Forests at a Glance…
The Forest Resource
New Mexico is a land of “sky islands”, where diverse forests top mountain ranges that are surrounded by arid lands. These high-elevation forests have provided resources for humans and wildlife for thousands of years. Because New Mexico forests have high value as wildlife habitat, and timber, scenic, and watershed resources, it is important to track their condition. USDA Forest Service inventory and monitoring efforts present a systematic compilation of forest statistics of the state. For example, the graph here presents a breakdown of forest cover, or forest type, on all land ownerships. A report titled New Mexico's Forest Resources, 2008-2012, presents a summary of the most recent inventory data available for New exico's forest lands.

Figure 3. Plot status of the 11,792 Phase 2 plots in New Mexico’s annual forest inventory, 2008-2012. (Note: plot locations are approximate; some plots on private land were randomly swapped.)

Plot Status and Current Activity

State inventories cover about 10% of the total forest plot locations each year, and provides a full cycle of plots over a 10-year period. The FIA method consists of 3 inventory phases: a remotely sensed phase (P1) and 2 field phases (P2 and P3). Comprehensive state reports are scheduled to be published every 5 years.

In addition to this site, other information related to New Mexico forest conditions may be found on the websites of federal and state cooperators.
USDA Forest Service in New Mexico
Data and Table Access
Customized data summaries are available through FIA data retrieval systems.
Other New Mexico Reports
Statewide Reports
Title / Link Reference
Number *
2003 2000

New Mexico’s Forests, 2000

Resource Bulletin RMRS-RB-3
1993 1987 New Mexico’s Forest Resources Resource Bulletin INT-79
1966 1962 New Mexico’s Forest Resources Resource Bulletin INT-5
* USDA Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station publication numbers are shown here. Over the years the name of the Research Station has changed. Previously it was named the Intermountain Forest and Range Experiment Station or the Intermountain Research Station, hence the initials INT in the report number.
Inventory and Monitoring Information

For specific questions related to field procedures, current and past field manuals are available online. These manuals describe the details of plot establishment and description, forest inventory methods, and procedures used for each forest health indicator. Websites for forest health indicators give rationale for the indicator, as well as access to data, analytical procedures, and related publications.

For clients with a general interest in inventory and monitoring work elsewhere, we have compiled a short list of Inventory and Monitory on the Web. This list comprises agencies and entities with related interests in forest monitoring at various geographic scales, both within the U.S. and internationally, plus some recommended publications for those with a more technical interest in this subject.


O'Brien, R.A. 2003. New Mexico’s Forests, 2000. USDA Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station. Resource Bulletin RMRS-RB-3 117 p.

Van Hooser, D.D.; O’Brien, R.A.; Collins, D.C. 1993. New Mexico’s Forest Resources. USDA Forest Service, Intermountain Forest and Range Experiment Station. Resource Bulletin INT-79. 110 p.

Choate, G.A. 1966. New Mexico’s Forest Resources. USDA Forest Service, Intermountain Forest and Range Experiment Station. Resource Bulletin INT-5.
59 p.

Interior West Forest Inventory and Analysis
Michael Wilson, Program Manager
USDA Forest Service
507 25 th St.
Ogden, Utah 84401
(801) 625-5407