1a.Objectives (from AD-416):
Principal focus of the CEAP Watershed Studies is to evaluate the effects and benefits of conservation practices at the watershed scale, in support of policy decisions and program implementation.
1b.Approach (from AD-416):
The effects of conservation activities on water and soil quality will be assessed at the watershed scale using models such as ARS’ Soil and Water Assessment Tool, in combination with ARS long-term watershed data sets, expertise, and resources.
Collaboration has been established with the Penn State Center for Environmental Informatics (CEI) to unify existing, historical data on the land use and management of the Mahantango Creek Experimental Watershed and research subwatersheds into a database for better use in research. All relevant paper and electronic information has been relocated from the field site to a secure location at the University Park building and backed-up electronically. Weekly meetings with CEI have helped clarify the information within the historical data, the potential research questions that would be asked with it, and forward-looking data collection interests. The CEI has developed a database infrastructure and begun to populate it with recent historical data. Additionally, look-up tables and allowable value ranges for tillage practices and amendments are being developed from the historical data and knowledge of farming in the area.