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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: Mechanistic Modeling of Multispecies Pasture Growth and Management

Location: Pasture Systems & Watershed Management Research

Project Number: 1902-21000-008-05
Project Type: Specific Cooperative Agreement

Start Date: Jul 01, 2011
End Date: Dec 31, 2014

Objective:
1) Develop a model of pasture management incorporating multiple forage species and mechanistic nutrient cycling; 2) test model predictions against measured data collected on farms in the northeastern United States; and 3) employ the model in the context of Grazingland CEAP to understand and predict the environmental implications of conservation practices in temperate pastures of the northeastern United States.

Approach:
Existing rangeland models are widely used, but are inadequate for the very different climatic conditions, dominant species, and management strategies used in temperate humid pastures. Existing mono- and multi-species models will provide the initial framework for development of a new mechanistic pasture model simulating plant growth, competition, and nutrient cycling in pastures. The model will be validated using on-farm data collected as part of ongoing ARS research. Model findings will contribute to both Grazingland CEAP efforts and to developing recommendations for pasture management.

Last Modified: 7/30/2014
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