment borings. Possible causes of the invasion involving specific climatic conditions, fire history, and grazing use of the area during years of the establishment were explored. Heavy grazing by domestic livestock, particularly sheep, appears responsible for altering the sagebrush-grass vegetation and allowing tree invasion.