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ARS Home » Plains Area » Temple, Texas » Grassland Soil and Water Research Laboratory » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #354285

Research Project: Resilient Management Systems and Decision Support Tools to Optimize Agricultural Production and Watershed Responses from Field to National Scale

Location: Grassland Soil and Water Research Laboratory

Title: Forage yield estimation with a process-based simulation model

Author
item Kiniry, James
item Kim, S - Oak Ridge Institute For Science And Education (ORISE)
item Meki, M - Texas Agrilife Research
item Johnson, Mv - Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS, USDA)

Submitted to: Book Chapter
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: 7/6/2018
Publication Date: 12/13/2018
Citation: Kiniry, J.R., Kim, S., Meki, M.N., Johnson, M.V. 2018. Forage yield estimation with a process-based simulation model. In: Edvan, R.L., Santos, E.M., editors. Forage Groups. p. 35-52. Available: https://www.intechopen.com/books/forage-groups/forage-yield-estimation-with-a-process-based-simulation-model.

Interpretive Summary: A computer simulation model of natural grasslands and improved pastures can be used to compare forage productivity and stability of forage productivity across years, regions, and management. Model simulations can help farmers develop management to optimize livestock stocking rates and nutrient management for native and improved grasses on different soils with varying rainfall amounts. Likewise, forages are adapted to a wide variety of soils, rainfall zones, and latitudes. The objective of this chapter is to describe the ALMANAC model that simulates a wide variety of environmental and management impacts on forage production, soil health, and conservation concerns, including nutrient and sediment losses. We describe the various processes simulated in the model and input data requirements. We also describe how to derive parameters to simulate various forage plant species. The model has been applied to simulate forage yields across years and diverse environments in the U.S. and tested using published forage yield data from Natural Resources Conservation Service, United States Dept. of Agric. Many common native and introduced grasses or grass mixtures in the U.S. have been successfully simulated. We also describe and discuss knowledge gaps for the model that future research should address to improve this and similar simulation models.

Technical Abstract: A process-based simulation model of natural grasslands and improved pastures can be used to compare mean productivity and stability of forage productivity across years, agroecological regions, and management approaches. Model simulations can help farmers develop management to optimize livestock stocking rates and nutrient management for native and improved grasses on different soils with varying rainfall amounts. Likewise, forages are adapted to a wide variety of soils, rainfall zones, and latitudes. The objective of this chapter is to describe the ALMANAC model that simulates a wide variety of environmental and management impacts on forage production, soil health, and conservation concerns, including nutrient and sediment losses. We describe the various processes simulated in the model and input data requirements. We also describe how to derive plant parameters for various forage plant species. The model has been applied to simulate forage yields across years and diverse environments in the U.S. and tested using published forage yield data from Natural Resources Conservation Service, United States Dept. of Agric. Many common native and introduced grasses or grass mixtures in the U.S. have been successfully simulated. We also describe and discuss knowledge gaps for the model that future research should address to improve this and similar simulation models.