2012 Annual Report
1a.Objectives (from AD-416):
Determine the effects of organic dominated soil (ODS) properties, climate, and management on soil crust (stability and loose erodible material), aggregate size distribution, dry aggregate stability, and surface roughness over time.
1b.Approach (from AD-416):
Field sites will be established by ARS on ODS at three locations with help of cooperators in Michigan. Sites will be selected to give a wide range in organic matter content (e.g., 20 to 80%). Sample approximately every two weeks to capture seasonal differences in erodibility parameters just prior to and during seasons when erosion can occur. In addition, sample immediately before and after any soil disturbing management operation and after significant precipitation or irrigation (> 12 mm). Parameters sampled will include soil crust (stability and loose erodible material), aggregate size distribution, and dry aggregate stability. Surface roughness will be measured through of surface elevations using a pin meter. Sampled soils and data will be sent to ARS lab in Manhattan for analysis.
Field sites were established during a site visit in November, 2011. Three sites were selected to represent high (~80%), medium (~40%), and low (~20%) organic matter content. Cooperators from Michigan State University were trained in the field on sampling procedures during the site visit. This winter and spring was the first of the two year study. Samples were taken approximately every two weeks from December through April and mailed back to EWERU for aggregate size distribution and dry aggregate stability analysis. Additional measurements such as random and oriented roughness as well precipitation and temperature data were also taken and data uploaded to EWERU for analysis. The first year of the two-year sampling is complete. Sampling progress and field conditions were monitored by email communications, phone calls, and photographs taken by the samplers. A companion project was concurrently established in Florida for comparisons of a warmer, wetter climate with that of Michigan.