Chapter 19
Ecological Subregions of the United States



Ozark Broadleaf Forest - Meadow

One Section has been delineated in this Province:

Located in parts of Arkansas and Oklahoma, the area of this Section is about 6,400 mi2 (16,600 km2).

Section M222A--Boston Mountains

Geomorphology. This Section is in the Ozark Plateau geomorphic province. Geomorphic characteristics include broad uplift of generally flat-lying marine sediments to a plateau, followed by fluvial erosion, resulting in a strongly dissected region with dendritic drainages. About 80 percent of the Section has landforms of low mountains; 20 percent consists of open hills and plains with hills. Elevation ranges from 650 to 2,600 ft (20 to 80 m). Local relief ranges from 100 to 800 ft (30 to 240 m).

Lithology and Stratigraphy. Rocks in this Section formed during the Paleozoic Era. Geologic strata consist of 20 percent Mississippian marine deposits (cherts and limestone) and 80 percent Pennsylvanian marine deposits (sandstone, shale, coal, and limestone).

Soil Taxa. Soils are mostly Udults. Hapludults are on ridgetops, benches, and upper slopes. Paleudults and Hapludults occur on middle and lower slopes. Udifluvents and Hapludults are on flood plains, while Fragiudults and Hapludults are on valley terraces. These soils have a thermic temperature regime, a udic moisture regime, and siliceous or mixed mineralogy. Soils are generally medium textured, stony to nonstony, and shallow to moderately deep.

Potential Natural Vegetation. K\"uchler mapped this area as oak-hickory forest and oak-hickory-pine forest. Predominant vegetation form is temperate low land and submontane broad-leaved, cold-deciduous forest, with smaller areas of cold-deciduous, broad-leaved forest with evergreen needle-leaved trees. Common oak species in the oak-hickory forest type include white oak, black oak, and northern red oak. Hickories include pignut and mockernut. The shortleaf pine-oak cover type occurs on drier sites where post, scarlet, and blackjack oaks dominate with shortleaf pine.

Fauna. Among the fauna in this Section are white-tailed deer, black bear, bobcat, gray fox, raccoon, cottontail rabbit, gray squirrel, fox squirrel, eastern chipmunk, white-footed mouse, pine vole, short-tailed shrew, and cotton mouse. The turkey, bobwhite, and mourning dove are game birds in various parts of this Section. Songbirds include the red-eyed vireo, cardinal, tufted titmouse, wood thrush, summer tanager, blue-gray gnatcatcher, hooded warbler, and Carolina wren. The herpetofauna include the box turtle, common garter snake, and timber rattlesnake.

Climate. Annual precipitation averages 45 to 52 in (1,150 to 1,320 mm). Temperature averages 58 to 64 oF (14 to 17 oC). The growing season lasts about 180 to 205 days.

Surface Water Characteristics. There is a high density of small to medium size perennial streams and associated rivers; those in intermountain basins have moderate rates of flow, and some on mountain sides are characterized by high rates of flow and velocity. A dendritic drainage pattern has developed on strongly dissected surfaces, largely with influence from the underlying bedrock. The Buffalo River drains much of this Section.

Disturbance Regimes. Reserved.

Land Use. Natural vegetation has been cleared for agriculture on about 25 percent of this area.

Cultural Ecology. Reserved.

Compiled by Southern Region and Southeastern Forest Experiment Station.