Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 10/17/2003
Publication Date: 10/17/2003
Citation: Franzluebbers, A.J. Pasture management strategies for sequestering soil carbon. Meeting Abstract. 2003.
Technical Abstract: Pasturelands account for 51 million hectares of the 212 million hectares of privately held grazing land in the USA. Tall fescue is the most important cool-season perennial forage for many beef cattle producers in the humid region of the USA. A fungal endophyte, Neotyphodium coenophialum, infects the majority of tall fescue stands with a mutualistic association. Ergot alkaloids produced by the endophyte have major negative impacts on cattle performance. Tall fescue pastures with high endophyte infection had greater concentration of soil organic carbon, but lower concentration of biologically active soil carbon than with low endophyte infection. One experiment suggested that endophyte-infected leaf tissue hay directly inhibit the activity of soil microorganisms. Another experiment suggested that both dry matter production and soil microbial activity could be affected by endophyte. Further work is being conducted to verify these preliminary results concerning the effect of endophyte infection on soil carbon sequestration.