Submitted to: Agronomy Abstracts
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: October 26, 1997
Publication Date: N/A
Technical Abstract: We determined the early changes in several pools of organic carbon and nitrogen as a result of bermudagrass pasture management on variably eroded Cecil-Madison-Pacolet soils (clayey, kaolinitic, thermic Typic Kanhapludults) in the Southern Appalachian Piedmont. Grazing pressure to maintain 1.5 Mg available forage/ha resulted in higher soil microbial biomass and potentially mineralizable carbon near the soil surface than grazing pressure to maintain 3 Mg available forage/ha. Both grazing pressures resulted in an accumulation of more active soil C pools than hayed (forage removed monthly) or unhayed (no forage removed) systems. Particulate organic and total carbon and nitrogen were not significantly affected by grazing pressure or nitrogen source (200 kg N/ha/yr supplied by either inorganic, crimson clover plus inorganic, or broiler litter) during the first two years. Our results indicate that steers grazing broiler-littered summer forage can have a beneficial impact on soil quality properties that lead to increased plant and animal productivity, economic utilization of animal by-products, and improved nutrient cycling in a diverse landscape.