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BLM>More BLM Programs>Landscape Approach>Rapid Ecoregional Assessments>Middle Rockies
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Upper Columbia Salmon Clearwater District
BLM/Photo by Scott Feldhausen
Upper Columbia Salmon Clearwater District , Idaho

Middle Rockies Rapid Ecoregional Assessment (REA)

Status | Location and Setting | Management Questions | Conservation Elements | Change Agents | Data, Maps, and Models | Memos and Reports 

REA Status
The Middle Rockies REA was initiated in September 2010 and is scheduled for completion in early 2013.   REA Task 1 (the refinement of management questions, conservation elements, and change agents) was completed in January 2011. The results of Task 1 are presented in the Middle Rockies Task 1 Final Memorandum, and are summarized briefly below. See the Memos and Reports section for a list of scheduled tasks and to download the completed documents.

Location and Setting
The Middle Rockies ecoregion is located in Montana, Idaho, Wyoming, and also includes a disconnected portion of South Dakota. The ecoregion has an area of 63,400 square miles, including 3.9 million acres of public lands. The ecoregion includes all or portions of 20 BLM field offices.


States in the Middle Rockies:

Contact: Project Manager
for more information

  Location Map

Middle Rockies REA Map

Management Questions
The management questions for the Middle Rockies REA were finalized in January 2011 in the Middle Rockies Task 1 Final Memorandum. They seek information related to:

  • Terrestrial biotic resources
  • Aquatic/Riparian Biotic Resources
  • Landscape Species/Species Richness 
  • Change Agents
  • Invasive or Undesired Non-native Species, Insect, and Disease
  • Urban, Agricultural, Industrial, and Water Development
  • Climate Change

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Conservation Elements
Conservation elements are resources of conservation concern within an ecoregion. This REA will assess the current status and forecast the future condition of these conservation elements:

  • "Coarse-filter" ecological systems, which represent characteristic vegetation assemblages occurring within the ecoregion;
  • "Fine-filter" plant species conservation elements, which represent a dominant plant species characteristic of each of the four largest geographical ecological system coarse-filters in the Middle Rockies Ecoregion;
  • Landscape-species conservation elements, in which selected species represent a range of important attributes characterizing the environment in which they occur.

A full list and description of conservation elements can be found in the Phase 1 Task 1 Memo.

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Change Agents
Change agents are disturbances on the landscape that can influence ecosystem health. They can have natural causes, such as wildfire; human causes, such as energy development; or result from the interaction of both, such as climate change. A key purpose of this REA is to understand the influences of significant, widespread change agents on the natural resources (represented by the conservation elements discussed above) of the Middle Rockies.
This REA will examine the potential effects of the following change agents. A more complete discussion of change agents is presented in the Task 1 Final Memorandum.

Change Agents to Be Addressed in the Middle Rockies REA

Wildland Fire
Invasive Species: terrestrial and aquatic

Land and Resource Uses:

  • Urban and Roads Development
  • Energy Development and Mining
  • Agriculture
  • Hydrological
  • Recreation
  • Climate Change
    Insect Outbreak and Diseases

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    Data, Maps, and Models
    Geospatial data, maps, and models used in and produced by the REAs will be made available to the public upon final completion of each individual assessment. 

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    Memos and Reports
    For each REA, there is a series of memos which are supplemental documents to the final report.  Memos document the major tasks and decision points made during the assessments and provide pertinent background information necessary to understand the justification and methods used during the assessment.  As memos and the final report are completed, they can be downloaded through the table below.

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    Middle Rockies (MIR) REA Memos and Reports


    Document Link

    Management questions, conservation elements, and change agentsTask 1 Final Memorandum (PDF)
    Datasets for analysisTask 2 Final Memorandum (PDF)
    Analytical models and tools

    Task 3 Final Memorandum (PDF)

    REA work plan 
    Preliminary findings for review 
    REA report, maps, and supporting documents