Biogeographic Regions of Arizona
Sky Islands Region
In the southeastern corner of the state several impressive
mountain ranges rise above the hot lowlands of the
Sonoran and Chihuahuan Deserts. These "sky islands" include the
Rincon, Santa Rita, Galuiro, Huachuca, Pinaleno (Mt.Graham), and
Chiricahua Mountains. The biological diversity of these mountain
ranges is amazing. One can hike from desertscrub up to
cool forests of pine, fir, and spruce in a single day, passing
through a host of other plant communities along the way. The
mountains of the Sky Islands region are surprisingly lush.
Perennial streams run through lovely forests of cottonwood,
sycamore, and numerous other broadleaf trees in many of the
rugged canyons. Occasional deep winter snows in the higher
elevations combined with heavy summer rains make water plentiful
in some areas throughout the year.
One can find the following biotic communities in the Sky Islands Region of southeastern Arizona. Subalpine Spruce-Fir Forest, Montane Mixed-Conifer Forest, Montane Ponderosa Pine Forest, Pinyon Pine-Juniper Woodland, Madrean Evergreen Woodland, Chaparral, Sonoran Desertscrub, Chihuahuan Desertscrub and Southern Arizona Riparian Woodland.