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ARS Home » Northeast Area » University Park, Pennsylvania » Pasture Systems & Watershed Management Research » Research » Research Project #433087

Research Project: APEX Modeling of Temperate Humid Pastures

Location: Pasture Systems & Watershed Management Research

Project Number: 8070-21000-009-08-S
Project Type: Non-Assistance Cooperative Agreement

Start Date: Jul 15, 2017
End Date: Sep 30, 2019

Objective:
Model temperate humid pasturelands using the Agricultural Policy/Environmental eXtender (APEX) simulation model and existing datasets. Specific objectives include: 1) Parameterize APEX model for use with cool-season temperate forage species based on extant pasture data; 2) Develop tools for automating the creation of APEX input files; 3) Integrate APEX model results with ecologically-based regional and national decision support tools for pasture management; and 4) Provide tools, datasets, and APEX model results to the Conservation Effects Assessment Project (CEAP) Grazing Lands team.

Approach:
The APEX simulation model has been selected for use in CEAP Grazing Lands projects to quantify the implications of management practices for pasture and rangelands. This model simulates grazing effectively in rangelands, but has not yet been parameterized for temperate humid pasture systems. Existing and novel data on forage species traits and pasture plant communities will be used to parameterize the model, to assess its sensitivity to species parameters, and to enable the use of APEX for all US grazing lands. The deliverables from this work will include modeling tools and parameterizations, comparison of model results to existing datasets, and the major component of the scientific underpinnings of a new pasture management decision support tool.