Submitted to: ASA-CSSA-SSSA Annual Meeting Abstracts
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 7/11/2017
Publication Date: N/A
Technical Abstract: Integrated crop-livestock (ICL) systems have shown potential to achieve environmentally sustainable production of crop and livestock products with regards to improved soil health. Reduction of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions relative to crop and/or livestock only production systems would increase sustainability in ICL systems. Greenhouse gas flux data were collected using static chambers starting in October 2016 in a central North Dakota ICL plot-scale study with a corn/soybean intercrop (Zea mays L., Glycine max (L.) Merr.)-spring wheat (Triticum aestivum L.)-perennial and annual cover crop mixture under no-till management. Objectives of this study were to: 1) determine effects of grazing crop residue and cover crops on GHG fluxes, 2) quantify GHG fluxes of grazing in ICL systems and grass pastures, and 3) quantify GHG fluxes of grazed and ungrazed plots. Cropped plots in ICL systems had greater CO2 and N2O fluxes compared to grass pastures, while no differences were apparent thus far for CH4 flux. Grazing in both cropped and grass plots slightly increased CO2 flux during times of cattle presence, while CH4 and N2O fluxes were unaffected. Uptake of atmospheric CH4 was observed consistently in all plots, regardless of whether they were cropped or grass and grazed or ungrazed. While croplands had increased emissions compared to a grass pasture, grazing of cover crops and crop residue in ICL systems did not substantially increase GHG emissions. Continued determination of GHG fluxes in ICL systems will allow for evaluation of impacts throughout the rest of the crop rotation.