Death Valley National Park
Death Valley Ecosystems
& Natural Features
An ecosystem is how it all works together. The geology of region provide for the plants, which provide for the animals
that eat the plants and animals that eat these animals, all of which have adapted to the environment in which they
live. Ecosystems may not be defined by hard boundaries, a line in the sand so to speak. They could end abruptly according
to dramatic changes in terrain or composition of the soil, but, more often than not they may have a transition from one
to the other. These transitions are called ecotones. Ecotones may include plant and animal species indicative of one
or both ecosystems. These ecotones may sometimes be considered ecosystems in themselves.
Natural features & ecosystems include:
Faults & Geologic Formations
Faulting is the one of the main reasons Death Valley exists. Movement along faults allow the mountains to ...
Weather and Climate
Death Valley is famous as the hottest and driest place in North America. Summer temperatures often top ...
Despite its reputation as a lifeless wasteland, Death Valley National Park contains a great diversity of ...
Despite those extremes it is home to a diverse amount of wildlife species: 56 mammals, 36 reptiles, ...
Springs and Seeps
Wetland and riparian areas have a unique scientific value. The Death Valley / Ash Meadows area is a classic example of ...
The landscape is so varied and extreme, one cannot help to wonder what events ...
For dunes to exist there must be a source of sand, prevailing winds to ...
The salt flats in Badwater Basin cover nearly 200 square miles, among the largest ...
Below Sea Level
To have exposed land below sea level, an extremely dry climate is ...
Source - National Park Service
Basin and Range
The province is characterized by interior drainage with lakes and playas, and the typical horst and graben structure.
General Ecological Settings
Eco-subsection: Mojave Desert:
This section is the hot part of the Basin and ranges from the southern end of the Sierra Nevada
and the north-northeastern side of the Transverse Ranges to Nevada and Arizona.
the alluvial plain of Death Valley, from Sand Spring south-southeast to the drainage divide
between Death Valley and Silurian Valley.
Funeral Mountains - Greenwater Valley
the Funeral Mountains, Black Mountains, Greenwater Range, Resting Spring Range, and
Nopah Range between Death Valley and the Amargosa Desert and Pahrump Valley.
Eco-subsection: Southern Great Basin:
southern Great Basin in the Basin and Range geomorphic province.
the Panamint Mountains, which are between Panamint Valley and Death Valley.
Ecosystems and Habitats
Desert Wash habitats are characterized by the presence of arborescent, often spiny, shrubs generally associated with ...
Desert Scrub habitats typically are open, scattered assemblages of broadleaved evergreen or deciduous ...
Desert Riparian habitats are characterized as dense groves of low, shrublike trees or tall shrubs ...
Habitat. Pinyon-juniper habitat generally occurs at middle elevations adjoining a number
of other wildlife habitats. At lower elevations, pinyon-juniper may interface with habitats
such as Joshua tree and desert scrub.