The topographic map derived from a digital elevation map (DEM) can be used to create a visual structure for other coverages. Almost every other map produced is influenced either directly or indirectly from the topography of the land, ie. precipitation, vegetation, temperature, species distribution, etc. By layering another map over the topography of an area, a more realistic representation is presented. A DEM will be used to refine species distributions where elevation, slope, and aspect restrictions are applicable.
Land FormsUnder development by the Department of Geology and Geophysics, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA and directed by Dr. Roy K. Dokka ( LANDFORM ). This effort describes the California Mojave Desert lands in geomorphological terms, age, and composition. Distribution of vertebrates in the Mojave Desert may be governed more by geomorphic and other abiotic factors than vegetation. Land forms will be used to describe habitat for focal species.
Vegetation polygons are created for each habitat type and are labeled for the dominant plant type in the polygon. Vegetation polygons are used to predict the presence, within the polygon, of each vertebrate species listed for California. The predictions are based on wildlife habitat relationship models which associate species with vegetation communities.
Primary and Secondary Roads
Secondary roads in the Mojave follow a characteristic style; gridded and regular in planned urban areas, irregular in rural areas. Many of the rural roads follow the topography of the land closely. Main roads and freeways stretch across the desert to Las Vegas and other large cities but are relatively sparse in comparison to the western portion of the Mojave. Road maps are an excellent indicator of human population density.
Bibliography of Vertebrate BiologyBack to the top
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