Jul 23, 2012 • The My American Landscape Winners include: Lee County, Florida , Submitted by Carole Holmberg

Summary: The landscape of Lee County, Florida, has changed dramatically as its population greatly expanded over the last 40 years. Much of the area’s unique landscape of coastal mangroves, marshes, cypress forests, and upland pine flat woods and prairies have been replaced by homes, roads and new bodies of water that are being used by industry.


Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. 2012. Babcock Ranch Preserve. Accessed June 29 2012 .
Fort Myers Regional Partnership Lee County Economic Development Office. 2012. Lee County Major Employers. Accessed June 23, 2012.

Lee County Master Mitigation Plan Environmental Quality Investment and Growth Mitigation Strategic Plan. 2007.

Rectenwald, E.E., G.P. Kennedy, M.L. Weatherby, and G.E. Reilly. 2008. Significant water quality trends observed in the lower Hawthorn aquifer of southwest Florida: occurrences & solutions. Florida Water Resources Journal, April, 38-48.

U.S. Dept. of Agriculture. Census of Agriculture Historical Archive. 1974 Census Publications, Florida. County Data. Accessed June 28, 2012 .

U.S. Dept. of Agriculture. 2007 Census of Agriculture, Volume 1, Chapter 2, County Data, Florida. Accessed 28 June 2012.

U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service. Florida Panther National Wildlife Refuge. Accessed 29 June 2012.

Maricopa County, Arizona, Submitted by Michelle Fuller

Summary: Arizona’s capital of Phoenix and neighboring towns in Maricopa County have undergone a major population boom in the last 40 years. The effects of this boom are seen in everything from the expansion of town and cities to an increased demand for fresh water. Michelle Fuller from Gilbert wrote asking to see these changes to the landscape; most visible in this series of images is how city streets and development are now covering the land that previously was used for agriculture.

Auch, R.F., J. Taylor, and W. Acevedo. 2004. Urban Growth in American Cities Glimpses of U.S. Urbanization. U.S. Geological Survey, Circular 1252.Accessed athttp://pubs.usgs.gov/circ/2004/circ1252/ 29 June 2012.

Bloomberg Rankings. 2012. Falling into Foreclosure. Accessed athttp://www.google.com/search?q=arizona+ranking+foreclosures%2C+2007-2011, 2 July 2012.

Demographia. US Counties Over 250,000: 1970 Ranked. Accessed athttp://www.demographia.com/db-70cor.htm29June 2012.

Mackun, P., S. Wilson, T. Fishchetti, and J. Goworowska. 2011. Population Distribution and Change: 2000 to 2010. U.S. Census Bureau, C2010BR-01.Accessed athttp://www.census.gov/prod/cen2010/briefs/c2010br-01.pdf 29 June 2012.

McKinnon, S. 2005. Farms swallowing most of Arizona’s water agriculture helped prevent state from exhausting supply. Arizona Republic, 3 January. Accessed athttp://www.azcentral.com/specials/special26/articles/0103conserve-main03.html?&wired 29 June 2012.

Patton, W.P. 2007. the Arizona growth machine. Arizona’s Economy Fall Issue. Accessed at http://azeconomy.eller.arizona.edu/AzEconomyIssues/AEFall07.pdf , 2 July 2012.

Rex, T.R. 2000. Development of metropolitan Phoenix: historical, current, and future trends. Tempe, AZ: Arizona State University, Morrison Institute for Public
Policy. Accessed athttps://repository.asu.edu/items/12471 29 June 2012.

U.S. Dept. of Agriculture. Census of Agriculture Historical Archive.1974 Census Publications, Arizona. County Data. Accessed 29 June 2012 athttp://usda.mannlib.cornell.edu/usda/AgCensusImages/1974/01/03/306/Table-02.pdf.

U.S. Dept. of Agriculture. 2007 Census of Agriculture, Volume 1, Chapter 2, County Data, Arizona. Accessed 29 June 2012 athttp://www.agcensus.usda.gov/Publications/2007/Full_Report/Volume_1,_Chapter_2_County_Level/Arizona/

North Central Colorado, Submitted by Justin Hirsch

Summary: The forests of northern Colorado have gone through many changes driven by both natural and human causes. Justin Hirsch from Steamboat Springs was interested in seeing the dynamic changes to the forest caused by mountain pine bark beetles. In this pair of Landsat images from 2001 and 2010, the tree die-off from the insect infestation is visible.

Bentz, B.J., J. Rgnire, C.J. Fettig, E.M. Hansen, J.L. Hayes, J.AA. Hicke, R.G. Kelsey, J.F. Negrn, and S.J. Seybold. 2010. Climate change and bark beetles of the western United States and Canada: direct and indirect effects. BioScience 60 (8): 602-613.

Bentz, B. 2008. Western U.S. Bark Beetles and Climate Change. (May 20, 2008). U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Climate Change Resource Center. Accessed athttps://www.fs.usda.gov/ccrc/topics/bark-beetles-and-climate-change-united-states  5 July 2012.

Cudmore, T.J., N. Bjorklund, A.L. Carroll, and B. Staffan Lindgren. 2010. Climate change and range expansion of an aggressive bark beetle: evidence of higher beetle reproduction in naïve host tree populations. Journal of Applied Ecology 47: 1036-1043.

Entomology Texas A&M University. 2012. Southern pine bark beetle. AgriLife Extension, Texas A&M System. Accessed athttp://texasinsects.tamu.edu/bimg208.html 5 July 2012.

Leatherman, D.A., I. Aguayo, and T.M. Mehall. 2012. Mountain pine beetle. Colorado State University Extension Fact Sheet No. 5.528. Accessed athttp://www.ext.colostate.edu/pubs/insect/05528.html/ 5 July 2012.

McKenzie, D., D.L. Peterson, and J.J. Littell. 2009. Global warming and stress complexes in forests of western North America. In Developments in Environmental Science, Volume 8, Bytnerowicz, A. M. Arbaugh, A. Riebau, and C. Andersen (eds.), 319-337. Elsevier B.V.

Nikiforuk, A. 2011. Bark beetles, aided by climate change, are devastating U.S. pine forests. Washington Post, 5 December. Accessed at http://www.washingtonpost.com/national/health-science/bark-beetles-aided-by-climate-change-are-devastating-us-pine-forests/2011/11/08/gIQA0B0CWO_print.html,  5 July 2012.

Walker, L.C. 1991. The Southern Forest a Chronicle. Austin: University of Texas Press.

Nebraska Sandhills, Submitted by Mary Ann Vinton

Summary: The Nebraska Sandhills region is one of the largest areas of mostly intact grassland ecosystems in the country and has the largest grass-stabilized sand dunes in the world. Mary Ann Vinton from Omaha is interested in how these hills have changed since the 1970s. The spread of center-pivot irrigation that taps directly into the vast underground Ogallala Aquifer has meant that agriculture has slowly taken over the landscape.

Bleed, A.S. and C.A. Flowerday, eds. 1998. An Atlas of the Sand Hills, 3rd ed. Lincoln, NB: Conservation and Survey Division, Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

Bowman, G.A., M.A. James, C.D. Kepler, T.E. Beesley, W.J. Jones, and W.E. McKinzie. 1978. Soil Survey of Lincoln County, Nebraska.USDA, Soil Conservation Service.

Bridges, D.E. and A. Jenkins. 2000. From prairie to cropland: irrigation’s impact on south central Nebraska. In Prairie Mosaic: An Atlas of Central Nebraska’s Land, Culture, and Nature. Rothenberger, S.J. and S. George-Bloomfield, eds. University of Nebraska at Kearney.

Hiemstra, C.A., R.A. Pielke Sr., T.L. Sohl, K.L. Sayler, T.R. Loveland, and L.T. Steyaert. 2009. The Influence of Pre-settlement and Current High Plains Land Use and Land Cover on Atmospheric, Soils, and Vegetation Properties (Preliminary Results). Accessed athttps://pielkeclimatesci.files.wordpress.com/2009/09/ppt-47.pdf 12 July 2012.Jones, S.R. 2000. The Last Prairie: a Sandhills Journal. Camden, ME: Ragged Mountain Press.

Nebraska Natural Legacy Project. 2012. Chapter 7 Sandhills Ecoregion. Nebraska Fish & Wildlife Department. Accessed athttps://outdoornebraska.gov/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/NebraskaNaturalLegacyProject2ndEdition.pdf 12 July 2012.

Oldfather, S., J. Stubbendieck, and SS. Walker. 1989. Evaluating revegetation practices for sandy cropland in the Nebraska Sandhills. Journal of Range Management, 42 (3).

Taylor, J.L. 2013. Nebraska Sandhills Ecoregion Summary. In Status and Trends of Land Change in the Great Plains of the United States—1973 to 2000, U.S. Geological Survey Professional Paper XXXX-B (in press).

Vermilion Parish, Louisiana, Submitted by Brent Yantis and Whitney Broussard

Summary: The landforms of southern Louisiana have been shaped by the wanderings of the lower Mississippi River, but with modern engineering of where the river flows, the salt marshes of the Chénier Plain are in a battle with the open ocean eroding the coastline. Brent Yantis and Whitney Broussard are interested in telling the story of the changing coastline.


Barras, J.A. 2007. Land area changes in coastal Louisiana after Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. In Science and the storms—the USGS response to the hurricanes of 2005, Farris, G.S., Smith, G.J., Crane, M.P., Demas, C.R., Robbins, L.L., and Lavoie, D.L., eds. : U.S. Geological Survey Circular 1306.
Buster, N.A. and C.W. Holmes. 2011. Gulf of Mexico Origin, Waters, and Biota: Volume 3, Geology. College Station, TX: Texas A&M University Press.

Couvillion, B.R., Barras, J.A., Steyer, G.D., Sleavin, William, Fischer, Michelle, Beck, Holly, Trahan, Nadine, Griffin, Brad, and Heckman, David, 2011, Land area change in coastal Louisiana from 1932 to 2010: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Map 3164, scale 1:265,000, 12 p. pamphlet.

Gammill, S., K. Balkum, K. Duffy, E. Meselhe, J. Porthouse, E. Ramsey, and R. Walters. 2002. Hydrologic Investigation of the Louisiana Chenier Plain. Louisiana Department of Natural Resources, Louisiana Coastal Wetlands Conservation and Restoration Task Force.

Gomez, G.M. 1998. A Wetland Biography Seasons on Louisiana’s Chenier Plain. Austin, TX: University of Texas Press.
Kelley, J.T., O.H. Pilkey, and J.A.G. Cooper, eds. 2009.America’s Most Vulnerable Coastal Communities. Boulder, CO: Geological Society of America.

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. 2012. Hurricane Danny August 12-20 1985. Accessed at http://www.wpc.ncep.noaa.gov/tropical/rain/danny1985.html 14 July 2012.

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. 2012. Hurricane Rita. Accessed athttp://www.nhc.noaa.gov/outreach/history/#rita.

Wikipedia. 2012. Chenier. Accessed at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chenier.
Williams, S.J. and B.T. Gutierrez. 2009. Sea-level and coastal change: causes and implications for the future of coasts and low-lying regions. Shore & Beach 77 (4): 13-21.

Trinity County, California, Submitted by Roger Eckart

Summary: Forest fires and logging are the two main drivers of change in this area within Trinity National Forest in northern California. Roger Eckart and his siblings bought a grandfathered-in piece of private land within the forest in 1972 and so together the Eckart family and the Landsat program have observed changes in the forest for over 40 years.

Cox, T.R. 2010. The Lumberman’s Frontier Three Centuries of Land Use, Society, and Changes in America’s Forests. Corvallis, OR: Oregon State University Press.

NASA Earth Observatory. 2012. Fires in Northern California. Accessed athttp://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/NaturalHazards/view.php?id=17082 11 July 2012.

Rapp, V. 2007. Northwest Forest Plan—the first 10 years (1994-2003): first-decade results of the Northwest Forest Plan. Gen. Tech. Rep. PNW-GTR-720. Portland, OR: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Pacific Northwest Research Station.

Sleeter, B.M. and J.P. Caliza. 2011. Klamath Mountains Ecoregion. Accessed athttp://landcovertrends.usgs.gov/west/eco78Report.html. 11 July 2012.

U.S.D.A. and U.S.DOI. 1994. Record of Decision for Amendments to the Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management Planning Documents Within the Range of the Northern Spotted Owl. Accessed at https://reo.gov/riec/newroda.pdf 11 July 2012.

U.S. Forest Service. 2012. Selected Fires of 2008. Accessed athttp://www.fs.fed.us/r5/rsl/projects/postfirecondition/2008/  11 July 2012.

U.S. Forest Service, 2000. Policy Implications of Large Fire Management: a Strategic Assessment of Factors Influencing Costs. Accessed athttps://www.fs.fed.us/fire/management/Large_Fire_Mgt.pdf11 July 2012

Westerling, A. L., H. G. Hidalgo, D. R. Cayan, and T. W. Swetnam, 2006, Warming and Earlier spring increase Western U.S. forest wildfire activity, Science, Vol. 313, pp. 940-943.