Ecoregions denote areas of general similarity in ecosystems and in the type, quality, and quantity of environmental resources; they are designed to serve as a spatial framework for the research, assessment, management, and monitoring of ecosystems and ecosystem components. Ecoregions are directly applicable to the immediate needs of state agencies, including the development of biological criteria and water quality standards, the establishment of management goals for nonpoint-source pollution, and integrated ecosystem management. The approach used to compile this map is based on the premise that ecological regions can be identified through the analysis of the patterns of biotic and abiotic phenomena that reflect differences in ecosystem quality and integrity. These phenomena include geology, physiography, vegetation, climate, soils, land use, wildlife, and hydro logy. Use this map, text, and photographs to teach and learn about the physical geography, flora, fauna, landscape processes, and ecosystems of North and South Dakota.