Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center
|42e. Southern Missouri Coteau||Level IV Ecoregion|
|Home||The Northwestern Glaciated
Plains ecoregion marks the westernmost extent of continental glaciation.
The youthful morainal landscape has significant surface irregularity
and high concentrations of wetlands. The rise in elevation along the
eastern boundary defines the beginning of the Great Plains. Land use
is transitional between the intensive dryland farming on Ecoregion 46i
to the east and the predominance of cattle ranching and farming to the
west on the Northwestern Great Plains (43).
The Southern Missouri Coteau ecoregion, located on the southern fringe of continental glaciation, exhibits a muted coteau topography: gentle undulations rather than steep hummocks, smaller areas of high wetland density, and more stream erosion backcutting into areas of internal drainage. There is more tilled land on the Southern Missouri Coteau than on the Missouri Coteau (42a) because of its gentler topography. More soybeans and corn are planted on the Southern Missouri Coteau due to its milder climate and increased precipitation.
Area (square miles): 2382
Surficial Material and Bedrock
Order (Great Groups)
Precipitation - Mean annual (inches)
Potential Natural Vegetation
Western wheatgrass, green needlegrass, needleandthread, and porcupine grass. Prairie cordgrass and northern reedgrass in poorly drained areas.
Land Use and Land Cover
Dominantly cropland. Corn, small grains, grain sorghum, and alfalfa.