The sagebrush steppe biome is one of the most important biomes in the American West. It spans 18 million acres and is home to many diverse animals. This lab can be used to ascertain the local health of the sagebrush steppe in your area. The lab asks students to mark out a 1m x 1m square where the students will identify all plants and hopefully identify cryptobiotic soil. Included in this lab are example pictures of several of the more common plant species, full step by step instructions on how to set up the population squares, and follow-up, critical thinking question.