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Journal ArticleDOI

Combining targeted grass traits with red clover improves grassland performance and reduces need for nitrogen fertilisation

TL;DR: In this paper, the role of red clover (cv. AberClaret) in minimising nitrogen (N) requirements, alongside two novel grass varieties, (1) a festulolium (v. AberNiche), developed for drought tolerance, with potential for deep-rooting, and (2) a ryegrass hybrid (CV. AberEcho) developed for high-sugar content, which may enhance ruminant N-uptake in vitro.
About: This article is published in European Journal of Agronomy.The article was published on 2022-02-01 and is currently open access. It has received 2 citations till now. The article focuses on the topics: Agronomy & Dry matter.
Citations
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Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this paper , an electronic agricultural record (EAR) is proposed to integrate many separate datasets into a unified dataset, and to store and manage the agricultural big data, an agricultural data warehouse based on Hive and Elasticsearch is built.
Abstract: Abstract Nutrients are important to promote plant growth and nutrient deficiency is the primary factor limiting crop production. However, excess fertilisers can also have a negative impact on crop quality and yield, cause an increase in pollution and decrease producer profit. Hence, determining the suitable quantities of fertiliser for every crop is very useful. Currently, the agricultural systems with internet of things make very large data volumes. Exploiting agricultural Big Data will help to extract valuable information. However, designing and implementing a large scale agricultural data warehouse are very challenging. The data warehouse is a key module to build a smart crop system to make proficient agronomy recommendations. In our paper, an electronic agricultural record (EAR) is proposed to integrate many separate datasets into a unified dataset. Then, to store and manage the agricultural Big Data, we built an agricultural data warehouse based on Hive and Elasticsearch. Finally, we applied some statistical methods based on our data warehouse to extract fertiliser information such as a case study. These statistical methods propose the recommended quantities of fertiliser components across a wide range of environmental and crop management conditions, such as nitrogen ( N ), phosphorus ( P ) and potassium ( K ) for the top ten most popular crops in EU.

8 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this article , a low-intensity sheep (>5 ewe ha−1) grazed grassland, dominated by Lolium perenne, was disassembled into a series of interlinked 15N-tracer experiments in North Wales during a summer growing season to assess fertiliser-N partitioning.

3 citations

References
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Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: Despite large differences in environmental conditions, such as N fertilization and geographic location, N2 fixation (Nfix) was significantly (P<0.001) correlated to legume dry matter yield (DM; kg per ha and year).
Abstract: Nitrogen acquisition is one of the most important factors for plant production, and N contribution from biological N2 fixation can reduce the need for industrial N fertilizers. Perennial forages are widespread in temperate and boreal areas, where much of the agriculture is based on livestock production. Due to the symbiosis with N2-fixing rhizobia, perennial forage legumes have great potential to increase sustainability in such grassland farming systems. The present work is a summary of a large number of studies investigating N2 fixation in three perennial forage legumes primarily relating to ungrazed northern temperate/boreal areas. Reported rates of N2 fixation in above-ground plant tissues were in the range of up to 373 kg N ha−1 year−1 in red clover (Trifolium pratense L.), 545 kg N ha−1 year−1 in white clover (T. repens L.) and 350 kg N ha−1 year−1 in alfalfa (Medicago sativa L.). When grown in mixtures with grasses, these species took a large fraction of their nitrogen from N2 fixation (average around 80%), regardless of management, dry matter yield and location. There was a large variation in N2 fixation data and part of this variation was ascribed to differences in plant production between years. Studies with experiments at more than one site showed that also geographic location was an important source of variation. On the other hand, when all data were plotted against latitude, there was no simple correlation. Climatic conditions seem therefore to give as high N2 fixation per ha and year in northern areas (around 60°N) as in areas with a milder climate (around 40°N). Analyzing whole plants or just above-ground plant parts influenced the estimate of N2 fixation, and most reported values were underestimated since roots were not included. Despite large differences in environmental conditions, such as N fertilization and geographic location, N2 fixation (Nfix; kg N per ha and year) was significantly (P<0.001) correlated to legume dry matter yield (DM; kg per ha and year). Very rough, but nevertheless valuable estimations of Nfix in legume/grass mixtures (roots not considered) are given by Nfix = 0.026ċDM + 7 for T. pratense, Nfix = 0.031ċDM + 24 for T. repens, and Nfix = 0.021ċDM + 17 for M. sativa.

411 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this article, the authors investigated the potential of using perennial ryegrass with a high concentration of watersoluble carbohydrate (WSC) to increase the efficiency of milk production.
Abstract: Eight multiparous Holstein‐Friesian dairy cows in late lactation were used to investigate the potential of using perennial ryegrass with a high concentration of watersoluble carbohydrate (WSC) to increase the efficiency of milk production. After a pretreatment period on a common pasture, the cows were each given ad libitum access to one of two varieties of zero-grazed grass continuously for 3 weeks. Treatments were: high sugar (HS), an experimental perennial ryegrass variety bred to contain high concentrations of WSC; or control, a standard variety of perennial ryegrass (cv. AberElan) containing typical concentrations of WSC. The two grass varieties were matched in terms of heading date. All animals also received 4 kg day ‐1 standard dairy concentrate. Grass dry matter (DM) intake was not significantly different between treatments (11AE6 vs. 10AE7 kg DM day ‐1 ; s.e.d. 0AE95 for HS and control diets respectively), although DM digestibility was higher on the HS diet (0AE71 vs. 0AE64 g g ‐1 DM; s.e.d. 0AE23; P <0 AE01) leading to higher digestible DM intakes for that diet. Milk yield from animals offered the HS diet was higher (15AE3 vs. 12AE6 kg day ‐1 ; s.e.d. 0AE87; P <0 AE05) and, although milk constituent concentrations were unaffected by treatment, milk protein yields were significantly increased on the HS diet. The partitioning of feed N was significantly affected by diet, with more N from the HS diet being used for milk production (0AE30 vs. 0AE23 g milk N g ‐1 feed N; s.e.d. 0AE012; P <0 AE01) and less being excreted in urine (0AE25 vs. 0AE35; s.e.d. 0AE020; P <0 AE01). In a separate experiment, using the same grasses harvested earlier in the season, the fractional rate of DM degradation, measured by in situ and gas production techniques, was higher for the HS grass than for the control. It is concluded that increased digestible DM intakes of the HS grass led to increased milk yields, whereas increased efficiency of utilization of the HS grass in the rumen resulted in the more efficient use of feed N for milk production and reduced N excretion.

375 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The N-Calculator as mentioned in this paper is a tool that provides information on how individual and collective action can result in the loss of reactive nitrogen (N r ) to the environment.
Abstract: The human use of reactive nitrogen (N r ) in the environment has profound beneficial and detrimental impacts on all people. Its beneficial impacts result from food production and industrial application. The detrimental impacts occur because most of the N r used in food production and the entire amount of N r formed during fossil fuel combustion are lost to the environment where it causes a cascade of environmental changes that negatively impact both people and ecosystems. We developed a tool called N-Calculator, a nitrogen footprint model that provides information on how individual and collective action can result in the loss of N r to the environment. The N-Calculator focuses on food and energy consumption, using average per capita data for a country. When an individual uses the N-Calculator, the country average is scaled based on the individual's answers to questions about resource consumption. N footprints were calculated for the United States and the Netherlands, which were found to be 41 kg N/capita/yr and 24 kg N/capita/yr, respectively. For both countries, the food portion of the footprint is the largest, and the food production N footprints are greater than the food consumption N footprints. The overarching message from the N-Calculator is that our lifestyle choices, and especially our food consumption, have major impacts on the N r losses to the environment. Communicating this message to all of the stakeholders (the public, policymakers, and governments) through tools like the N-Calculator will help reduce N r losses to the environment.

374 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: Calculations suggest that breeding crop plants with deeper and bushy root ecosystems could simultaneously improve both the soil structure and its steady-state carbon, water and nutrient retention, as well as sustainable plant yields.

336 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
01 Jun 2013-Animal
TL;DR: Major dietary strategies to mitigating N2O emission from cattle operations include reducing dietary N content or increasing energy content, and increasing dietary mineral content to increase urine volume.
Abstract: Ruminant production contributes to emissions of nitrogen (N) to the environment, principally ammonia (NH3), nitrous oxide (N2O) and di-nitrogen (N2) to air, nitrate (NO3 -) to groundwater and particulate N to surface waters. Variation in dietary N intake will particularly affect excretion of urinary N, which is much more vulnerable to losses than is faecal N. Our objective is to review dietary effects on the level and form of N excreted in cattle urine, as well as its consequences for emissions of N2O. The quantity of N excreted in urine varies widely. Urinary N excretion, in particular that of urea N, is decreased upon reduction of dietary N intake or an increase in the supply of energy to the rumen microorganisms and to the host animal itself. Most of the N in urine (from 50% to well over 90%) is present in the form of urea. Other nitrogenous components include purine derivatives (PD), hippuric acid, creatine and creatinine. Excretion of PD is related to rumen microbial protein synthesis, and that of hippuric acid to dietary concentration of degradable phenolic acids. The N concentration of cattle urine ranges from 3 to 20 g/l. High-dietary mineral levels increase urine volume and lead to reduced urinary N concentration as well as reduced urea concentration in plasma and milk. In lactating dairy cattle, variation in urine volume affects the relationship between milk urea and urinary N excretion, which hampers the use of milk urea as an accurate indicator of urinary N excretion. Following its deposition in pastures or in animal houses, ubiquitous microorganisms in soil and waters transform urinary N components into ammonium (NH4 +), and thereafter into NO3 - and ultimately in N2 accompanied with the release of N2O. Urinary hippuric acid, creatine and creatinine decompose more slowly than urea. Hippuric acid may act as a natural inhibitor of N2O emissions, but inhibition conditions have not been defined properly yet. Environmental and soil conditions at the site of urine deposition or manure application strongly influence N2O release. Major dietary strategies to mitigating N2O emission from cattle operations include reducing dietary N content or increasing energy content, and increasing dietary mineral content to increase urine volume. For further reduction of N2O emission, an integrated animal nutrition and excreta management approach is required.

285 citations