Great Basin Naturalist


Reexamination of a semiarid foothill rangeland, first evaluated in 1948, indicated that secondary succession continues to shift toward a perennial grass-forb community formerly dominated by xeric shrubs, particularly big sagebrush (Artemisia tridentata spp. vaseyana). The direct role in livestock grazing in establishment and maintenance of shrub-dominant plant communities appears confirmed in the decline of shrubs upon cessation of livestock grazing in summer and continued browsing by mule deer in winter. The reduction of shrub forages on mule deer winter ranges is a major factor in population declines.