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Ecoregions

Boston Mountains Species and Habitats

Boston MountainsBoston Mountains (Eco-Region 38)
Ecoregion 38 is mountainous, forested, and underlain by Pennsylvanian sandstone, shale, and siltstone. It is one of the Ozark Plateaus; some folding and faulting has occurred but, in general, strata are much less deformed than in the Ouachita Mountains (36).
Maximum elevations are higher, soils have a warmer temperture regime, and carbonate rocks are much less extensive than in the Ozark Highlands (39).

Boston Mountains Physiography is distinct from the Arkansas Valley (37). Upland soils are mostly Ultisols that developed under oak-hickory and oak-hickory-pine forests. Today, forests are still widespread; northern red oak, southern red oak, white oak, and hickories usually dominate the uplands, but shortleaf pine grows on drier, south- and west-facing slopes underlain by sandstone. Pastureland or hayland occur on nearly level ridgetops, benches, and valley floors. Population density is low; recreation, logging, and livestock farming are the primary land uses.

Boston MountainsWater quality in streams is generally exceptional; biochemical, nutrient, and mineral water quality parameter concentrations all tend to be very low. Fish communities are mostly composed of sensitive species; a diverse, often darter-dominated community occurs along with nearly equal proportions of minnows and sunfishes. During low flows, streams in both Ecoregions 38 and 36 usually run clear but, during high flow conditions, turbidity in Ecoregion 38 tends to be greater than in Ecoregion 36. Summer flow in many small streams is limited or non-existent but isolated, enduring pools may occur.

 

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Content provided by Woods et al. 2004.

 

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