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USGS NRP Tucson: Landscape Change in the Southwest

Changes in Riparian Vegetation in Arizona

Virgin River at Littlefield (09415000), October 30, 2000

Virgin River at Littlefield (09415000), October 20,2000
Dominic Oldershaw, Stake 1727 Despite several large floods in the intervening 58 years, including a January 1,1989, flood caused by the breaching of an off-channel dam upstream, riparian vegetation has increased in this reach. Most of the foreground vegetation is native, including cottonwood trees, arrowweed, mesquite, and catclaw. At lower right, a marsh containing reeds, cattails, and phragmites has developed. On river left, native coyote willow lines the bank, and a prominent zone of tamarisks with occasional cottonwood appears behind. The vertical bank at center is in a small floodplain terrace that developed after 1942.

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