Grasslands are a small but significant component of British Columbia’s (BC) natural landscape. To capture the climatic, topographic, and vegetative differences throughout the grasslands of BC, 70Range Referenec Areas (RRA) across the province were used to collect samples (Figure 1). To view an interactive map displaying the site characteristics and a picture for each locations, click HERE.
RRAs are permanent fencing installations which are used to monitor the impact of livestock on British Columbia rangelands and evaluate the accuracy of potential natural communities (PNC) estimates. The sites cover a variety of local climates, plant communities, and physiographies. Among the sites, elevation ranges from 346 to1213m and mean annual precipitation ranges from 302mm/year to 538mm/year. Once analyzed, the SC and SOC values at these sites were used as the training and testing data in the models. The figure below displays examples of RRA sites at a) Alkali Creek, Chilcotin Region; b) Lac du Bois, Thompson-Nicola Region; and c) Crump, Okanogan Region (Figure 2).