Location: Delta Water Management ResearchTitle: Irrigation water management tools and alternative irrigation sources trends and perceptions by farmers from the Delta regions of the Lower Mississippi River Basin in South Central USA
|QUINTANA-ASHWELL, NICOLAS - Mississippi State University|
|GHOLSON, DREW - Mississippi State University|
|KAUR, GURPREET - Mississippi State University|
|KRUTZ, L.JASON - Mississippi State University|
|HENRY, CHRISTOPHER - University Of Arkansas|
|COOKE, III, TREY - The Nature Conservancy|
Submitted to: Agronomy
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 3/22/2022
Publication Date: 4/7/2022
Citation: Quintana-Ashwell, N., Gholson, D., Kaur, G., Krutz, L., Henry, C.G., Cooke, III, T., Massey, J., Reba, M.L., Locke, M.A. 2022. Irrigation water management tools and alternative irrigation sources trends and perceptions by farmers from the Delta regions of the Lower Mississippi River Basin in South Central USA. Agronomy. 12(4):894. https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy12040894.
Interpretive Summary: This research addresses the issue of aquifer depletion in the Lower Mississippi River Basin (LMRB) and the need to better understand the factors that cause farmers to adopt irrigation conservation practices and willingness to switch to surface water sources. This research asked 466 farmers in the Lower Mississippi River Basin (LMRB) their opinions of different irrigation water management tools and of thir knowledge of how alternative sources of irrigation water can be used to replace groundwater. A key finding was that the longer a farmer has farmed, the less likely it was that the farmer used practices that conserved groundwater. This research suggests that older farmers may require additional considerations and outreach approaches in terms of fostering irrigation conservation in the LMRB. This research provides useful information as farmer experience may be an important factor to consider when designing future extension outreach and training related irrigation conservation practices.
Technical Abstract: This article describes the opinions and perceptions of farmers on water management tools that conserve groundwater and on alternative sources of water for irrigation. The analysis is based on a survey of producers (N = 466) across the Lower Mississippi River Basin (LMRB) areas of Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Missouri. Summary statistics of practice usage across the region and for each state are presented. A Poisson count model is applied to the data to identify factors that influence the number of groundwater-conserving practices employed. The number of irrigated acres, years of farming, annual income level, perception of groundwater problems, and participation in conservation programs have statistically significant association with the number of practices employed. Years of farming experience is the only factor negatively associated with the number of practices employed while participation in conservation programs has the largest magnitude effect on that number.