East-side Ecosystems

Posted on
An artistic view of central Washington, viewed from the Columbia River westward, up and over the Cascade Mountains

An artistic view of central Washington, viewed from the Columbia River westward, up and over the Cascade Mountains

East-side Overview:

What’s In A Name: Why Our Region Has So Many Names for the Plant Communities, by Susan Ballinger

North Central WA map East to West view  Take a look at this artist created aerial view from a different perspective, looking from the Columbia River in the east, westward, up and over the Cascade Mountains.

Shrub-steppe:  Washington’s Disappearing Sea by Joe Rocchio. This is a well-written blog overview of the shrub-steppe ecosystem, with some good photographs.

The Nature of North Central Washington celebrates the rich diversity of life that makes this portion of the Northwest special. The 12-minute video explores the natural systems and species that characterize the alpine, coniferous forest, shrub steppe and freshwater habitats of the north central region of Washington State. This video was locally produced in 2007 by Nancy Warner, for the Initiative for Rural Innovation and Stewardship (IRIS).

Washington Wildlife by Woodland Park Zoo (NOTE- this is a 59-page hardcopy in Loaner box). Descriptor:  Background about habitats, plants, and animals in 5 Washington ecosystems including shrub-steppe, forests, wetlands, and urban areas.  Glossary References and Resources, Washington Wildife by Woodland Park Zoo (8 pages).

Eastside WA Plant Communities classification  by Susan Ballinger.  Six different field guide authors describe Eastern Washington’s plant communities from a variety of perspectives using slightly different  vocabulary, which are summarized in this single-page table.

The Wenatchee Mountains by Arthur Kruckeberg and Coleman Leuthy A re-print of an excellent article introducing the unique plant communities in the Wenatchee Mountains, excerpted from the Bulletin of the American Rock Garden Society, Summer 1991.


Introduction to Wenatchee Naturalist course and to the Wenatchee Watershed Eco-region

Dig Deeper:  Technical manual: Field Guide to Washington’s Ecological Systems  Compiled by Joe Rocchio and Rex Crawford Washington Natural Heritage Program.  2008; 246 pages. The purpose of this guide is to provide the user a tool to identify and understand all the Ecological Systems which occur in the State of Washington. This guide provides dichotomous keys and brief descriptions of each Ecological System to assist in identification.