Parks in this Network
Sonoran Desert Network
The Sonoran Desert Network (SODN) is one of 32 National Park Service (NPS) inventory and monitoring networks nationwide. These networks use vital signs monitoring to assess the condition of park ecosystems. The goal is to develop a stronger scientific basis for stewardship and management of natural resources across the National Park System.
The Sonoran Desert Network consists of 10 national park units in central and southern Arizona and 1 unit in southwestern New Mexico. These parks are characteristic of two ecoregions: the upper Sonoran subdivision of the Sonoran Desert Ecoregion and the Apache Highlands Ecoregion. SODN parks range in size from half a square mile to 517 square miles (147 to 133,882 hectares).
This web site delivers information about these resources and the scientific activities underway in the SODN. Learn more about what we're doing by exploring the links on the left or visit our park unit pages to find out about the resources found at each of these special places.
Learn why the riparian forest at Tumacácori NHP may be headed for change and how we're using a "pressure bomb" to monitor water stress in trees. Discover which of our SODN staffers has a talent for tap dancing as well as data management, and find out what we've been up to and what we've got planned.
Video: It's Alive! Biological Soil Crusts in the Sonoran and Chihuahuan Deserts
Monitoring and analysis have led us to discover that fire plays a surprisingly active and pervasive role in the park's ecosystems. Got just a few minutes? Read the brief, instead.