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Publisher: Elsevier   (Total: 3123 journals)

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Showing 1 - 200 of 3120 Journals sorted alphabetically
A Practical Logic of Cognitive Systems     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 8)
AASRI Procedia     Open Access   (Followers: 15)
Academic Pediatrics     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 26, SJR: 1.402, h-index: 51)
Academic Radiology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 22, SJR: 1.008, h-index: 75)
Accident Analysis & Prevention     Partially Free   (Followers: 90, SJR: 1.109, h-index: 94)
Accounting Forum     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 25, SJR: 0.612, h-index: 27)
Accounting, Organizations and Society     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 30, SJR: 2.515, h-index: 90)
Achievements in the Life Sciences     Open Access   (Followers: 4)
Acta Anaesthesiologica Taiwanica     Open Access   (Followers: 5, SJR: 0.338, h-index: 19)
Acta Astronautica     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 378, SJR: 0.726, h-index: 43)
Acta Automatica Sinica     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 3)
Acta Biomaterialia     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 26, SJR: 2.02, h-index: 104)
Acta Colombiana de Cuidado Intensivo     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 1)
Acta de Investigación Psicológica     Open Access   (Followers: 2)
Acta Ecologica Sinica     Open Access   (Followers: 8, SJR: 0.172, h-index: 29)
Acta Haematologica Polonica     Free   (Followers: 1, SJR: 0.123, h-index: 8)
Acta Histochemica     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 3, SJR: 0.604, h-index: 38)
Acta Materialia     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 237, SJR: 3.683, h-index: 202)
Acta Mathematica Scientia     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 5, SJR: 0.615, h-index: 21)
Acta Mechanica Solida Sinica     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 9, SJR: 0.442, h-index: 21)
Acta Oecologica     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 10, SJR: 0.915, h-index: 53)
Acta Otorrinolaringologica (English Edition)     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 1)
Acta Otorrinolaringológica Española     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 3, SJR: 0.311, h-index: 16)
Acta Pharmaceutica Sinica B     Open Access   (Followers: 2)
Acta Poética     Open Access   (Followers: 4)
Acta Psychologica     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 25, SJR: 1.365, h-index: 73)
Acta Sociológica     Open Access  
Acta Tropica     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 6, SJR: 1.059, h-index: 77)
Acta Urológica Portuguesa     Open Access  
Actas Dermo-Sifiliograficas     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 4)
Actas Dermo-Sifiliográficas (English Edition)     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 3)
Actas Urológicas Españolas     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 4, SJR: 0.383, h-index: 19)
Actas Urológicas Españolas (English Edition)     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 2)
Actualites Pharmaceutiques     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 5, SJR: 0.141, h-index: 3)
Actualites Pharmaceutiques Hospitalieres     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 4, SJR: 0.112, h-index: 2)
Acupuncture and Related Therapies     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 5)
Acute Pain     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 13)
Ad Hoc Networks     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 11, SJR: 0.967, h-index: 57)
Addictive Behaviors     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 15, SJR: 1.514, h-index: 92)
Addictive Behaviors Reports     Open Access   (Followers: 7)
Additive Manufacturing     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 7, SJR: 1.039, h-index: 5)
Additives for Polymers     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 22)
Advanced Cement Based Materials     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 3)
Advanced Drug Delivery Reviews     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 138, SJR: 5.2, h-index: 222)
Advanced Engineering Informatics     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 11, SJR: 1.265, h-index: 53)
Advanced Powder Technology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 17, SJR: 0.739, h-index: 33)
Advances in Accounting     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 9, SJR: 0.299, h-index: 15)
Advances in Agronomy     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 15, SJR: 2.071, h-index: 82)
Advances in Anesthesia     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 27, SJR: 0.169, h-index: 4)
Advances in Antiviral Drug Design     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 4)
Advances in Applied Mathematics     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 9, SJR: 1.054, h-index: 35)
Advances in Applied Mechanics     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 12, SJR: 0.801, h-index: 26)
Advances in Applied Microbiology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 23, SJR: 1.286, h-index: 49)
Advances In Atomic, Molecular, and Optical Physics     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 16, SJR: 3.31, h-index: 42)
Advances in Biological Regulation     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 4, SJR: 2.277, h-index: 43)
Advances in Botanical Research     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 3, SJR: 0.619, h-index: 48)
Advances in Cancer Research     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 26, SJR: 2.215, h-index: 78)
Advances in Carbohydrate Chemistry and Biochemistry     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 9, SJR: 0.9, h-index: 30)
Advances in Catalysis     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 6, SJR: 2.139, h-index: 42)
Advances in Cell Aging and Gerontology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 4)
Advances in Cellular and Molecular Biology of Membranes and Organelles     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 13)
Advances in Chemical Engineering     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 26, SJR: 0.183, h-index: 23)
Advances in Child Development and Behavior     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 10, SJR: 0.665, h-index: 29)
Advances in Chronic Kidney Disease     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 9, SJR: 1.268, h-index: 45)
Advances in Clinical Chemistry     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 29, SJR: 0.938, h-index: 33)
Advances in Colloid and Interface Science     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 18, SJR: 2.314, h-index: 130)
Advances in Computers     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 16, SJR: 0.223, h-index: 22)
Advances in Dermatology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 12)
Advances in Developmental Biology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 12)
Advances in Digestive Medicine     Open Access   (Followers: 7)
Advances in DNA Sequence-Specific Agents     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 6)
Advances in Drug Research     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 23)
Advances in Ecological Research     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 47, SJR: 3.25, h-index: 43)
Advances in Engineering Software     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 27, SJR: 0.486, h-index: 10)
Advances in Experimental Biology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 9)
Advances in Experimental Social Psychology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 45, SJR: 5.465, h-index: 64)
Advances in Exploration Geophysics     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 3)
Advances in Food and Nutrition Research     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 52, SJR: 0.674, h-index: 38)
Advances in Fuel Cells     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 16)
Advances in Genetics     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 17, SJR: 2.558, h-index: 54)
Advances in Genome Biology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 11)
Advances in Geophysics     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 6, SJR: 2.325, h-index: 20)
Advances in Heat Transfer     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 22, SJR: 0.906, h-index: 24)
Advances in Heterocyclic Chemistry     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 9, SJR: 0.497, h-index: 31)
Advances in Human Factors/Ergonomics     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 27)
Advances in Imaging and Electron Physics     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 2, SJR: 0.396, h-index: 27)
Advances in Immunology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 36, SJR: 4.152, h-index: 85)
Advances in Inorganic Chemistry     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 9, SJR: 1.132, h-index: 42)
Advances in Insect Physiology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 3, SJR: 1.274, h-index: 27)
Advances in Integrative Medicine     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 6)
Advances in Intl. Accounting     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 4)
Advances in Life Course Research     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 8, SJR: 0.764, h-index: 15)
Advances in Lipobiology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 2)
Advances in Magnetic and Optical Resonance     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 10)
Advances in Marine Biology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 16, SJR: 1.645, h-index: 45)
Advances in Mathematics     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 10, SJR: 3.261, h-index: 65)
Advances in Medical Sciences     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 6, SJR: 0.489, h-index: 25)
Advances in Medicinal Chemistry     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 6)
Advances in Microbial Physiology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 5, SJR: 1.44, h-index: 51)
Advances in Molecular and Cell Biology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 23)
Advances in Molecular and Cellular Endocrinology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 10)
Advances in Molecular Toxicology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 9, SJR: 0.324, h-index: 8)
Advances in Nanoporous Materials     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 4)
Advances in Oncobiology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 2)
Advances in Organ Biology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 2)
Advances in Organometallic Chemistry     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 15, SJR: 2.885, h-index: 45)
Advances in Parallel Computing     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 7, SJR: 0.148, h-index: 11)
Advances in Parasitology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 7, SJR: 2.37, h-index: 73)
Advances in Pediatrics     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 24, SJR: 0.4, h-index: 28)
Advances in Pharmaceutical Sciences     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 13)
Advances in Pharmacology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 16, SJR: 1.718, h-index: 58)
Advances in Physical Organic Chemistry     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 8, SJR: 0.384, h-index: 26)
Advances in Phytomedicine     Full-text available via subscription  
Advances in Planar Lipid Bilayers and Liposomes     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 3, SJR: 0.248, h-index: 11)
Advances in Plant Biochemistry and Molecular Biology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 7)
Advances in Plant Pathology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 5)
Advances in Porous Media     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 5)
Advances in Protein Chemistry     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 18)
Advances in Protein Chemistry and Structural Biology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 20, SJR: 1.5, h-index: 62)
Advances in Quantum Chemistry     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 6, SJR: 0.478, h-index: 32)
Advances in Radiation Oncology     Open Access  
Advances in Small Animal Medicine and Surgery     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 3, SJR: 0.1, h-index: 2)
Advances in Space Biology and Medicine     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 5)
Advances in Space Research     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 370, SJR: 0.606, h-index: 65)
Advances in Structural Biology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 8)
Advances in Surgery     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 9, SJR: 0.823, h-index: 27)
Advances in the Study of Behavior     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 31, SJR: 1.321, h-index: 56)
Advances in Veterinary Medicine     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 16)
Advances in Veterinary Science and Comparative Medicine     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 13)
Advances in Virus Research     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 6, SJR: 1.878, h-index: 68)
Advances in Water Resources     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 45, SJR: 2.408, h-index: 94)
Aeolian Research     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 5, SJR: 0.973, h-index: 22)
Aerospace Science and Technology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 337, SJR: 0.816, h-index: 49)
AEU - Intl. J. of Electronics and Communications     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 8, SJR: 0.318, h-index: 36)
African J. of Emergency Medicine     Open Access   (Followers: 6, SJR: 0.344, h-index: 6)
Ageing Research Reviews     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 9, SJR: 3.289, h-index: 78)
Aggression and Violent Behavior     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 432, SJR: 1.385, h-index: 72)
Agri Gene     Hybrid Journal  
Agricultural and Forest Meteorology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 15, SJR: 2.18, h-index: 116)
Agricultural Systems     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 31, SJR: 1.275, h-index: 74)
Agricultural Water Management     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 42, SJR: 1.546, h-index: 79)
Agriculture and Agricultural Science Procedia     Open Access  
Agriculture and Natural Resources     Open Access   (Followers: 3)
Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 56, SJR: 1.879, h-index: 120)
Ain Shams Engineering J.     Open Access   (Followers: 5, SJR: 0.434, h-index: 14)
Air Medical J.     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 5, SJR: 0.234, h-index: 18)
AKCE Intl. J. of Graphs and Combinatorics     Open Access   (SJR: 0.285, h-index: 3)
Alcohol     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 11, SJR: 0.922, h-index: 66)
Alcoholism and Drug Addiction     Open Access   (Followers: 8)
Alergologia Polska : Polish J. of Allergology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 1)
Alexandria Engineering J.     Open Access   (Followers: 1, SJR: 0.436, h-index: 12)
Alexandria J. of Medicine     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Algal Research     Partially Free   (Followers: 9, SJR: 2.05, h-index: 20)
Alkaloids: Chemical and Biological Perspectives     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 3)
Allergologia et Immunopathologia     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 1, SJR: 0.46, h-index: 29)
Allergology Intl.     Open Access   (Followers: 4, SJR: 0.776, h-index: 35)
Alpha Omegan     Full-text available via subscription   (SJR: 0.121, h-index: 9)
ALTER - European J. of Disability Research / Revue Européenne de Recherche sur le Handicap     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 9, SJR: 0.158, h-index: 9)
Alzheimer's & Dementia     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 49, SJR: 4.289, h-index: 64)
Alzheimer's & Dementia: Diagnosis, Assessment & Disease Monitoring     Open Access   (Followers: 4)
Alzheimer's & Dementia: Translational Research & Clinical Interventions     Open Access   (Followers: 4)
Ambulatory Pediatrics     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 5)
American Heart J.     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 48, SJR: 3.157, h-index: 153)
American J. of Cardiology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 48, SJR: 2.063, h-index: 186)
American J. of Emergency Medicine     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 42, SJR: 0.574, h-index: 65)
American J. of Geriatric Pharmacotherapy     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 9, SJR: 1.091, h-index: 45)
American J. of Geriatric Psychiatry     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 14, SJR: 1.653, h-index: 93)
American J. of Human Genetics     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 32, SJR: 8.769, h-index: 256)
American J. of Infection Control     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 26, SJR: 1.259, h-index: 81)
American J. of Kidney Diseases     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 31, SJR: 2.313, h-index: 172)
American J. of Medicine     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 45, SJR: 2.023, h-index: 189)
American J. of Medicine Supplements     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 3)
American J. of Obstetrics and Gynecology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 207, SJR: 2.255, h-index: 171)
American J. of Ophthalmology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 61, SJR: 2.803, h-index: 148)
American J. of Ophthalmology Case Reports     Open Access   (Followers: 6)
American J. of Orthodontics and Dentofacial Orthopedics     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 6, SJR: 1.249, h-index: 88)
American J. of Otolaryngology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 24, SJR: 0.59, h-index: 45)
American J. of Pathology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 27, SJR: 2.653, h-index: 228)
American J. of Preventive Medicine     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 26, SJR: 2.764, h-index: 154)
American J. of Surgery     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 36, SJR: 1.286, h-index: 125)
American J. of the Medical Sciences     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 12, SJR: 0.653, h-index: 70)
Ampersand : An Intl. J. of General and Applied Linguistics     Open Access   (Followers: 6)
Anaerobe     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 4, SJR: 1.066, h-index: 51)
Anaesthesia & Intensive Care Medicine     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 60, SJR: 0.124, h-index: 9)
Anaesthesia Critical Care & Pain Medicine     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 14)
Anales de Cirugia Vascular     Full-text available via subscription  
Anales de Pediatría     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 2, SJR: 0.209, h-index: 27)
Anales de Pediatría (English Edition)     Full-text available via subscription  
Anales de Pediatría Continuada     Full-text available via subscription   (SJR: 0.104, h-index: 3)
Analytic Methods in Accident Research     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 4, SJR: 2.577, h-index: 7)
Analytica Chimica Acta     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 36, SJR: 1.548, h-index: 152)
Analytical Biochemistry     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 171, SJR: 0.725, h-index: 154)
Analytical Chemistry Research     Open Access   (Followers: 8, SJR: 0.18, h-index: 2)
Analytical Spectroscopy Library     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 12)
Anesthésie & Réanimation     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 1)
Anesthesiology Clinics     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 22, SJR: 0.421, h-index: 40)
Angiología     Full-text available via subscription   (SJR: 0.124, h-index: 9)
Angiologia e Cirurgia Vascular     Open Access  
Animal Behaviour     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 176, SJR: 1.907, h-index: 126)
Animal Feed Science and Technology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 5, SJR: 1.151, h-index: 83)

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Journal Cover Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment
  [SJR: 1.879]   [H-I: 120]   [56 followers]  Follow
   Hybrid Journal Hybrid journal (It can contain Open Access articles)
   ISSN (Print) 0167-8809 - ISSN (Online) 1873-2305
   Published by Elsevier Homepage  [3123 journals]
  • Enhancing agricultural landscapes to increase crop pest reduction by
    • Authors: Catherine Lindell; Rachael A. Eaton; Philip H. Howard; Steven M. Roels; M.E. Shave
      Pages: 1 - 11
      Abstract: Publication date: 1 April 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 257
      Author(s): Catherine Lindell, Rachael A. Eaton, Philip H. Howard, Steven M. Roels, M.E. Shave
      A key challenge of the coming decades is increasing agricultural productivity while maintaining environments that optimize ecosystem service provisioning. Crop pests are a constant challenge for farmers. Recent investigations demonstrate that vertebrates consume numerous crop pests and that this consumption often reduces crop damage, a key ecosystem service. Pest-consuming vertebrates can be attracted to agricultural areas through several strategies that we refer to as landscape enhancements: 1) providing critical structures and materials like nest boxes and roosts, 2) managing habitat/landscape complexity, 3) reintroducing native species, and 4) reducing invasive species’ impacts on target species. In addition to the potential for lower crop damage, attracting pest-consuming vertebrate to agricultural areas could: reduce use of pesticides, aid in the conservation of declining species, provide cultural ecosystem services like wildlife watching, and respond to consumer preferences regarding food production. Some of these benefits provide potential economic advantages to food producers. Our search of past research indicated that relatively few systematic studies have investigated vertebrate effects on crop pests and even fewer have studied how enhancements may increase trophic effects resulting in lower crop damage. Birds are the most studied vertebrate with regard to effects on crop pests, arthropods are the most studied pest group, and a plurality of studies have taken place in coffee and cacao. We lack information about key ecological and social questions related to enhancements including the contexts in which vertebrate predators are most likely to be attracted to enhancements and reduce crop pests, the potential economic benefits of enhancements, and how to marshal the human resources to install, maintain, and monitor enhancements. Addressing these questions will increase understanding of the interactions of vertebrate predators and their prey, the ways in which these interactions provide ecosystem services, and the roles of humans in protecting and encouraging these interactions.

      PubDate: 2018-02-04T22:44:53Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2018.01.028
      Issue No: Vol. 257 (2018)
  • Can we maintain productivity on broad acre dairy farms during early
           transition from mineral to compost fertilization'
    • Authors: J.A. Drake; A.F. Patti; K. Whan; W.R. Jackson; T.R. Cavagnaro
      Pages: 12 - 19
      Abstract: Publication date: 1 April 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 257
      Author(s): J.A. Drake, A.F. Patti, K. Whan, W.R. Jackson, T.R. Cavagnaro
      Composts are being increasingly used as an alternative to mineral fertilisers in production agriculture. However, some farmers are reluctant to utilise compost due to lack of consistent information regarding agricultural productivity and management. Here we explore the changes in soil chemistry, plant biomass production and nutrition during an 18 month transition period from mineral to compost fertiliser use. This was undertaken on plots excluding stock on two dairy farms in southeastern Australia. Biomass was not affected by compost application, demonstrating that productivity and nutrition were maintained during early stage transition. Soil chemical properties, including available nitrogen species, were influenced by compost, but changes fluctuated over the transition phase. Impacts of management practices, season and soil chemical influences on biomass production were explored using multivariate techniques. This analysis revealed that season and inherent soil chemical properties had the greatest influence on pasture biomass during early stage transition. Results are discussed in the context of a transition to compost-based nutrient management of grazed dairy pastures.

      PubDate: 2018-02-04T22:44:53Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2017.12.022
      Issue No: Vol. 257 (2018)
  • Establishing soil nutrient distribution zones across free range egg farms
           to guide practical nutrient management strategies
    • Authors: Stephen Wiedemann; Chris Pratt; Naomi Bliefield; David G. Mayer; Matthew R. Redding; Eugene McGahan
      Pages: 20 - 29
      Abstract: Publication date: 1 April 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 257
      Author(s): Stephen Wiedemann, Chris Pratt, Naomi Bliefield, David G. Mayer, Matthew R. Redding, Eugene McGahan
      Little is known regarding manure nutrient deposition in free range egg layer facilities. Consequently, a significant knowledge gap exists regarding how to best manage soil nutrient loading on these farms. Here, we report on soil nutrient properties across 14 Australian free range farms. Electromagnetic-induction (EM) mapping was performed at each farm to select soil sample locations which were collected at an average depth of 30 cm. EM data exhibited promising relationships with key soil properties. Measured soil properties were highly variable between and within farms. Soil nitrate-N (NO3-N) and Colwell-P (Col-P) concentrations ranged from 1 to 529 mg N kg−1 and 11 to 1856 mg P kg−1. Average NO3-N and Col-P concentrations across farms were 100 mg N kg−1 and 250 mg P kg−1 which exceed typical background nutrient levels and exceed requirements for dryland crop or pasture production. Farms with trees exhibited 2.6 × and 2.1 × greater NO3-N and Col-P concentrations than farms with no trees (P < 0.05), indicating trees attract birds to range areas resulting in higher manure deposition rates. Generalised nonlinear models were derived to describe soil nutrient concentrations with respect to shed location. These models revealed sharp nitrate and Col–P concentration decreases with increasing distance from sheds, with 50% of the NO3-N and Col-P concentration gradients restricted to a radius of <6 m (equating to an area of 0.05 ha) from the nearest shed (P < 0.05). Encouragingly for farms that pose a nutrient accumulation risk, these relatively small impacted areas can be managed with several options which we discuss in this paper.

      PubDate: 2018-02-04T22:44:53Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2018.01.021
      Issue No: Vol. 257 (2018)
  • Present agri-environment measures in Europe are not sufficient for the
           conservation of a highly sensitive bird species, the Corncrake Crex crex
    • Authors: Jochen Bellebaum; Kees Koffijberg
      Pages: 30 - 37
      Abstract: Publication date: 1 April 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 257
      Author(s): Jochen Bellebaum, Kees Koffijberg
      The Corncrake Crex crex breeds mainly in managed grasslands in Europe. Agri-environment schemes (AES) were introduced in many European countries to protect broods from earlier and more frequent mowing. In order to assess the efficacy of these AES on the scale of regional populations, we obtained information on current AES options for Corncrakes in 33 countries and administrative regions within the European Union (EU) and European free Trade Association (EFTA) using a questionnaire. Options suitable for Corncrake conservation were available in 18 regions, but coverage of the regional Corncrake populations was highly variable. Coverage with AES was high in selected western regions, but low throughout eastern Europe where most Corncrakes breed. The various suitable options together covered only 6.2% of the total Corncrake population inside the EU and EFTA. While AES were effective at restoring Corncrake populations in Scotland, no evidence was found for effects on populations in other EU regions.Limited coverage of Corncrake populations in countries holding the largest populations, as well as its low breeding-site fidelity suggest that the Corncrake’s future is not secured by the current extent of AES. If current farming practices in eastern European countries become more intensive as expected, the species’ future may be at risk. Besides developing AES which are more attractive to farmers and better targeting the requirement of Corncrakes, conservation of farmland birds in Europe should pay more attention to continent-wide changes of breeding conditions in order to be successful.

      PubDate: 2018-02-04T22:44:53Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2018.01.018
      Issue No: Vol. 257 (2018)
  • Long-term effects of organic manure and inorganic fertilization on
           sustainability and chemical soil quality indicators of soybean-wheat
           cropping system in the Indian mid-Himalayas
    • Authors: Mahipal Choudhary; Suresh Chandra Panday; Vijay Singh Meena; Sher Singh; Ram Prakash Yadav; Dibakar Mahanta; Tilak Mondal; Pankaj Kumar Mishra; Jaideep Kumar Bisht; Arunava Pattanayak
      Pages: 38 - 46
      Abstract: Publication date: 1 April 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 257
      Author(s): Mahipal Choudhary, Suresh Chandra Panday, Vijay Singh Meena, Sher Singh, Ram Prakash Yadav, Dibakar Mahanta, Tilak Mondal, Pankaj Kumar Mishra, Jaideep Kumar Bisht, Arunava Pattanayak
      A long-term field study was commenced in 1995-96 to assess the impact of continuous application of inorganic fertilizers and organic manure on sustainability, productivity and chemical indicators of soil quality in an irrigated soybean-wheat cropping system (SWCS). Six treatments comprised inorganic fertilizers (NPK) and manure (M) either alone or in combination. Soybean yield indicated declining trend −22.50, −56.0 and −25.0 kg ha−1 year−1 under unfertilized control, sole nitrogen and NPK treatments, respectively while addition of organic manure resulted in a positive yield trend. Plot receiving NPK had positive yield trend of 118 kg ha−1 year−1 in wheat crop. The highest positive yield trend was obtained with manure (M) and NPK treatment, values being 17.60 and 191 kg ha−1 year−1 in soybean and wheat, respectively. Significantly (p < 0.05) the highest grain yield was also observed under the MNPK treatment, soybean and wheat reporting 2.56 and 4.31 Mg ha−1, respectively which was ∼ 30 and 25% higher than NPK treatment, respectively. Significantly higher yield sustainability was observed in the plots receiving manure either alone (0.77 and 0.51) or in combination with N fertilizer (0.79 and 0.79) or with NPK, MNPK (0.89 and 0.92) compared to the treatment, which did not receive the manure in both soybean and wheat crops. Due to continuous cropping and fertilization over the years, available N increased from initial values in all the plots except CK (−3.89 and −3.59%) under 0–15 and 15–30 cm soil depths. Negative trends for available P were observed in all treatments except MNPK over the years of continuous cropping. A significantly decreasing trend for the available K was observed under CK, N, NPK and M treatments, whereas a significant accumulation was estimated under MN and MNPK treated plots in both soil depths. Significantly higher accumulation of available N, P and K were observed under MNPK treatment compared to the rest of the treatments. The treatment MNPK had the highest soil DTPA-extractable Fe, Mn, Zn and Cu after 21-years of cropping and fertilization. The sustainable yield index (SYI) values indicated that soybean yield was more sustainable compared to the wheat. The SYI and grain yield of soybean had significantly higher correlation with available N, P, Fe, Mn, Zn and Cu. Soil available N had significantly higher values of coefficient of regression (r2) for wheat (0.98; p = 0.001 and 0.97; p = 0.001) compared to soybean (0.74; p = 0.029 and 0.74; p = 0.027) under 0–15 and 15–30 cm soil depths, respectively. The SYI was strongly positively correlated with chemical indicators of soil quality. Hence, SYI could potentially be used for assessment of agricultural productivity and soil sustainability elsewhere.

      PubDate: 2018-02-04T22:44:53Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2018.01.029
      Issue No: Vol. 257 (2018)
  • Veterinary antibiotics (VAs) contamination as a global agro-ecological
           issue: A critical view
    • Authors: Saranya Kuppusamy; Dhatri Kakarla; Kadiyala Venkateswarlu; Mallavarapu Megharaj; Young-Eun Yoon; Yong Bok Lee
      Pages: 47 - 59
      Abstract: Publication date: 1 April 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 257
      Author(s): Saranya Kuppusamy, Dhatri Kakarla, Kadiyala Venkateswarlu, Mallavarapu Megharaj, Young-Eun Yoon, Yong Bok Lee
      Veterinary antibiotics (VAs) are used worldwide in animal farming as drugs to treat or prevent diseases and serve as feed additives. VAs are usually poorly sorbed in the animal gut, and the majority are excreted unchanged or as their recalcitrant metabolites in feces and urine. More importantly, animal wastes are frequently employed in agriculture as a supplement to fertilizer, raising a major international concern about the potential impacts of VAs on agro-ecosystems. Increasing use of these manures in agriculture is thus posing a threat in the form of rapid increase in antibiotic resistance. The current review critically summarizes available literature on the global consumption, exposure pathways, occurrence, fate and environmental effects of VAs in manure-fertilized agricultural soils. Recognizing the importance of the issue of VA resistance in the environment, we focused on the increased abundance and transferability of VA resistance determinants, highlighting details as to how they contribute to the change in human microbiome. Notably, existing regulations and research gaps in association with the spread of VAs and their resistance due to manure application in agricultural fields are also outlined. Finally, we highlight the areas that future research should prioritize and propose certain strategies that could help curtail VAs occurrence and the danger they pose to agro-ecosystems.
      Graphical abstract image

      PubDate: 2018-02-04T22:44:53Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2018.01.026
      Issue No: Vol. 257 (2018)
  • Effects of organic farming on bird diversity in North-West Spain
    • Authors: Sandra Goded; Johan Ekroos; Jesús Domínguez; José A. Guitián; Henrik G. Smith
      Pages: 60 - 67
      Abstract: Publication date: 1 April 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 257
      Author(s): Sandra Goded, Johan Ekroos, Jesús Domínguez, José A. Guitián, Henrik G. Smith
      Many studies have investigated effects of organic farming on the abundance and diversity of farmland birds, but few have considered how these effects vary between seasons. We analysed the effects of organic farming during an entire year in a previously understudied region, Galicia (North-West Spain), a relatively heterogeneous landscape which is an important wintering and breeding ground for birds. We compared bird abundance and species richness on farmland in 0.5 × 0.5 km study squares on 16 paired organic and conventional farms. In addition, at each organic farm we compared bird abundance and species richness between one similar study square with a high and one with a low proportion of organic farming, respectively. During winter, species richness was higher in organic farms compared to conventional ones. Throughout the year bird abundance was higher in squares with a high proportion of organic farming compared to those with a low proportion of organic farming, but only when they were surrounded by land with a low proportion of agriculture. Bird abundance in organic squares increased with the proportion of land being native forest resulting in more mosaic landscapes. Seedeaters particularly benefited from organic farming, with high abundances on organic farms in landscapes with a low proportion of agricultural land. Our results suggest that organic farming can benefit farmland birds in heterogeneous landscapes, particularly during winter, probably due to increased food availability, but future studies are needed to clarify the mechanism behind the effects.

      PubDate: 2018-02-04T22:44:53Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2018.01.020
      Issue No: Vol. 257 (2018)
  • Conceptualising fields of action for sustainable intensification – A
           systematic literature review and application to regional case studies
    • Authors: Meike Weltin; Ingo Zasada; Annette Piorr; Marta Debolini; Ghislain Geniaux; Olga Moreno Perez; Laura Scherer; Lorena Tudela Marco; Catharina J.E. Schulp
      Pages: 68 - 80
      Abstract: Publication date: 1 April 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 257
      Author(s): Meike Weltin, Ingo Zasada, Annette Piorr, Marta Debolini, Ghislain Geniaux, Olga Moreno Perez, Laura Scherer, Lorena Tudela Marco, Catharina J.E. Schulp
      After two decades of research on sustainable intensification (SI), namely securing food production on less environmental cost, heterogeneous understandings and perspectives prevail in a broad and partly fragmented scientific literature. Structuring and consolidating contributions to provide practice-oriented guidelines are lacking. The objectives of this study are to (1) comprehensively explore the academic SI literature, (2) propose an implementation-oriented conceptual framework, and (3) demonstrate its applicability for region-specific problem settings. In a systematic literature review of 349 papers covering the international literature of 20 years of SI research, we identified SI practices and analysed temporal, spatial and disciplinary trends and foci. Based on key SI practices, a conceptual framework was developed differentiating four fields of action from farm to regional and landscape scale and from land use to structural optimisation. Its applicability to derive region-specific SI solutions was successfully tested through stakeholder processes in four European case studies. Disciplinary boundaries and the separation of the temporal and spatial strands in the literature prevent a holistic address of SI. This leads to the dominance of research describing SI practices in isolation, mainly on the farm scale. Coordinated actions on the regional scale and the coupling of multiple practices are comparatively underrepresented. Results from the case studies demonstrate that implementation is extremely context-sensitive and thus crucially depends on the situational knowledge of farmers and stakeholders. Although, there is no ‘one size fits all’ solution, practitioners in all regions identified the need for integrated solutions and common action to implement suitable SI strategies at the regional landscape level and in local ecosystems.
      Graphical abstract image

      PubDate: 2018-02-04T22:44:53Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2018.01.023
      Issue No: Vol. 257 (2018)
  • Arthropod communities in warm and cool grass riparian buffers and their
           influence on natural enemies in adjacent crops
    • Authors: Jessica L. Nelson; Lauren G. Hunt; Margaret T. Lewis; Kelly A. Hamby; Cerruti R.R. Hooks; Galen P. Dively
      Pages: 81 - 91
      Abstract: Publication date: 1 April 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 257
      Author(s): Jessica L. Nelson, Lauren G. Hunt, Margaret T. Lewis, Kelly A. Hamby, Cerruti R.R. Hooks, Galen P. Dively
      Riparian buffers of native warm season (WSG) or non-native cool season (CSG) species are commonly planted along margins of crop fields as part of the USDA Conservation Reserve Program. The soil, water and wildlife enhancement values of these buffers are well researched and documented. However, their conservation value for biological control is largely unknown. In this study, we examined and compared arthropod communities in WSG and CSG buffers and focused specifically on their influence on natural enemy populations in adjacent crops. Plant diversity measurements and relative estimates of epigeal and canopy-dwelling arthropods using pitfall trapping and sticky cards were recorded in 29 buffers of each grass type and adjoining crop fields during two years in Maryland. We predicted that the structurally more diverse and less stressed WSG buffers are more suitable for enhancing arthropod biodiversity and provide greater conservation value for natural enemies. Results demonstrated that the composition and relative abundances of most epigeal and canopy-dwelling taxa in both grass buffers corresponded with the composition and relative abundances of those taxa in neighboring crops, suggesting population linkage and movement of taxa between buffer and crop habitats. However, warm and cool season grasses in riparian buffers were inhabited by dissimilar arthropod communities in terms of taxa richness, abundance and composition, which in turn influenced differently the beneficial arthropod communities in adjacent crops. Contrary to our hypothesis, cool season grasses supported greater abundances of most beneficial arthropods in buffers and also enhanced their populations in adjacent crop fields, especially early in the growing season. Beneficial taxa responses were likely linked to differences in the early season phenology of the grass types. Although WSG buffers are green and actively growing during the summer, CSG grasses break dormancy earlier in the spring and provide higher quality food for many arthropod taxa that serve as prey and hosts for predators and parasitoids. Given this early season advantage, the addition of perennial flowering forbs to the CSG mixes is suggested to enhance their conservation value by improving structural complexity and providing floral resources to support natural enemy populations.

      PubDate: 2018-02-04T22:44:53Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2018.01.019
      Issue No: Vol. 257 (2018)
  • Rubber plantation ageing controls soil biodiversity after land conversion
           from cassava
    • Authors: Monrawee Peerawat; Aimeric Blaud; Jean Trap; Tiphaine Chevallier; Pascal Alonso; Frederic Gay; Philippe Thaler; Ayme Spor; David Sebag; Chutinan Choosai; Nopmanee Suvannang; Kannika Sajjaphan; Alain Brauman
      Pages: 92 - 102
      Abstract: Publication date: 1 April 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 257
      Author(s): Monrawee Peerawat, Aimeric Blaud, Jean Trap, Tiphaine Chevallier, Pascal Alonso, Frederic Gay, Philippe Thaler, Ayme Spor, David Sebag, Chutinan Choosai, Nopmanee Suvannang, Kannika Sajjaphan, Alain Brauman
      The rapid expansion of perennial crops is a major threat to biodiversity in Southeast Asia. The biodiversity losses related to the conversion of forest lands to oil palm or rubber plantations (RP) are well documented by recent studies. However, the impact of the conversion from intensively managed annual crops to perennial crops on soil biodiversity has not yet been addressed. This study aims at assessing the impact on soil biodiversity of a) the short-term effect of land use conversion from cassava crop to RP, and b) the long-term effect of RP ageing. Soil biodiversity (bacterial, fungal and macrofaunal), microbial activities and pedoclimatic characteristics were measured over a chronosequence of 1–25 years old of RP compared to cassava fields, the former crop, in Thailand. The conversion from cassava to young RP (1–3 yr) had a significant effect on microbial biomass and activities and fungal composition, but did not impact the bacterial and macrofaunal diversity. This effect of land use conversion could be explained by the change in land management due to the cultivation of pineapple in the inter-row of the young RP. Canopy closure appeared to be the main driver of soil biota shifts, as most of the biotic parameters, composition, abundance and activities were significantly modified after 7 years of RP. The changes of composition in older rubber plantations originated from the dominance of Trichoderma (fungi), Firmicutes (bacteria), and earthworms. Old rubber plantations (23–25 yr) harboured the highest microbial and macrofaunal biomass; however, they were also characterised by a significant decrease in bacterial richness. The change in pedoclimatic conditions across the rubber chronosequence, i.e. increase in soil moisture, litter and organic carbon content, was a stronger driver of soil biota evolution than land use conversion. The macrofaunal composition was more resistant to land use conversion than the bacterial composition, whereas the microbial biomass was sensitive to land use conversion, but showed resilience after 20 years. However, bacterial, fungal and macrofaunal diversity, macrofaunal and microbial biomass and microbial activities were all sensitive to RP ageing.
      Graphical abstract image

      PubDate: 2018-02-04T22:44:53Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2018.01.034
      Issue No: Vol. 257 (2018)
  • Estrogen occurrence and persistence in vernal pools impacted by wastewater
           irrigation practices
    • Authors: Odette Mina; Heather E. Gall; Herschel A. Elliott; John E. Watson; Michael L. Mashtare; Tracy Langkilde; Jeremy P. Harper; Elizabeth W. Boyer
      Pages: 103 - 112
      Abstract: Publication date: 1 April 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 257
      Author(s): Odette Mina, Heather E. Gall, Herschel A. Elliott, John E. Watson, Michael L. Mashtare, Tracy Langkilde, Jeremy P. Harper, Elizabeth W. Boyer
      Planned beneficial re-use of water has become an increasingly common conservation practice worldwide, sparking questions about the degree of water treatment needed to mitigate negative environmental impacts. Since the early 1980s, as an alternative to surface discharge, the Pennsylvania State University has spray-irrigated all of its treated wastewater effluent via land application onto an environmental setting known as the “Living Filter” site (∼245 ha). The impacts of spray irrigation on nearby ephemeral wetlands, known as vernal pools, were explored. The pools gain water from both natural rainfall and spray-irrigation of the University’s treated wastewater. The occurrence and persistence of estrogens in three vernal pools were quantified by analyzing >137 water samples collected from the pools over an eight-week period coincident with the development period of native amphibian larvae. Additionally, dissolved oxygen, oxidation-reduction potential, water level, water temperature, electrical conductivity, pH, and rainfall data were measured continuously throughout the study period within each pool. Further, the treated wastewater effluent was sampled during each weekly spray-irrigation event. Estrone was detected in nearly 100% of the vernal pool samples, with concentrations up to 6.2 ng L−1. Additionally, 17α-estradiol was not detected in the wastewater effluent, but was present in 52% of the vernal pool samples. 17β-estradiol, estriol, and 17α-ethinylestradiol were detected in fewer than 10% of the vernal pool samples. The findings of this research have important implications for management practices that can help protect these critical habitats.
      Graphical abstract image

      PubDate: 2018-02-04T22:44:53Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2018.01.022
      Issue No: Vol. 257 (2018)
  • Grassland plant community spatial patterns driven by herbivory intensity
    • Authors: Ryan F. Limb; Torre J. Hovick; Jack E. Norland; Jay M. Volk
      Pages: 113 - 119
      Abstract: Publication date: 1 April 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 257
      Author(s): Ryan F. Limb, Torre J. Hovick, Jack E. Norland, Jay M. Volk
      Heterogeneity is a critical driver in rangeland ecosystems and can be used to direct and quantify management success across landscapes. Plant community dynamics and patterns are frequently examined in relation to herbivory, but most patterns are discussed either in a single dimension, or across species, but at small spatial scales within individual communities. Therefore, we designed a study to measure plant community spatial patterns across similar topographic position and soil type in pastures with three different herbivory intensities. We assessed plant community spatial patterns in the northern mixed-grass prairie near Streeter, ND, USA (46°45′N, 99°28′W) in pastures moderately or intensively grazed or non-grazed exclosures established for 25 years. Plant species composition and abundance were recorded along 50-m transects in three replicate pastures for each grazing intensity (n = 3) at mid-summer twice separated by 10 years. Fine and coarse-scale diversity were similar between the moderately and intensively grazed pastures and greater than the non-grazed exclosures in both years (p ≤ .05). Plant species composition was similar among the three grazing intensities and years. Plant community heterogeneity was highest for moderately grazed pastures followed by intensively and non-grazed exclosures respectively. Similarly, patch size was smallest for moderate pastures followed by intensive pastures and non-grazed exclosures for both years. However, while patch size in both moderate and intensive pastures was similar across years respectively, patch size in non-grazed exclosures increased over time. Land management activities varying the disturbance intensities or timing of disturbance can influence specific species composition and relative abundance among species groups. Grazing intensity influenced both fine- and coarse-scale plant community patterns and created different, but stable, plant community patch sizes over time. Based on these results, the ecological cost of inactivity in managing grasslands may have profound consequences on plant community stability and the wildlife that depend on them.

      PubDate: 2018-02-04T22:44:53Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2018.01.030
      Issue No: Vol. 257 (2018)
  • Phosphorus efficiency, soil phosphorus dynamics and critical phosphorus
           level under long-term fertilization for single and double cropping systems
    • Authors: Asif Khan; Guoyan Lu; Muhammed Ayaz; Hongtao Zhang; Renjie Wang; Fenglian Lv; Xueyun Yang; Benhua Sun; Shulan Zhang
      Pages: 1 - 11
      Abstract: Publication date: 15 March 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 256
      Author(s): Asif Khan, Guoyan Lu, Muhammed Ayaz, Hongtao Zhang, Renjie Wang, Fenglian Lv, Xueyun Yang, Benhua Sun, Shulan Zhang
      Wise phosphorus (P) management is paramount to ensure food and environmental security and prolong the life of P resources. Long-term experiments under winter wheat–summer maize (with irrigation) and winter wheat–summer fallow (rain-fed) cropping systems were undertaken to investigate P efficiency, soil P availability and P downward movement in the deep profile of a loess soil in China. The four nutrient management regimes in each experiment were: a control without any nutrient input; P and K combined (PK); N, P and K combined (NPK), and organic manure (M) combined with NPK (MNPK). The P efficiency ranged from 20 to 54% under the double cropping system, and from 13 to 33% in the single cropping system over the 25 years studied, and the highest P efficiency was in the NPK treatment in both systems. Application of P significantly increased soil total-P, Olsen-P and CaCl2-P over the years, especially in the MNPK treatment. Two segment regression analyses indicated that Olsen-P was about 14 mg kg−1 or 16 mg kg−1 for optimal crop yield under double cropping or single cropping. In addition, Olsen-P content above 37 mg kg−1 or 57 mg kg−1 led to a significant increase in CaCl2-P content under double cropping or single cropping, which might indicate risk of P leaching. After 24 years of P applications, total P accumulated at various depths depending on treatment under double cropping, but there was no accumulation under single cropping. While Olsen-P leached down to a depth of 300 cm in the MNPK treatments under both cropping systems, and higher concentrations were recorded in the deeper layers in single cropping than in double cropping systems. The Olsen-P leached to a shallower depth in the PK and NPK treatments under single cropping compared to double cropping. We conclude that P supply in excess of the crop’s requirement (e.g. MNPK) or an unbalanced nutrient supply (e.g. PK) resulted in not only low P efficiency and massive accumulation of P in the topsoil but also leaching out of root zone under both irrigated and rain-fed conditions in the loess soil. Thus, P fertilization recommendations need to be adjusted based on changes in soil P over time.

      PubDate: 2018-02-04T22:44:53Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2018.01.006
      Issue No: Vol. 256 (2018)
  • Deciphering the bacterial and fungal communities in clubroot-affected
           cabbage rhizosphere treated with Bacillus Subtilis XF-1
    • Authors: Chunming Liu; Zhenfu Yang; Pengfei He; Shahzad Munir; Yixin Wu; Honhing Ho; Yueqiu He
      Pages: 12 - 22
      Abstract: Publication date: 15 March 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 256
      Author(s): Chunming Liu, Zhenfu Yang, Pengfei He, Shahzad Munir, Yixin Wu, Honhing Ho, Yueqiu He
      Clubroot is an infection of cruciferous crops which results in considerable yield losses, caused by Plasmodiophora brassicae Woron. Bacillus subtilis XF-1 isolated from the rhizosphere of Chinese cabbages with severe clubroot in Guandu District of Kunming, Yunnan Province, China, has strong inhibitory effects on the resting spores of P. brassicae. However, its potential effects on the soil bacterial and fungal communities are still unknown. In this study, B. subtilis XF-1 was inoculated into cabbage rhizosphere and incidence of clubroot disease was surveyed, furthermore, an effect of this strain on soil microbial community in cabbage rhizosphere was investigated using Biolog™ MicroPlates and 454 pyrosequencing. B. subtilis XF-1 reduced the disease index (DI) by 17.14% and the control efficiency was 76.92%. The results of Biolog analysis and high-throughput pyrosequencing demonstrated that Proteobacteria, Bacteroidetes, Acidobacteria, Actinobacteria, Firmicutes, and Gemmatimonadetes were the dominant taxonomic phyla found among bacteria in ten samples and Ascomycota, Basidiomycota and early diverging fungal lineages were reported among fungi. The soil bacterial and fungal communities were reduced greatly at the beginning, but they were recovered gradually with the growth of plant. However, there was little difference between treatment and control at the mature stage. The present study demonstrated that the effect of B. subtilis XF-1 on soil fungal community in cabbages rhizosphere was just transient and that the high-throughput 454 pyrosequencing is a suitable method for the characterization of microbial communities of rhizosphere soil of cabbage.

      PubDate: 2018-02-04T22:44:53Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2018.01.001
      Issue No: Vol. 256 (2018)
  • Combined effects of cover crops, mulch, zero-tillage and resistant
           varieties on Striga asiatica (L.) Kuntze in rice-maize rotation systems
    • Authors: Meva Tahiry Randrianjafizanaka; Patrice Autfray; Alain Paul Andrianaivo; Isabelle Ratsimiala Ramonta; Jonne Rodenburg
      Pages: 23 - 33
      Abstract: Publication date: 15 March 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 256
      Author(s): Meva Tahiry Randrianjafizanaka, Patrice Autfray, Alain Paul Andrianaivo, Isabelle Ratsimiala Ramonta, Jonne Rodenburg
      In low-input rice-maize rotation systems in the hills of central Madagascar, farmers deal with erratic rainfall, poor soils, high soil erosion risks and infestation by the parasitic weed Striga asiatica (L.) Kuntze. Practices combining zero-tillage with permanent soil cover by intercropped legumes and crop residue mulches — known as Conservation Agriculture (CA)— are proposed as remedy against soil and climatic constraints. Implications of these practices for S. asiatica are unknown. A 4-season factorial experiment compared the current farmer practice of rice − maize rotation, involving seasonal tillage and crop residue removal (CONV), with three rice − maize rotation systems following CA with different cover crops, i.e. Vigna unguiculata (cowpea) and Mucuna pruriens (CACM), Vigna umbellata (ricebean) (CARB), and Stylosanthes guianensis (CAST). Performance of two rice varieties, NERICA-4 and −9, with partial S. asiatica resistance, were compared with the locally popular B22. Parasite emergence time, numbers, and seed bank sizes were recorded. In all CA practices S. asiatica infection was significantly reduced. Best results were obtained with Stylosanthes guianensis (CAST). This species also suppressed ordinary weeds much better than other cover crops. With CAST, average parasite emergence was delayed by 7.5 days (in rice) and 6.3 days (in maize) and infection levels were reduced by 79% (in rice) and 92% (in maize) compared to the conventional farmer practice (CONV). NERICA varieties delayed S. asiatica emergence by 5.7 days (NERICA-9) and 9.7 days (NERICA-4) and reduced infection levels by 57% (NERICA-9) and 91% (NERICA-4) compared to B22. In maize the residual effect of resistance of NERICA-4 resulted in a delay of 7.5 days in S. asiatica emergence and a reduction of 60% in parasite numbers. The best combinations delay S. asiatica emergence by 17.8 days (CAST + NERICA-9) and 19.1 days (CARB + NERICA-4) and reduce the parasite infection levels by 96% (CAST + NERICA-9 or −4) to 98% (CARB + NERICA-4) in rice, compared to CONV + B22. After two full rice-maize rotation cycles S. asiatica seed numbers in the soil (0–10 cm) were 76% (CACM), 78% (CAST) and 86% (CARB) lower than under CONV. Even the combination of zero-tillage, crop residue mulching, cover crops and resistant rice varieties does not entirely prevent S. asiatica parasitism and seed bank increase. Additional measures, targeted to escaping weeds, would be required for fully effective and long-term control.

      PubDate: 2018-02-04T22:44:53Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2017.12.005
      Issue No: Vol. 256 (2018)
  • Potential roles of biological amendments for profitable grain production
           – A review
    • Authors: L.K. Abbott; L.M. Macdonald; M.T.F. Wong; M.J. Webb; S.N. Jenkins; M. Farrell
      Pages: 34 - 50
      Abstract: Publication date: 15 March 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 256
      Author(s): L.K. Abbott, L.M. Macdonald, M.T.F. Wong, M.J. Webb, S.N. Jenkins, M. Farrell
      There is increasing interest in use of ‘alternative’ soil amendments in agriculture, but the wide range of resources and products available differ greatly in their potential to overcome soil constraints and improve nutrient use efficiency. The three main types of biological amendments can be categorised as biostimulants, organic amendments and microbial inoculants. Many have potential to influence biological, chemical and physical conditions of soil, but most are not well researched or easily used in agriculture. The main exception is legume inoculants, which are very well researched and contribute enormously to agricultural productivity when legumes are incorporated into farming systems. Biostimulants include amino acids, chitosan, seaweed extracts and humic substances. Organic amendments include manures, composts, compost derivatives and biochars. Microbial inoculants include specific bacterial inoculants for legumes, and less specialised rhizosphere bacteria, arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi, ectomycorrhizal fungi and a range of disease suppressing microorganisms. Some biological amendments applied to soil may be more effective when used in combinations rather than singly. Furthermore, those used over longer periods may have potential for cumulative effects not captured when used over shorter timeframes. Such differences in effectiveness would occur primarily where benefits involve microbial interactions with chemical and physical soil processes leading to slow transformations within the soil matrix that influence soil fertility and soil health. Similarly, addition of manures and composts may require several years for any quantifiable increase in soil organic C. Although considerable knowledge of the modes of action of many biological amendments is available, their performance under field conditions is usually less well understood. The wide variety of natural and manufactured products available in most cases precludes adequate peer-reviewed research to support claims about their effectiveness. This can lead to proliferation of unsubstantiated assertions of efficacy. This review highlights the lack of field-scale evidence of benefits for many biological amendments with potential to be used in agriculture. We propose complementary approaches of (i) laboratory- or glasshouse-scale research to understand modes of action, and (ii) targeted field-scale participatory research involving groups of farmers using on-farm trials as a forward pathway. Use of biological amendments to overcome soil constraints is expected to expand with intensification of agriculture and as a result of climate change. Therefore, information that enables farmers to discriminate among products that have different levels of effectiveness is necessary, and on-farm participatory research should contribute to addressing this need.

      PubDate: 2018-02-04T22:44:53Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2017.12.021
      Issue No: Vol. 256 (2018)
  • Successional processes in agricultural mosaics in the eastern Amazon
    • Authors: Igor Do Vale; Izildinha Souza Miranda; Danielle Mitja; Alessio Moreira Santos; Tâmara Thaíz Santana Lima; Luiz Gonzaga Silva Costa
      Pages: 51 - 60
      Abstract: Publication date: 15 March 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 256
      Author(s): Igor Do Vale, Izildinha Souza Miranda, Danielle Mitja, Alessio Moreira Santos, Tâmara Thaíz Santana Lima, Luiz Gonzaga Silva Costa
      Most tropical landscapes are mainly composed of dynamic mosaics involving multiple land uses. Different histories of land use management can lead to different successional paths. The aim of this study was to determine if there is a successional floristic gradient related to land use types and how these gradients change across three rural mosaics in Eastern Amazon. We also investigated what are the indicator species across mosaics and land use types and how they change through succession. Five sampling points were established in nine family farms at each mosaic. A detrended correspondence analysis was used to reveal the successional gradient. A multivariate regression tree was used to analyze differences in floristic composition between mosaics and land uses. Floristic similarity between land uses formed successional gradient at the mosaics, in which agricultural land uses represent the early stages of secondary succession and forests represent more advanced stages. Total number of species and total number of shade-tolerant species were correlated with advanced successional stages in all mosaics, but pioneer trees were also correlated with advanced stages in fragmented mosaics. Each mosaic had a distinct successional series due to different management approaches. Where the matrix was mainly composed of forest fragments and the human intervention period was shorter, land use types were more similar to one another as they were grouped into fewer successional stages. Thus, the floristic similarity between land use types appears as an indicator of successional advancement across the mosaics and help determine the regenerative capacity of those areas.

      PubDate: 2018-02-04T22:44:53Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2017.12.004
      Issue No: Vol. 256 (2018)
  • The influence of local and landscape scale on single response traits in
           bees: A meta-analysis
    • Authors: Jeferson Gabriel da Encarnação Coutinho; Lucas Alejandro Garibaldi; Blandina Felipe Viana
      Pages: 61 - 73
      Abstract: Publication date: 15 March 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 256
      Author(s): Jeferson Gabriel da Encarnação Coutinho, Lucas Alejandro Garibaldi, Blandina Felipe Viana
      Assessments of environmental drivers that regulate the functional composition of various organisms have become more frequent in the ecological literature, as this approach establishes a more direct connection between community structure and ecosystem functions. Bee response traits, such as sociality, body size, nest location, nest behaviour, and dietary specialization, have been reported in empirical studies that examine the role of land use intensity in functional diversity. However, empirical studies include different descriptors measured at different spatial scales, producing poor generalizations. Processes operating at different scales may have different effects depending on the response traits considered in the analysis. In this meta-analysis, we provide a quantitative assessment of the role that the structural complexity of habitats at local and landscape scales plays in the richness and abundance patterns of bees, considering different response traits. As indicated through this meta-analysis, the descriptors of structural complexity at the local scale explained more of the richness and abundance of bees with distinct response traits than the descriptors at the landscape scale. In addition, high management intensity has a negative effect on the different response traits. Below-ground nesting bees and social bees showed different abundance trends, which suggest a mechanism denominated ‘response diversity’. This result suggests that the adoption of hybrid management strategies at the local scale could support the richness and abundance of different bees with distinct response traits in agroecosystems. These distinct response traits can be an important ecological pattern that contributes to the development of management strategies that maintain, in space and time, bees with distinct response traits. However, we should analyse the communities in terms of clusters of response traits, considering the possible synergies and trade-offs between these traits.

      PubDate: 2018-02-04T22:44:53Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2017.12.025
      Issue No: Vol. 256 (2018)
  • Weed control method drives conservation tillage efficiency on farmland
           breeding birds
    • Authors: Kévin Barré; Isabelle Le Viol; Romain Julliard; Christian Kerbiriou
      Pages: 74 - 81
      Abstract: Publication date: 15 March 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 256
      Author(s): Kévin Barré, Isabelle Le Viol, Romain Julliard, Christian Kerbiriou
      Crops management is known to influence biodiversity, especially conservation tillage (CT, no-till) often found as a positive method compared to conventional tillage (T, inversion of soil) but without controlling for underlying farming practices. There are many ways to perform CT, in particular concerning the control of weeds, but few studies have taken into account these methods, which could explain the lack of consensus about the effect of CT compared to T. We tested differences in breeding birds abundance between CT and T while accounting for weed control methods in oilseed rape and wheat CT fields. During the intercrop period, one CT system used a cover crop to control weeds (CTcc), the other used herbicides (CTh) and the control (T) system only used a tillage. We made CTcc/T and CTh/T comparisons by sampling bird abundance (respectively 49 CTcc/51 T and 30 CTh/33 T point counts). We show substantial differences between CTcc/T and CTh/T comparisons as we detected greater bird abundances in CTcc than T for 5 species (2.3–4.1 times more individuals) and a lower abundance in CTh than T for 2 species (2.1–2.2 times less individuals). Our results demonstrate the importance to account for system features to ensure the CT efficiency for farmland birds, declining strongly in Europe since 1980 (−55 to −67%). Results also highlight an even more negative impact of herbicides than tillage, showing that stopping tillage to intensify herbicide use is not a promising way.

      PubDate: 2018-02-04T22:44:53Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2018.01.004
      Issue No: Vol. 256 (2018)
  • Amount and incorporation of plant residue inputs modify residue
           stabilisation dynamics in soil organic matter fractions
    • Authors: Elaine Mitchell; Clemens Scheer; David Rowlings; Richard T. Conant; M. Francesca Cotrufo; Peter Grace
      Pages: 82 - 91
      Abstract: Publication date: 15 March 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 256
      Author(s): Elaine Mitchell, Clemens Scheer, David Rowlings, Richard T. Conant, M. Francesca Cotrufo, Peter Grace
      Carbon sequestration in agricultural soils has been promoted as a means to reduce atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases (GHG) whilst improving soil productivity. Although there is broad agreement on practices that increase carbon (C) stocks, uncertainty remains on how agricultural management affects the stability of these gains. The fate of above-ground residue into soil organic matter (SOM) was tracked using isotopically labelled (13C and 15N) residue over 12 months in a pasture soil in sub-tropical Australia. Agricultural residue management was simulated by (1) altering the rate of residue input and (2) incorporating residue with topsoil or leaving on soil surface. Increased input and incorporation of residue increased residue-derived SOM content, with the majority of residue-derived SOM accumulating as particulate organic matter (POM) (65%) with more modest gains in mineral-associated fractions. Rapid accumulation of residue-derived SOM in the mineral-associated fractions in the initial stages of decomposition, coinciding with a high loss of labile residue components, indicate an important role for soluble OM inputs in providing an immediate and long-term sink for C and N. However, this must be considered alongside high rates of accumulation in the more readily mineralised POM fraction, particularly when a soil is approaching saturation, which is likely to lead to greater mineralisation of SOM.

      PubDate: 2018-02-04T22:44:53Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2017.12.006
      Issue No: Vol. 256 (2018)
  • Importance of cover crops in alleviating negative effects of reduced soil
           tillage and promoting soil fertility in a winter wheat cropping system
    • Authors: Lucie Büchi; Marina Wendling; Camille Amossé; Magdalena Necpalova; Raphaël Charles
      Pages: 92 - 104
      Abstract: Publication date: 15 March 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 256
      Author(s): Lucie Büchi, Marina Wendling, Camille Amossé, Magdalena Necpalova, Raphaël Charles
      Reduction of soil tillage is of paramount importance for agricultural soil preservation. However, it is often accompanied by yield reduction and weed management problems. In this perspective, cover crops could play an important role to alleviate weed infestation and sustain yield. In this study, the results from a three-year experiment of cover crop cultivation in different soil tillage treatments is presented, together with results from DayCent simulations on the long term evolution of soil organic carbon and total nitrogen. Eight cover crop treatments were set up as subtreatments in a long term experiment in Switzerland. Cover crops were cultivated for a short two-month period between two winter wheats. Substantial differences in cover crop growth were observed depending on cover crop species. In all tillage treatments, high cover crop biomass production allowed to supress weed biomass compared to the no cover crop control. Wheat grain yield was higher in the minimum tillage than in the plough treatment. In the no till treatment, wheat yield was notably low, except in the field pea treatments, where wheat yield reached values similar to that observed in the plough and minimum tillage treatments. In addition, these differences in biomass production translated into important differences in nutrient inputs, and even in soil nutrient concentration in some cases. Long term simulations showed that cover crop cultivation could increase drastically soil organic carbon and total nitrogen, especially in reduced tillage treatments. Altogether, these results demonstrated that the presence of a well-developed cover crop, even for only two months, allows to sustain wheat yield in a no till treatment. It impacts also soil fertility and nutrient cycling. This study shows that an accurate use and management of cover crops, in interaction with tillage reduction, could maintain yield and improve soil fertility in the long term.

      PubDate: 2018-02-04T22:44:53Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2018.01.005
      Issue No: Vol. 256 (2018)
  • Application of oil palm empty fruit bunch effects on soil biota and
           functions: A case study in Sumatra, Indonesia
    • Authors: Hsiao-Hang Tao; Jake L. Snaddon; Eleanor M. Slade; Ludovic Henneron; Jean-Pierre Caliman; Katherine J. Willis
      Pages: 105 - 113
      Abstract: Publication date: 15 March 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 256
      Author(s): Hsiao-Hang Tao, Jake L. Snaddon, Eleanor M. Slade, Ludovic Henneron, Jean-Pierre Caliman, Katherine J. Willis
      Oil palm (Elaeis guineensis) is an important tropical crop which provides one-fifth of the world’s vegetable oil, yet its rapid expansion can negatively influence the soil ecosystem. Identifying suitable agronomic management such as crop residue application is important for the sustainable development of oil palm. We examined the effects of adding empty fruit bunches (EFB), a major oil palm residue, on multiple soil abiotic properties, soil biota, and indicators of soil functions. We compared treatments of EFB applications with three application rates, and a chemical fertilizer treatment in a 15–year trial in Central Sumatra, Indonesia. EFB application increased pH and aggregate stability in 0–10 cm soils and decreased the soil bulk density. EFB application increased the abundance of soil detritivore mites, soil fauna feeding activity, and soil microbial activity. EFB application decreased the biomass of a dominant invasive earthworm species, Pontoscolex corethrurus (Müller, 1857). Results from structural equation modelling suggested that EFB directly affected soil biota and functions, rather than through altering soil abiotic properties. The effects of EFB application on most soil abiotic properties, soil biota and function indicators were independent of the application rate. Our results revealed that EFB application has a high potential to enhance soil biota and functions in oil palm plantations.
      Graphical abstract image

      PubDate: 2018-02-04T22:44:53Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2017.12.012
      Issue No: Vol. 256 (2018)
  • Towards global applicability' Erosion source discrimination across
           catchments using compound-specific δ13C isotopes
    • Authors: Christian Brandt; Gerd Dercon; Georg Cadisch; Lam T. Nguyen; Paulina Schuller; Claudio Bravo Linares; Alejandra Castillo Santana; Valentin Golosov; Moncef Benmansour; Nourredine Amenzou; Zhang Xinbao; Frank Rasche
      Pages: 114 - 122
      Abstract: Publication date: 15 March 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 256
      Author(s): Christian Brandt, Gerd Dercon, Georg Cadisch, Lam T. Nguyen, Paulina Schuller, Claudio Bravo Linares, Alejandra Castillo Santana, Valentin Golosov, Moncef Benmansour, Nourredine Amenzou, Zhang Xinbao, Frank Rasche
      Accurate identification of soil erosion hot spots across catchments of different sizes and agro-ecologies through the use of conventional tracing techniques has proven challenging. Since this problem hinders implementation of precise soil conservation measures by land managers and decision-making bodies, novel evidence-based techniques are needed. To meet this need, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA, Vienna, Austria) initiated the Coordinated Research Project entitled “Integrated Isotopic Approaches for an Area-wide Precision Conservation to Control the Impacts of Agricultural Practices on Land Degradation and Soil Erosion – D1.20.11” in 2008. This project emphasized the application of isotopic approaches to identify hot spots of land degradation in agricultural catchments to develop effective soil conservation measures. As one key outcome of this project, we present here an aligned protocol to explore the potential of compound-specific stable isotope (CSSI) analysis of individual fatty acids (FA) combined with Bayesian statistics to discriminate sediment sources across six catchments of different sizes and agro-ecologies. The global applicability of the CSSI approach was first tested on the basis of major land use categories (i.e., forest, cultivated and non-cultivated land) as potential sediment sources in the studied catchments. These land use categories were then further resolved into specific land use types (e.g., cassava and maize fields, orchards) to assess the potential resolution threshold of the CSSI technique. In a final step, the influence of miscellaneous sources (e.g., roads, channel banks) that had the potential to distort proportional contributions to sediment deposition was assessed. The introduced aligned protocol of the CSSI technique was applied to discriminate individual erosion sources based on land use types of tested catchments. Merging catchment-specific land use types with broader land use categories made it possible to determine inter-catchment comparisons of isotopic signatures due to significant differences in δ13C values of fatty acids when cultivated land was present. Notably, no correlations were found between different catchment sizes, agro-ecologies, number and type of land use types, or soil organic carbon concentrations and the number of significant δ13C fatty acid values of the various land use types. Thus, we propose that the presented CSSI technique has the potential to identify soil erosion hot spots in contrasting catchments of different sizes and agro-ecologies.

      PubDate: 2018-02-04T22:44:53Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2018.01.010
      Issue No: Vol. 256 (2018)
  • Crop yield gap and stability in organic and conventional farming systems
    • Authors: M. Schrama; J.J. de Haan; M. Kroonen; H. Verstegen; W.H. Van der Putten
      Pages: 123 - 130
      Abstract: Publication date: 15 March 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 256
      Author(s): M. Schrama, J.J. de Haan, M. Kroonen, H. Verstegen, W.H. Van der Putten
      A key challenge for sustainable intensification of agriculture is to produce increasing amounts of food and feed with minimal biodiversity loss, nutrient leaching, and greenhouse gas emissions. Organic farming is considered more sustainable, however, less productive than conventional farming. We analysed results from an experiment started under identical soil conditions comparing one organic and two conventional farming systems. Initially, yields in the organic farming system were lower, but approached those of both conventional systems after 10–13 years, while requiring lower nitrogen inputs. Unexpectedly, organic farming resulted in lower coefficient of variation, indicating enhanced spatial stability, of pH, nutrient mineralization, nutrient availability, and abundance of soil biota. Organic farming also resulted in improved soil structure with higher organic matter concentrations and higher soil aggregation, a profound reduction in groundwater nitrate concentrations, and fewer plant-parasitic nematodes. Temporal stability between the three farming systems was similar, but when excluding years of Phytophthora outbreaks in potato, temporal stability was higher in the organic farming system. There are two non-mutually exclusive mechanistic explanations for these results. First, the enhanced spatial stability in the organic farming system could result from changes in resource-based (i.e. bottom-up) processes, which coincides with the observed higher nutrient provisioning throughout the season in soils with more organic matter. Second, enhanced resource inputs may also affect stability via increased predator-based (i.e. top-down) control. According to this explanation, predators stabilize population dynamics of soil organisms, which is supported by the observed higher soil food web biomass in the organic farming system.We conclude that closure of the yield gap between organic and conventional farming can be a matter of time and that organic farming may result in greater spatial stability of soil biotic and abiotic properties and soil processes. This is likely due to the time required to fundamentally alter soil properties.

      PubDate: 2018-02-04T22:44:53Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2017.12.023
      Issue No: Vol. 256 (2018)
  • Linking crop- and soil-based approaches to evaluate system nitrogen-use
           efficiency and tradeoffs
    • Authors: Rafael A. Martinez-Feria; Michael J. Castellano; Ranae N. Dietzel; Matt J. Helmers; Matt Liebman; Isaiah Huber; Sotirios V. Archontoulis
      Pages: 131 - 143
      Abstract: Publication date: 15 March 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 256
      Author(s): Rafael A. Martinez-Feria, Michael J. Castellano, Ranae N. Dietzel, Matt J. Helmers, Matt Liebman, Isaiah Huber, Sotirios V. Archontoulis
      Increasing nitrogen (N)-use efficiency (NUE) is key to improving crop production while mitigating ecologically-damaging environmental N losses. Traditional approaches to assess NUE are principally focused on evaluating crop responses to N inputs, often consider only what happens during the growing season, and ignore other means to improve system efficiency, such as by tightening the cycling of soil N (e.g. with N scavenging cover crops). As the goals of improving production and environmental quality converge, new metrics that can simultaneously capture multiple aspects of system performance are needed. To fill this gap, we developed a theoretical framework that links both crop- and soil-based approaches to derive a system N-use efficiency (sNUE) index. This easily interpretable metric succinctly characterizes N cycling and facilitates comparison of systems that differ in biophysical controls on N dynamics. We demonstrated the application of this new approach and compared it to traditional NUE metrics using data generated with a process-based model (APSIM), trained and tested with experimental datasets (Iowa, USA). Modeling of maize-soybean rotations indicated that despite their high crop NUE, only 45% of N losses could be attributed to the inefficient use of N inputs, whereas the rest originated from the release of native soil N into the environment, due to the asynchrony between soil mineralization and crop uptake. Additionally, sNUE produced estimates of system efficiency that were more stable across weather years and less correlated to other metrics across distinct crop sequences and N fertilizer input levels. We also showed how sNUE allows for the examination of tradeoffs between N cycling and production performance, and thus has the potential to aid in the design of systems that better balance production and environmental outcomes.
      Graphical abstract image

      PubDate: 2018-02-04T22:44:53Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2018.01.002
      Issue No: Vol. 256 (2018)
  • Offstream watering points for cattle: Protecting riparian ecosystems and
           improving water quality'
    • Authors: Julie-Ann C. Malan; Nicole Flint; Emma L. Jackson; Andrew D. Irving; Dave L. Swain
      Pages: 144 - 152
      Abstract: Publication date: 15 March 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 256
      Author(s): Julie-Ann C. Malan, Nicole Flint, Emma L. Jackson, Andrew D. Irving, Dave L. Swain
      A healthy riparian ecosystem is essential to maintain instream water quality, decrease stream bank erosion, increase bank stability and prevent soil loss within river systems, which in turn may affect coastal water quality. The presence of cattle within the riparian zone is a common feature of grazing ventures, but can negatively impact on the functionality of riparian ecosystems. Therefore, the provision of offstream watering points (OSWPs) as an alternative watering source for cattle may lessen or prevent the impact cattle have on the riparian zone. A systematic review was conducted to identify: 1) which factors influence how cattle use OSWPs, and 2) if the provision of an OSWP is an effective best management practice to reduce the time cattle spent in riparian zones, potentially limiting the impact cattle may have on instream water quality and riparian habitat particularly stream bank vegetation. A total of 37 from 1135 research papers satisfied the initial selection criteria for the review with seven providing sufficient information to conduct a meta-analysis. Out of the 37 papers a total of seven factors and five sub-factors influencing cattle’s use of OSWPs were identified. There is evidence that OSWPs did reduce the time cattle spent in riparian zones, however with great variation (63.7%) among studies. The review further highlights that substantial knowledge gaps exist within the literature linking the interaction of cattle, OSWPs and riparian habitats indicating the need for further research.

      PubDate: 2018-02-04T22:44:53Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2018.01.013
      Issue No: Vol. 256 (2018)
  • Plant species, functional assemblages and partitioning of diversity in a
           Mediterranean agricultural mosaic landscape
    • Authors: X.O. Solé-Senan; A. Juárez-Escario; J.A. Conesa; J. Recasens
      Pages: 163 - 172
      Abstract: Publication date: 15 March 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 256
      Author(s): X.O. Solé-Senan, A. Juárez-Escario, J.A. Conesa, J. Recasens
      Agricultural landscapes represent mosaics of different habitats that can harbour high plant diversity where plant traits and trait syndromes can be used for predicting either plant responses to agricultural intensification or plant functional effects on other organisms. Understanding the spatial components of diversity within an agricultural mosaic can help to select the appropriate spatial scale for conserving species and ecological functions such as the provisioning of resources for pollinators. We hypothesize that trait syndromes aimed at provisioning resources for pollinators are positively related to non-crop habitats and negatively related to increasing agricultural intensification. We sampled plant species in 140 patches distributed among seven habitats (abandoned fields, boundaries, roadverges, and edges and inner alfalfa and cereal fields) that were classified into three levels of agricultural intensification: Low, Medium and High. We examined differences in species and functional assemblages, splitting response and effect traits, across various habitats and levels of agricultural intensification. Species richness and functional diversity of response and effect traits were partitioned along spatial scales. Both species and functional assemblages changed across habitats and with different levels of agricultural intensification. Non-cropped habitats and low levels of agricultural intensification promoted trait syndromes with trait-overdispersion mainly linked to the provisioning of resources for pollinators. The species turnover did not imply a functional turnover. Our study shows that traits are determined by agricultural intensification, and no further details on field position and habitat variability are needed to promote vegetation types with trait syndromes able to support pollinating insects.

      PubDate: 2018-02-04T22:44:53Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2018.01.014
      Issue No: Vol. 256 (2018)
  • Disinfection byproduct precursors in paddy fields under swine manure
           application: Reactivity, origins and interception
    • Authors: Yixiang Zhang; Xinqiang Liang; Guifen Hua; Meiru Li; Limin Lin
      Pages: 173 - 183
      Abstract: Publication date: 15 March 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 256
      Author(s): Yixiang Zhang, Xinqiang Liang, Guifen Hua, Meiru Li, Limin Lin
      High content of organic matter in paddy fields contributes substantial organic loading to ambient waterways via runoff, which is the potential precursor of disinfection byproducts (DBPs) in downstream water treatment plants. Moreover, submerged conditions of paddy fields pose a high DBP precursor export risk. The major objectives of this study were to characterize and quantify DBP precursors in paddy field floodwater under swine manure application, and to explore the origins and interception strategy of DBP precursors. In spite of high amounts of DBP precursors in paddy fields, the aromaticity and formation reactivity of DBP precursors are relatively low. Parallel factor analysis (PARAFAC) and self-organizing map (SOM) showed protein-like substances contributed the major part of bulk DBP precursors, while humic-like substances have a stronger tendency to yield DBPs than protein-like substances. The highest DBP precursor amounts occurred on the second day after swine manure application, and DBP precursor export potential fell by up to 56.2% within 7 days. Therefore, making one or more weeks’ interval between the highest DBP precursor occurrence and a forecasted rainfall event could be an advisable strategy for interception of DBP precursors.
      Graphical abstract image

      PubDate: 2018-02-04T22:44:53Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2018.01.008
      Issue No: Vol. 256 (2018)
  • Emissions of atmospherically important nitrous acid (HONO) gas from
           northern grassland soil increases in the presence of nitrite (NO2−)
    • Authors: Hem Raj Bhattarai; Perttu Virkajärvi; Pasi Yli-Pirilä; Marja Maljanen
      Pages: 194 - 199
      Abstract: Publication date: 15 March 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 256
      Author(s): Hem Raj Bhattarai, Perttu Virkajärvi, Pasi Yli-Pirilä, Marja Maljanen
      Several studies have shown that the use of nitrogen fertilizers increases the emission of nitric oxide (NO) and nitrous oxide (N2O) from agricultural soils. Nitrous acid (HONO) is another form of gaseous N which increase the reactivity potential in the atmosphere by forming OH radicals in photolysis and further oxidize pollutants e.g. methane. It has recently been discovered that soil is a source of HONO. In our experiment with grassland (Phleum pratense L.), we found that HONO emissions increased up to 14 μg N m−2 h−1 in the plot receiving annually 450 kg N ha−1 and were strongly linked with soil nitrite (NO2 −) concentration and pH. A strong correlation between HONO and NO emissions was also observed. This finding suggests that agricultural soils could be an important source of HONO and its emission is primarily dependent soil NO2 − concentration. Moreover, in agricultural soils the production pathway of HONO and NO could be similar and more studies on the effect of fertilization on HONO emission are needed.

      PubDate: 2018-02-04T22:44:53Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2018.01.017
      Issue No: Vol. 256 (2018)
  • Beautiful agricultural landscapes promote cultural ecosystem services and
           biodiversity conservation
    • Authors: Giacomo Assandri; Giuseppe Bogliani; Paolo Pedrini; Mattia Brambilla
      Pages: 200 - 210
      Abstract: Publication date: 15 March 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 256
      Author(s): Giacomo Assandri, Giuseppe Bogliani, Paolo Pedrini, Mattia Brambilla
      Agriculture, during its millenarian history, had contributed to shape impressive cultural landscapes; however, in recent decades, many of these have been lost or degraded because of widespread intensification or abandonment. Low-intensive agricultural landscapes are of utmost importance for biodiversity conservation and the delivery of cultural ecosystem services. We worked in a cultural landscape shaped by viticulture (in Trentino, Italy), which recently underwent a widespread intensification. We explicitly quantified two cultural services (aesthetic and cultural heritage values), and the biodiversity (bird species richness) associated with this landscape at 24 sampling sites. We then related these variables with the territory density of an indicator/flagship bird species, the common redstart. Finally, we assessed redstart ecological requirements at the territory scale. We aimed to define an appealing strategy combining biodiversity conservation and ecosystem service delivery in the cultural landscapes. Redstart density was positively related with avian species richness and landscape aesthetic value, the latter being related with the cultural heritage value. Redstart occurrence was positively associated with hedge and tree rows, dry-stone walls, marginal habitats, and the compositional diversity of the land-cover. We concluded that managing the agricultural landscape to maintain aesthetic and heritage values, which primarily means conserving and enhancing its key ‘traditional’ traits, would favour an indicator/flagship species and likely the wider bird diversity. It will also promote the heritage and recreational value of the landscape itself, underlining the importance of the synergistic integration of multiple conservation targets into a combined strategy.
      Graphical abstract image

      PubDate: 2018-02-04T22:44:53Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2018.01.012
      Issue No: Vol. 256 (2018)
  • Effects of mowing, grazing and fertilization on soil seed banks in
           temperate grasslands in Central Europe
    • Authors: Valentin H. Klaus; Deborah Schäfer; Daniel Prati; Verena Busch; Ute Hamer; Christina J. Hoever; Till Kleinebecker; Désirée Mertens; Markus Fischer; Norbert Hölzel
      Pages: 211 - 217
      Abstract: Publication date: 15 March 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 256
      Author(s): Valentin H. Klaus, Deborah Schäfer, Daniel Prati, Verena Busch, Ute Hamer, Christina J. Hoever, Till Kleinebecker, Désirée Mertens, Markus Fischer, Norbert Hölzel
      Soil seed banks support the recovery of plant species and communities after disturbances. Against the background of increasing disturbance frequencies due to current changes in climate and land use, the importance of seed banks to maintain ecosystem functioning of grasslands is likely to increase. This makes seed bank ecology a highly relevant topic of studies on ecosystem functioning. One of the main drivers of seed bank composition and density in grasslands is the current management. Although highly intensive grassland management can affect soil seed banks negatively, it is still unclear which component of management – fertilization, mowing or grazing – is the most influential. We studied soil seed banks of 73 mesic grasslands, which were arranged along a gradient of land-use intensity, by two seasonally differing surveys. Grasslands generally exhibited rather poor seed banks with low numbers of species and seedlings. Both were even lower in spring compared to autumn sampling. Grassland management turned out to affect soil seed banks in a complex way, via direct and indirect paths. While intensive mowing and fertilization decreased species richness and seedling density, grazing intensity increased species richness in the seed bank. Thus, land-use intensity, an index calculated as a sum of all three components, had highly ambivalent effects on seed banks. We conclude that the positive effect of grazing on soil seed banks makes pastures more resilient towards mechanic disturbances as compared to meadows.

      PubDate: 2018-02-04T22:44:53Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2017.11.008
      Issue No: Vol. 256 (2018)
  • Landscape and crop management strategies to conserve pollination services
           and increase yields in tropical coffee farms
    • Authors: Juliana Hipólito; Danilo Boscolo; Blandina Felipe Viana
      Pages: 218 - 225
      Abstract: Publication date: 15 March 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 256
      Author(s): Juliana Hipólito, Danilo Boscolo, Blandina Felipe Viana
      Agricultural intensification has reduced biodiversity and leads to fundamental trade-offs between food production and conservation. Conventional approaches to food production are thus no longer suitable. In the present work, we discuss the influence of local management and landscape context variables on coffee yield and crop pollination services. We used 34 coffee farms (15 with low impact and 19 with high impact management) located in Chapada Diamantina, Bahia, Brazil. We analysed the floral visitor patterns and yield and their relationships with landscape and management context over two years. Using a GLM analysis, we found that farms close to natural areas and with low management intensity have higher potential to reduce yield gaps and maintain biodiversity. Biodiversity in turn (represented here by pollinators) improved yields by 30%, and yields were lower on larger, intensively managed farms. Low impact farms, on the other hand, may depend not only on diversified landscapes but also on proper investment in sustainable production practices. Combining landscape and management strategies should thus generate synergies between multiple ecosystem services, such as pollination, yield, farm profitability, and others not analysed here, such as natural enemies and nutrient cycling, among others.

      PubDate: 2018-02-04T22:44:53Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2017.09.038
      Issue No: Vol. 256 (2018)
  • Seasonal abundance of cotton thrips (Thysanoptera: Thripidae) across crop
           and non-crop vegetation in an Australian cotton producing region
    • Authors: Rehan Silva; James P. Hereward; Gimme H. Walter; Lewis J. Wilson; Michael J. Furlong
      Pages: 226 - 238
      Abstract: Publication date: 15 March 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 256
      Author(s): Rehan Silva, James P. Hereward, Gimme H. Walter, Lewis J. Wilson, Michael J. Furlong
      The spatio-temporal relationships of thrips populations across weeds and cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L. (Malvales: Malvaceae) crops were studied across the agricultural landscape of the Namoi Valley, New South Wales, Australia. In a structured sampling program, the seasonal patterns of host plant use by Thrips tabaci Lindeman, Frankliniella occidentalis Pergrande and F. schultzei Trybom (Thysanoptera: Thripidae) were quantified in relation to their invasion of cotton crops. Plants of 69 species (in 20 families) were sampled; T. tabaci was the most numerous thrips species and was recorded from 31 plant species, F. occidentalis was less numerous but recorded from 35 plant species, and F. schultzei was present at very low densities on 25 plant species. Both T. tabaci and F. occidentalis were mostly collected from weeds flowering in spring and summer, when these plants were most abundant. The seasonal composition of thrips populations on cotton changed from predominately T. tabaci on seedling cotton to F. schultzei and F. occidentalis on mature flowering cotton later in the season. High T. tabaci abundance on early season cotton was attributed to the abundance of T. tabaci on the surrounding weed species, because the weed hosts on which it was recorded were plentiful then. In contrast, the patterns of F. occidentalis and F. schultzei abundance on cotton were not correlated with their abundance on weeds, but rather with the emergence of cotton flowers. The genetic relationships and cryptic species identity of thrips on cotton relative to those on the other host plant species sampled was investigated through the analysis of mitochondrial CO1 gene sequences. Thrips tabaci and F. occidentalis collected from cotton were genetically identical to conspecifics collected from weeds. This is consistent with these insects moving onto cotton plants from nearby source populations on weeds. Frankliniella schultzei is a species complex in Australia, two members of which are present in this region, but only the black species was found in these surveys. This study demonstrates that (i) weeds play an important role in the population ecology of thrips, particularly in T. tabaci infesting early season cotton crops, (ii) the role of weeds warrants consideration in relation to pest management strategies, and (iii) without considering the surrounding landscape (which needs definition relative to each pest species) invasions cannot be readily understood mechanistically.

      PubDate: 2018-02-04T22:44:53Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2017.12.024
      Issue No: Vol. 256 (2018)
  • Long rotation swidden systems maintain higher carbon stocks than rubber
    • Authors: Thilde Bech Bruun; Nicholas Berry; Andreas de Neergaard; Phaeng Xaphokahme; Iain McNicol; Casey M. Ryan
      Pages: 239 - 249
      Abstract: Publication date: 15 March 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 256
      Author(s): Thilde Bech Bruun, Nicholas Berry, Andreas de Neergaard, Phaeng Xaphokahme, Iain McNicol, Casey M. Ryan
      Conversion of shifting cultivation to rubber (Hevea brasiliensis) plantations is one of the dominant land use changes in montane mainland areas of Southeast Asia, with the area of rubber expected to quadruple by 2050. However, the impacts of this transition on total ecosystem carbon stocks are poorly quantified. We undertook a chronosequence study to quantify changes in ecosystem carbon stocks following conversion from swidden agriculture to rubber plantations in Northern Laos. We measured above-ground biomass stocks and collected volume specific soil samples across rubber plantations established between 2 and 18 years prior to the study, and fallows used in a swidden system. The carbon stock in the upper 40 cm of the soil was almost 20% lower after 18 years of rubber than in the swidden system fallows, suggesting a SOC loss of 0.74 ± 0.2 Mg C ha−1 yr−1. Rates of biomass accumulation in fallows were 1.5 ± 0.12 Mg C ha−1 yr−1 and 1.9 ± 0.14 Mg C ha−1 yr−1 in rubber plantations. When comparing time-averaged carbon stocks of swidden systems to rubber plantations with 30 year rotation periods, the stocks of swidden systems with rotation times of 5 and 10 years were 19% and 13% lower respectively; the stock of swidden systems with a rotation time of ∼15 years was approximately equal to rubber; and the stock of swidden systems with a rotation time of 30 years was 11% higher than in rubber. Therefore, we conclude that the replacement of swidden agriculture with rubber leads to soil carbon losses, but the overall effects on ecosystem carbon stocks depend on the rotation intensity of the swidden system that is being replaced.

      PubDate: 2018-02-04T22:44:53Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2017.09.010
      Issue No: Vol. 256 (2018)
  • Wooded field margins increase potential for cultural and biological
           control of soybean pests
    • Authors: Hannah J. Penn
      Pages: 45 - 51
      Abstract: Publication date: 1 March 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 255
      Author(s): Hannah J. Penn
      Crop field margins provide benefits to growers by inhibiting pest dispersal through cultural control and provisioning resources for predators through conservation biological control. The purpose of this study was to elucidate potential soybean insect pest control measures by determining the relationships between pests and spiders, common generalist predators in agroecosystems, and field margin type and distance from the field (0–3 and 3–6 m). Both margin type and distance were significantly correlated with in-field pest abundance (both pooled and taxa-specific). Generally, pest abundance was negatively correlated with the presence of wooded field margins at both distances and could be due to cultural control as hedgerows provide similar ecosystem services in other cropping systems. Spider abundance and spider-pest spatial associations (an indication of potential predation events) within fields were positively correlated with wooded margins from 3 to 6 m, indicating that conservation biological control in addition to cultural control might be contributing to diminished pest abundance in fields with these margins. The lack of wooded margin influence from 0 to 3 m might indicate a need for a minimum wooded area before margins can become a source for within-field spider populations. Furthermore, the number of spider-pest spatial associations was greatest early in the season when pest abundance was lowest and pests were more likely to be spatially aggregated. These data indicate that growers might be able to maintain their field margins, particularly wooded areas, to maximize both potential cultural control and conservation biological control resources, particularly early in the growing season.

      PubDate: 2018-02-04T22:44:53Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2017.12.016
      Issue No: Vol. 255 (2018)
  • Crop-season and residual effects of sequentially applied mineral enhanced
           biochar and N fertiliser on crop yield, soil chemistry and microbial
    • Authors: Shaun Nielsen; Stephen Joseph; Jun Ye; Chee Chia; Paul Munroe; Lukas van Zwieten; Torsten Thomas
      Pages: 52 - 61
      Abstract: Publication date: 1 March 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 255
      Author(s): Shaun Nielsen, Stephen Joseph, Jun Ye, Chee Chia, Paul Munroe, Lukas van Zwieten, Torsten Thomas
      The use of biochar in agricultural soils has received increasing attention over the last decade and enhancing biochar through chemical modification offers a strategy to reduce the amount of biochar required for improving soil productivity. However there is limited knowledge on how mineral enhanced biochars alone, or in combination with conventional fertilisers impact on microbial processes and edaphic parameters of soil or the root, and how this influences agricultural yield in the long-term. To investigate this we assessed crop yield, edaphic parameters and microbial communities within the bulk soil and on roots at the end of the third crop-cycle from a long-term agricultural trial where pre-existing enhanced biochar applications (from previous crop-cycles) totalled between 0 and 5.5 t ha−1 and were then supplemented with fresh enhanced biochar (0.1 t ha−1) and traditional N fertiliser (50 kg ha−1) in a crossed design. We found an array of effects associated with existing and new enhanced biochar applications in conjunction with N fertiliser on plant yield, soil nutrients and microbial communities. Yield decreased up to 27% with any soil amendment and was greatest in the unamended control. Soil nitrate increased from 30.4 to 59.6 mg kg−1 due to N fertiliser with little effect of the enhanced biochar. Soil pH increased from 4.59 to 4.86 due to previously applied enhanced biochar and was associated with applications of at least 1 t ha−1. There were differing responses in the microbial communities between bulk soil (294 taxa changes) and roots (383 taxa changes) to the fertilisation regimes, which were unrelated to the nitrate content in the soil and appeared to be driven by pH changes, especially for communities associated with plant roots. This has important implications on which soil compartments should be investigated in future studies of microbial communities. The short- and long-term effects of enhanced biochar observed here question the relevance of studies examining once-off applications of biochar and their extrapolation to real world scenarios i.e. where sequential application of biochar might occur. It is likely that responses of agricultural systems may depend on the historical use of biochar.

      PubDate: 2018-02-04T22:44:53Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2017.12.020
      Issue No: Vol. 255 (2018)
  • Soil C:N ratios are unresponsive to land use change in Brazil: A
           comparative analysis
    • Authors: Yuri Lopes Zinn; Gonçalves Jotamo Marrenjo; Carlos Alberto Silva
      Pages: 62 - 72
      Abstract: Publication date: 1 March 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 255
      Author(s): Yuri Lopes Zinn, Gonçalves Jotamo Marrenjo, Carlos Alberto Silva
      The C:N ratio is the most widely used indicator of the quality of organic residues and soil organic matter, but little is known about how average soil C:N ratios change when pristine lands are converted to agriculture in the humid tropics. This work aimed to compile the literature on Brazilian soils and calculate percent changes in soil organic carbon (SOC), total N and C:N ratios, after conversion of native vegetation to different land use systems. The hypotheses tested were that land use change affects mean soil C:N ratios across a range of experiments, and that different land use types would affect C:N ratios differently. Overall, average changes for SOC and total N for the 0–20 cm standard depth interval were respectively −14.4 and −13.1% (p < 0.05, n = 171), whereas the average change in the C:N ratio was slightly positive (1.49%) but not significant (p < 0.05). For the 20–40 cm depth interval, SOC also decreased significantly (−13.2%, p < 0.05, n = 72) but not N, whereas C:N ratios increased by 0.21%, again not significantly. Linear regressions suggest that higher or lower C:N ratios upon tillage were more associated to decreased or increased N concentrations, respectively, than to respective changes in SOC. When data were treated separately by major land use systems, the results were generally similar to the overall trends. Therefore, we concluded that land use changes in Brazil, and probably in other humid tropics, have no significant effect on soil C:N ratios in average. However, when C:N effectively changes, its impact for soil fertility and quality can only be interpreted aside with respective changes in SOC and N concentrations.

      PubDate: 2018-02-04T22:44:53Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2017.12.019
      Issue No: Vol. 255 (2018)
  • Mobility of atrazine in soils of a wastewater irrigated maize field
    • Authors: M. Salazar-Ledesma; B. Prado; O. Zamora; C. Siebe
      Pages: 73 - 83
      Abstract: Publication date: 1 March 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 255
      Author(s): M. Salazar-Ledesma, B. Prado, O. Zamora, C. Siebe
      The behavior of atrazine has been studied mainly in laboratory experiments, seldom directly in the field, and even less in agricultural plots irrigated with wastewater. In the Mezquital Valley, central Mexico, maize (Zea mays L.) crops have been irrigated with untreated municipal wastewater for more than 100 years. The herbicide atrazine has been applied to maize for weed control for 20 years. The research objectives of this study were: (i) to monitor the persistence and migration of atrazine and its main metabolites (hydroxyatrazine (HyA) and deethylatrazine (DEA)) in a wastewater irrigated maize field along a cropping cycle; (ii) to assess their sorption behavior in batch experiments; and (iii) to determine the degradation of atrazine under field conditions. Soil samples (0–15 and 25–40 cm) were collected before and after three irrigation events within a 2 ha plot. Additionally,percolation water was collected below the rooting zone and down to 5.0 m depth. Atrazine degradation was studied by calculating dissipation rates considering field data. Atrazine was detected in soil and percolation water during the first two irrigation events after application. HyA was detected only in the soil samples from the first and third irrigation events (∼0.08 mg kg−1) while DEA was found only in the percolation water of the second irrigation event (0.03 mg L−1) and also in the groundwater (∼0.02 mg L−1) from a deep piezometer. Batch experiments showed, that the soil has a higher affinity for atrazine (Kd = 5 L kg−1) than for HyA and DEA (Kd = 1.3 L kg−1). The atrazine half-life value was 16 days under field conditions. The moderate filter capacity of the soil and the relatively fast degradation rates seem to prevent the transport of atrazine and its metabolites into the unsaturated zone. Nevertheless it is recommended to establish a monitoring program with more narrow time intervals during the first days after atrazine application. We concluded that the large wastewater volume applied for irrigation explains themobility of these compounds.

      PubDate: 2018-02-04T22:44:53Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2017.12.018
      Issue No: Vol. 255 (2018)
  • The contribution of CAP greening measures to conservation biological
           control at two spatial scales
    • Authors: Klaus Birkhofer; Valentin Fevrier; Anna Eva Heinrich; Katharina Rink; Henrik G. Smith
      Pages: 84 - 94
      Abstract: Publication date: 1 March 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 255
      Author(s): Klaus Birkhofer, Valentin Fevrier, Anna Eva Heinrich, Katharina Rink, Henrik G. Smith
      To promote a more sustainable agricultural production, the European Commission implemented direct payments that require farmers to implement greening measures aimed at reducing negative effects of agriculture on the environment and biodiversity. These greening measures (including fallows and permanent grasslands) have been criticised for their potential inability to conserve biodiversity and promote associated ecosystem services. In this study, we investigate if the presence of old or recently established fallows and permanent grassland in the landscape are beneficial for the emergence, activity density and spillover of ground-running natural enemies and as a result aphid biological control in cereal fields. Lycosidae and Theridiidae were more numerous in fallows (emergence & activity density) compared to crop fields, while Staphylinidae and Linyphiidae showed opposite patterns. Spillover of Lycosidae was significantly higher from fallows into cereal fields, than between cereal fields. As a result of the opposite patterns in activity density in fallows between different groups of predators, a spillover from fallows did not result in a significantly higher aphid control in crop fields adjacent to them. A high proportion of permanent grassland in the landscape resulted in lower emergence of Linyphiidae and Carabidae. Our results support the assumption that a higher emergence and activity density of ground-running predators generally results in higher spillover to adjacent fields. However, patterns of emergence and activity density differed between individual natural enemy groups. Fallows, independent of age, can therefore act as source or sink depending on the focal predator group and more permanent grassland in the landscape can result in lower local emergence. Fallows at the local scale and permanent grassland at larger spatial scales therefore did not generally promote aphid biological control services provided by ground-running natural enemies.

      PubDate: 2018-02-04T22:44:53Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2017.12.026
      Issue No: Vol. 255 (2018)
  • Dose-dependent physiological responses of Triticum aestivum L. to soil
           applied TiO2 nanoparticles: Alterations in chlorophyll content, H2O2
           production, and genotoxicity
    • Authors: Rafia Rafique; Zahra Zahra; Nasar Virk; Muhammad Shahid; Eric Pinelli; Tae Jung Park; Jean Kallerhoff; Muhammad Arshad
      Pages: 95 - 101
      Abstract: Publication date: 1 March 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 255
      Author(s): Rafia Rafique, Zahra Zahra, Nasar Virk, Muhammad Shahid, Eric Pinelli, Tae Jung Park, Jean Kallerhoff, Muhammad Arshad
      Titanium dioxide nanoparticles (TiO2 NPs) are used widely in commercial products. These high production levels have led to their increased release into natural ecosystems, where they may interact with plants and affect their physiological functions. The aim of this study was to assess the physiological responses of wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) to increasing concentrations of TiO2 NPs. TiO2 NPs with a particle size less than 20 nm were administered as soil spiked with 0, 20, 40, 60, 80, and 100 mg TiO2 NPs kg−1, and their physiological parameters, including root and shoot lengths, biomass, phytoavailability of phosphorus (P), chlorophyll content, H2O2 production, and micronuclei (MN) formation in the plants grown from seeds in NPs-spiked soils, were subsequently recorded. All experiments were repeated twice with four replicates per treatment. After 60 days exposure to the NPs, root and shoot lengths, and P uptake by plants was significantly (p < 0.05) higher between 20 and 60 mg kg−1 compared to the control (0 mg kg−1 TiO2 NPs), but was then lower at 80 and 100 mg kg−1 compared to 60 mg kg−1 TiO2 NPs. The application of TiO2 NPs led to chlorophyll content being higher by 32.3% at 60 mg kg−1 than in the control, but 11.1% lower content was observed at 100 mg kg−1. The results suggested that wheat could not tolerate concentrations of TiO2 NPs higher than 60 mg kg−1 owing to overproduction of H2O2 (84.4%) and MN formation (53.6%).
      Graphical abstract image

      PubDate: 2018-02-04T22:44:53Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2017.12.010
      Issue No: Vol. 255 (2018)
  • Change in ladybeetle abundance and biological control of wheat aphids over
           time in agricultural landscape
    • Authors: Long Yang; Yingda Zeng; Lei Xu; Bing Liu; Qian Zhang; Yanhui Lu
      Pages: 102 - 110
      Abstract: Publication date: 1 March 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 255
      Author(s): Long Yang, Yingda Zeng, Lei Xu, Bing Liu, Qian Zhang, Yanhui Lu
      The improvement of biocontrol services provided by natural enemies is important for realizing sustainable agriculture. While it has been well demonstrated that landscape context affects the occurrence of natural enemies in agricultural ecosystems, the response of natural enemies and their ability to suppress pest population growth over time has rarely been studied in relation to landscape composition and diversity. In this study, we investigated natural enemy (ladybeetle) and pest (wheat aphids) population abundance in wheat fields in the early period (defined as the main period for aphid colonization) and the late period (i.e., the main period for aphid reproduction) in different landscapes. Non-crop habitats surrounding wheat fields were found to enhance ladybeetle abundance. More specifically, the proportion of dwellings and woodlots were positively correlated with ladybeetle abundance in early period, and those of fallow and woodlot habitats were positively associated with ladybeetle abundance in late period. The most predictive spatial scales of ladybeetle abundance were landscape features within 0.5 and 2.0 km of wheat fields in the early and late periods, respectively. In contrast with the significantly negative correlation between ladybeetle abundance and aphid population growth during the late period, the relative low density of ladybeetles in the early period appeared to have no effect on aphid population growth. These findings suggest that non-crop habitats have differing effects on ladybeetle populations, both in their spatial scale and over time, and the continuity of functional habitat types is essential to support ladybeetle populations. While ladybeetles do indeed suppress aphid growth in the later part of the cycle, aphid control is also dependent on early colonization and constrained by external circumstances.

      PubDate: 2018-02-04T22:44:53Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2017.12.013
      Issue No: Vol. 255 (2018)
  • Nitrogen leaching: A crop rotation perspective on the effect of N surplus,
           field management and use of catch crops
    • Authors: Chiara De Notaris; Jim Rasmussen; Peter Sørensen; Jørgen Eivind Olesen
      Pages: 1 - 11
      Abstract: Publication date: 1 March 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 255
      Author(s): Chiara De Notaris, Jim Rasmussen, Peter Sørensen, Jørgen Eivind Olesen
      Components of the field nitrogen (N) balance (input and surplus) are often used to predict nitrate leaching from agricultural lands. However, management factors, such as use of catch crops, greatly affect the actual loss and are a key to reduce N leaching. The present study is based on the 4th cycle of a long-term crop rotation experiment in Denmark, and it aims to quantify, from a crop rotation perspective, the influence on N leaching from N input and surplus or management factors. The experiment included three cropping systems (two organic and one conventional) with or without use of animal manure and catch crops. N leaching was calculated from measurements of nitrate in soil water sampled with ceramic suction cups installed at 1 m depth in all plots. At the rotation level, over a four years period, N leaching was positively related to N input and surplus. However, the overall effect of N input and surplus on N leaching was lower than the effect of use of catch crops. The response rates of N leaching to increasing N inputs and N surplus were about 0.08 and 0.19–0.25, respectively. Catch crops reduced N leaching by 23 kg N ha−1, irrespective of conventional and organic management system, with legume-based catch crops being as effective as non-legumes. Animal manure increased N leaching in one of the organic systems. The organic system with two years of green manure per rotation cycle was the one at highest risk of N leaching, especially from crops following green manure incorporation. Spring wheat and potatoes were the two crops with highest N leaching, and a stable low level of N leaching was only achieved above a crop-specific threshold in catch crop biomass.

      PubDate: 2017-12-27T00:59:07Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2017.12.009
      Issue No: Vol. 255 (2017)
  • Insect assemblies related to volatile signals emitted by different soybean
           – weeds – herbivory combinations
    • Authors: M. Torcat Fuentes; A. Lenardis; E.B. de la Fuente
      Pages: 20 - 26
      Abstract: Publication date: 1 March 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 255
      Author(s): M. Torcat Fuentes, A. Lenardis, E.B. de la Fuente
      Soybean, the main crop of Argentina, has promoted spatial and temporal homogenization of the agricultural landscape accompanied by significant losses of biodiversity, along with increases in the use of chemical inputs. One of the possible solutions to overcome these effects is the diversification of the agroecosystem, avoiding the control of weed species that could act as attractants of beneficial insects and deterrents of herbivory, without compromising crop yield. The aims of this work were to evaluate the composition, abundance and richness of insect assemblages in different soybean-weed (Artemisia annua and Chenopodium album)-herbivory combinations and to determine the relationship between insect assemblages and volatile signals emitted by the different combinations. Two factorial experiments were conducted during two consecutive seasons under field conditions. Factors were: i) crop-weed combinations with five levels: pure soybean (PS), soybean + 2 A. annua plants m−2 (2A), soybean + 4 A. annua plants m−2 (4A), soybean + 2 C. album plants m−2 (2C) and soybean + 4 C. album plants m−2 (4C) and ii) herbivory with two levels: with (+H) and without (−H). Volatile signals were measured with an electronic nose and insects were sampled with pitfall traps located in the center of each plot. Different insect assemblages related to treatments were identified. Richness increased when soybean was accompanied by weeds. The proportion of non-herbivores was always higher than that of herbivores. In both seasons, the same sensors detecting volatile cues were the main explanatory variables of the insect data, being responsible for the separation of A. annua treatments from the others. Many non-herbivore species were attracted to A. annua and repelled by signals captured by these sensors and, on the contrary, many herbivore and non-herbivore species were attracted to those blends associated to PS and C. album. PS and C. album could represent a food source for herbivores and alternative food or host for non- herbivores. Herbivory was not a discriminant explanatory variable. This work highlights that insect assemblage varies according to different crop-weed combinations and their volatile signals. Considering the positive impact on insect diversity of some species currently considered as weeds, could be useful to design future agro-ecosystems in which the regulation of pests is accomplished by increasing the fauna of beneficial insects and, thus, reducing the use of pesticides.

      PubDate: 2017-12-27T00:59:07Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2017.12.007
      Issue No: Vol. 255 (2017)
  • Think twice before using narrow buffers: Attenuating mowing-induced
           arthropod spillover at forest – grassland edges
    • Authors: Csaba Tölgyesi; Péter Császár; Attila Torma; Péter Török; Zoltán Bátori; Róbert Gallé
      Pages: 37 - 44
      Abstract: Publication date: 1 March 2018
      Source:Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Volume 255
      Author(s): Csaba Tölgyesi, Péter Császár, Attila Torma, Péter Török, Zoltán Bátori, Róbert Gallé
      Spillover between agricultural land and natural habitats is recognised as an important mechanism shaping biodiversity and ecosystem functions. Its spatio-temporal patterns and magnitude are thoroughly described in the literature and it is often stated that spillover should be considered in conservation planning. In fact studies that implement and test active interventions to modulate spillover are scarce. Therefore, we studied the spillover of spiders and carabids between hay meadows and natural forests after mowing and tested whether leaving unmown buffer strips in the edges can mitigate undesirable aspects of mowing-induced spillover. We found that mowing affected the assemblages both in the meadows and forests and, interestingly, changes were more profound in the forests. Mowing reduced the spillover of forest assemblages into meadows. Mowing also led to the retraction of forest assemblages from the peripheral zones of forests but did not trigger an influx of meadow assemblages into the forests. Wide (10 m) unmown buffers attenuated or completely offset most of these effects. Leaving narrow (5 m) buffers had unexpected consequences, as they did not function only as buffers but as facilitators of forest-ward spillover from meadows, potentially compromising ecological interactions such as predation or competition in forests. We conclude that using wide buffers can be recommended as a refinement of standard management practices in hay meadow–forest mosaics. Narrow buffers should be applied with great caution and should generally be avoided if the forest-specific assemblages are of conservation interest.

      PubDate: 2017-12-27T00:59:07Z
      DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2017.12.011
      Issue No: Vol. 255 (2017)
School of Mathematical and Computer Sciences
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