National Park Service

Southern Colorado Plateau Network (SCPN)

Bandelier National Monument (BAND)

Wild geraniums grow in mixed conifer forests<br/>(SCPN photo) Basecamp cabin before the 2011 Las Conchas Fire<br/>(SCPN photo) Basecamp cabin after the 2011 Las Conches Fire<br/>(SCPN photo) Goldenrod<br/>(SCPN photo) Collecting vegetation data<br/>(SCPN photo) Pinesap grows on the floor of mixed conifer forests<br/>(SCPN photo) Damage at Capulin Creek after the 2011 Las Conches Fire<br/>(SCPN photo) Collecting water quality data at Rito de los Frijoles<br/>(SCPN photo) Apache plume shrubs in juniper-ponderosa pine ecotone<br/>(SCPN photo) Blooming cholla<br/>(SCPN photo) Tyuonyi Pueblo in Frijoles Canyon<br/>(SCPN photo) Hopi dancers<br/>(NPS photo by S. King) Simple campion flowers<br/>(SCPN photo) Cavates (room-like caves) carved in volcanic tuff<br/>(NPS photo by S. King) Burned landscape after the 2011 Las Conchas Fire<br/>(SCPN photo) Fritillary butterfly on butterflyweed<br/>(NPS photo by S.King) Lower falls of Frijoles Creek<br/>(USGS photo) Rio Grande River<br/>(NPS Photo) Singing rock wren<br/>(NPS photo by S. King)

Inventory Reports

Monitoring Project Summaries

Monitoring Reports

Monitoring Protocol Documents

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University of Wyoming -
Rocky Mountain Region Digital Herbarium
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Park Flora (SEINet)
NPS Logo Official Bandelier NM Website
SCPN park map
Location of Bandelier NM in the Southern Colorado Plateau Network. Click for larger image.

Bandelier National Monument encompasses 33,675 acres along the eastern side of the Jemez Mountains in north-central New Mexico. It was designated as a national monument in 1916 to protect its Ancestral Puebloan resources. In 1976, 70% of the monument was designated as wilderness.

Much of the area was covered with volcanic ash, or Bandelier tuff, when an ancient volcano erupted about a million years ago. Most of the park overlaps the southern portion of the Parajito Plateau, a geologic formation of narrow mesas and deep canyons.

These dramatic features create different microclimates that support a diversity of life forms. Fifteen vegetation community types are found in the monument and include juniper grassland, pinyon-juniper woodland, ponderosa pine forest, mixed conifer forest, high-elevation meadows, and riparian communities. Bandelier NM supports 10 amphibian, 216 bird, 34 fish, 80 mammal, 36 reptile, 382 insects (of which more than 81 are butterflies), and 124 arachnid species.

The water resources of Bandelier include a number of perennial springs and streams. Bandelier NM possesses Class I, the highest level, air quality, which has legal protection under the Clean Air Act. All of these natural resources have been seriously affected by the frequency and extent of large-scale crown fires that have burned across the park since 2000.

The Southern Colorado Plateau Network conducts long-term monitoring of a number of vital signs in Bandelier NM, including aquatic macroinvertebrates, water quality, bird communities, integrated upland soils and vegetation and integrated riparian communities.

Life Zones of Bandelier National Monument

Bandelier NM ranges in elevation from 5,217 feet at the Rio Grande to more than 10,000 feet at the peak of Cerro Grande (1,590–3,050 m) and spans five life zones - from Semi-Desert Grassland/Shrub Steppe through Spruce-Fir Forest. The park experiences an average annual precipitation of 15 inches (382 mm).

Bandelier Life Zones

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Last Updated: January 23, 2018 Contact Webmaster