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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: DEVELOPMENT OF ALTERNATIVE PRACTICES FOR IMPROVED WATERSHED MANAGEMENT

Location: Cropping Systems and Water Quality Research

Title: Reducing herbicides and veterinary antibiotics losses from agroecosystems using vegetative buffers

Authors
item Lerch, Robert
item Lin, Chug-Ho -
item Goyne, Keith -
item Garrett, Harold -

Submitted to: ASA-CSSA-SSSA Annual Meeting Abstracts
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: April 25, 2011
Publication Date: October 16, 2011
Citation: Lerch, R.N., Lin, C., Goyne, K.W., Garrett, H.E. 2011. Reducing herbicides and veterinary antibiotics losses from agroecosystems using vegetative buffers [abstract]. ASA-CSSA-SSSA Annual International Meeting, October 16-19, 2011, San Antonio, TX. 389-1.

Technical Abstract: Multiple species vegetative buffer strips (VBSs) have been recommended as an effective approach to mitigate agrochemical transport in surface runoff while at the same time offering a broader range of long-term ecological and environmental benefits. However, the effect of VBS designs and species composition on reducing herbicide and veterinary antibiotic transport has not been well documented. An experiment consisting of three VBS designs and one continuous cultivated fallow control replicated in triplicate was conducted to assess effectiveness in reducing herbicide and antibiotic transport for claypan soils. The three VBS designs include (i) tall fescue, (ii) tall fescue with a switchgrass hedge barrier, and (iii) native vegetation (largely eastern gamagrass). Rainfall simulation was used to create uniform antecedent soil moisture content in the plots and to generate runoff. Our results suggested that all VBS significantly reduced the transport of dissolved and sediment-bound atrazine, metolachlor, and glyphosate in surface runoff by 58 to 72 percent. Four to 8 m of any tested VBS reduced dissolved sulfamethazine transport in the surface runoff by more than 70 percent. The tall fescue VBS was overall most effective at reducing dissolved tylosin and enrofloxacin transport in the runoff (>75 percent). The developed exponential regression models can be used to predict expected field-scale results and provide design criteria for effective field implementation of grass buffers. Our study has demonstrated that an optimized VBS design may achieve desired agrochemical reductions and minimize acreage removed from crop production.

Last Modified: 9/10/2014
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