Why Southern Grasslands?
The SGI will focus on the grasslands of the interior regions of the Southeast. The primary reason for this is that unlike the Great Plains to the west, the Midwestern tall grass prairie to the northwest, and the Coastal Plain longleaf pine savannas to the south along the Gulf and Atlantic coasts, the grasslands of the interior portions of the South have received much less conservation focus.
Our efforts will seek to ensure that the native grasslands of a 21-state region covering portions of 10 major ecoregions, from Austin, Texas to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, will be conserved for future generations and that these imperiled grasslands will still be around in the next century.
This map shows the approximate outline of the Southeastern Grasslands Initiative focal region. Note that the northern and western boundaries are subject to revision. Areas with a high degree of historical grasslands are indicated by the green-brown color. This does not imply that all of the colored regions consisted of grasslands, only that the dominant matrix vegetation would have been grasslands of various types, including woodlands and savannas with a diverse herbaceous understory. This map is general and there are undoubtedly other regions that SGI has not yet been able to include.