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North Slope Plant Invasion Vulnerability

Current invasion vulnerability across the region suggests that the northern and high elevation regions of the North Slope are resistant to invasion even by the most cold-tolerant non-native plant species. The Brooks Range foothills and south side of the Brooks Range west to Point Hope are predicted to be vulnerable to the extremely to moderately cold-tolerant species currently. By the 2020s modest changes in invasion vulnerability are predicted, with expansion of the region potentially suitable to the extremely cold-tolerant suite of species occurring primarily northward and westward. By the 2060s however, the area expected to be resistant to non-native plant invasion becomes dramatically reduced. The region is expected to become vulnerable to invasions of the extremely cold-tolerant species primarily. Vulnerability of the landscape to less cold-tolerant suites of species is expected to occur in the Brooks Range foothills, and particularly on the south side of the Brooks Range and the region from Hotham Inlet to Cape Lisburne. Growing season length is used as a proxy for cumulative summer growing conditions. Invasion vulnerability in the North Slope is outlined by identifying summer associated with non-native plants of the five cold tolerance categories.

Using the growing season length dataset, general plant invasion vulnerability is defined and illustrated using length of growing season (in days). Areas with a growing season of less than 120 days are predicted to be invasion resistant (white); areas in blue represent regions vulnerable to invasion by extremely cold-tolerant plants; and warmer colors represent areas predicted to vulnerable to less cold tolerant species.

Invasive Vulnerability

Additional Information

resource typefile upload
timestampFeb 20, 2018