Page 18

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Title Is Utah Sahara Bound?
Subject Agriculture--Utah; Land use--Utah
Description The 11th Annual Frederick William Reynolds Lecture.
Creator Cottam, Walter Pace, 1894-
Publisher Extension Division, University of Utah
Date 1947-02-19
Date Digital 2008-05-29
Type Text
Format image/jpeg
Digitization Specifications Original scanned on Epson Expression 10000XL flatbed scanner and saved as 400 ppi uncompressed tiff. Display images generated in PhotoshopCS and uploaded into CONTENTdm Aquisition Station.
Resource Identifier http://content.lib.utah.edu/u?/reynolds,458
Source LD5526 .U8 n.s. v.37 no.11
Language eng
Relation Digital reproduction of "Is Utah Sahara Bound?," J. Willard Marriott Library Special Collections
Rights Digital Image Copyright University of Utah
Metadata Cataloger Seungkeol Choe; Ken Rockwell
ARK ark:/87278/s6w66hr0
Setname uu_fwrl
Date Created 2008-07-29
Date Modified 2009-03-13
ID 319731
Reference URL https://collections.lib.utah.edu/ark:/87278/s6w66hr0

Page Metadata

Title Page 18
Description 18 IS UTAH SAHARA BOUND? greater and the period of grazing use is shorter. This survey discloses the important fact that two areas of similar plant type and density of cover may not necessarily carry the same forage values. It would seem to be prima facie evidence of retrogressive plant succession due to the grazing factor. Causes of Vegetational Changes in Utah Nature, undisturbed by man, always tends to establish dominant types of vegetation peculiarly adapted to climate. The great deciduous forests of eastern United States, the vast expanse of grass over the prairie and plains, the northern and southern types of the Rocky Mountains, and the coniferous forests of the Northwest are all vegetational expressions of broad climatic influences. A fundamental concept of ecology, however, is that these so-called climax vegetational types are not static phenomena in a world of changing forces. In every plant community myriads of biological forms present influences of action and interaction which bind the whole into a social organism extremely delicate in its balance. The removal of one biological species or the ascendancy of another through such outside influences as grazing is bound to upset this fine balance in nature and to set in motion successional changes which may and often do alter completely the original vegetational aspect. These basic facts of ecology were not understood by the pioneer settlers. It was natural and inevitable that mistakes and misconceptions should result, in the development of an agricultural economy in a climate so utterly different from those of the countries from which the pioneers came. When Parley P. Pratt21 concluded that Utah could supply pasturage for grazing animals "without limit" and "raise cattle and sheep to any amount," his knowledge of the drizzling rains and cold humid climate of Britain had not been tempered by the occasional drenchings and prolonged droughts of a dry, hot desert. The widespread and significant changes that have occurred in Utah vegetation must be the result of one or both of the following causes: (1) major climatic changes within the century and (2) biotic causes incident to man's occupancy. Many people, especially stockmen, believe that climate has changed since the settlement of Utah and that this factor is the primary cause of forage depletion. Certainly the theory lends itself to scientific investigation. The field of dendrochronology offers unlimited opportunity to answer this question. Considerable work in tree ring investigation has already been done in Utah, but there is no evidence from this source that climate in Utah has changed appreciably, at least during the past three centuries. Studies in levels of the Great Salt Lake show that the recent drought was no more severe than previous droughts, and actual precipitation records dating back to 1870 do not support the thesis of a major climatic change. The records show that a drought as long and almost as severe as the 1928-1936 drought plagued this area from 1897 to 1904.26 This time it does not, however, stand out in the memory of ranchers of
Format image/jpeg
Identifier 018-RNLT-CottamWP_Page 18.jpg
Source Original Manuscript: Is Utah Sahara Bound? by Walter P. Cottam.
Setname uu_fwrl
Date Created 2008-07-29
Date Modified 2008-07-29
ID 319707
Reference URL https://collections.lib.utah.edu/ark:/87278/s6w66hr0/319707