Sand shinnery is codominated by oak shrubs and mid and tallgrasses; the grasses are usually taller than the oaks. The shrubs are the small, visible shoots of massive underground stem systems, which are hundreds or thousands of years old. Sand shinnery occupies 5 to 7 M acres in western Oklahoma, western Texas, and southeastern New Mexico. This area is a decrease from the original due to land clearing for agriculture and eradication of oak to improve livestock-grazing. Oak control is controversial because it can open sandy soils to wind erosion and can conflict with wildlife-habitat quality. Of special concern are the lesser prairie-chicken and the sand dune lizard, which are heavily dependent on shinnery vegetation. This review of climate, soils, vegetation, ecosystem dynamics (including responses to drought and fire), wildlife and hunting, livestock grazing, and oak control in the sand shinnery provides managers with a knowledge-base for decision-making and points to areas where research is needed.