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Montana Field Guides

Blue Gramma - Bouteloua gracilis

Native Species

Global Rank: G5
State Rank: S5
C-value: 4


Agency Status
USFWS:
USFS:
BLM:


 

External Links






 
General Description
Perennial bunchgrass or sodgrass. Stems 20–50 cm long. Leaves: blades 1–2 mm wide, often curled. Inflorescence of 1 to 4 secund lateral divergent spikes, each 2–4.5 cm long and with 50 to 80 spikelets, each lateral rachis terminated by a spikelet, Spikelets 4–5.5 mm long, second glume essentially hairless or with clear gland-based hairs. Lemmas essentially hairless, short-awned, these disarticulating from the spikelet; rudimentary florets 1, densely hairy (Lavin in Lesica et al. 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. BRIT Press. Fort Worth, TX).

Species Range
Montana Range

Year-round
 


Range Comments
Throughout much of North America except at extreme northern latitudes and in much of the southeast (Lavin in Lesica et al. 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. BRIT Press. Fort Worth, TX).

Observations in Montana Natural Heritage Program Database
Number of Observations: 2098

(Click on the following maps and charts to see full sized version) Map Help and Descriptions
Relative Density

Recency

 

(Observations spanning multiple months or years are excluded from time charts)



Habitat
Open dry shrub-steppe vegetation and open understory (Lavin in Lesica et al. 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. BRIT Press. Fort Worth, TX).

References
  • Literature Cited AboveLegend:   View Online Publication
    • Lesica, P., M.T. Lavin, and P.F. Stickney. 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. Fort Worth, TX: BRIT Press. viii + 771 p.
  • Additional ReferencesLegend:   View Online Publication
    Do you know of a citation we're missing?
    • Anderson, N.L. 1951. Field studies on the biology of range grasshoppers of southeastern Montana. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, Montana: Montana State University. 96 p.
    • Anderson, N.L. 1962. Grasshopper-vegetation relationships on Montana grasslands. Ph.D Dissertation. Bozeman, Montana: Montana State University. 73 p.
    • Aradottir, A.L. 1984. Ammonia volatilization from native grasslands and forests of SW Montana. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 48 p.
    • Bess, J.A. 1997. The leafhopper species assemblages associated with native and replanted grasslands in southwest Montana. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, Montana: Montana State University. 94 p.
    • Birkby, J.L. 1983. Interaction of western harvester ants with southeastern Montana soils and vegetation. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, MT. Montana State University. 35 pp.
    • Boggs, K. W. 1984. Succession in riparian communities of the lower Yellowstone River, Montana. M.S. Thesis. Montana State University, Bozeman, 107 pp.
    • Britton, M. P. 1955. An ecological study of a relict grassland and an adjacent grazed pasture in Beaverhead Valley, Montana. M.S. thesis. Montana State University, Bozeman. 23 pp.
    • Butler, M.A. 1996. The validity of using artificial nests to assess nest-predation rates in prairie nesting ducks. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 82 p.
    • Chadde, S.W. 1985. Initial recovery patterns of southwestern Montana foothill range. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 103 p.
    • Clark, D. 1991. The effect of fire on Yellowstone ecosystem seed banks. M.Sc. Thesis. Montana State University, Bozeman. 115 pp.
    • Dolan, J.J. 1966. Long-term responses of dense clubmoss (Selaginella densa Rydb.) to range renovation practices in northern Montana. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 83 pp.
    • Durham, R. A., D. L. Mummey, L. Shreading, and P.W. Ramsey. 2017. Phenological patterns differ between exotic and native plants: Field observations from the Sapphire Mountains, Montana. Natural Areas Journal, 37(3), 361–381.
    • Egan, J.L. 1957. Some relationships between mule deer and alfalfa production in Powder River County, Montana. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 34 p.
    • Eneboe, E.J. Tiller dynamics of blue grama and western wheatgrass subjected to drought and grazing. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 91 p.
    • Feist, F.G. 1968. Breeding bird populations in relation to proposed sagebrush control in central Montana. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 41 p.
    • Foster, J.W. 1977. Impact of off-road vehicle traffic on soils and vegetation on rangeland in southeastern Montana and photographic monitoring of the effects. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 168 p.
    • Fritzen, D.E. 1995. Ecology and behavior of Mule Deer on the Rosebud Coal Mine, Montana. Ph.D. Dissertation. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 143 p.
    • Gillespie, R.L.1992. Dynamics of grasshoppers (Orthoptera: Acrididae) at a rangeland-crop interference. Ph.D. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 111 p.
    • Gobeille, J.E. 1992. The effect of fire on Merriams turkey brood habitat in southeastern Montana. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 61 p.
    • Haile, K.F. 2011. Fuel load and heat effects on Northern mixed prairie and four prominent rangeland graminoids. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 71 p.
    • Hanson, H. C. 1955. Characteristics of the Stipa comata - Bouteloua gracilis - Bouteloua curtipendula association in northern Colorado. Ecology 36(2):269-280.
    • Harvey, S.J. 1990. Responses of steppe plants to gradients of water soil texture and disturbance in Montana, U.S.A. Ph.D. Thesis. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 34 p.
    • Holeckek, J.L. 1976. Initial effects of different species treatments and fertilizer rates on a mine spoils rehabilitation. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 91 p.
    • Hurst, R.J. 2006. Use of satellite imagery to measure cover of prairie vegetation for the detection of change. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozemant, MT: Montana State University. 56 p.
    • Johnson, C. 1985. Simulated effects of supplemental watering on two grasslands, Agropyron smithii and Bouteloua gracilis. M.S. thesis, Montana State University, Bozeman. 79 pp.
    • Johnson, C.M. 2002. Effects of black-tailed prairie dogs on the mixed-grass prairie in Montana. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 89 p.
    • Johnson, J.D. 2004. Restoring native species to crested wheatgrass dominated rangelands. M.Sc.Thesis. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 58 p.
    • Jorgensen, H.E. 1970. Ecological aspects of the life history of Agropyron smithii Rydb. in Central Montana, with related effects of selective herbicide treatments of rangeland. Ph.D. Dissertation. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 118 p.
    • King, L.A. 1980. Effects of topsoiling and other reclamation practices on nonseeded species establishment on surface mined land at Colstrip, Montana. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 129 p.
    • Kisch, H.R. 2015. An inventory of carbon stocks under native vegetation and farm fields in south-central Montana. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 67 p.
    • Kitchen, K.A. 2010. The influence of Douglas-fir and Rocky Mountain juniper on Wyoming and mountain big sagebrush cover in southwest Montana. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 87 p.
    • Larson, D.P. 1996. Evaluation of sweep sampling as a method for determining grasshopper community composition on rangeland. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 92 p.
    • Lehnhoff, E.A., L.J.Rew, J.M. Mangold, T. Seipel, and D. Ragen.2019. Integrated management of Cheatgrass (Bromus tectorum) with sheep grazing and herbicide. Agronomy 9, 315
    • MacCracken, J.G. and D.W. Uresk. 1984. Big game habitat use in southeastern Montana. The Prairie Naturalist 16(3):135-139.
    • Mackie, R.J. 1965. Range ecology and relationships of mule deer, elk, and cattle in the Missouri River breaks. Ph.D Dissertation. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 229 p.
    • Mathews, S.L. 1995. Evolution of the phytochrome gene family in land plants and its utility for phylogenetic analyses of flowering plants. Ph.D. Dissertation. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 85 p.
    • Maxwell, B.D. 1984. Changes in an infested plant community after an application of picloram, the effect of glyphosate on bud dormancy, the effect of pulling and the fuel potential of leafy spurge (Euphorbia esula L.). M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 73 p.
    • McCarthy, J.J. 1973. Response of nesting Canada geese (Branta canadensis) to islands in stockdams in northcentral Montana. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 36 p.
    • McClelland, J.D. 1983. Growth response of Agropyron smithii and Bouteloua gracilis to simulated grazing and water treatments. M.S. thesis. Montana State University, Bozeman. 55 pp.
    • Meier, G.A. 1997. The colonization of Montana roadsides by native and exotic plants. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 45 p.
    • Miller, M.G. 1980. The influence of habitat features on waterfowl productivity on stock reservoirs in south Valley County, Montana. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 43 p.
    • Morris, M. S. 1941. The status of blue grama grass, Bouteloua gracilis, in western Montana. Proc. Mont. Acad. Sci. 2:38.
    • Mundinger, J.G. 1975. The influence of rest-rotation grazing management on waterfowl production on stock-water reservoirs in Phillips County, Montana. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 100 p.
    • Mussgnug, G.L. 1972. The structure and performance of an adult population of Aulocara elliotti (Thomas) (Orthoptera, Acrididae) near Billings, Montana. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 97 p.
    • Nielsen, L.S. 1978. The effects of rest-rotation grazing on the distribution of Sharp-tailed Grouse. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 52 p.
    • Norem, W.L. 1940. Contrasting density changes of Poa secunda and Bouteloua gracilis in eastern Montana through seven years, including the extreme droughts of 1934 and 1936. Northwest Science 14:92.
    • Northrup, R.D. 1991. Sharp-tailed grouse habitat use during fall and winter on the Charles M. Russell National Wildlife Refuge, Montana. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 54 p.
    • Payson, E. 1996. Gap colonization in grasslands of the Northern Great Plains. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 37 p.
    • Plantenberg, P.L. 1983. Factors affecting vegetation development on mined land at Colstrip, Montana. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 121 p.
    • Quire, R.L. 2013. The sagebrush steppe of Montana and southeastern Idaho shows evidence of high native plant diversity, stability, and resistance to the detrimental effects of nonnative plant species. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 124 p.
    • Rauscher, R.L. 1995. Deer use of irrigated alfalfa along the Yellowstone River, Custer County, Montana. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 50 p.
    • Reichel, J.D., D.L. Genter and E. Atkinson. 1992. Sensitive animal species in the Elkhorn and Big Belt Mountains of the Helena National Forest. Unpublished report to the Helena National Forest. Montana Natural Heritage Program, Helena. 158 p.
    • Rennick, R.B. 1981. Effects of prescribed burning on mixed prairie vegetation in southeastern Montana. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 144 p.
    • Rundquist, V.M. 1973. Avian ecology on stock ponds in two vegetational types in north-central Montana. Ph.D. Dissertation. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 112 p.
    • Scow, K.L. 1981. Ecological distribution of small mammals at Sarpy Creek, Montana, with special consideration of the Deer Mouse, Peromyscus maniculatus. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, Montana: Montana State University. 73 p.
    • Seipel, T., L.J. Rew, K.T. Taylor, B.D. Maxwell, and E.A. Lehnhoff. 2018. Applied Vegetation Science 21:385-394.
    • Seipel, T.F. 2006. Plant species diversity in the sagebrush steppe of Montana. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 87 p.
    • Selting, J.P. 1994. Seasonal use of agricultural lands by Mule Deer, White-Tailed Deer, and Pronghorn Antelope in Carter County, Montana. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, Montana: Montana State University. 66 p.
    • Skilbred, Chester L. 1979. Plant succession on five naturally revegetated strip-mined deposits at Colstrip, Montana. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 128 pp.
    • Skinner, K.F. 1995. Plant and grasshopper community composition: indicators & interactions across three spatial scales. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 144 p.
    • Stevens, D.R. 1965. Range relationships of elk and livestock in the Crow Creek drainage, Elkhorn Mountains, Montana. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 68 p.
    • Swingle, K.W. 1986. Effect of supplemental water on morphology, density, survival and population dynamics of Agropyron smithii and Bouteloua gracilis. M.S. Thesis. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 101 p.
    • Thompson, W. L. 1993. Ecology of Merriam's Turkeys in relation to burned and logged areas in southeastern Montana. Ph.D. Dissertation. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 195 p.
    • Trout, R.G. 1978. Small mammal abundance and distribution in the Missouri River Breaks, Montana. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, Montana: Montana State University. 64 p.
    • Tschache, O.P. 1970. Effects of ecological changes induced by various sagebrush control techniques on small mammal populations. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 51 p.
    • Tuinstra, K. E. 1967. Vegetation of the floodplains and first terraces of Rock Creek near Red Lodge, Montana. Ph.D dissertation. Montana State University, Bozeman 110 pp.
    • Wachter, D.H. 1995. The ecology of selected grasshopper species along an elevational gradient. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, Montana: Montana State University. 59 p.
    • Weaver, T. 1983. Ecological effects of weather modification in Bouteloua gracilis Agropyron smithii grasslands. Pp. 65-280 in L. Holman and G. Knudsen, comps., State of Montana activities in the high plains cooperative project 1981-1983. Montana Dept. of Natural Res. and Conserv., Helena. 172 pp.
    • Weaver, T., et ale 1981. Ecological effects of spring, summer, and fall water supplements on Agropyron smithii and Bouteloua gracilis ecosystems. Pp. 73-81 in G. Knutsen and R. Moy, comp., State of Montana activities in the High Plains Cooperative Program 1975-1980. Montana Dept. Nat. Res. and Conserv., Helena. 287 pp.
    • Welker, J. 1982. Relative digestibility of Agropyron smithii and Bouteloua gracilis grown under six water regimes. M.S. thesis, Montana State University, Bozeman. 44 pp.
    • Williams, A.R. 2020. Evaluating grazing and defoliation effects on ponderosa pine grassland following the Lodgepole Complex wildfire. M.Sc. Thesis. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 70 p.
    • Wood, A.K. 1987. Ecology of a prairie mule deer population. Ph.D. Dissertation. Bozeman, MT: Montana State University. 205 p.
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Citation for data on this website:
Blue Gramma — Bouteloua gracilis.  Montana Field Guide.  .  Retrieved on , from