Mapping habitat for multiple species in the Desert Southwest

Open-File Report 2014-1134
By: , and 



Many utility scale renewable energy projects are currently proposed across the Mojave Ecoregion. Agencies that manage biological resources throughout this region need to understand the potential impacts of these renewable energy projects and their associated infrastructure (for example, transmission corridors, substations, access roads, etc.) on species movement, genetic exchange among populations, and species’ abilities to adapt to changing environmental conditions. Understanding these factors will help managers’ select appropriate project sites and possibly mitigate for anticipated effects of management activities. We used species distribution models to map habitat for 15 species across the Mojave Ecoregion to aid regional land-use management planning. Models were developed using a common 1 × 1 kilometer resolution with maximum entropy and generalized additive models. Occurrence data were compiled from multiple sources, including VertNet (, HerpNET (, and MaNIS (, as well as from internal U.S. Geological Survey databases and other biologists. Background data included 20 environmental covariates representing terrain, vegetation, and climate covariates. This report summarizes these environmental covariates and species distribution models used to predict habitat for the 15 species across the Mojave Ecoregion.

Study Area

Publication type Report
Publication Subtype USGS Numbered Series
Title Mapping habitat for multiple species in the Desert Southwest
Series title Open-File Report
Series number 2014-1134
DOI 10.3133/ofr20141134
Year Published 2014
Language English
Publisher U.S. Geological Survey
Publisher location Reston, VA
Contributing office(s) Western Ecological Research Center
Description Report: vi, 92 p.; Species Distribution Models; Environmental Covariates
Country United States
Other Geospatial Mojave Ecoregion
Projection USA Contiguous Albers Equal Area Projection
Online Only (Y/N) Y
Additional Online Files (Y/N) Y
Google Analytic Metrics Metrics page
Additional publication details