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Sample records for semi-arid pedo-climatic condition

  1. Microbiological parameters and maturity degree during composting of Posidonia oceanica residues mixed with vegetable wastes in semi-arid pedo-climatic condition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saidi, Neyla; Kouki, Soulwene; M'hiri, Fadhel; Jedidi, Naceur; Mahrouk, Meriam; Hassen, Abdennaceur; Ouzari, Hadda

    2009-01-01

    The aim of this study was to characterize the biological stability and maturity degree of compost during a controlled pile-composting trial of mixed vegetable residues (VR) collected from markets of Tunis City with residues of Posidonia oceanica (PoR), collected from Tunis beaches. The accumulation in beaches (as well as their removal) constitutes a serious environmental problem in all Mediterranean countries particularly in Tunisia. Aerobic-thermophilic composting is the most reasonable way to profit highly-valuable content of organic matter in these wastes for agricultural purposes. The physical, chemical, and biological parameters were monitored during composting over 150 d. The most appropriate parameters were selected to establish the maturity degree. The main result of this research was the deduction of the following maturity criterion: (a) C/N ratio 80%. These five parameters, considered jointly are indicative of a high maturity degree and thus of a high-quality organic amendment which employed in a rational way, may improve soil fertility and soil quality. The mature compost was relatively rich in N (13.0 g/kg), P (4.74 g/kg) and MgO (15.80 g/kg). Thus composting definitively constitutes the most optimal option to exploit these wastes.

  2. Process-based modelling of a headwater catchment in semi-arid conditions: the influence of macropore flow

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schaik, N.L.M.B.; Bronstert, A.; Jong, S.M.; Jetten, V.G.; Dam, van J.C.; Ritsema, C.J.; Schnabel, S.

    2014-01-01

    Subsurface stormflow is thought to occur mainly in humid environments with steep terrains. However, in semi-arid areas, preferential flow through macropores can also result in a significant contribution of subsurface stormflow to catchment runoff for varying catchment conditions. Most hydrological

  3. Sediment delivery ratio in a small semi-arid watershed under conditions of low connectivity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julio Cesar Neves dos Santos

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT The semi-arid region in the northeast of Brazil is characterised by rains of high intensity and short duration, with the processes of erosion being aggravated by an inappropriate land-use model. In this region, the lack of measured data for runoff and sediment yield increases the need to apply hydro-sedimentological models in estimating erosion, requiring knowledge of the actual sediment delivery ratio for the region. The aim of this study therefore, was to map soil erosion, making use of the Universal Soil Loss Equation (USLE, in the Iguatu Experimental Watershed (IEW. The mean annual sediment delivery ratio (SDR, and the SDR for individual events, was calculated from hydro-sedimentological measurements, contributing to an understanding of the processes of sediment propagation in the Brazilian semi-arid region, allowing identification of areas susceptible to water erosion. The IEW has an area of 16.74 km2 and is equipped with sensors for the continuous measurement of rainfall, flow and sediment yield. The mean annual SDR for the IEW was 0.37%. The SDR for individual rainfall events ranged from 0.08 to 1.67%, with an average of 0.68%. Among the main variables that influence the SDR for individual events is the magnitude of rainfall depth and antecedent soil moisture that can be better represented by the total antecedent precipitation of the previous 15 days. According to maps of soil loss, only 6.27% of the watershed presented losses beyond tolerable limits.

  4. Simulating the impact of no-till systems on field water fluxes and maize productivity under semi-arid conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mupangwa, W.; Jewitt, G. P. W.

    Crop output from the smallholder farming sector in sub-Saharan Africa is trailing population growth leading to widespread household food insecurity. It is therefore imperative that crop production in semi-arid areas be improved in order to meet the food demand of the ever increasing human population. No-till farming practices have the potential to increase crop productivity in smallholder production systems of sub-Saharan Africa, but rarely do because of the constraints experienced by these farmers. One of the most significant of these is the consumption of mulch by livestock. In the absence of long term on-farm assessment of the no-till system under smallholder conditions, simulation modelling is a tool that provides an insight into the potential benefits and can highlight shortcomings of the system under existing soil, climatic and socio-economic conditions. Thus, this study was designed to better understand the long term impact of no-till system without mulch cover on field water fluxes and maize productivity under a highly variable rainfall pattern typical of semi-arid South Africa. The simulated on-farm experiment consisted of two tillage treatments namely oxen-drawn conventional ploughing (CT) and ripping (NT). The APSIM model was applied for a 95 year period after first being calibrated and validated using measured runoff and maize yield data. The predicted results showed significantly higher surface runoff from the conventional system compared to the no-till system. Predicted deep drainage losses were higher from the NT system compared to the CT system regardless of the rainfall pattern. However, the APSIM model predicted 62% of the annual rainfall being lost through soil evaporation from both tillage systems. The predicted yields from the two systems were within 50 kg ha -1 difference in 74% of the years used in the simulation. In only 9% of the years, the model predicted higher grain yield in the NT system compared to the CT system. It is suggested that

  5. Soil tillage and water infiltration in semi-arid Morocco: the role fo surface and sub-surface soil conditions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dimanche, P.H.; Hoogmoed, W.B.

    2002-01-01

    Production of cereals in a dryland farming system forms an important part of agricultural production in Morocco. Yield levels on the Saïs Plateau between Meknès and Fez in the semi-arid zone, however, remain low possibly because of sub-optimum water use due to inefficient tillage systems. A study

  6. Initiation of soil formation in weathered sulfidic Cu-Pb-Zn tailings under subtropical and semi-arid climatic conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    You, Fang; Dalal, Ram; Huang, Longbin

    2018-08-01

    Field evidence has been scarce about soil (or technosol) formation and direct phytostabilization of base metal mine tailings under field conditions. The present study evaluated key attributes of soil formation in weathered and neutral Cu-Pb-Zn tailings subject to organic amendment (WC: woodchips) and colonization of pioneer native plant species (mixed native woody and grass plant species) in a 2.5-year field trial under subtropical and semi-arid climatic conditions. Key soil indicators of engineered soil formation process were characterized, including organic carbon fractions, aggregation, microbial community and key enzymatic activities. The majority (64-87%) of the OC was stabilized in microaggregate or organo-mineral complexes in the amended tailings. The levels of OC and water soluble OC were elevated by 2-3 folds across the treatments, with the highest level in the treatment of WC and plant colonization (WC+P). Specifically, the WC+P treatment increased the proportion of water stable macroaggregates. Plants further contributed to the N rich organic matter in the tailings, favouring organo-mineral interactions and organic stabilization. Besides, the plants played a major role in boosting microbial biomass and activities in the treated tailings. WC and plants enhanced the contents of organic carbon (OC) associated with aggregates (e.g., physically protected OC), formation of water-stable aggregates (e.g., micro and macroaggregates), chemical buffering capacity (e.g., cation exchange capacity). Microbial community and enzymatic activities were also stimulated in the amended tailings. The present results showed that the formation of functional technosol was initiated in the eco-engineered and weathered Cu-Pb-Zn tailings under field conditions for direct phytostabilization. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Effect of complementary irrigation on yield components and alternate bearing of a traditional olive orchard in semi-arid conditions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lodolini, E.M.; Polverigiani, S.; Ali, S.; Mutawea, M.; Qutub, M.; Pierini, F.; Neri, D.

    2016-11-01

    Traditional olive orchards are usually not irrigated in the Mediterranean basin, but at those latitudes, the yearly rainfall is frequently insufficient to support equilibrated vegetative growth and high fruit and oil production. This three-year field study investigated the effect of complementary irrigation on olive tree vegetative growth, fruit and oil yield during a biennial alternate bearing cycle in a traditional grove under semi-arid conditions. Adult olive trees (Olea europaea L. cv. Nabali Baladi) were subjected to complementary irrigation in 2011 and 2012 ('on' and 'off' years, respectively) with 6, 10, 15 or 20 m3 of water per tree per season, which corresponded to 14.2%, 23.8%, 35.7% and 47.6% of the whole seasonal evapotranspiration (42 m3 of water per year), respectively. Rain-fed trees were used as control. In 2013, no complementary irrigation was supplied, and any residual effects on the yield components were determined. Results showed that none of the irrigation regimes affected vegetative growth, or olive fruit size (mesocarp and endocarp), as fresh and dry weights. The fruit and oil yield per tree increased compared to the rain-fed conditions only when the threshold of 15 m3 was exceeded, thus inducing a higher crop load compared to the rain-fed control during the 'off' and even further during the 'on' year. No residual effects were registered in 2013. The study showed that complementary irrigation of at least 35% of the seasonal water requirement can produce remarkable positive effects on fruit yield especially during 'on' bearing years. (Author)

  8. Effect of complementary irrigation on yield components and alternate bearing of a traditional olive orchard in semi-arid conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Enrico M. Lodolini

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Traditional olive orchards are usually not irrigated in the Mediterranean basin, but at those latitudes, the yearly rainfall is frequently insufficient to support equilibrated vegetative growth and high fruit and oil production. This three-year field study investigated the effect of complementary irrigation on olive tree vegetative growth, fruit and oil yield during a biennial alternate bearing cycle in a traditional grove under semi-arid conditions. Adult olive trees (Olea europaea L. cv. Nabali Baladi were subjected to complementary irrigation in 2011 and 2012 ('on' and 'off' years, respectively with 6, 10, 15 or 20 m3 of water per tree per season, which corresponded to 14.2%, 23.8%, 35.7% and 47.6% of the whole seasonal evapotranspiration (42 m3 of water per year, respectively. Rain-fed trees were used as control. In 2013, no complementary irrigation was supplied, and any residual effects on the yield components were determined. Results showed that none of the irrigation regimes affected vegetative growth, or olive fruit size (mesocarp and endocarp, as fresh and dry weights. The fruit and oil yield per tree increased compared to the rain-fed conditions only when the threshold of 15 m3 was exceeded, thus inducing a higher crop load compared to the rain-fed control during the 'off' and even further during the 'on' year. No residual effects were registered in 2013. The study showed that complementary irrigation of at least 35% of the seasonal water requirement can produce remarkable positive effects on fruit yield especially during 'on' bearing years.

  9. Heat tolerance in Field Grown Tomatoes (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill.) under Semi Arid Conditions of West Africa

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kugblenu, Y O; Oppong Danso, E; Ofori, K

    2013-01-01

    One major reason for extremely low production of tomato in Ghana is that the length of the growing season last only for a few months due to the high temperature influx during the remaining months. The temperatures recorded during these months are above the optimum for tomato flowering and fruiting...... and this consequently affects yield. To solve this problem a number management practices may be undertaken such has growing heat tolerant tomato varieties or providing shade to mitigate the devastating effect of high temperatures. Therefore the present study was conducted outside the normal growing season from June...... to October, which has a mean temperature of 23°C. Heat tolerant tomato cultivars were grown from April to July with a mean temperature of 25°C to evaluate their performance under these conditions and to assess the effect of shading on the production of one of the genotypes. Fruiting percentage...

  10. Growth and bromatologic value of Typha sp. under semi-arid conditions

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    Jorge Messias Leal do Nascimento

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Typha sp. plants are rustic and have accelerated development. However, their real growth and potential to animal nutrition are not so well-known. This study aimed to evaluate the shoot biomass production, growth dynamics and chemicalbromatological composition of Typha sp. plants at different cutting heights, under semiarid conditions. A total of four cutting heights (60 cm, 100 cm, 140 cm and 180 cm were evaluated in a complete randomized design, with five replicates. Plants presented similar production of leaf biomass and heart of palm up to 140 cm height, with higher leaf accumulation above this value. Its heart of palm grows up to 112.5 cm and, above this height, only leaf elongation occurs. It is not recommended to cut this plant bellow 140 cm height, otherwise that can affect the pseudo-stem formation (heart of palm, which supports the leaf biomass accumulation.

  11. Yield gap analysis of Chickpea under semi-arid conditions: A simulation study

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    seyed Reza Amiri Deh ahmadi

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Yield gap analysis provides an essential framework to prioritize research and policy efforts aimed at reducing yield constraints. To identify options for increasing chickpea yield, the SSM-chickpea model was parameterized and evaluated to analyze yield potentials, water limited yields and yield gaps for nine regions representing major chickpea-growing areas of Razavi Khorasan province. The average potential yield of chickpea for the locations was 2251 kg ha-1, while the water limited yield was 1026 kg ha-1 indicating a 54% reduction in yield due to adverse soil moisture conditions. Also, the average irrigated and rainfed actual yields were respectively 64% and 79% less than simulated potential and water limited yields. Maximum and minimum yield gap between potential yield and actual yield were observed in Quchan and Torbat-jam respectively. Generally, yield gap showed an increasing trend from the north (including Nishabur, Mashhad, Quchan and Daregaz regions to the south of the province (Torbat- Jam and Gonabad. In addition, yield gap between simulated water limited potential yield and rainfed actual yield were very low because both simulated water limiting potential and average rainfed actual yields were low in these regions. Yield gap analysis provides an essential framework to prioritize research and policy efforts aimed at reducing yield constraints. To identify options for increasing chickpea yield, the SSM-chickpea model was parameterized and evaluated to analyze yield potentials, water limited yields and yield gaps for nine regions representing major chickpea-growing areas of Razavi Khorasan province. The average potential yield of chickpea for the locations was 2251 kg ha-1, while the water limited yield was 1026 kg ha-1 indicating a 54% reduction in yield due to adverse soil moisture conditions. Also, the average irrigated and rainfed actual yields were respectively 64% and 79% less than simulated potential and water limited yields

  12. Effect of nitrogen on partitioning and yield in grain sorghum under differing environmental conditions in the semi-arid tropics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Muchow, R.C.

    1990-01-01

    The effect of nitrogen (N) supply on the relative contributions of pre- and post-anthesis net above-ground biomass accumulation and N uptake to grain-yield and grain N concentration was examined in four contrasting environments in semi-arid tropical Australia. The four environments had different radiation and temperature regimes, and varying levels of water deficit. The grain-yield achieved under high N supply ranged from 156 to 621 g m −2 (on an oven-dry basis). In all but the lowest-yielding environment, there was substantial biomass accumulation during grain-filling and it increased with N application. Only in the lowest-yielding environment was there substantial mobilization of pre-anthesis biomass to grain. Biomass mobilization was not affected by N application. Nitrogen uptake during grain-filling was unresponsive to N application, and was small relative to total N uptake during the life-cycle. Mobilization of pre-anthesis N to the grain was much more significant. In all but the lowest-yielding environment, N mobilization increased with N application. Grain-yield under variable N supply and differing environmental conditions was not dependent on the proportions of pre- and post-anthesis growth. However, grain-yield was proportional to biomass at maturity over the entire yield range in this study and variability in biomass accounted for 95% of the variance in grain-yield. Similarly, grain N concentration was not related to the proportions of pre- and post-anthesis N uptake, but variability in total N uptake accounted for 92% of the variance in grain N accumulation. Consequently, there was no differential effect of N supply or environmental factors on yield physiology that could not be explained by their effect on biomass and N uptake. (author)

  13. Management of Brackish water for crop production under arid and semi-arid conditions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Murtaza, G.; Ghafoor, A.; Akhtar, S.; Shah, S.H.; Mahmood, N.

    2005-01-01

    For sustainable crop production, changing soil or water chemistry so as to counter the adverse effects of brackish water is a good option. This is normally accomplished by soil or water applied amendments such as gypsum. The other option of blending or cycling brackish and non-brackish water also has merits to reduce the potential hazards. The biological and organic amendments improve soil physical conditions which, otherwise, are expected to be deteriorated by the use of brackish water. Keeping this in view, a field experiment was conducted on a non saline-non sodic sandy loam soil (EC/sub e/ 1.31-1.76 dS m/sup -1/, pH = 8.47-8.61, SAR = 5.50-7.41, infiltration rate 0.6-0.8 cm/h, bulk density = 1.56-1.61 Mg m/sup -3/ for the upper 15 cm soil depth) to evaluate the growth response of cotton crop to different soil and water treatments. Treatments included: T/sub 1/ canal water), T/sub 2/ [tube well water (EC = 3.38 dS m/sup -1/, SAR = 16.43 and RSC = 5.57 mmol/sub c/ L/sup -1/)], T3 [cyclic use (alternate irrigations with canal and tube well waters)], T/sub 4/ (tube well water as such + FYM at the rate of 25 Mg ha/sup -1/annually) and T/sub 5/ (tube well water + gypsum at the rate of water gypsum requirement (WRSC to be decreased up to 00). During the first year of experimentation seed cotton yield was not significantly affected by the applied treatments and was in the decreasing order of: T/sub 3/ (2361 kg ha/sup -1/) > T/sub 4/ (2073 kg ha/sup -1/) > T 1 (2015 kg ha/sup -1/) > T/sub 5/ (2001 kg ha.1 and T 2 (1982 ha/sup -1/. Number of bolls picked per plant was in the decreasing order of: T 2 (33) > T/sub 4/ (32) > T/sub 1/ (31) > T/sub 3/ (30) and T/sub 5/ (26) with non-significant treatment differences. The pH, EC/sub e/ and SAR values remained below safe limits by this cotton (first) crop. (author)

  14. Effects of climate change on agriculture particularly in semi-arid tropics of the world with some examples of Ethiopian condition

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Demessie, Almaz

    2004-01-01

    Today climate change is a burning issue all over the world because of its global nature. Fears have arisen that, climate may be changing for the worse and its impact may be felt on agricultural production, which will reduce the supply of food to growing population, especially in developing countries. Climate change would affect various human activities. Agriculture is one of the activities, which can be seriously affected by climate change. Due to high inter-annual variability and uneven distribution of rainfall during the rainy season, recurrent droughts have been observed in semi-arid tropics of the world over the last three decades. As White (1996) pointed out rain fed agriculture in the semi-arid tropics is limited mostly by high climatic variability with principal limiting factor being rainfall. The main crops of traditional rain fed agriculture are sorghum, millet, maize, cowpea, pulses and sesame. There is a suggestion that increased CO 2 will benefit temperate and humid tropical agriculture more than that in the semi-arid tropics. During the process of photosynthesis plant species with the C 3 photosynthetic pathway tend to respond positively to increased CO 2 while the C 4 have a poor response. Since C 4 plants are mostly tropical crops, the situation will be worst over the areas (Parry, 1990). Climate change will alter the nature of occurrence of agricultural pests in terms of area. Warmer temperatures shorten the generation time; increase the development rate of epidemic. For example, assessment of the effect of global warming on the distribution of livestock disease suggests that pests at present limited to tropical countries may spread into other parts of the world, which have different climatic condition (ibid).(Author)

  15. Assessing anthropogenic impacts on limited water resources under semi-arid conditions: three-dimensional transient regional modelling in Jordan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rödiger, Tino; Magri, Fabien; Geyer, Stefan; Morandage, Shehan Tharaka; Ali Subah, H. E.; Alraggad, Marwan; Siebert, Christian

    2017-11-01

    Both increasing aridity and population growth strongly stress freshwater resources in semi-arid areas such as Jordan. The country's second largest governorate, Irbid, with over 1 million inhabitants, is already suffering from an annual water deficit of 25 million cubic meters (MCM). The population is expected to double within the next 20 years. Even without the large number of refugees from Syria, the deficit will likely increase to more then 50 MCM per year by 2035 The Governorate's exclusive resource is groundwater, abstracted by the extensive Al Arab and Kufr Asad well fields. This study presents the first three-dimensional transient regional groundwater flow model of the entire Wadi al Arab to answer important questions regarding the dynamic quality and availability of water within the catchment. Emphasis is given to the calculation and validation of the dynamic groundwater recharge, derived from a multi-proxy approach, including (1) a hydrological model covering a 30-years dataset, (2) groundwater level measurements and (3) information about springs. The model enables evaluation of the impact of abstraction on the flow regime and the groundwater budget of the resource. Sensitivity analyses of controlling parameters indicate that intense abstraction in the southern part of the Wadi al Arab system can result in critical water-level drops of 10 m at a distance of 16 km from the production wells. Moreover, modelling results suggest that observed head fluctuations are strongly controlled by anthropogenic abstraction rather than variable recharge rates due to climate changes.

  16. Development and water requirements of cowpea under climate change conditions in the Brazilian semi-arid region

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    Edmilson G. Cavalcante Junior

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT This study aimed to determine the impacts that climate change may cause on the development and evapotranspiration of cowpea, in semi-arid climate region of Northeast Brazil. The study was conducted in the municipalities of Apodi, Ipanguaçu and Mossoró, in the state of Rio Grande do Norte. In order to evaluate the influence of climate change on crop water consumption, changes in air temperature and relative humidity were simulated using the PRECIS climate model. Two scenarios of emissions were evaluated based on the report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change: a pessimistic named A2 and an optimistic B2. The duration of the crop cycle showed an average reduction of 14 and 23 days for the optimistic and pessimistic scenarios, respectively. Temperatures will be well above the limit tolerated by crop, which could have a negative impact on its development and yield. There will be a decrease in total evapotranspiration of 4.8%, considering the optimistic scenario, and 8.7% in the pessimistic scenario.

  17. Influence of rootstocks on growth, yield, fruit quality and leaf mineral element contents of pear cv. 'Santa Maria' in semi-arid conditions

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    Ali Ikinci

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Rootstocks play an essential role to determining orchard performance of fruit trees. Pyrus communisand Cydonia oblonga are widely used rootstocks for European pear cultivars. The lack of rootstocks adapted to different soil conditions and different grafted cultivars is widely acknowledged in pear culture. Cydonia rootstocks (clonal and Pyrus rootstocks (seedling or clonal have their advantages and disadvantages. In each case, site-specific environmental characteristics, specific cultivar response and production objectives must be considered before choosing the best rootstock. In this study, the influence of three Quince (BA 29, Quince A = MA, Quince C = MC and a local European pear seedling rootstocks on the scion yield, some fruit quality characteristics and leaf macro (N, P, K, Ca and Mg and micro element (Fe, Zn, Cu, Mn and B content of 'Santa Maria' pear (Pyrus communis L. were investigated. RESULTS: Trees on seedling rootstock had the highest annual yield, highest cumulative yield (kg tree−1, largest trunk cross-sectional area (TCSA, lowest yield efficiency and lowest cumulative yield (ton ha−1 in the 10th year after planting. The rootstocks had no significant effect on average fruit weight and fruit volume. Significantly higher fruit firmness was obtained on BA 29 and Quince A. The effect of rootstocks on the mineral element accumulation (N, K, Ca, Mg, Fe, Zn, Cu, Mn and B was significant. Leaf analysis showed that rootstocks used had different mineral uptake efficiencies throughout the early season. CONCLUSION: The results showed that the rootstocks strongly affected fruit yield, fruit quality and leaf mineral element uptake of 'Santa Maria' pear cultivar. Pear seedling and BA 29 rootstock found to be more prominent in terms of several characteristics for 'Santa Maria' pear cultivar that is grown in highly calcareous soil in semi-arid climate conditions. We determined the highest N, P (although insignificant, K, Ca, Mg, Fe

  18. Alternate furrow irrigation of four fresh-market tomato cultivars under semi-arid condition of Ethiopia – Part II: Physiological response

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    Ashinie Bogale

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Understanding the variation in physiological response to deficit irrigation together with better knowledge on physiological characteristics of different genotypes that contribute to drought adaptation mechanisms would be helpful in transferring different irrigation technologies to farmers. A field experiment was carried to investigate the physiological response of four tomato cultivars (Fetan, Chali, Cochoro and ARP Tomato d2 to moderate water deficit induced by alternate furrow irrigation (AFI and deficit irrigation (DI under semi-arid condition of Ethiopia during 2013 and 2014. The study also aimed at identifying physiological attributes to the fruit yield of tomato under different deficit irrigation techniques. A factorial combination of irrigation treatments and cultivar were arranged in a complete randomized design with three replicates. Results showed that stomatal conductance (g_s was significantly reduced while photosynthetic performance measured as chlorophyll fluorescence (Fv’/Fm’, relative water content (RWC and leaf ash content remained unaffected under deficit irrigations. Significant differences among cultivars were found for water use efficiency (WUE, g_s, chlorophyll content (Chl_SPAD, normal difference vegetation index (NDVI, leaf ash content and fruit growth rate. However, cultivar differences in WUE were more accounted for by the regulation of g_s, therefore, g_s could be useful for breeders for screening large numbers of genotypes with higher WUE under deficit irrigation condition. The study result also demonstrated that cultivar with traits that contribute to achieve higher yields under deficit irrigation strategies has the potential to increase WUE.

  19. Vertical and temporal variation in phytoplankton assemblages correlated with environmental conditions in the Mundaú reservoir, semi-arid northeastern Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lira, G A S T; Moura, A N; Vilar, M C P; Cordeiro-Araújo, M K; Bittencourt-Oliveira, M C

    2014-08-01

    The goal of this study was to analyse the vertical structure of the phytoplankton community at the Mundaú reservoir, located in the semi-arid region of northeastern Brazil, and to correlate it to environmental conditions over two distinct seasons, dry and rainy. Samples were collected bimonthly at eight depths in the dry and rainy season for analyses of the physical and chemical variables of the water, as well as density, abundance, dominance, species diversity index and equitability of the community. Analysis of variance (ANOVA-two way) was used to analyse the vertical and seasonal differences, and Canonical Correspondence Analysis (CCA) was used to assess associations between phytoplankton and environmental variables Cylindrospermopsis raciborskii (Woloszynska) Seenaya and Subba Raju was the only dominant species and Geitlerinema amphibium (C. Agardh) Anagnostidis, Merismopedia punctata Meyen and Synedra rumpens Kützing. Others six taxa were abundant in at least one of the samples. Distinct vertical distribution patterns were observed for the abundant taxa between depths and seasons. The cyanobacteria, with the exception of C. raciborskii, showed similar seasonal patterns, with higher densities in the dry season. The CCA showed a strong correlation between the density of the phytoplanktonic species and abiotic variables. The vertical changes in abundant taxa revealed distinct patterns regulated by the variation in the environmental factors that were directly linked to seasonality, with the success of one or more species being dependent on their life strategies and ecological needs. The present study restates the importance of environmental and seasonal factors for phytoplankton composition and distribution in a freshwater tropical reservoir through a vertical gradient.

  20. Vertical and temporal variation in phytoplankton assemblages correlated with environmental conditions in the Mundaú reservoir, semi-arid northeastern Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    GAST LIRA

    Full Text Available The goal of this study was to analyse the vertical structure of the phytoplankton community at the Mundaú reservoir, located in the semi-arid region of northeastern Brazil, and to correlate it to environmental conditions over two distinct seasons, dry and rainy. Samples were collected bimonthly at eight depths in the dry and rainy season for analyses of the physical and chemical variables of the water, as well as density, abundance, dominance, species diversity index and equitability of the community. Analysis of variance (ANOVA-two way was used to analyse the vertical and seasonal differences, and Canonical Correspondence Analysis (CCA was used to assess associations between phytoplankton and environmental variables Cylindrospermopsis raciborskii (Woloszynska Seenaya and Subba Raju was the only dominant species and Geitlerinema amphibium (C. Agardh Anagnostidis, Merismopedia punctata Meyen and Synedra rumpens Kützing. Others six taxa were abundant in at least one of the samples. Distinct vertical distribution patterns were observed for the abundant taxa between depths and seasons. The cyanobacteria, with the exception of C. raciborskii, showed similar seasonal patterns, with higher densities in the dry season. The CCA showed a strong correlation between the density of the phytoplanktonic species and abiotic variables. The vertical changes in abundant taxa revealed distinct patterns regulated by the variation in the environmental factors that were directly linked to seasonality, with the success of one or more species being dependent on their life strategies and ecological needs. The present study restates the importance of environmental and seasonal factors for phytoplankton composition and distribution in a freshwater tropical reservoir through a vertical gradient.

  1. Carbon and water dynamics of a bioenergy crop (Cynara cardunculus L. under different meteorological conditions in a semi-arid region

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    Gianfranco Rana

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available To evaluate the environmental adaptability of cultivated cardoon (Cynara cardunculus L. its water use efficiency [(WUE – ratio between net ecosystem exchange (NEE and evapotranspiration (ET] was analysed. The crop was cultivated in South Italy and WUE was evaluated at different time scales during two seasons: wet and dry. Even if the crop development is similar in the two seasons, plants delay their development in the presence of drought, showing, in this way, an improvement in their adaptability. Seasonal WUE in the dry season is greater than in the wet one by +11.2%, and this is also confirmed at monthly and daily scale. Hourly analysis around the full development phase shows that WUE is greater during the wet season than during the dry one, this being explainable when considering the impact of the drivers [(photosynthetically active radiation (PAR, vapour pressure deficit (VPD, and air temperature (Tair] on CO2 and H2O exchanges by stomatal regulation. The saturation values of NEE in function of PAR (threshold 2.5 MJ m–2h–1 and VPD (threshold 10 hPa are greater during the wet season than the dry one. Furthermore, also the linear relationships between ET and PAR and VPD showed higher slopes in the wet season than in the dry one. Drought causes reduction in both photosynthesis and evapotranspiration by stomatal regulation, however, the photosynthesis process is surely more sensitive to water stress than the crop transpiration, thus demonstrating the good adaptability of this crop to scarce water availability of semi-arid conditions.

  2. Use of the tritium thermonuclear peak in the deep unsaturated zone for quantitative estimate of aquifer recharge under semi-arid conditions: first application in Sahel

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cheikh Becaye Gaye; Aranyossy, J.F.

    1992-01-01

    The location of the bomb tritium signal at 20 and 12 m depth in the unsaturated sand dunes in the semi-arid part of North Senegal leads to a qualitative estimate of the effective infiltration of 22 and 26 mm.yr -1 . These figures correspond respectively to 6.5 and 8% of the total precipitation since 1963. Tritium content distribution in interstitial water is modelled by convolution of the analytical solution of the dispersion equation. Best fitting of the complete 12 m depth tritium peak is obtained with a dispersion coefficient of 0.03 m 2 .yr -1

  3. Pathways to Resilience in Semi-Arid Economies | CRDI - Centre de ...

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    Pathways to Resilience in Semi-Arid Economies. How can populations become resilient to climate change while pursuing economic growth? This question is at the heart of a research project designed to support climate-resilient economic development in semi-arid lands. It will do so by addressing the conditions for ...

  4. Screening of efficient arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi for Azadirachta indica under nursery condition: a step towards afforestation of semi-arid region of western India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. Banerjee

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available To optimize nursery practices for efficient plant production procedures and to keep up to the ever growing demand of seedlings, identification of the most suitable species of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF, specific for a given tree species, is clearly a necessary task. Sixty days old seedlings of Neem (Azadirachta indica A. Juss raised in root trainers were inoculated with six species of AMF and a mixed inoculum (consortia and kept in green house. Performances of the treatments on this tree species were evaluated in terms of growth parameters like plant height shoot collar diameter, biomass and phosphorous uptake capabilities. Significant and varied increase in the growth parameters and phosphorous uptake was observed for most of the AMF species against control. Consortia culture was found to be the best suited AMF treatment for A.indica, while Glomus intraradices and Glomus mosseae were the best performing single species cultures. It is the first time in the state of Gujarat that a wide variety of AMF species, isolated from the typical semi-arid region of western India, were tested for the best growth performance with one of the most important tree species for the concerned region.

  5. An Overview of Biodegradation of LNAPLs in Coastal (Semi)-arid Environment.

    KAUST Repository

    Yadav, Brijesh Kumar; Hassanizadeh, S Majid

    2011-01-01

    environmental variables, and their remediation favoring customization requires a sound understanding of their integrated behavior on fate and transport of LNAPLs under site-specific conditions. The arid and semi-arid coastal sites are characterized by specific

  6. Climate-smart crop production in semi-arid areas through increased knowledge of varieties, environment and management factors

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Murungweni, C.; Wijk, van M.T.; Smaling, E.M.A.; Giller, K.E.

    2016-01-01

    In large regions of sub-Saharan Africa, semi-arid conditions are likely to increase with climate change, yet these regions are becoming more important to feed production zones due to increasing population pressure. A production system in the semi-arid south eastern Zimbabwe was studied to assess

  7. EFFECT OF POLYETHYLENE BLACK PLASTIC MULCH ON GROWTH AND YIELD OF TWO SUMMER VEGETABLE CROPS UNDER RAIN-FED CONDITIONS UNDER SEMI-ARID REGION CONDITIONS

    OpenAIRE

    Atif Y. Mahadeen

    2014-01-01

    Water use efficiency in agriculture can be enhanced by several strategies mainly by reducing evaporation from the soil surface. The mulching techniques were being used widely in irrigated crop production worldwide. The mulching techniques can be also implemented in summer vegetables production under rain-fed conditions. The current study aimed at evaluating the effect of polyethylene black plastic mulch on growth and yield of okra, Abelmoschus esculentus and summer squash, ...

  8. Pedo-Climatic Risks Over Făllticeni City Related Orchards

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jitariu Vasile

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Through this study, “Pedo-climatic risks over Fălticeni city related orchards”, we intend to conduct a study that highlights the way that a number of parameters such as climate and soil, through their evolution, may be considered a risk factor for orchards nearby Fălticeni city.

  9. Water conservation for semi-arid rangelands

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Willis, W.O.

    1983-01-01

    Water deficiency is most often the cause for low forage production on rangelands in semi-arid and arid regions. Water conservation methods have been developed but additional research is needed to develop the best management practices for various climatic regions. Poor management is another major cause of low rangeland production. Better management, including the application of research findings, depends on attitudes, policies, adaptability of findings, resources for implementation and a good understanding of the governing biotic and abiotic factors. (author)

  10. Tropical Warm Semi-Arid Regions Expanding Over Temperate Latitudes In The Projected 21st Century

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rajaud, A.; de Noblet, N. I.

    2015-12-01

    Two billion people today live in drylands, where extreme climatic conditions prevail, and natural resources are limited. Drylands are expected to expand under several scenarios of climatic change. However, relevant adaptation strategies need to account for the aridity level: it conditions the equilibrium tree-cover density, ranging from deserts (hyper-arid) to dense savannas (sub-humid). Here we focus on the evolution of climatically defined warm semi-arid areas, where low-tree density covers can be maintained. We study the global repartition of these regions in the future and the bioclimatic shifts involved. We adopted a bioclimatological approach based on the Köppen climate classification. The warm semi-arid class is characterized by mean annual temperatures over 18°C and a rainfall-limitation criterion. A multi-model ensemble of CMIP5 projections for three representative concentration pathways was selected to analyze future conditions. The classification was first applied to the start, middle and end of the 20th and 21st centuries, in order to localize past and future warm semi-arid regions. Then, time-series for the classification were built to characterize trends and variability in the evolution of those regions. According to the CRU datasets, global expansion of the warm semi-arid area has already started (~+13%), following the global warming trend since the 1900s. This will continue according to all projections, most significantly so outside the tropical belt. Under the "business as usual" scenario, the global warm semi-arid area will increase by 30% and expand 12° poleward in the Northern Hemisphere, according to the multi-model mean. Drying drives the conversion from equatorial sub-humid conditions. Beyond 30° of latitude, cold semi-arid conditions become warm semi-arid through warming, and temperate conditions through combined warming and drying processes. Those various transitions may have drastic but also very distinct ecological and sociological

  11. Association analysis of resistance to cereal cyst nematodes (Heterodera avenae) and root lesion nematodes (Pratylenchus neglectus and P. thornei) in CIMMYT advanced spring wheat lines for semi-arid conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dababat, Abdelfattah A; Ferney, Gomez-Becerra Hugo; Erginbas-Orakci, Gul; Dreisigacker, Susanne; Imren, Mustafa; Toktay, Halil; Elekcioglu, Halil I; Mekete, Tesfamariam; Nicol, Julie M; Ansari, Omid; Ogbonnaya, Francis

    2016-12-01

    To identify loci linked to nematode resistance genes, a total of 126 of CIMMYT advanced spring wheat lines adapted to semi-arid conditions were screened for resistance to Heterodera avenae , Pratylenchus neglectus , and P. thornei , of which 107 lines were genotyped with 1,310 DArT. Association of DArT markers with nematode response was analyzed using the general linear model. Results showed that 11 markers were associated with resistance to H. avenae (pathotype Ha21), 25 markers with resistance to P. neglectus , and 9 significant markers were identified to be linked with resistance to P. thornei . In this work we confirmed that chromosome 4A (~90-105 cM) can be a source of resistance to P. thornei as has been recently reported. Other significant markers were also identified on chromosomal regions where no resistant genes have been reported for both nematodes species. These novel QTL were mapped to chromosomes 5A, 6A, and 7A for H. avenae ; on chromosomes 1A, 1B, 3A, 3B, 6B, 7AS, and 7D for P. neglectus ; and on chromosomes 1D, 2A, and 5B for P. thornei and represent potentially new loci linked to resistance that may be useful for selecting parents and deploying resistance into elite germplasm adapted to regions where nematodes are causing problem.

  12. Are acid volatile sulfides (AVS) important trace metals sinks in semi-arid mangroves?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Queiroz, Hermano Melo; Nóbrega, Gabriel Nuto; Otero, Xose L; Ferreira, Tiago Osório

    2018-01-01

    Acid-volatile sulfides (AVS) formation and its role on trace metals bioavailability were studied in semi-arid mangroves. The semi-arid climatic conditions at the studied sites, marked by low rainfall and high evapotranspiration rates, clearly limited the AVS formation (AVS contents varied from 0.10 to 2.34μmolg -1 ) by favoring oxic conditions (Eh>+350mV). The AVS contents were strongly correlated with reactive iron and organic carbon (r=0.84; r=0.83 respectively), evidencing their dominant role for AVS formation under semi-arid conditions. On the other hand, the recorded ΣSEM/AVS values remained >1 evidencing a little control of AVS over the bioavailability of trace metals and, thus, its minor role as a sink for toxic metals. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Cereals for the semi-arid tropics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    De Wet, J.M.J.

    1989-01-01

    The region of semi-arid tropics is the most famine prone area of the world. This region with nearly one billion people extends across some 20 million square kilometres. Major domesticated cereals adapted to semi-arid regions are sorghum (Sorghum bicolor (L.) Moench), foxtail millet (Setaria italica (L.) P. Beauv.) and pearl millet (Pennisetum glaucum (L.) R. Br.). Several minor cereals are grown as speciality crops, or harvested in the wild in times of severe drought and scarcity. Important in the African Sahel are the fonios Digitaria iburua Stapf, D. exilis (Kapist) Stapf and Brachiaria deflexa (Schumach). C.E. Hubbard. These species are aggressive colonizers and are commonly encouraged as weeds in cultivated fields. Sown genotypes differ from their close wild relatives primarily in the lack of efficient natural seed dispersal. The fonios lend themselves to rapid domestication. Several wild cereals extend well beyond the limits of agriculture into the Sahara. Commonly harvested are the perennial Stipagrostis pungens and Panicum turgidum, and the annual Cenchrus biflorus (kram-kram). Kram-kram yields well under extreme heat and drought stress, and holds promise as a domesticated cereal. Sauwi millet (Panicum sonorum) is promising cereal in arid northwestern Mexico. (author). 31 refs

  14. The net effect of abiotic conditions and biotic interactions in a semi-arid ecosystem NE Spain: implications for the management and restoration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pueyo, Yolanda; Arroyo, Antonio I.; Saiz, Hugo; Alados, Concepción L.

    2014-05-01

    Degradation in arid and semiarid lands can be irreversible without human intervention, due to a positive plant-soil feedback where the loss of vegetation cover leads to soil degradation, which in turn hampers plant establishment. Human intervention in restoration actions usually involves the amendment of the degraded abiotic conditions, revegetation of bare areas, or both. However, abiotic amelioration is often expensive and too intrusive, and revegetation is not successful in many cases. Biotic interactions between plants, and more specifically facilitation by a "nurse" plant, have been proposed as a new via to take profit of improved abiotic conditions without intervention, and to increase the success rate of revegetation actions. But "nurse" plants can also interfere with others (i.e. by competition for resources or the release of allelopathic compounds), and the net balance between facilitation and interference could depend on plant types involved. We present recent observational and experimental studies performed in the semiarid ecosystems of the Middle Ebro Valley (NE Spain) about the role of abiotic conditions and biotic interactions in the productivity, dynamics and diversity of plant communities under different stress conditions (aridity and grazing). We found that all plant types studied (shrubs and perennial grasses) improved abiotic conditions (soil temperature and water availability for plants) with respect to open areas. However, only some shrubs (mainly Salsola vermiculata) had a positive net balance in the biotic interactions between plants, while other shrubs (Artemisia herba-alba) and perennial grasses (Lygeum spartum) showed interference with other plants. Moreover, the net balance between facilitation and interference among plants in the community shifted from competitive to neutral or from neutral to facilitative with increasing aridity. Grazing status did not strongly change the net biotic interactions between plants. Our results suggest that

  15. Évaluation comparée des conditions de traite chez des troupeaux bovins conduits en hors sol en milieu semi-aride de Tunisie

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Youssef M'SADAK

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available The objective of this work was to evaluate the milking conditions in 120 dairy herds in three regions of the Sahel of Tunisia: Sousse, Monastir and Mahdia. For this purpose, 707 lactating cows of Holstein Friesian, were considered. The average farm size in the three areas studied was 4.6 ha. Among the surveyed farms, 71% free stall. The study of the machine operating parameters to milk cows revealed that the pulse frequency (FP, the vacuum level (NV and pulsation ratio (PR are nonconforming respectively in 87%, 78% and 58% of cases. The study of the hygienic conditions revealed that 39% of milking machines (MAT are of poor cleanliness and 51% of their pipes are in medium condition. Regarding milking practices, the most used method for cleaning teats is the collective mop with water (39%, without wiping (67%. The elimination of the first jets and the teat disinfection after milking were both omitted by 62% and 61% of farmers. The milking conditions deviate from best practice in several farms and they deserve more attention and equipment maintenance.

  16. Co-inoculation with Rhizobium and plant growth promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR for inducing salinity tolerance in mung bean under field condition of semi arid climate

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Muhammad Aamir

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available Salinity stress severely affects the growth, nodulation and yield of mung bean (Vigna radiata L.. However, its growth can be improved under salinity stress by inoculation/co-inoculation with rhizobia and plant growth promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR containing 1-Aminocyclopropane-1-carboxylic acid (ACC deaminase enzyme. ACC-deaminase containing bacteria regulate the stress induced ethylene production by hydrolyzing the ACC (immediate precursor of ethylene into ammonia and ketobutyric acid, thus improve plant growth by lowering the ethylene level. A study was conducted under salt affected field conditions where pre-isolated strains of Rhizobium and PGPR were used alone as well as in combination for mitigating the salinity stress on growth, nodulation and yield of mung bean by following the randomized complete block design (RCBD. The data were recorded and analyzed statistically to see the difference among treatments.

  17. Utility of the end-of-season nitrate test for nitrogen sufficiency of irrigated maize under Mediterranean semi-arid conditions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Isla, R.; Salmeron, M.; Cavero, J.; Yagüe, M.R.; Quilez, D.

    2015-07-01

    Calibration of decision tools to improve N fertilizer management is critical to increase its adoption by maize (Zea mays L.) growers. The objective of this study was to establish nitrate and total nitrogen concentrations in the basal maize stalks (BMS) at harvest to separate maize fields among three N availability categories (N-deficient, N-optimum, and N-excess) under Mediterranean irrigated semiarid conditions. We analysed data from 26 irrigated maize trials conducted between 2001 and 2012. Trials included treatments receiving different N fertilizer rates and sources (mineral and organic), irrigation systems (flood, sprinkler) and soil types. The critical nitrate concentration in BMS to identify N-deficient plots (CNCL) is affected by the irrigation system. The CNCL was lower under sprinkler irrigation (708 mg NO{sub 3}{sup -}–N/kg) than under flood irrigation (2205 mg NO{sub 3}{sup -}–N/kg), and the later presented a higher degree of uncertainty compared to sprinkler irrigated systems. The results showed the difficulty to identify the N-deficient plots with the BMS test and the higher sensibility of nitrate-N than total-N concentration in BMS to separate N-deficient from N-optimal plots. Under sprinkler irrigation, nitrate in BMS>1500 mg NO{sub 3}{sup -}–N/kg had a 85% probability of having received an excess of N. Considering economic net returns to N fertilization, the range of nitrate concentration in BMS that maximized profit under sprinkler-irrigated conditions was established between 1100 and 1700 mg NO3-–N/kg. Results suggest that BMS test can be useful in detecting plots with an excess of N but considering irrigation efficiency is crucial for stablishing successful CNC thresholds. (Author)

  18. Effect of induced body condition score differences on physiological response, productive and reproductive performance of Malpura ewes kept in a hot, semi-arid environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sejian, V; Maurya, V P; Naqvi, S M K; Kumar, D; Joshi, A

    2010-04-01

    This study was undertaken to study the influence of induced body condition score (BCS) differences on physiological response, productive and reproductive performance of Malpura ewes to optimise BCS for these ewes for maximising production making it economically viable. The study was conducted for a period of 1 year using thirty healthy Malpura ewes (2-4 year old). The animals were randomly divided and different BCS was induced within three groups named Group I (BCS 2.5; n = 10), Group II (BCS 3.0-3.5; n = 10) and Group III (BCS 4.0; n = 10). The parameters included in the study were allometric measurements, physiological response, wool yield and reproductive performance. BCS had a significant influence on allometric measurements, respiration rate and different reproductive parameters studied, while wool production differed significantly during spring and non-significantly during autumn. The results revealed that the reproductive performance of Malpura ewes with a BCS of 3.0-3.5 was better in comparison with the groups with lower and higher BCS. It may be concluded from this study that an active management of breeding sheep flock to achieve a BCS of 3.0-3.5 may prove to result in an economically viable return from these flocks.

  19. Effect of Timing and Amount of Irrigation Water on Bean Yield and Water Use Efficiency in Arid and Semi-arid Conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S.S. Nurbakhsh

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: Nowadays, due to lack of water resources and increasing demand for water, agricultural water planning issues need further consideration. With proper planning and determination of irrigation depth and time, the effects of stress and yield loss on the plants are reduced. Irrigation scheduling is one of the most important factors in crop’s quality and quantity. The main objective of irrigation scheduling is to control crop’s water conditions in order to achieve its optimum yield level. So irrigation timing is the vital factor on which crop water stress and eventually yield's level are dependent upon. Moreover, irrigation timing is used in irrigation scheduling. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of irrigation time on water consumption, water use efficiency and yield of beans. Materials and Methods: In order to observe the effect of the amount and the time of the irrigation on water consumption, yields rate and water use efficiency, the current research was carried out at the University of Shahrekord during the summer of 2012. The experiment was done as a completely randomized design with 4 repetitions consisting of irrigation time and the amount of irrigation in 4 and 2 levels (at 6, 8, 14 and 18 and (deficit irrigation, full irrigation, respectively. Beans seeds were planted in 32 similar vases with a diameter of 45 cm and height of 60 cm, in each experiment. Treatments were begun after 37 days from planting. Treatments were irrigated when the average moisture in the root zone was equal to the lower border of readily available water of full irrigation. At the end of the experiments, plants were completely harvested. Then the plant’s height, number of branches, numbers of pods per plant, pod and seed weight were measured. Results and Discussion: Results showed that irrigating at different times during the day influenced water use efficiency, water consumption, seeds yield and number of pods in the bush. The water

  20. Pathways to Resilience in Semi-Arid Economies (PRISE)

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    rlarbey

    PRISE Goal. This research will support the emergence of equitable, climate resilient economic development in semi-arid lands through research excellence and ... change in semi-arid areas, and how is the private sector adapting? 4. How do ... Role. Individual. Contact email. Lead Principal Investigator. Dr Tom Mitchell.

  1. Salinization mechanisms in semi-arid regions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Santiago, M.M.F.

    1984-01-01

    During a period of three years the basins of the Pereira de Miranda and Caxitore dams, located in the crystalline rock area of Ceara, Brazil, were studied in order to determine the mechanisms of salinization of their waters. Isotope methods ( 18 O/ 16 O) and hidrochemistry (determination of the of the maior ions) were applied to surface, underground and rain water in this study. An isotope model was designed and applied to the determination of evaporation and percolation of dams in semi-arid zones during the dry season. The results are compared to those from a conventional chemical model. As causes of salinization of the water in the dams, the contributions of the rain itself and the lixiviation of the soil are quantified. An interaction between the dams and the underground water is imperceptible. The salinization of the underground water is attributed to recharge of the aquifer with rain water from the surface runoff followed by evaporation of the water rising, due to capilarity, in a one-directional flow to the surface. (Author) [pt

  2. Nuclear applications for the management of aquifers in the semi-arid region

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Simoes Filho, Fernando Lamego

    2005-01-01

    The semi-arid region of the Northeast of Brazil is characterized by a lack of superficial waters due to the low pluviometric precipitation and high evaporation rates. In addition to this, the precipitation events are irregular in time causing long periods of dryness or flooding with catastrophic consequences. Owing to adverse climatic conditions with recurrent droughts, intense pressure is being put on the use of groundwater resources. Groundwater occurrence on its turn depends on a series of geological and climatological characteristics that are very variable in the region. Because of this situation, groundwater is of strategical importance and represents a vital factor to its socioeconomic development. However, there is still insufficient knowledge of the basic aquifers characteristics leading to an over exploitation of the water resources. It is not surprising that, amongst other reasons, this situation contributes to the fact that areas with the lowest human development pattern are located in the semi-arid region of Brazil. Given the nature of hydrological problems that need to be addressed in semi-arid regions, nuclear/isotope techniques are increasingly recognized as indispensable tools for water resources assessment and development. However, information arising from these techniques has to cope with other hydrological methods in an integrated manner. The general objective was prospect nuclear technologies as tools for aquifer management, promoting sustainable use of groundwater in the semi-arid region. (author)

  3. Introducing Pathways to Resilience in Semi-Arid Economies (PRISE ...

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    rlarbey

    Equitable, climate resilient economic development in semi-arid .... manufacturing or services (apart from health, insurance and tourism). Further research ... evaluated, particularly economic impact assessments of adaptation both on existing.

  4. Patchiness in semi-arid dwarf shrublands: evidence from satellite ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    ... Plants; Remote sensing; Rhigozum obovatum Burch; Satellite-derived vegetation indices; Woody species; patchiness; semi-arid; dwarf shrubland; shrublands; co2; assimilation; karoo; south africa; ndvi; satellite imagery; geochemical mound; rhigozum obovatum; eriocephalus ericoides; pentzia incana; vegetation; botany

  5. Avaliação fitotecnica de bananeiras tipo terra sob irrigação em condições semi-áridas Agronomical evaluation of bananas under irrigation and semi-arid conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hudson Caldeira de Faria

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available Conduziu-se este trabalho, com o objetivo de avaliar fitotecnicamente as características vegetativas e de rendimento de cinco cultivares de bananeira tipo Terra, em primeiro ciclo de produção sob irrigação nas condições semiáridas da região de Guanambi - BA. Utilizaram-se descritores fenotípicos relevantes para a identificação e seleção de indivíduos com características superiores, visando a disponibilizar aos produtores dos perímetros de irrigação uma alternativa para a diversificação da bananicultura. Avaliaram-se as seguintes características: número de dias do plantio ao florescimento e à colheita, altura da planta, perímetro do pseudocaule, número de folhas vivas nas épocas do florescimento e colheita, o intervalo florescimento-colheita, peso do cacho, da ráquis e das pencas, número de pencas e de frutos, comprimento e diâmetro do fruto. O experimento foi delineado em blocos casualizados, com cinco tratamentos, constituídos pelas cultivares AAB: Terra, Terra-Maranhão, Terrinha e D'Angola e pelo híbrido AAAB: FHIA-21 com cinco repetições. Cada parcela foi constituída por 20 plantas (quatro fileiras de cinco plantas, com seis plantas úteis no espaçamento de 3,0 m x 3,0 m. Destacaram-se as cultivares avaliadas a Terra e a Terra Maranhão como as mais produtivas, porém, com maior altura e mais tardias em ciclo. O híbrido FHIA-21 e as cultivares Terrinha e D'Angola, apresentaram-se com maior número de folhas vivas à época da colheita. A cultivar D'Angola apresentou a menor produtividade dentre as cultivares avaliadas.The goal of this work was to make a agronomical evaluation of the vegetative characteristics and income of five cultivars of banana type Plantain, in the first production cycle under irrigation in the semi-arid conditions of the region of the city of Guanambi -Bahia State. Relevant phenotypic descriptors were used for the identification and selection of individuals with superior

  6. Insolation driven biomagnetic response to the Holocene Warm Period in semi-arid East Asia

    OpenAIRE

    Liu, Suzhen; Deng, Chenglong; Xiao, Jule; Li, Jinhua; Paterson, Greig A.; Chang, Liao; Yi, Liang; Qin, Huafeng; Pan, Yongxin; Zhu, Rixiang

    2015-01-01

    The Holocene Warm Period (HWP) provides valuable insights into the climate system and biotic responses to environmental variability and thus serves as an excellent analogue for future global climate changes. Here we document, for the first time, that warm and wet HWP conditions were highly favourable for magnetofossil proliferation in the semi-arid Asian interior. The pronounced increase of magnetofossil concentrations at ~9.8?ka and decrease at ~5.9?ka in Dali Lake coincided respectively wit...

  7. Isotope and radiation techniques for efficient water and fertilizer use in semi-arid regions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1986-04-01

    The Joint FAO/IAEA Division carried out a coordinated research programme, which was concerned with the efficiency of water and fertilizer uses in semi-arid farming systems. The present publication is a summary of the individual contributions from Belgium, Chile, Ivory Coast, Cyprus, France, India, Israel, Romania, Senegal, Sri Lanka and the United States of America, over the period 1978-1984. Water and fertilizer uptake by crops are dynamic processes affected by several factors of the soil-plant-atmosphere system. The neutron moisture meters were used not only to measure soil water contents but also to understand water dynamics under field conditions. Nitrogen is the most limiting nutrient in many semi-arid regions, and as its absorption is very much related to water dynamics in the soil, experiments using N-15 labelled fertilizer were carried out, which are presented in this report

  8. The pedo-climatic microzones on the habitat of Cornu Luncii village

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ioan GONTARIU

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available The territory where is placed the village Cornu Luncii, belong from point of geomorphologic of view on extra Carpathian passage of Moldavia (Baia Depression , which is interpose between Suceava Plateau, from the north of passage and sub Carpathian hills fromthe north of Culmea Pleşului, from south of passage. Thus, the relief of this territory formed through a selective evolution, in the longway of Moldavia valley, dominating the fluvial accumulation process and on the slopes and sub Carpathian tops, prevailing the fluviodedutionale process. The main role in the relief shaping belonged of the hydrographic arteries in the context of the epeirogenesis movements and of climatic quaternary variations. On the territory of the village Cornu Luncii there are 2 pedo-climatic micro zones (III-O-SPwith numerical code 82 habitat 2, which cover 611,29 ha, that mean 12,02 % and III-LSA, with numerical code 93 habitat 1, which cover 4539,19 ha, that mean 87,98 %.

  9. Spatial patterns and natural recruitment of native shrubs in a semi-arid sandy land.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Bo; Yang, Hongxiao

    2013-01-01

    Passive restoration depending on native shrubs is an attractive approach for restoring desertified landscapes in semi-arid sandy regions. We sought to understand the relationships between spatial patterns of native shrubs and their survival ability in sandy environments. Furthermore, we applied our results to better understand whether passive restoration is feasible for desertified landscapes in semi-arid sandy regions. The study was conducted in the semi-arid Mu Us sandy land of northern China with the native shrub Artemisia ordosica. We analyzed population structures and patterns of A. ordosica at the edges and centers of land patches where sand was stabilized by A. ordosica-dominated vegetation. Saplings were more aggregated than adults, and both were more aggregated at the patch edges than at the patch centers. At the patch edges, spatial association of the saplings with the adults was mostly positive at distances 0.3-6.6 m, and turned from positive to neutral, and even negative, at other distances. At the patch centers, the saplings were spaced almost randomly around the adults, and their distances from the adults did not seem to affect their locations. A greater number of A. ordosica individuals emerged at the patch edges than at the patch centers. Such patterns may have resulted from their integrative adjustment to specific conditions of soil water supply and sand drift intensity. These findings suggest that in semi-arid sandy regions, native shrubs that are well-adapted to local environments may serve as low-cost and competent ecological engineers that can promote the passive restoration of surrounding patches of mobile sandy land.

  10. Modelling annual evapotranspiration in a semi-arid, African savanna ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Accurately measuring evapotranspiration (ET) is essential if we are to derive reasonable estimates of production and water use for semi-arid savannas. Estimates of ET are also important in defining the health of an ecosystem and the quantity of water used by the vegetation when preparing a catchment-scale water balance.

  11. Rainwater harvesting in arid and semi-arid zones

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Boers, T.M.

    1994-01-01

    In arid and semi-arid regions, the scarcity of water can be alleviated by rainwater harvesting, which is defined as a method of inducing, collecting, storing, and conserving local surface runoff for agriculture. Rainwater harvesting can be applied with different

  12. Hypogeous fungi from Southern Spanish semi-arid lands

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Honrubia, M.; Cano, A.; Molina-Niñirola, C.

    1992-01-01

    Six hypogeous fungi of Ascomycotina and Basidiomycotina have been studied from semiarid zones in Southern Spain. Melanogaster variegatus (Vitt.) Tul. is recorded for the first time from Spain. Picoa juniperi Vitt. and Terfezia claveryi Chat. are revealed as the most frequent species in semi-arid

  13. Determining Dry Matter Degradability of Some Semi-Arid Browse ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    acer

    ABSTRACT: The in vitro gas production of some semi-arid browse species were evaluated. The relationship between in ... between in vitro gas measured on incubation of browse leaves and that calculated from SCFA allows the prediction of SCFA from ... with concentrate feed (40% corn, 10% wheat offal, 10% palm kernel ...

  14. Adaptation at Scale in Semi-Arid Regions | IDRC - International ...

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    People living in Africa and South Asia's semi-arid regions face challenges that hinder their economic growth and development. This project seeks to find proactive, longer-term approaches to climate change adaptation in these vulnerable regions, while helping locals manage existing risks. Short-term focus must shift. So far ...

  15. Uses of tree legumes in semi-arid regions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Felker, P.

    1980-01-01

    Uses of tree legumes in semi-arid and arid regions are reviewed. This review is divided into sections according to the following general use categories: fuels; human food; livestock food; to increase yields of crops grown beneath their canopies;and control of desertification. (MHR)

  16. Paclobutrazol biodegradation in unsaturated soil in the Semi-Arid ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Paclobutrazol (PBZ) is a plant growth regulator, increasing flowe ring and yield that is widely used in mango cultivation in the semi-arid northeastern Brazil. PBZ remains active in the soil for several years. However, it can severely affect the growth and development of subsequent crops, mainly by reducing vegetative vigor.

  17. Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi in Mimosa tenuiflora (Willd. Poir from Brazilian semi-arid

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tancredo Augusto Feitosa de Souza

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Many plant species from Brazilian semi-arid present arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF in their rhizosphere. These microorganisms play a key role in the establishment, growth, survival of plants and protection against drought, pathogenic fungi and nematodes. This study presents a quantitative analysis of the AMF species associated with Mimosa tenuiflora, an important native plant of the Caatinga flora. AMF diversity, spore abundance and root colonization were estimated in seven sampling locations in the Ceará and Paraíba States, during September of 2012. There were significant differences in soil properties, spore abundance, percentage of root colonization, and AMF diversity among sites. Altogether, 18 AMF species were identified, and spores of the genera Acaulospora, Claroideoglomus, Dentiscutata, Entrophospora, Funneliformis, Gigaspora, Glomus, Racocetra, Rhizoglomus and Scutellospora were observed. AMF species diversity and their spore abundance found in M. tenuiflora rhizosphere shown that this native plant species is an important host plant to AMF communities from Brazilian semi-arid region. We concluded that: (a during the dry period and in semi-arid conditions, there is a high spore production in M. tenuiflora root zone; and (b soil properties, as soil pH and available phosphorous, affect AMF species diversity, thus constituting key factors for the similarity/dissimilarity of AMF communities in the M. tenuiflora root zone among sites.

  18. Agroecological and Social Transformations for Coexistence with Semi-Aridity in Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aldrin M. Pérez-Marin

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available This article explores whether a shift in development paradigm resulted in coexistence with semi-aridity for residents of the Semi-Arid region of Brazil (SAB. If so, which strategies contributed and which conditions facilitated it? We conducted a comparative analysis of the transformations that occurred in 10 territories of the SAB during two time periods: PI (1973–2001 when “development” policies almost exclusively aimed to “combat drought and its effects”; and PII (2002–2016 when a concept of coexistence with semi-aridity informed policy making. Our study from the 10 territories of the SAB show significant changes between PI and PII. On average, there was a substantial improvement in Access to Water Infrastructure (+33%∆, Diversification of Production Systems (Animals +36%∆; Crops +61%∆, Management of Common Pool Resources (+45%∆, Involvement in Spaces of Political Organizing (+24%∆, and Access to Public Programs (+29%∆. As such, “coexistence” went from concept to action as a consequence of structural, agroecological, social, and management transformations in combination with a strengthening of mechanisms for community reciprocity. These were characterized by (a the creation of resource reserves for use during times of drought; (b the efficient use of available natural resources; and (c enhanced articulation between diverse actors.

  19. Effect of high ambient temperature on behavior of sheep under semi-arid tropical environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De, Kalyan; Kumar, Davendra; Saxena, Vijay Kumar; Thirumurugan, Palanisamy; Naqvi, Syed Mohammed Khursheed

    2017-07-01

    High environmental temperature is a major constraint in sheep production under semi-arid tropical environment. Behavior is the earliest indicator of animal's adaptation and responses to the environmental alteration. Therefore, the objective of this study was to assess the effects of high ambient temperature on the behavior of sheep under a semi-arid tropical environment. The experiment was conducted for 6 weeks on 16 Malpura cross (Garole × Malpura × Malpura (GMM)) rams. The rams were divided equally into two groups, designated as C and T. The rams of C were kept in comfortable environmental conditions served as control. The rams of T were exposed to a different temperature at different hours of the day in a climatic chamber, to simulate a high environmental temperature of summer in semi-arid tropic. The behavioral observations were taken by direct instantaneous observation at 15-min intervals for each animal individually. The feeding, ruminating, standing, and lying behaviors were recorded twice a week from morning (0800 hours) to afternoon (1700 hours) for 6 weeks. Exposure of rams to high temperature (T) significantly (P behavior of sheep which is directed to circumvent the effect of the stressor.

  20. Effect of high ambient temperature on behavior of sheep under semi-arid tropical environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    De, Kalyan; Kumar, Davendra; Saxena, Vijay Kumar; Thirumurugan, Palanisamy; Naqvi, Syed Mohammed Khursheed

    2017-07-01

    High environmental temperature is a major constraint in sheep production under semi-arid tropical environment. Behavior is the earliest indicator of animal's adaptation and responses to the environmental alteration. Therefore, the objective of this study was to assess the effects of high ambient temperature on the behavior of sheep under a semi-arid tropical environment. The experiment was conducted for 6 weeks on 16 Malpura cross (Garole × Malpura × Malpura (GMM)) rams. The rams were divided equally into two groups, designated as C and T. The rams of C were kept in comfortable environmental conditions served as control. The rams of T were exposed to a different temperature at different hours of the day in a climatic chamber, to simulate a high environmental temperature of summer in semi-arid tropic. The behavioral observations were taken by direct instantaneous observation at 15-min intervals for each animal individually. The feeding, ruminating, standing, and lying behaviors were recorded twice a week from morning (0800 hours) to afternoon (1700 hours) for 6 weeks. Exposure of rams to high temperature (T) significantly ( P animals of T spent significantly ( P behavior of sheep which is directed to circumvent the effect of the stressor.

  1. Predicting germination in semi-arid wildland seedbeds II. Field validation of wet thermal-time models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jennifer K. Rawlins; Bruce A. Roundy; Dennis Eggett; Nathan. Cline

    2011-01-01

    Accurate prediction of germination for species used for semi-arid land revegetation would support selection of plant materials for specific climatic conditions and sites. Wet thermal-time models predict germination time by summing progress toward germination subpopulation percentages as a function of temperature across intermittent wet periods or within singular wet...

  2. Regional integrated modelling of climate change impacts on natural resources and resource usage in semi-arid Norhteast Brazil

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Krol, Martinus S.; Bronstert, Axel

    2007-01-01

    Semi-arid regions are characterised by a high vulnerability of natural resources to climate change, pronounced climatic variability and often by water scarcity and related social stress. The analysis of the dynamics of natural conditions and the assessment of possible strategies to cope with

  3. Semi-arid development: competitiveness factors in biodiesel productive chain

    OpenAIRE

    Breno Barros Telles do Carmo; Dmontier Pinheiro Aragão; Heráclito Lopes Jaguaribe Pontes; Bruno Magalhães Ribeiro; Marcos Ronaldo Albertin

    2009-01-01

    The new global market competitiveness considerer the competition between productive chains (PC) or supply chains, not just between enterprises. In this case, it can be observed collaboration and cooperation enterprises that dispute with others productives chain. The PC competitiveness can be impaired if is subject by inhibitors factors, that can impairer the performance. This paper analyses these competitiveness factors inhibitors in biodiesel productive chain (CPB) in semi-arid area: exporte...

  4. Efficiency of water and fertilizer use in semi-arid regions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1976-01-01

    The proceedings contain 14 papers considering problems on soil and soil water, irrigation, and the use of fertilizers in semi-arid zones. Research projects in these fields are discussed and results obtained so far are reported (tables and diagrams on the behaviour of water and fertilizers in soils). The use of radioisotope techniques is mentioned briefly. Finally, some future ''first priority'' research areas are identified and recommendations for further research programs are given. These programs aim at reducing the hazards of crop failure and at increasing production under dry farming conditions

  5. Insolation driven biomagnetic response to Holocene Warm Period in semi-arid East Asia

    OpenAIRE

    Liu, S.; Deng, Chenglong; Xiao, Jule; Li, Jinhua; Paterson, Greig; Chang, Liao; Yi, Liang; Qin, Huafeng; Pan, Yongxin; Zhu, Rixiang

    2015-01-01

    The Holocene Warm Period (HWP) provides valuable insights into the climate system and biotic responses to environmental variability and thus serves as an excellent analogue for future global climate changes. Here we document, for the first time, that warm and wet HWP conditions were highly favourable for magnetofossil proliferation in the semi-arid Asian interior. The pronounced increase of magnetofossil concentrations at ~9.8 ka and decrease at ~5.9 ka in Dali Lake coincided respectively wit...

  6. An Overview of Biodegradation of LNAPLs in Coastal (Semi)-arid Environment.

    KAUST Repository

    Yadav, Brijesh Kumar

    2011-02-22

    Contamination of soil and water due to the release of light non-aqueous phase liquids (LNAPLs) is a ubiquitous problem. The problem is more severe in arid and semi-arid coastal regions where most of the petroleum production and related refinery industries are located. Biological treatment of these organic contaminated resources is receiving increasing interests and where applicable, can serve as a cost-effective remediation alternative. The success of bioremediation greatly depends on the prevailing environmental variables, and their remediation favoring customization requires a sound understanding of their integrated behavior on fate and transport of LNAPLs under site-specific conditions. The arid and semi-arid coastal sites are characterized by specific environmental extremes; primarily, varying low and high temperatures, high salinity, water table dynamics, and fluctuating soil moisture content. An understanding of the behavior of these environmental variables on biological interactions with LNAPLs would be helpful in customizing the bioremediation for restoring problematic sites in these regions. Therefore, this paper reviews the microbial degradation of LNAPLs in soil-water, considering the influences of prevailing environmental parameters of arid and semi-arid coastal regions. First, the mechanism of biodegradation of LNAPLs is discussed briefly, followed by a summary of popular kinetic models used by researchers for describing the degradation rate of these hydrocarbons. Next, the impact of soil moisture content, water table dynamics, and soil-water temperature on the fate and transport of LNAPLs are discussed, including an overview of the studies conducted so far. Finally, based on the reviewed information, a general conclusion is presented with recommendations for future research subjects on optimizing the bioremediation technique in the field under the aforesaid environmental conditions. The present review will be useful to better understand the

  7. Assessment of the performance of water harvesting systems in semi-arid regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lasage, Ralph

    2016-04-01

    Water harvesting is widely practiced and has the potential to improve water availability for domestic and agricultural use in semi-arid regions. New funds are becoming available to stimulate the implementation of water harvesting projects, for meeting the Sustainable Development Goals and to help communities to adapt to climate change. For this, it is important to understand which factors determine the success of water harvesting techniques under different conditions. For this, we review the literature, including information on the crop yield impacts of water harvesting projects in semi-arid Africa and Asia. Results show that large water harvesting structures (> 500 m3) are less expensive than small structures, when taking into account investment costs, storage capacity and lifetimes. We also find that water harvesting improves crop yields significantly, and that the relative impact of water harvesting on crop yields is largest in low rainfall years. We also see that the governance, technical knowledge and initial investment are more demanding for the larger structures than for smaller structures, which may affect their spontaneous adoption and long term sustainability when managed by local communities. To support the selection of appropriate techniques, we present a decision framework based on case specific characteristics. This framework can also be used when reporting and evaluating the performance of water harvesting techniques, which is up to now quite limited in peer reviewed literature. Based on Bouma, J., Hegde, S.E., Lasage, R., (2016). Assessing the returns to water harvesting: A meta-analysis. Agricultural Water Management 163, 100-109. Lasage, R., Verburg P.H., (2015). Evaluation of small scale water harvesting techniques for semi-arid environments. Journal of Arid Environments 118, 48-57.

  8. Predicting the future impact of droughts on ungulate populations in arid and semi-arid environments.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Clare Duncan

    Full Text Available Droughts can have a severe impact on the dynamics of animal populations, particularly in semi-arid and arid environments where herbivore populations are strongly limited by resource availability. Increased drought intensity under projected climate change scenarios can be expected to reduce the viability of such populations, yet this impact has seldom been quantified. In this study, we aim to fill this gap and assess how the predicted worsening of droughts over the 21(st century is likely to impact the population dynamics of twelve ungulate species occurring in arid and semi-arid habitats. Our results provide support to the hypotheses that more sedentary, grazing and mixed feeding species will be put at high risk from future increases in drought intensity, suggesting that management intervention under these conditions should be targeted towards species possessing these traits. Predictive population models for all sedentary, grazing or mixed feeding species in our study show that their probability of extinction dramatically increases under future emissions scenarios, and that this extinction risk is greater for smaller populations than larger ones. Our study highlights the importance of quantifying the current and future impacts of increasing extreme natural events on populations and species in order to improve our ability to mitigate predicted biodiversity loss under climate change.

  9. The simulation of naturally ventilated residential buildings in semi-arid regions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ghiabaklou, Z.; Ballinger, J.A.; Prasad, D.K. [New South Wales Univ., Kensington, NSW (Australia). Solar Architecture Research Unit

    1995-12-31

    The most important consideration in hot arid and semi-arid zones is to reduce the internal day temperature and to maintain the interior spaces of buildings in a comfortable condition. An important contributor to errors in the thermal analysis of naturally ventilated buildings is inaccurate airflow predictions. These predictions are important for designers in regions where most buildings are naturally ventilated. Passive cooling by day and night natural ventilation in a single story residential building in Wagga Wagga, a semi-arid location in New South Wales has been compared and analyzed theoretically. A modified version of the computer simulation program CHEETAH, has been used to consider a building with continuous natural ventilation to simulate indoor air temperature. The aim of the study was to investigate the thermal behaviour of the building with continuous ventilation (24 hour/day) and the same building with only night time ventilation. Using night time ventilation in high mass buildings in such a climate, leads to a considerable decrease in room air temperature. Simulation results showed that increasing the effective area of windows is effective only when the wind blows. Using a steady averaged air change per hour can also cause a reduction in room air temperatures which results in different temperatures than the actual air changes per hour. (author). 3 figs., 4 refs.

  10. Simulated Optimum Sowing Date for Forage Pearl Millet Cultivars in Multilocation Trials in Brazilian Semi-Arid Region.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santos, Rafael D; Boote, Kenneth J; Sollenberger, Lynn E; Neves, Andre L A; Pereira, Luiz G R; Scherer, Carolina B; Gonçalves, Lucio C

    2017-01-01

    Forage production is primarily limited by weather conditions under dryland production systems in Brazilian semi-arid regions, therefore sowing at the appropriate time is critical. The objectives of this study were to evaluate the CSM-CERES-Pearl Millet model from the DSSAT software suite for its ability to simulate growth, development, and forage accumulation of pearl millet [ Pennisetum glaucum (L.) R.] at three Brazilian semi-arid locations, and to use the model to study the impact of different sowing dates on pearl millet performance for forage. Four pearl millet cultivars were grown during the 2011 rainy season in field experiments conducted at three Brazilian semi-arid locations, under rainfed conditions. The genetic coefficients of the four pearl millet cultivars were calibrated for the model, and the model performance was evaluated with experimental data. The model was run for 14 sowing dates using long-term historical weather data from three locations, to determine the optimum sowing window. Results showed that performance of the model was satisfactory as indicated by accurate simulation of crop phenology and forage accumulation against measured data. The optimum sowing window varied among locations depending on rainfall patterns, although showing the same trend for cultivars within the site. The best sowing windows were from 15 April to 15 May for the Bom Conselho location; 12 April to 02 May for Nossa Senhora da Gloria; and 17 April to 25 May for Sao Bento do Una. The model can be used as a tool to evaluate the effect of sowing date on forage pearl millet performance in Brazilian semi-arid conditions.

  11. Impacts of urbanization on nitrogen cycling and aerosol, surface and groundwater transport in semi-arid regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lohse, K. A.; Gallo, E.; Carlson, M.; Riha, K. M.; Brooks, P. D.; McIntosh, J. C.; Sorooshian, A.; Michalski, G. M.; Meixner, T.

    2011-12-01

    Semi-arid regions are experiencing disproportionate increases in human population and land transformation worldwide, taxing limited water resources and altering nitrogen (N) biogeochemistry. How the redistribution of water and N by urbanization affects semi-arid ecosystems and downstream water quality (e.g. drinking water) is unclear. Understanding these interactions and their feedbacks will be critical for developing science-based management strategies to sustain these limited resources. This is especially true in the US where some of the fastest growing urban areas are in semi-arid ecosystems, where N and water cycles are accelerated, and intimately coupled, and where runoff from urban ecosystems is actively managed to augment a limited water supply to the growing human population. Here we synthesize several ongoing studies from the Tucson Basin in Arizona and examine how increasing urban land cover is altering rainfall-runoff relationships, groundwater recharge, water quality, and long range transport of atmospheric N. Studies across 5 catchments varying in impervious land cover showed that only the least impervious catchment responded to antecedent moisture conditions while hydrologic responses were not statistically related to antecedent rainfall conditions at more impervious sites. Regression models indicated that rainfall depth, imperviousness, and their combined effect control discharge and runoff ratios (p channel characteristics and infrastructure controlled runoff chemistry. Groundwater studies showed nonpoint source contamination of CFCs and associated nitrate in areas of rapid recharge along ephemeral channels. Aerosol measurements indicate that both long-range transport of N and N emissions from Tucson are being transported and deposited at high elevation in areas that recharge regional groundwater. Combined, our findings suggest that urbanization in semi-arid regions results in tradeoffs in the redistribution of water and N that have important

  12. Productivity and residual benefits of grain legumes to sorghum under semi-arid conditions in south-western Zimbabwe: Unravelling the effects of water and nitrogen using a simulation model

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ncube, B.; Dimes, J.P.; Wijk, van M.T.; Twomlow, S.J.; Giller, K.E.

    2009-01-01

    The APSIM model was used to assess the impact of legumes on sorghum grown in rotation in a nutrient-limited system under dry conditions in south-western Zimbabwe. An experiment was conducted at Lucydale, Matopos Research Station, between 2002 and 2005. The model was used to simulate soil and plant

  13. Simulations for Making On-farm Decisions in Relation to ENSO in Semi-arid Areas, South Africa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tesfuhuney, W. A.; Crespo, O. O.; Walker, S. S.; Steyn, S. A.

    2017-12-01

    The study was employed to investigate and improve on-farm decision making on planting dates and fertilization by relating simulated yield and seasonal outlook information. The Agricultural Production Systems SIMulator model (APSIM) was used to explore ENSO/SOI effects for small-scale farmers to represent weather conditions and soil forms of semi-arid areas of Bothaville, Bethlehem and Bloemfontein regions in South Africa. The relationships of rainfall and SOI anomalies indicate a positive correlation, signifies ENSO/SOI as seasonal outlooks for study areas. Model evaluation results showed higher degree of bias (RMSEs/RMSE value of 0.88-0.98). The D-index of agreement in the range 0.61-0.71 indicate the ability of the APSIM-Maize model is an adequate tool in evaluating relative changes in maize yield in relation to various management practices and seasonal variations. During rainy, La Niño years (SOI > +5), highest simulated yields were found for Bethlehem in November with addition of 100 - 150 kg ha-1 N fertilization and up to 50 kg ha-1 for both Bothaville and Bloemfontein. With respect to various levels of fertilization, the dry El Niño years (SOI risk for dryland farming in semi-arid regions. Key word: Semi-arid; APSIM; SOI; El Niño / La Niña; On-farm Decisions

  14. Hydrologic feasibility of artificial forestation in the semi-arid Loess Plateau of China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jin, T. T.; Fu, B. J.; Liu, G. H.; Wang, Z.

    2011-08-01

    Hydrologic viability, in terms of moisture availability, is fundamental to ecosystem sustainability in arid and semi-arid regions. In this study, we examine the spatial distribution and after-planting variations of soil moisture content (SMC) in black locust tree (Robinia pseudoacacia L.) plantings in the Loess Plateau of China at a regional scale. Thirty sites (5 to 45 yr old) were selected, spanning an area of 300 km by 190 km in the northern region of the Shaanxi Province. The SMC was measured to a depth of 100 cm at intervals of 10 cm. Geographical, topographic and vegetation information was recorded, and soil organic matter was evaluated. The results show that, at the regional scale, SMC spatial variability was most highly correlated with rainfall. The negative relationship between the SMC at a depth of 20-50 cm and the stand age was stronger than at other depths, although this relationship was not significant at a 5 % level. Watershed analysis shows that the after-planting SMC variation differed depending upon precipitation. The SMC of plantings in areas receiving sufficient precipitation (e.g., mean annual precipitation (MAP) of 617 mm) may increase with stand age due to improvements in soil water-holding capacity and water-retention abilities after planting. For areas experiencing water shortages (e.g., MAP = 509 mm), evapotranspiration may cause planting soils to dry within the first 20 yr of growth. It is expected that, as arid and semi-arid plantings age, evapotranspiration will decrease, and the soil profile may gradually recover. In extremely dry areas (e.g., MAP = 352 mm), the variation in after-planting SMC with stand age was found to be negligible. The MAP can be used as an index to divide the study area into different ecological regions. Afforestation may sequentially exert positive, negative and negligible effects on SMCs with a decrease in the MAP. Therefore, future restoration measures should correspond to the local climate conditions, and the

  15. IMPACT OF ZOOTECHNICAL PARAMETERS ON CELL QUALITY OF CATTLE MILK (SEMI-ARID COSTAL TUNISIA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. HAJ MBAREK

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available The work was realized on a sample of 50 cattle herds, conducted in aboveground, in a coastal area of the semi-arid Tunisia, by using investigation related to cows and their breeding and milking conditions as well as despoliation in milk control data. Analysis of the data relating to the parameters of udder conformation and cow cleanliness revealed that “Udder depth” settings “Udder cleanliness” have been shown to affect the ICC and are considered factors risk of bovine mastitis. The study of breeding and milking conditions highlight some significant factors on changes on the variation of cell counts and the probability of the spread of mastitis, especially the "No disinfection of teat." The level of housing, the analysis revealed that the use of a litter reduced to half the average of ICC which proved highly related to the cleanliness of both the sleeping area as the udder.

  16. The use of soil quality indicators to assess soil functionality in restored semi-arid ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muñoz-Rojas, Miriam; Erickson, Todd E.; Dixon, Kingsley W.; Merritt, David J.

    2016-04-01

    . Soil microbial activity was measured with the 1-day CO2 test, a cost-effective and rapid method to determine soil microbial respiration rate based on the measurement of the CO2 burst produced after moistening dry soil (Muñoz-Rojas et al., 2016). Soil microbial abundance of specific groups was measured by phospholipid fatty acid analysis. Results and discussion We showed that in addition to organic C and C:N ratio, biological indicators (microbial diversity and activity in particular), are the most sensitive indicators to detect differences among reconstructed soils and analogue undisturbed soils in semi-arid areas. The 1-day CO2 test is an alternative cost- and time-effective method to measure microbial activity and assess soil functionality of restored soils. Our results also showed a positive effect of vegetation on reconstructed soils and a recovery of soil functionality in waste material to levels similar to topsoil once vegetation is established, although soil quality levels are still far from those in undisturbed native soils four years post-restoration. Soil functionality is critical in the restoration process, particularly in semi-arid areas, and the methods used here could be effectively applied in a broad range of restoration projects in arid and semi-arid environments. References Costantini EAC, Branquinho C, Nunes A, Schwilch G, Stavi I, Valdecantos A and Zucca C (2015) Soil indicators to assess the effectiveness of restoration strategies in dryland ecosystems. Solid Earth Discussions 7:3645-3687. James JJ, Sheley RL, EricksonT, Rollins KS, Taylor MH, Dixon KW (2013) A systems approach to restoring degraded drylands. Journal of Applied Ecology 50:730-739. Muñoz-Rojas M., Erickson T, Merritt D, Dixon K (2014) Optimising post-mining soil conditions to maximise restoration success in a biodiverse semiarid environment. Geophysical Research. Abstracts Vol. 16, EGU2014-2069-1, EGU General Assembly. Muñoz-Rojas M, Erickson T, Merritt D, Dixon K (2015) Applying

  17. Dynamics in carbon exchange fluxes for a grazed semi-arid savanna ecosystem in West Africa

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tagesson, Torbern; Fensholt, Rasmus; Cropley, Ford

    2015-01-01

    variable in scaling carbon fluxes from ground observations using earth observation data. The net ecosystem exchange of carbon dioxide (NEE) 2010-2013 was measured using the eddy covariance technique at a grazed semi-arid savanna site in Senegal, West Africa. Night-time NEE was not related to temperature......-arid savanna sites; half-hourly GPP and Reco peaked at -43μmol CO2m-2s-1 and 20μmol CO2m-2s-1, and daily GPP and Reco peaked at -15gCm-2 and 12gCm-2, respectively. Possible explanations for the high CO2 fluxes are a high fraction of C4 species, alleviated water stress conditions, and a strong grazing pressure...

  18. Spatiotemporal characterization of dissolved carbon for inland waters in semi-humid/semi-arid region, China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. S. Song

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Spatiotemporal variations of dissolved organic carbon (DOC and inorganic carbon (DIC in 26 waters across the semi-humid/semi-arid Songnen Plain, China, were examined with data collected during 2008–2011. Fresh (n = 14 and brackish (n = 12 waters were grouped according to electrical conductivity (threshold = 1000 μS cm−1 Significant differences in the average DOC and DIC concentrations were observed between the fresh (5.63 mg L−1, 37.39 mg L−1 and the brackish waters (15.33 mg L−1, 142.93 mg L−1. Colored dissolved organic matter (CDOM and DOC concentrations were mainly controlled by climatic–hydrologic conditions. The investigation indicated that the outflow conditions in the semi-arid region had condensed effects on the dissolved carbon, resulting in close relationships between salinity vs. DOC (R2 = 0.66, and salinity vs. DIC (R2 = 0.94. An independent data set collected in May 2012 also confirmed this finding (DOC: R2 = 0.79, DIC: R2 = 0.91, highlighting the potential of quantifying DOC and DIC via salinity measurements for waters dispersed in the plain. Indices based on the CDOM absorption spectra (e.g., the DOC-specific CDOM absorption (SUVA254, absorption ratio a250 : a365 (E250 : E365 and the spectral slope ratio (Sr, S275−295/S350−400 were applied to characterize CDOM composition and quality. Our results indicate that high molecular weight CDOM fractions are more abundant in the fresh waters than the brackish waters.

  19. Spatiotemporal characterization of dissolved carbon for inland waters in semi-humid/semi-arid region, China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Song, K. S.; Zang, S. Y.; Zhao, Y.; Li, L.; Du, J.; Zhang, N. N.; Wang, X. D.; Shao, T. T.; Guan, Y.; Liu, L.

    2013-10-01

    Spatiotemporal variations of dissolved organic carbon (DOC) and inorganic carbon (DIC) in 26 waters across the semi-humid/semi-arid Songnen Plain, China, were examined with data collected during 2008-2011. Fresh (n = 14) and brackish (n = 12) waters were grouped according to electrical conductivity (threshold = 1000 μS cm-1) Significant differences in the average DOC and DIC concentrations were observed between the fresh (5.63 mg L-1, 37.39 mg L-1) and the brackish waters (15.33 mg L-1, 142.93 mg L-1). Colored dissolved organic matter (CDOM) and DOC concentrations were mainly controlled by climatic-hydrologic conditions. The investigation indicated that the outflow conditions in the semi-arid region had condensed effects on the dissolved carbon, resulting in close relationships between salinity vs. DOC (R2 = 0.66), and salinity vs. DIC (R2 = 0.94). An independent data set collected in May 2012 also confirmed this finding (DOC: R2 = 0.79, DIC: R2 = 0.91), highlighting the potential of quantifying DOC and DIC via salinity measurements for waters dispersed in the plain. Indices based on the CDOM absorption spectra (e.g., the DOC-specific CDOM absorption (SUVA254), absorption ratio a250 : a365 (E250 : E365) and the spectral slope ratio (Sr, S275-295/S350-400) were applied to characterize CDOM composition and quality. Our results indicate that high molecular weight CDOM fractions are more abundant in the fresh waters than the brackish waters.

  20. Using NDVI to measure precipitation in semi-arid landscapes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Birtwhistle, Amy N.; Laituri, Melinda; Bledsoe, Brian; Friedman, Jonathan M.

    2016-01-01

    Measuring precipitation in semi-arid landscapes is important for understanding the processes related to rainfall and run-off; however, measuring precipitation accurately can often be challenging especially within remote regions where precipitation instruments are scarce. Typically, rain-gauges are sparsely distributed and research comparing rain-gauge and RADAR precipitation estimates reveal that RADAR data are often misleading, especially for monsoon season convective storms. This study investigates an alternative way to map the spatial and temporal variation of precipitation inputs along ephemeral stream channels using Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) derived from Landsat Thematic Mapper imagery. NDVI values from 26 years of pre- and post-monsoon season Landsat imagery were derived across Yuma Proving Ground (YPG), a region covering 3,367 km2 of semiarid landscapes in southwestern Arizona, USA. The change in NDVI from a pre-to post-monsoon season image along ephemeral stream channels explained 73% of the variance in annual monsoonal precipitation totals from a nearby rain-gauge. In addition, large seasonal changes in NDVI along channels were useful in determining when and where flow events have occurred.

  1. Modeling mechanisms of vegetation change due to fire in a semi-arid ecosystem

    Science.gov (United States)

    White, J.D.; Gutzwiller, K.J.; Barrow, W.C.; Randall, L.J.; Swint, P.

    2008-01-01

    Vegetation growth and community composition in semi-arid environments is determined by water availability and carbon assimilation mechanisms specific to different plant types. Disturbance also impacts vegetation productivity and composition dependent on area affected, intensity, and frequency factors. In this study, a new spatially explicit ecosystem model is presented for the purpose of simulating vegetation cover type changes associated with fire disturbance in the northern Chihuahuan Desert region. The model is called the Landscape and Fire Simulator (LAFS) and represents physiological activity of six functional plant types incorporating site climate, fire, and seed dispersal routines for individual grid cells. We applied this model for Big Bend National Park, Texas, by assessing the impact of wildfire on the trajectory of vegetation communities over time. The model was initialized and calibrated based on landcover maps derived from Landsat-5 Thematic Mapper data acquired in 1986 and 1999 coupled with plant biomass measurements collected in the field during 2000. Initial vegetation cover change analysis from satellite data showed shrub encroachment during this time period that was captured in the simulated results. A synthetic 50-year climate record was derived from historical meteorological data to assess system response based on initial landcover conditions. This simulation showed that shrublands increased to the detriment of grass and yucca-ocotillo vegetation cover types indicating an ecosystem-level trajectory for shrub encroachment. Our analysis of simulated fires also showed that fires significantly reduced site biomass components including leaf area, stem, and seed biomass in this semi-arid ecosystem. In contrast to other landscape simulation models, this new model incorporates detailed physiological responses of functional plant types that will allow us to simulated the impact of increased atmospheric CO2 occurring with climate change coupled with fire

  2. Climate change in semi-arid Malawi: Perceptions, adaptation strategies and water governance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Miriam K. Joshua

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Climate change and variability are a threat to sustainable agricultural production in semi-arid areas of Malawi. Overdependence on subsistence rain-fed agriculture in these areas calls for the identification of sustainable adaptation strategies. A study was therefore conducted in Chikwawa, a semi-arid district in southern Malawi, to: (1 assess community’s perception of a changing climate against empirical evidence, (2 determine their local adaptive measures, (3 evaluate the potential of irrigated agriculture as an adaptive measure in household food security and (4 challenges over access to available water resources. The study employed focus group discussions and key informant interviews to assess people’s perceptions of climate change and variability and their desired interventions. To validate the people’s perceptions, rainfall and temperature data for the period 1960–2010 were analysed. A participatory complete randomised experimental design in both rain-fed and dry season–irrigated conditions was conducted to assess a maize cropping system that would improve adaptation. The study established persistent declining yields from rain-fed production in part because of perennial rainfall failure. In response, the community has shifted its focus to irrigation as an adaptation strategy, which has in turn triggered water conflicts in the community over the control of the resource. Water legislation however fails to adequately provide for rules governing sharing of water resources between various stakeholders. This article therefore recommends development of an appropriate institutional framework that forms a strong basis for equitable distribution of water for irrigation in areas most vulnerable to extreme climate events – including droughts and floods. Keywords: Food Security; Climate Change and Variability; Rainfall Variability; Irrigation; Water Resources; Governance Crisis

  3. Karst characterization in a semi-arid region using gravity, seismic, and resistivity geophysical techniques.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Barnhart, Kevin Scott

    2013-10-01

    We proposed to customize emerging in situ geophysical monitoring technology to generate time-series data during sporadic rain events in a semi-arid region. Electrodes were to be connected to wireless \

  4. Diurnal regulation of photosynthesis in Jatropha curcas under drought during summer in a semi-arid region

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tominaga, Jun; Inafuku, Sayuri; Coetzee, Tidimalo; Kawamitsu, Yoshinobu

    2014-01-01

    The diurnal photosynthetic responses to drought in Jatropha curcas have not been well assessed under field conditions in harsh semi-arid habitats. To illustrate this, diurnal changes in chlorophyll fluorescence and gas exchange rates were measured in field-grown Jatropha with or without a short (13 days) water recovery treatment under drought conditions during hot summer in a semi-arid. Sensitive stomatal closure coordinated with a drying atmosphere strictly limited a net CO 2 assimilation rate with a predominant morning peak, eventually turning negative during the day. Even though the risk of excess excitation energy which potentially causes photodamage increased with the extremely low capacity for CO 2 fixation, Jatropha preserved the integrity of PSII. Quantitative analysis of quenching partitioning revealed that regulated thermal energy dissipation accounted a large fraction of both instantaneous and daily absorbed energy by up to 80 and 72%, respectively, under the drought condition. Water recovery treatment more than doubled daily CO 2 uptake via mitigating diurnal stomatal closure. The regulated thermal dissipation flexibly adjusted PSII quantum efficiency to capacity of CO 2 fixation. In addition, downregulation of PSII quantum efficiency via sustained regulated thermal dissipation was observed and thought to be an additional photoprotective function. It is clear that Jatropha strongly rely upon the regulated thermal dissipation under drought condition, which must be critically important for this strict water conserving species, especially under a climate with high solar radiation loads as is seen in semi-arid regions. - Highlights: • Diurnal gas exchange and the fate of absorbed energy were assessed in Jatropha. • The dynamic stomatal closure was the predominant restriction under water stress. • The PSII integrity was preserved even under severe water stress. • The regulated thermal dissipation accounted by up to 72% of daily absorbed energy.

  5. Rapid warming accelerates tree growth decline in semi-arid forests of Inner Asia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Hongyan; Park Williams, A; Allen, Craig D; Guo, Dali; Wu, Xiuchen; Anenkhonov, Oleg A; Liang, Eryuan; Sandanov, Denis V; Yin, Yi; Qi, Zhaohuan; Badmaeva, Natalya K

    2013-08-01

    Forests around the world are subject to risk of high rates of tree growth decline and increased tree mortality from combinations of climate warming and drought, notably in semi-arid settings. Here, we assess how climate warming has affected tree growth in one of the world's most extensive zones of semi-arid forests, in Inner Asia, a region where lack of data limits our understanding of how climate change may impact forests. We show that pervasive tree growth declines since 1994 in Inner Asia have been confined to semi-arid forests, where growing season water stress has been rising due to warming-induced increases in atmospheric moisture demand. A causal link between increasing drought and declining growth at semi-arid sites is corroborated by correlation analyses comparing annual climate data to records of tree-ring widths. These ring-width records tend to be substantially more sensitive to drought variability at semi-arid sites than at semi-humid sites. Fire occurrence and insect/pathogen attacks have increased in tandem with the most recent (2007-2009) documented episode of tree mortality. If warming in Inner Asia continues, further increases in forest stress and tree mortality could be expected, potentially driving the eventual regional loss of current semi-arid forests. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  6. Evaluating water controls on vegetation growth in the semi-arid sahel using field and earth observation data

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Abdi, Abdulhakim M.; Boke-Olen, Niklas; Tenenbaum, David E.

    2017-01-01

    Water loss is a crucial factor for vegetation in the semi-arid Sahel region of Africa. Global satellite-driven estimates of plant CO2 uptake (gross primary productivity, GPP) have been found to not accurately account for Sahelian conditions, particularly the impact of canopy water stress. Here, we...... identify the main biophysical limitations that induce canopy water stress in Sahelian vegetation and evaluate the relationships between field data and Earth observation-derived spectral products for up-scaling GPP. We find that plant-available water and vapor pressure deficit together control the GPP...

  7. Soil Microbial Activity Responses to Fire in a Semi-arid Savannah Ecosystem Pre- and Post-Monsoon Season

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jimenez, J. R.; Raub, H. D.; Jong, E. L.; Muscarella, C. R.; Smith, W. K.; Gallery, R. E.

    2017-12-01

    Extracellular enzyme activities (EEA) of soil microorganisms can act as important proxies for nutrient limitation and turnover in soil and provide insight into the biochemical requirements of microbes in terrestrial ecosystems. In semi-arid ecosystems, microbial activity is influenced by topography, disturbances such as fire, and seasonality from monsoon rains. Previous studies from forest ecosystems show that microbial communities shift to similar compositions after severe fires despite different initial conditions. In semi-arid ecosystems with high spatial heterogeniety, we ask does fire lead to patch intensification or patch homogenization and how do monsoon rains influence the successional trajectories of microbial responses? We analyzed microbial activity and soil biogeochemistry throughout the monsoon season in paired burned and unburned sites in the Santa Rita Experimental Range, AZ. Surface soil (5cm) from bare-ground patches, bole, canopy drip line, and nearby grass patches for 5 mesquite trees per site allowed tests of spatiotemporal responses to fire and monsoon rain. Microbial activity was low during the pre-monsoon season and did not differ between the burned and unburned sites. We found greater activity near mesquite trees that reflects soil water and nutrient availability. Fire increased soil alkalinity, though soils near mesquite trees were less affected. Soil water content was significantly higher in the burned sites post-monsoon, potentially reflecting greater hydrophobicity of burned soils. Considering the effects of fire in these semi-arid ecosystems is especially important in the context of the projected changing climate regime in this region. Assessing microbial community recovery pre-, during, and post-monsoon is important for testing predictions about whether successional pathways post-fire lead to recovery or novel trajectories of communities and ecosystem function.

  8. INTEGRATION OF SATELLITE RAINFALL DATA AND CURVE NUMBER METHOD FOR RUNOFF ESTIMATION UNDER SEMI-ARID WADI SYSTEM

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. O. Adam

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available The arid and semi-arid catchments in dry lands in general require a special effective management as the scarcity of resources and information which is needed to leverage studies and investigations is the common characteristic. Hydrology is one of the most important elements in the management of resources. Deep understanding of hydrological responses is the key towards better planning and land management. Surface runoff quantification of such ungauged semi-arid catchments considered among the important challenges. A 7586 km2 catchment under investigation is located in semi-arid region in central Sudan where mean annual rainfall is around 250 mm and represent the ultimate source for water supply. The objective is to parameterize hydrological characteristics of the catchment and estimate surface runoff using suitable methods and hydrological models that suit the nature of such ungauged catchments with scarce geospatial information. In order to produce spatial runoff estimations, satellite rainfall was used. Remote sensing and GIS were incorporated in the investigations and the generation of landcover and soil information. Five days rainfall event (50.2 mm was used for the SCS CN model which is considered the suitable for this catchment, as SCS curve number (CN method is widely used for estimating infiltration characteristics depending on the landcover and soil property. Runoff depths of 3.6, 15.7 and 29.7 mm were estimated for the three different Antecedent Moisture Conditions (AMC-I, AMC-II and AMC-III. The estimated runoff depths of AMCII and AMCIII indicate the possibility of having small artificial surface reservoirs that could provide water for domestic and small household agricultural use.

  9. Water requirement and use by Jatropha curcas in a semi-arid tropical location

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kesava Rao, A.V.R.; Wani, Suhas P.; Singh, Piara; Srinivas, K.; Srinivasa Rao, Ch.

    2012-01-01

    Increasing emphasis on biofuel to meet the growing energy demand while reducing emissions of greenhouse gases, Jatropha curcas has attracted the attention of researchers, policy makers and industries as a good candidate for biodiesel. It is a non-edible oil crop, drought tolerant and could be grown on degraded lands in the tropics without competing for lands currently used for food production. J. curcas being a wild plant, much about its water requirement and production potential of promising clones in different agroclimatic conditions is not known. Water use assessment of J. curcas plantations in the semi-arid tropical location at ICRISAT, Patancheru indicated that crop evapotranspiration of J. curcas under no moisture stress varied from 1410 to 1538 mm per year during 2006–2009. Under field conditions the crop evapotranspiration varied from 614 to 930 mm depending on the atmospheric demand, rainfall and crop phenological stage. Patterns of soil-water depletion indicated that with growing plant age from two to five years, depth of soil-water extraction increased from 100 to 150 cm by fifth year. Monthly water use of Jatropha varied from 10–20 (leaf shedding period) to 140 mm depending on water availability and environmental demand. This study indicated that J. curcas has a good drought tolerance mechanism, however under favorable soil moisture conditions Jatropha could use large amounts of water for luxurious growth and high yield. These findings highlight the need to carefully identify suitable niche areas for Jatropha cultivation and assess the implications of large J. curcas plantations on water availability and use under different agroecosystems, particularly so in water scarce regions such as semi-arid and arid regions in the tropics. -- Highlights: ► Jatropha ET varied from 1410 to 1538 mm in optimal and 614 to 930 mm in field conditions. ► Depth of soil-water extraction increased from 100 to 150 cm by fifth year of age. ► Jatropha yields varied

  10. Semi-arid vegetation response to antecedent climate and water balance windows

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thoma, David P.; Munson, Seth M.; Irvine, Kathryn M.; Witwicki, Dana L.; Bunting, Erin

    2016-01-01

    Questions Can we improve understanding of vegetation response to water availability on monthly time scales in semi-arid environments using remote sensing methods? What climatic or water balance variables and antecedent windows of time associated with these variables best relate to the condition of vegetation? Can we develop credible near-term forecasts from climate data that can be used to prepare for future climate change effects on vegetation? Location Semi-arid grasslands in Capitol Reef National Park, Utah, USA. Methods We built vegetation response models by relating the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) from MODIS imagery in Mar–Nov 2000–2013 to antecedent climate and water balance variables preceding the monthly NDVI observations. We compared how climate and water balance variables explained vegetation greenness and then used a multi-model ensemble of climate and water balance models to forecast monthly NDVI for three holdout years. Results Water balance variables explained vegetation greenness to a greater degree than climate variables for most growing season months. Seasonally important variables included measures of antecedent water input and storage in spring, switching to indicators of drought, input or use in summer, followed by antecedent moisture availability in autumn. In spite of similar climates, there was evidence the grazed grassland showed a response to drying conditions 1 mo sooner than the ungrazed grassland. Lead times were generally short early in the growing season and antecedent window durations increased from 3 mo early in the growing season to 1 yr or more as the growing season progressed. Forecast accuracy for three holdout years using a multi-model ensemble of climate and water balance variables outperformed forecasts made with a naïve NDVI climatology. Conclusions We determined the influence of climate and water balance on vegetation at a fine temporal scale, which presents an opportunity to forecast vegetation

  11. Peach response to water deficit in a semi-arid region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paltineanu, C.; Septar, L.; Moale, C.; Nicolae, S.; Nicola, C.

    2013-09-01

    During three years a deficit irrigation experiment was performed on peach response under the semi-arid conditions of south-eastern Romania. Three sprinkler-irrigated treatments were investigated: fully irrigated, deficit irrigation treatment, and non-irrigated control treatment. Soil water content ranged between 60 and 76% of the plant available soil water capacity in fully irrigated, between 40 and 62% in deficit irrigation treatment, and between 30 and 45% in control. There were significant differences in fruit yield between the treatments. Irrigation water use efficiency was maximum in deficit irrigation treatment. Fruit yield correlated significantly with irrigation application. Total dry matter content, total solids content and titrable acidity of fruit were significantly different in the irrigated treatments vs. the control. Significant correlation coefficients were found between some fruit chemical components. For the possible future global warming conditions, when water use becomes increasingly restrictive, deficit irrigation will be a reasonable solution for water conservation in regions with similar soil and climate conditions.

  12. Air pollution measurements in a semi-arid zine, using neutron activation analysis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Shani, G; Cohen, D

    1977-01-01

    Neutron activation analysis was used for measurement of air pollution in a semi arid zone. After a careful selection of the air filter, air samples were filtered in the city of Beer-Sheva in the south of Israel. The sampling took place over a period of 2 months with each sampling period lasting 2 days. The samples were irradiated in a thermal neutron flux of the order of 10/sup 13/ n/cm/sup 2/ sec for 1 h and the gamma spectrum was measured several times. The concentration of elements was concluded from the measured gamma spectrum. Several conclusions were obtained by combining the weather conditions with the measurement results. The air pollution can be divided into several sources: dust of a certain origin containing Fe, Co, Cr, Sc, Th and Na (probably from the Dead Sea area), other dust sources containing Sb, Eu, and Hf, and urban pollution due to industry and transportation--Br, Hg. The air pollution has its maxima and minima according to weather or industrial conditions. The pollution requires 4 days to clear out. Other relations to weather conditions were also found.

  13. Air pollution measurements in a semi-arid zone, using neutron activation analysis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Shani, G; Cohen, D [Ben-Gurion Univ. of the Negev, Beersheba (Israel). Dept. of Nuclear Engineering

    1977-12-01

    Neutron activation analysis was used for measurement of air pollution in a semi-arid zone. After a careful selection of the air filter, air samples were filtered in the city of Beer-Sheva in the south of Israel. The sampling took place over a period of 2 months with each sampling period lasting 2 days. The samples were irradiated in a thermal neutron flux of the order of 10/sup 13/ n/cm/sup 2/ sec for 1 h and the gamma spectrum was measured several times. The concentration of elements was concluded from the measured gamma spectrum. Several conclusions were obtained by combining the weather conditions with the measurement results. The air pollution can be divided into several sources: dust of a certain origin containing Fe, Co, Cr, Sc, Th and Na (probably from the Dead Sea area), other dust sources containing Sb, Eu, and Hf, and urban pollution due to industry and transportation-Br, Hg. The air pollution has its maxima and minima according to weather or industrial conditions. The pollution requires 4 days to clear out. Other relations to weather conditions were also found.

  14. Air pollution measurements in a semi-arid zone, using neutron activation analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Shani, G.; Cohen, D.

    1977-01-01

    Neutron activation analysis was used for measurement of air pollution in a semi-arid zone. After a careful selection of the air filter, air samples were filtered in the city of Beer-Sheva in the south of Israel. The sampling took place over a period of 2 months with each sampling period lasting 2 days. The samples were irradiated in a thermal neutron flux of the order of 10 13 n/cm 2 sec for 1 h and the gamma spectrum was measured several times. The concentration of elements was concluded from the measured gamma spectrum. Several conclusions were obtained by combining the weather conditions with the measurement results. The air pollution can be divided into several sources: dust of a certain origin containing Fe, Co, Cr, Sc, Th and Na (probably from the Dead Sea area), other dust sources containing Sb, Eu, and Hf, and urban pollution due to industry and transportation-Br, Hg. The air pollution has its maxima and minima according to weather or industrial conditions. The pollution requires 4 days to clear out. Other relations to weather conditions were also found. (Auth.)

  15. Hydrological Response of Semi-arid Degraded Catchments in Tigray, Northern Ethiopia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teka, Daniel; Van Wesemael, Bas; Vanacker, Veerle; Hallet, Vincent

    2013-04-01

    To address water scarcity in the arid and semi-arid part of developing countries, accurate estimation of surface runoff is an essential task. In semi-arid catchments runoff data are scarce and therefore runoff estimation using hydrological models becomes an alternative. This research was initiated in order to characterize runoff response of semi-arid catchments in Tigray, North Ethiopia to evaluate SCS-CN for various catchments. Ten sub-catchments were selected in different river basins and rainfall and runoff were measured with automatic hydro-monitoring equipments for 2-3 years. The Curve Number was estimated for each Hydrological Response Unit (HRU) in the sub-catchments and runoff was modeled using the SCS-CN method at λ = 0.05 and λ = 0.20. The result showed a significant difference between the two abstraction ratios (P =0.05, df = 1, n= 132) and reasonable good result was obtained for predicted runoff at λ = 0.05 (NSE = -0.69; PBIAS = 18.1%). When using the CN values from literature runoff was overestimated compared to the measured value (e= -11.53). This research showed the importance of using measured runoff data to characterize semi-arid catchments and accurately estimate the scarce water resource. Key words: Hydrological response, rainfall-runoff, degraded environments, semi-arid, Ethiopia, Tigray

  16. Observing Semi-Arid Ecoclimates across Mountain Gradients in the Great Basin, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strachan, Scotty

    Observation of climate and ecohydrological variables in mountain systems is a necessary (if challenging) endeavor for modern society. Water resources are often intimately tied to mountains, and high elevation environments are frequently home to unique landscapes and biota with limited geographical distributions. This is especially true in the temperate and semi-arid mountains of the western United States, and specifically the Great Basin. Stark contrasts in annual water balance and ecological populations are visible across steep elevational gradients in the region; and yet the bulk of our historical knowledge of climate and related processes comes from lowland observations. Interpolative models that strive to estimate conditions in mountains using existing datasets are often found to be inaccurate, making future projections of mountain climate and ecosystem response suspect. This study details the results of high-resolution topographically-diverse ecohydrological monitoring, and describes the character and seasonality of basic climatic variables such as temperature and precipitation as well as their impact on soil moisture and vegetation during the 2012-2015 drought sequence. Relationships of topography (elevation/aspect) to daily and seasonal temperatures are shown. Tests of the PRISM temperature model are performed at the large watershed scale, revealing magnitudes, modes, and potential sources of bias that could dramatically affect derivative scientific conclusions. A new method of precipitation phase partitioning to detect and quantify frozen precipitation on a sub-daily basis is described. Character of precipitation from sub-daily to annual scales is quantified across all major Great Basin vegetation/elevation zones, and the relationship of elevation to precipitation phase, intensity, and amount is explored. Water-stress responses of Great Basin conifers including Pinus flexilis, Pinus longaeva, and Pinus ponderosa are directly observed, showing potential

  17. Chemical and Physical Weathering of Granites in a Semi-Arid Savanna

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khomo, L.; Hartshorn, A.; Chadwick, O.; Kurtz, A.; Heimsath, A.; Rogers, K.

    2005-12-01

    The catena concept describes soil properties on hillslopes and implies a hydrological mass redistribution process that has been applied differently in different parts of the Earth. In tectonically active regions, it is mostly used to describe the redistribution of mass by overland flow leading to thickening soil mantles downslope. This application is somewhat different from its initial and still popular usage in tectonically inactive areas of Africa, where it defines long-term soil property differentiation along hillslopes as controlled by internal soil hydrology as opposed to overland flow. Many ecologists have found the "African" catena concept to be useful as an organizing principal for savanna studies, but there has been little recent research on catenas per se in Africa. Elsewhere however, there is a growing body of research that places the concept ever more strongly into a landscape evolution context. Here, we apply these new approaches to catenas in a South African savanna underlain by a heterogeneous suite of Basement granites straddling a gradient in effective precipitation. We constrain the weathering extent of hilly terrains formed on these oldrocks by calculating element losses with solid-phase mass-balance calculations augmented by cosmogenic (26Al/10Be) derived rates of landscape denudation. We test the efficacy of Ti, Zr and Nb as immobile elements to benchmark chemical losses and gains in these semi-arid weathering environments. We also trace and quantify the abundance of the host minerals for these elements (Ti = rutile and ilmenite, Nb = columbite and Zr = zircon and baddleyite) in a variety of rocks in the basement complex. This analysis provides the boundary conditions for assigning immobile elements to parent materials required for the mass balance calculations. We calculate total denudation using the cosmogenic isotopes and then partition it into chemical and physical loss vectors using the mass balance calculations for representative

  18. Should we plant trees to offset greenhouse gas emissions in semi-arid environments?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pataki, D. E.; Pincetl, S.; Gillespie, T. W.; Li, W.; McCarthy, H. R.; Saatchi, S.; Saphores, J.

    2008-12-01

    Urban tree planting programs have been gaining popularity in the United States. Urban trees have been associated with a variety of environmental benefits, including improvements in air quality, mitigation of urban heat island effects, reductions in stormwater runoff, and more recently, carbon sequestration. There are also other potential aesthetic and economic benefits of urban forests, which have been shown to affect real estate values. However, there may also be significant economic and environmental costs of planting and maintaining trees in urban areas, particularly in semi-arid environments where trees are not native and require irrigation and fertilization. We are conducting an analysis of the Million Tree Initiative in the city of Los Angeles, which has committed to a major tree planting program. Los Angeles currently has a low tree canopy cover relative to other cities, particularly in its low income neighborhoods. We are evaluating the decision-making processes associated with the new tree planting program, its perceived benefits, and its actual benefits based on measurements of plant and ecosystem processes such as transpiration, photosynthesis, and water use efficiency; remote sensing analyses of tree cover and surface temperature; and economic analyses. We have found great variability in the interpretation of the program by its various participants, but also significant institutional learning as the program has evolved. Our datasets have challenged some of the common assumptions of the program, for example, the assumption that native species use less water than imported species and are therefore more environmentally beneficial in terms of water resources. We have also found significant impacts of the urban forest on air temperature, which may reduce energy use during the summer due to reductions in air conditioning. This is likely to be a larger effect of urban trees on greenhouse gas emissions than direct carbon sequestration alone, which is a very

  19. Characterising root density of peach trees in a semi-arid Chernozem to increase plant density

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paltineanu, Cristian; Septar, Leinar; Gavat, Corina; Chitu, Emil; Oprita, Alexandru; Moale, Cristina; Calciu, Irina; Vizitiu, Olga; Lamureanu, Gheorghe

    2016-01-01

    The available information on root system in fully mature peach orchards in semi-arid regions is insufficient. This paper presents a study on the root system density in an irrigated peach orchard from Dobrogea, Romania, using the trench technique. The old orchard has clean cultivation in inter-row and in-row. The objectives of the study were to: test the hypothesis that the roots of fully mature peach trees occupy the whole soil volume; find out if root repulsive effect of adjacent plants occurred for the rootstocks and soil conditions; find relationships between root system and soil properties and analyse soil state trend. Some soil physical properties were significantly deteriorated in inter-row versus in-row, mainly due to soil compaction induced by technological traffic. Density of total roots was higher in-row than inter-row, but the differences were not significant. Root density decreased more intensely with soil depth than with distance from tree trunks. Root density correlated with some soil properties. No repulsive effect of the roots of adjacent peach trees was noted. The decrease of root density with distance from trunk can be used in optimising tree arrangement. The conclusions could also be used in countries with similar growth conditions.

  20. Insolation driven biomagnetic response to the Holocene Warm Period in semi-arid East Asia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Suzhen; Deng, Chenglong; Xiao, Jule; Li, Jinhua; Paterson, Greig A.; Chang, Liao; Yi, Liang; Qin, Huafeng; Pan, Yongxin; Zhu, Rixiang

    2015-01-01

    The Holocene Warm Period (HWP) provides valuable insights into the climate system and biotic responses to environmental variability and thus serves as an excellent analogue for future global climate changes. Here we document, for the first time, that warm and wet HWP conditions were highly favourable for magnetofossil proliferation in the semi-arid Asian interior. The pronounced increase of magnetofossil concentrations at ~9.8 ka and decrease at ~5.9 ka in Dali Lake coincided respectively with the onset and termination of the HWP, and are respectively linked to increased nutrient supply due to postglacial warming and poor nutrition due to drying at ~6 ka in the Asian interior. The two-stage transition at ~7.7 ka correlates well with increased organic carbon in middle HWP and suggests that improved climate conditions, leading to high quality nutrient influx, fostered magnetofossil proliferation. Our findings represent an excellent lake record in which magnetofossil abundance is, through nutrient availability, controlled by insolation driven climate changes.

  1. Resistência natural de nove madeiras do semi-árido brasileiro a fungos xilófagos em condições de laboratório Natural resistance of nine woods of Brazilian semi-arid region to wood-destroying fungi under laboratory conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juarez Benigno Paes

    2004-04-01

    Full Text Available Objetivou-se avaliar a resistência natural de nove madeiras do semi-árido brasileiro a fungos xilófagos, em condições de laboratório. As madeiras estudadas foram a algaroba (Prosopis juliflora, o angico (Anadenanthera macrocarpa, a aroeira (Myracrodruon urundeuva, a braúna (Schinopsis brasiliensis, a cássia (Senna siamea, a craibeira (Tabebuia aurea, o cumaru (Amburana cearensis, o ipê (Tabebuia impetiginosa e o pereiro (Aspidosperma pyrifolium. De cada espécie foram retirados corpos-de-prova de 2,54 x 2,00 x 1,00 cm, com a maior dimensão na direção das fibras, em quatro posições na direção medula-casca. As amostras foram submetidas, por 14 semanas, à ação dos fungos Postia placenta e Neolentinus lepideus. A resistência natural, com exceção da algaroba e do angico (P. placenta, da craibeira (N. lepideus e da cássia (P. placenta e N. lepideus, foi afetada pela posição na direção medula-casca, sem estar relacionada à densidade das madeiras ensaiadas. A madeira de ipê e a madeira de cerne da aroeira e braúna foram as mais resistentes aos fungos testados. As diferenças entre a resistência natural, exceto para a aroeira e braúna, não estavam associadas à concentração de extrativos solúveis em água quente.The objective of this research was to evaluate the natural resistance of nine semi arid region Brazilian woods to wood-destroying fungi under laboratory conditions. The studied woods were the Prosopis juliflora, Anadenanthera macrocarpa, Myracrodruon urundeuva, Schinopsis brasiliensis, Senna siamea, Tabebuia aurea, Amburana cearensis, Tabebuia impetiginosa and Aspidosperma pyrifolium. Test samples measuring 2.54 x 2.00 x 1.00 cm, with the largest measure taken fiber-wise were obtained from four pith-to-bark positions. The samples were submitted to action of the Postia placenta and Neolentinus lepideus fungi for 14 weeks. Species resistance, with exception of those of Prosopis juliflora and Anadenanthera

  2. Large-scale hydrological modelling in the semi-arid north-east of Brazil

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Guentner, A

    2002-09-01

    Semi-arid areas are characterized by small water resources. An increasing water demand due to population growth and economic development as well as a possible decreasing water availability in the course of climate change may aggravate water scarcity in future in these areas. The quantitative assessment of the water resources is a prerequisite for the development of sustainable measures of water management. For this task, hydrological models within a dynamic integrated framework are indispensable tools. The main objective of this study is to develop a hydrological model for the quantification of water availability over a large geographic domain of semi-arid environments. The study area is the Federal State of Ceara in the semi-arid north-east of Brazil. Surface water from reservoirs provides the largest part of water supply. The area has recurrently been affected by droughts which caused serious economic losses and social impacts like migration from the rural regions. (orig.)

  3. Land degradation assessment by geo-spatially modeling different soil erodibility equations in a semi-arid catchment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saygın, Selen Deviren; Basaran, Mustafa; Ozcan, Ali Ugur; Dolarslan, Melda; Timur, Ozgur Burhan; Yilman, F Ebru; Erpul, Gunay

    2011-09-01

    Land degradation by soil erosion is one of the most serious problems and environmental issues in many ecosystems of arid and semi-arid regions. Especially, the disturbed areas have greater soil detachability and transportability capacity. Evaluation of land degradation in terms of soil erodibility, by using geostatistical modeling, is vital to protect and reclaim susceptible areas. Soil erodibility, described as the ability of soils to resist erosion, can be measured either directly under natural or simulated rainfall conditions, or indirectly estimated by empirical regression models. This study compares three empirical equations used to determine the soil erodibility factor of revised universal soil loss equation prediction technology based on their geospatial performances in the semi-arid catchment of the Saraykoy II Irrigation Dam located in Cankiri, Turkey. A total of 311 geo-referenced soil samples were collected with irregular intervals from the top soil layer (0-10 cm). Geostatistical analysis was performed with the point values of each equation to determine its spatial pattern. Results showed that equations that used soil organic matter in combination with the soil particle size better agreed with the variations in land use and topography of the catchment than the one using only the particle size distribution. It is recommended that the equations which dynamically integrate soil intrinsic properties with land use, topography, and its influences on the local microclimates, could be successfully used to geospatially determine sites highly susceptible to water erosion, and therefore, to select the agricultural and bio-engineering control measures needed.

  4. The linkage between household water consumption and rainfall in the semi-arid region of East Nusa Tenggara, Indonesia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Messakh, J. J.; Moy, D. L.; Mojo, D.; Maliti, Y.

    2018-01-01

    Several studies have shown that the amount of water consumption by communities will depend on the factors of water consumption patterns that are influenced by social, cultural, economic and local climate conditions. Research on the linkage between rainfall and household water consumption in semi-arid areas of Indonesia has never been done. This study has been conducted on 17 regions in NTT, and case study has taken samples in one town and one village. The research used survey and documentation method. The results show that the average amount of household water consumption in semi-arid region of East Nusa Tenggara is 107 liters / person / day. Statistical test results using Pearson correlation found r = -0.194 and sig = 0.448. This means that there is a negative correlation between rainfall and household water consumption. The greater the rainfall the smaller the consumption of water, or the smaller the rainfall the greater the consumption of water, but the linkage is not significant. Research shows that the amount of household water consumption will be influenced by many interrelated factors and none of the most dominant factors, including the size of the rainfall that occurs in a region.

  5. Management of nutrients and water in rainfed arid and semi-arid areas. Proceedings of a consultants meeting

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1998-07-01

    Sustainable food security is needed for the arid and semi-arid regions of the tropical, subtropical and warm-temperate climatic zones. In these regions the supply of locally grown food is unreliable because much of it is produced in conditions of highly variable rainfall. Even in favourable seasons, these regions re becoming increasingly dependent on imported food. The IAEA's involvement in field studies on soil-water use dates back several years. A five year Co-ordinated Research Project on ''The Use of Nuclear and Related Techniques in Assessment of Irrigation Schedules of Field Crops to Increase Effective Use of Water in Irrigation Projects''. That project, completed in 1995, laid a solid foundation for future research. Because of a scarcity of water in many developing countries and increasing needs for sustainable food security in the face of increasing populations and lack of funds for irrigation schemes of significant dimension, research must focus on improved management of (i) the modest quantities of fertilizers that are available to farmers, (ii) the natural resources that are available to farmers for increasing soil organic matter content, and (iii) rain water. The Joint FAO/IAEA Division of Nuclear Techniques in Food and Agriculture held a Consultants Meeting on Management of Nutrients and Water in Rainfed Arid and Semi-Arid Areas for Increasing Crop Production, 26-29 May 1997

  6. Genetic resistance to natural coccidiosis infection in goats in a semi-arid region of India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    P.K. Rout

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Coccidiosis is one of the major causes of kid mortality in tropical regions and causes significant loss to farmers by affecting growth and feed efficiency in the growing kid. The strategy to control the coccidiosis is mainly through drug usage and is not efficacious at present. Therefore, an alternative strategy is required to control the disease in goats. Increasing genetic resistance to coccidiosis may be an appropriate complementary control strategy. The purpose of this study was to analyse the genetic variation in severity of natural coccidiosis infections in kids in the semi-arid region. The observations were recorded in 227 kids of Barbari and Jamunapari goats. Barbari goats had higher mean faecal oocyst counts (FOC than Jamunapari goats at 3 and 6 months of age. The heritability for FOC was 0.05 and 0.15 at 3 and 6 months of age, respectively. All phenotypic and environmental correlations between FOC and live weight traits were low and negative, indicating a tendency for more heavily infected kids in the flock to grow more slowly. Genetic correlations were largely similar, but had large standard errors. The results suggest that genetic resistance control strategy can potentially be useful for the better performance in the existing managemental condition.

  7. Spatial and temporal evapotranspiration trends after wildfire in semi-arid landscapes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poon, Patrick K.; Kinoshita, Alicia M.

    2018-04-01

    In recent years climate change and other anthropogenic factors have contributed to increased wildfire frequency and size in western United States forests. This research focuses on the evaluation of spatial and temporal changes in evapotranspiration (ET) following the 2011 Las Conchas Fire in New Mexico (USA) using the Operational Simplified Surface Energy Balance Model (SSEBop ET). Evapotranspiration is coupled with soil burn severity and analyzed for 16 watersheds for water years 2001-2014. An average annual decrease of 120 mm of ET is observed within the regions affected by the Las Conchas Fire, and conifers were converted to grassland a year after the fire. On average, the post-fire annual ET in high, moderate, and low burn severity is lower than pre-fire ET by approximately 103-352 mm, 97-304 mm, and 91-268 mm, respectively. The ratio of post-fire evapotranspiration to precipitation (ET/P) is statistically different from pre-fire conditions (α = 0.05) in nine of the watersheds. The largest decrease in ET is approximately 13-57 mm per month and is most prominent during the summer (April to September). The observed decrease in ET contributes to our understanding of changes in water yield following wildfires, which is of interest for accurately modeling and predicting hydrologic processes in semi-arid landscapes.

  8. Cyanobacterial blooms in stratified and destratified eutrophic reservoirs in semi-arid region of Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dantas, Enio W; Moura, Ariadne N; Bittencourt-Oliveira, Maria do Carmo

    2011-12-01

    This study investigated the dynamics of cyanobacteria in two deep, eutrophic reservoirs in a semi-arid region of Brazil during periods of stratification and destratification. Four collections were carried out at each reservoir at two depths at three-month intervals. The following abiotic variables were analyzed: water temperature, dissolved oxygen, pH, turbidity, water transparency, total phosphorus, total dissolved phosphorus, orthophosphate and total nitrogen. Phytoplankton density was quantified for the determination of the biomass of cyanobacteria. The data were analyzed using CCA. Higher mean phytoplankton biomass values (29.8 mm(3).L(-1)) occurred in the period of thermal stratification. A greater similarity in the phytoplankton communities also occurred in this period and was related to the development of cyanobacteria, mainly Cylindrospermopsis raciborskii (>3.9 mm(3).L(-1)). During the period of thermal destratification, this species co-dominated the environment with Planktothrix agardhii, Geitlerinema amphibium, Microcystis aeruginosa and Merismopedia tenuissima, as well as with diatoms and phytoflagellates. Environmental instability and competition among algae hindered the establishment of blooms more during the mixture period than during the stratification period. Thermal changes in the water column caused by climatologic events altered other physiochemical conditions of the water, leading to changes in the composition and biomass of the cyanobacterial community in tropical reservoirs.

  9. Excessive reliance on afforestation in China's arid and semi-arid regions: Lessons in ecological restoration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cao, Shixiong; Chen, Li; Shankman, David; Wang, Chunmei; Wang, Xiongbin; Zhang, Hong

    2011-02-01

    Afforestation is a primary tool for controlling desertification and soil erosion in China. Large-scale afforestation, however, has complex and poorly understood consequences for the structure and composition of future ecosystems. Here, we discuss the potential links between China's historical large-scale afforestation practices and the program's effects on environmental restoration in arid and semi-arid regions in northern China based on a review of data from published papers, and offer recommendations to overcome the shortcomings of current environmental policy. Although afforestation is potentially an important approach for environmental restoration, current Chinese policy has not been tailored to local environmental conditions, leading to the use of inappropriate species and an overemphasis on tree and shrub planting, thereby compromising the ability to achieve environmental policy goals. China's huge investment to increase forest cover seems likely to exacerbate environmental degradation in environmentally fragile areas because it has ignored climate, pedological, hydrological, and landscape factors that would make a site unsuitable for afforestation. This has, in many cases, led to the deterioration of soil ecosystems and decreased vegetation cover, and has exacerbated water shortages. Large-scale and long-term research is urgently needed to provide information that supports a more effective and flexible environmental restoration policy.

  10. Water management can reinforce plant competition in salt-affected semi-arid wetlands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coletti, Janaine Z.; Vogwill, Ryan; Hipsey, Matthew R.

    2017-09-01

    The diversity of vegetation in semi-arid, ephemeral wetlands is determined by niche availability and species competition, both of which are influenced by changes in water availability and salinity. Here, we hypothesise that ignoring physiological differences and competition between species when managing wetland hydrologic regimes can lead to a decrease in vegetation diversity, even when the overall wetland carrying capacity is improved. Using an ecohydrological model capable of resolving water-vegetation-salt feedbacks, we investigate why water surface and groundwater management interventions to combat vegetation decline have been more beneficial to Casuarina obesa than to Melaleuca strobophylla, the co-dominant tree species in Lake Toolibin, a salt-affected wetland in Western Australia. The simulations reveal that in trying to reduce the negative effect of salinity, the management interventions have created an environment favouring C. obesa by intensifying the climate-induced trend that the wetland has been experiencing of lower water availability and higher root-zone salinity. By testing alternative scenarios, we show that interventions that improve M. strobophylla biomass are possible by promoting hydrologic conditions that are less specific to the niche requirements of C. obesa. Modelling uncertainties were explored via a Markov Chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) algorithm. Overall, the study demonstrates the importance of including species differentiation and competition in ecohydrological models that form the basis for wetland management.

  11. Mechanisms, timing and quantities of recharge to groundwater in semi-arid and tropical regions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Edmunds, W.M.

    2001-01-01

    Groundwater being exploited in many and and semi-arid regions at the present day was recharged during former humid episodes of the Pleistocene or Holocene and, in contrast, the amounts derived from modem recharge are small generally small and variable. Geochemical and isotopic techniques provide the most effective way to calculate modem recharge and to investigate recharge history, since physically- based water-balance methods are generally inapplicable in semiarid regions. Examples from Africa (Senegal, Niger, Nigeria, Sudan as well as Cyprus) show that direct recharge rates may vary from zero to around 40% of mean rainfall, dependent primarily on the soil depth and the lithology. Spatial variability presents a real problem in any recharge investigation but results from Senegal show that unsaturated zone profiles may be extrapolated using the chemistry of shallow groundwater. Unsaturated-zone studies show that there are limiting conditions to direct recharge through soil, but that present day replenishment of aquifers takes place via wadis and channels. In the Butana area of central Sudan the regional groundwater was also recharged during a mid-Holocene wet phase and is now in decline. The only current recharge sources, which can be recognised distinctly using stable isotopes, are Nile baseflow and ephemeral wadi floods. (author)

  12. First record of Chantransia macrospora Wood, 1887 (Batrachospermales, Rhodophyta in semi-arid northeastern Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Janiele França Vasconcelos

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available This study presents the first record of Chantransia macrospora in the state of Rio Grande do Norte, in the semi-arid region of northeastern Brazil. Analyses of periphytic algae revealed C. macrospora individuals associated in particular with shells of Melanoides tuberculatus, a non-native species, suggesting that C. macrospora have been introduced into systems associated with the gastropods. In this context, new records of C. macrospora are still expected for the Brazilian semi-arid region in the next years.

  13. First record of Chantransia macrospora Wood, 1887 (Batrachospermales, Rhodophyta in semi-arid northeastern Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Janiele França Vasconcelos

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available http://dx.doi.org/10.5007/2175-7925.2014v27n4p129 This study presents the first record of Chantransia macrospora in the state of Rio Grande do Norte, in the semi-arid region of northeastern Brazil. Analyses of periphytic algae revealed C. macrospora individuals associated in particular with shells of Melanoides tuberculatus, a non-native species, suggesting that C. macrospora have been introduced into systems associated with the gastropods. In this context, new records of C. macrospora are still expected for the Brazilian semi-arid region in the next years.

  14. Analysis and evaluation of tillage on an alfisol in a semi-arid tropical region of India

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Klaij, M.C.

    1983-01-01

    Tillage field experiments were conducted on Alfisols in a semi-arid tropical environment in India. The research was conducted within the framework of the Farming Systems Research Program of the International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT).

    To put the

  15. Soil fertility management strategies and practices by smallholder farmers in semi-arid areas of Zimbabwe

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mapfumo, P.; Giller, K.E.

    2001-01-01

    Indigenous soil fertility management strategies in semi-arid Communal Areas of Zimbabwe have largely been driven by an extensive use of resources. The shrinking of common property resources (CPRs) due to expansion of cultivated lands, the general loss of productivity in natural ecosystems (e.g.,

  16. Vegetation monitoring on semi-arid grasslands unglazed by domestic livestock

    Science.gov (United States)

    Linda Kennedy; Dan Robinett

    2013-01-01

    The Research Ranch is an 8000-acre sanctuary and research facility in the semi-arid grasslands of southeastern Arizona, USA. Cattle were removed from the property in 1968 to provide a reference area by which various land uses, such as grazing and exurbanization, could be evaluated. Vegetation transects were established in 2000 and 2003 on several ecological sites in...

  17. Coupled flow and salinity transport modelling in semi-arid environments

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bauer-Gottwein, Peter; Held, R.J.; Zimmermann, S.

    2006-01-01

    Numerical groundwater modelling is used as the base for sound aquifer system analysis and water resources assessment. In many cases, particularly in semi-arid and arid regions, groundwater flow is intricately linked to salinity transport. A case in point is the Shashe River Valley in Botswana. A ...

  18. Runoff controlling factors in various sized catchments in a semi-arid Mediterranean environment in Spain

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wit, A.M.W. de

    2001-01-01

    Understanding land degradation in a semi-arid Mediterranean environment is very difficult because of the contributing factors: precipitation, infiltration vegetation cover and discontinuity of flow and the temporal and spatial levels of resolution at which these factors are acting. Therefore it

  19. Catchment management in semi-arid area of central South Africa ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    This accentuates the need for wise decisions by catchment management agencies (CMAs), especially in water-scarce semi-arid areas. ... A financial analysis also showed that gross margin of option, expressed as R/ m3 of rainwater utilised, was estimated to be between 0.0234 to 0.0254 under Option 1 and 0.0354 for ...

  20. Spatiotemporal soil and saprolite moisture dynamics across a semi-arid woody plant gradient

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woody plant cover has increased 10-fold over the last 140+ years in many parts of the semi-arid western USA. Woody plant cover can alter the timing and amount of plant available moisture in the soil and saprolite. To assess spatiotemporal subsurface moisture dynamics over two water years in a snow-d...

  1. Contour hedgerows and grass strips in erosion and runoff control in semi-arid Kenya

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kinama, J.M.; Stigter, C.J.; Ong, C.K.; Ng'ang'a, J.K.; Gichuki, F.N.

    2007-01-01

    Most early alley cropping studies in semi-arid Kenya were on fairly flat land while there is an increase in cultivated sloping land. The effectiveness of aging contour hedgerows and grass strips for erosion control on an about 15% slope of an Alfisol was compared. The five treatments were Senna

  2. Hydrological modeling in semi-arid region using HEC-HMS model ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The purpose of this study is to simulate rainfall-runoff in the semi-arid region of ... the frequency storm is used for the meteorological model, the SCS curve number is ... SCS unit hydrograph method have been applied to simulate the runoff rate.

  3. Preface paper to the Semi-Arid Land-Surface-Atmosphere (SALSA) Program special issue

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goodrich, D.C.; Chehbouni, A.; Goff, B.; MacNish, B.; Maddock, T.; Moran, S.; Shuttleworth, W.J.; Williams, D.G.; Watts, C.; Hipps, L.H.; Cooper, D.I.; Schieldge, J.; Kerr, Y.H.; Arias, H.; Kirkland, M.; Carlos, R.; Cayrol, P.; Kepner, W.; Jones, B.; Avissar, R.; Begue, A.; Bonnefond, J.-M.; Boulet, G.; Branan, B.; Brunel, J.P.; Chen, L.C.; Clarke, T.; Davis, M.R.; DeBruin, H.; Dedieu, G.; Elguero, E.; Eichinger, W.E.; Everitt, J.; Garatuza-Payan, J.; Gempko, V.L.; Gupta, H.; Harlow, C.; Hartogensis, O.; Helfert, M.; Holifield, C.; Hymer, D.; Kahle, A.; Keefer, T.; Krishnamoorthy, S.; Lhomme, J.-P.; Lagouarde, J.-P.; Lo, Seen D.; Luquet, D.; Marsett, R.; Monteny, B.; Ni, W.; Nouvellon, Y.; Pinker, R.; Peters, C.; Pool, D.; Qi, J.; Rambal, S.; Rodriguez, J.; Santiago, F.; Sano, E.; Schaeffer, S.M.; Schulte, M.; Scott, R.; Shao, X.; Snyder, K.A.; Sorooshian, S.; Unkrich, C.L.; Whitaker, M.; Yucel, I.

    2000-01-01

    The Semi-Arid Land-Surface-Atmosphere Program (SALSA) is a multi-agency, multi-national research effort that seeks to evaluate the consequences of natural and human-induced environmental change in semi-arid regions. The ultimate goal of SALSA is to advance scientific understanding of the semi-arid portion of the hydrosphere-biosphere interface in order to provide reliable information for environmental decision making. SALSA approaches this goal through a program of long-term, integrated observations, process research, modeling, assessment, and information management that is sustained by cooperation among scientists and information users. In this preface to the SALSA special issue, general program background information and the critical nature of semi-arid regions is presented. A brief description of the Upper San Pedro River Basin, the initial location for focused SALSA research follows. Several overarching research objectives under which much of the interdisciplinary research contained in the special issue was undertaken are discussed. Principal methods, primary research sites and data collection used by numerous investigators during 1997-1999 are then presented. Scientists from about 20 US, five European (four French and one Dutch), and three Mexican agencies and institutions have collaborated closely to make the research leading to this special issue a reality. The SALSA Program has served as a model of interagency cooperation by breaking new ground in the approach to large scale interdisciplinary science with relatively limited resources.

  4. Agroforestry parkland species diversity : uses and management in semi-arid West-Africa (Burkina Faso)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nikiema, A.

    2005-01-01

    Agroforestry parkland in semi-arid West Africa is a rural land use system, which allows farmers to grow annual crops in combination with useful trees. In addition to cereals, tree products such as vegetables, fruits, vegetable oil, firewood, fodder, and medicines are obtained from the parklands.

  5. Energetics of the green iguana (Iguana iguana) in a semi-arid environment

    OpenAIRE

    van Marken Lichtenbelt, Wouter David

    1991-01-01

    Energy budgets in the herbivorous green iguana (Iguana Iguana) were studied from April 1985-October 1988 in a strongly seasonal environment on the semi-arid island Curacao (Netherlands Antilles) under the auspices of the CARMABI Foundation in cooperation with the State University of Groningen (The Netherlands). ... Zie: Summary

  6. Energetics of the green iguana (Iguana iguana) in a semi-arid environment

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Marken Lichtenbelt, Wouter David

    1991-01-01

    Energy budgets in the herbivorous green iguana (Iguana Iguana) were studied from April 1985-October 1988 in a strongly seasonal environment on the semi-arid island Curacao (Netherlands Antilles) under the auspices of the CARMABI Foundation in cooperation with the State University of Groningen (The

  7. Evaluating rainwater harvesting systems in arid and semi-arid regions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ammar, Adham Ali

    2017-01-01

    Rainwater harvesting (RWH) is an ancient traditional technology practised in many parts of the world, especially in arid and semi-arid regions (ASARs). ASARs represent 40% of the earth’s land surface and are characterised by low average annual rainfall and uneven temporal and spatial

  8. Recovery of rangelands : the functioning of soil seed banks in a semi-arid African savanna

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tessema, Z.K.

    2011-01-01

    Rangelands in Africa provide important forage resources for herbivores; particularly perennial grasses provide grazing for domestic and wild herbivores. However, semi-arid African rangelands experience severe vegetation and soil degradation due to heavy grazing, causing negative impacts

  9. Extensive Green Roof Species and Soilless Media Evaluations in Semi-arid Colorado

    Science.gov (United States)

    In the high elevation, semi-arid climate of Colorado, green roofs have not been scientifically tested. This research examined alternative plant species, soilless media blends and plant interactions on an existing, modular-extensive (shallow, 10 cm deep) green roof in Denver, Colo...

  10. Infiltration and planting pits for improved water management and maize yield in semi-arid Zimbabwe

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nyakudya, I.W.; Stroosnijder, L.; Nyagumbo, I.

    2014-01-01

    Realising that rainwater harvesting (RWH) improves crop productivity, smallholder farmers in semi-arid Zimbabwe modified contour ridges traditionally used for rainwater management by digging infiltration pits inside contour ridge channels in order to retain more water in crop fields. However,

  11. 1 Title page Title: Groundwater quality in a semi-arid region of India ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    64

    Groundwater quality in a semi-arid region of India - suitability for drinking, ... concentration ranges from 0.1 to 4.4 mg/L and 39% of the total samples measured ..... on identifying local priorities and implementing proper management is very.

  12. Woody plants in agro-ecosystems of semi-arid regions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Breman, H.; Kessler, J.J.

    1995-01-01

    A quantitative analysis of the role of woody plants in semi-arid regions, focusing on the Sahel and Sudan zones in West-Africa, is given for the assessment of their benefits in agro-sylvopastoral land-use systems with productive and sustainability objectives.

  13. Development of hardy sorghum cultivars for the arid and semi arid ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Development of hardy sorghum cultivars for the arid and semi arid regions. MN Makobe, EM Kahangi, AK Misra, MO Imbuga. Abstract. No Abstract. Full Text: EMAIL FREE FULL TEXT EMAIL FREE FULL TEXT · DOWNLOAD FULL TEXT DOWNLOAD FULL TEXT · AJOL African Journals Online. HOW TO USE AJOL.

  14. Characterisation of rainfall at a semi-arid ecotope in the Limpopo ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Detailed knowledge of rainfall regime is an important prerequisite for agricultural planning. Despite the importance of rain-fed agriculture to food security in the semi-arid regions of South Africa, studies to understand the spatial and temporal variability of rainfall are not widely documented. Twenty-three years (1983 to 2005) ...

  15. Effects of irrigation and plastic mulch on soil properties on semi-arid abandoned fields

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van der Meulen, E.S.; Nol, L.; Cammeraat, L.H.

    2006-01-01

    The Guadalentín Basin in Spain is one of the driest areas of Europe and has problems with high evaporation rates, and high risks of desertification exist including soil quality loss and soil erosion. Farmers in this semi-arid region use polyethylene covers on their irrigated croplands to reduce

  16. Problems and Prospects of SWAT Model Application on an Arid/Semi-arid Watershed in Arizona

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hydrological characteristics in the semi-arid southwest create unique challenges to watershed modelers. Streamflow in these regions is largely dependent on seasonal, short term, and high intensity rainfall events. The objectives of this study are: 1) to analyze the unique hydrolo...

  17. Understanding hydrological variability for improved water management in the Semi-Arid Karkheh basin, Iran

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Masih, I.

    2011-01-01

    This study provides a hydrology based assessment of (surface) water resources and its continuum of variability and change at different spatio-temporal scales in the semi-arid Karkheh Basin, Iran, where water is scarce, competition among users is high and massive water resources development is under

  18. Polyacrylamide molecular weight and phosphogypsum effects on infiltration and erosion in semi-arid soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seal formation at the surface of semi-arid soils during rainstorms reduces soil infiltration rate (IR) and causes runoff and erosion. Surface application of dry anionic polyacrylamide (PAM) with high molecular weight (MW) has been found to be effective in stabilizing soil aggregates, and decreasing ...

  19. The Soil-Land use System in a Sand Spit Area in the Semi-Arid ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The Soil-Land use System in a Sand Spit Area in the Semi-Arid Coastal Savanna Region of Ghana – Development, Sustainability and Threats. ... The investigation comprises soil profile descriptions and analyses on the dominant soil type on the sand spit, measurement of electrical conductivity of well water and in the soil, ...

  20. The challenges of rehabilitating denuded patches of a semi-arid environment in Kenya

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mganga, K.Z.; Nyangito, M.M.; Musimba, N.K.R.; Nyariki, D.M.; Mwangombe, A.W.; Ekaya, W.N.; Muiri, W.M.; Clavel, D.; Francis, J.; Kaufmann, Von R.; Verhagen, J.

    2010-01-01

    Land degradation is a major problem in the semi-arid environments of Sub-Saharan Africa. Fighting land degradation is essential to ensure the sustainable and long-term productivity of the habited semiarid lands. In Kenya, grass reseeding technology has been used to combat land degradation. However,

  1. Soil quality improvement for crop production in semi-arid West Africa

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ouédraogo, E.

    2004-01-01

    Soil quality maintenance and crop production improvement in semi-arid West Africa require appropriate cropping technologies, which are ecologically sound and economically viable. Thus, on-farm and on-station experiments have been carried out on the central plateau and in the south of Burkina Faso

  2. Semi-arid Northeast Brazil: integrated modelling of regional development and global change impacts

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Krol, Martinus S.; Fuhr, Dagmar; Döring, Andreas; Unruh, Jon D.; Krol, Maarten S.; Kliot, Nurit

    2004-01-01

    Societies in semi-arid areas in developing regions are amongst those most vulnerable to climate variability and potentially most vulnerable to climate change. The vulnerability to climate variability emerges from a combination of the level of availability of natural resources and the human

  3. Integrated Scenarios of Regional Development in Two Semi-Arid States of North-Eastern Brazil

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Döll, Petra; Krol, Martinus S.

    2002-01-01

    Scenario analysis of the future is an important tool for supporting sustainability-oriented regional planning. To assist regional planning in two federal states in semi-arid North-eastern Brazil, Ceará and Piauí, we developed integrated qualitative¿quantitative scenarios that show potential

  4. Evaluation of methods for delineating riparian zones in a semi-arid montane watershed

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jessica A. Salo; David M. Theobald; Thomas C. Brown

    2016-01-01

    Riparian zones in semi-arid, mountainous regions provide a disproportionate amount of the available wildlife habitat and ecosystem services. Despite their importance, there is little guidance on the best way to map riparian zones for broad spatial extents (e.g., large watersheds) when detailed maps from field data or high-resolution imagery and terrain data...

  5. Rainfall-interception-evaporation-runoff relationships in a semi-arid catchment, northern Limpopo basin, Zimbabwe

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Love, D.; Uhlenbrook, S.; Corzo Perez, G.; Twomlow, S.; Zaag, van der P.

    2010-01-01

    Characterizing the response of a catchment to rainfall, in terms of the production of runoff vs the interception, transpiration and evaporation of water, is the first important step in understanding water resource availability in a catchment. This is particularly important in small semi-arid

  6. Consistency between Sweat Rate and Wet Bulb Globe Temperature for the Assessment of Heat Stress of People Working Outdoor in Arid and Semi-arid Regions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hamidreza Heidari

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Background: Heat stress is common among workers in arid and semi-arid areas. In order to take every preventive measure to protect exposed workers against heat-related disorders, it is crucial to choose an appropriate index that accurately relates environmental parameters to physiological responses. Objective: To investigate the consistency between 2 heat stress and strain indices, ie, sweat rate and wet bulb globe temperature (WBGT, for the assessment of heat stress of people working outdoor in arid and semi-arid regions in Iran. Methods: During spring and summer, 136 randomly selected outdoor workers were enrolled in this study. Using a defined protocol, the sweat rate of these workers was measured 3 times a day. Simultaneously, the environmental parameters including WBGT index were recorded for each working station. Results: The level of agreement between sweat rate and WBGT was poor (κ<0.2. Based on sweat rate, no case exceeding the reference value was observed during the study. WBGT overestimated the heat stress in outdoor workers compared to sweat rate. Conclusion: It seems that the sweat rate standards may need some modifications related to real condition of work in arid and semi-arid regions in Iran. Moreover, it seems that judging workers solely based on monitoring their sweat rate in such regions, can probably result in underestimation of heat stress.

  7. Is annual recharge coefficient a valid concept in arid and semi-arid regions?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Y. Cheng

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Deep soil recharge (DSR (at depth greater than 200 cm is an important part of water circulation in arid and semi-arid regions. Quantitative monitoring of DSR is of great importance to assess water resources and to study water balance in arid and semi-arid regions. This study used a typical bare land on the eastern margin of Mu Us Sandy Land in the Ordos Basin of China as an example to illustrate a new lysimeter method of measuring DSR to examine if the annual recharge coefficient is valid or not in the study site, where the annual recharge efficient is the ratio of annual DSR over annual total precipitation. Positioning monitoring was done on precipitation and DSR measurements underneath mobile sand dunes from 2013 to 2015 in the study area. Results showed that use of an annual recharge coefficient for estimating DSR in bare sand land in arid and semi-arid regions is questionable and could lead to considerable errors. It appeared that DSR in those regions was influenced by precipitation pattern and was closely correlated with spontaneous strong precipitation events (with precipitation greater than 10 mm other than the total precipitation. This study showed that as much as 42 % of precipitation in a single strong precipitation event can be transformed into DSR. During the observation period, the maximum annual DSR could make up 24.33 % of the annual precipitation. This study provided a reliable method of estimating DSR in sandy areas of arid and semi-arid regions, which is valuable for managing groundwater resources and ecological restoration in those regions. It also provided strong evidence that the annual recharge coefficient was invalid for calculating DSR in arid and semi-arid regions. This study shows that DSR is closely related to the strong precipitation events, rather than to the average annual precipitation, as well as the precipitation patterns.

  8. Theoretical simulation of small scale psychometric solar water desalination system in semi-arid region

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Shatat, Mahmoud; Omer, Siddig; Gillott, Mark; Riffat, Saffa

    2013-01-01

    Many countries around the world suffer from water scarcity. This is especially true in remote and semi-arid regions in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) where per capita water supplies decline as populations increase. This paper presents the results of a theoretical simulation of an affordable small scale solar water desalination plant using the psychometric humidification and dehumidification process coupled with an evacuated tube solar collector with an area of about 2 m 2 . A mathematical model was developed to describe the system's operation. Then a computer program using Simulink Matlab software was developed to provide the governing equations for the theoretical calculations of the humidification and dehumidification processes. The experimental and theoretical values for the total daily distillate output were found to be closely correlated. After the experimental calibration of the mathematical model, a model simulating solar radiation under the climatic conditions in the Middle East region proved that the performance of the system could be improved to produce a considerably higher amount of fresh water, namely up to 17.5 kg/m 2 day. This work suggests that utilizing the concept of humidification and dehumidification, a compact water desalination unit coupled with solar collectors would significantly increase the potable water supply in remote area. It could be a unique solution of water shortages in such areas. -- Highlights: • An affordable small scale desalination system is proposed. • A mathematical model of the desalination system is developed and programmed using Matlab Simulink. • The model describes the psychometric process based on humidification and dehumidification. • The model is used in optimal selection of elements and operating conditions for solar desalination system. • The use of solar water desalination contributes significantly to reducing global warming

  9. A Framework Predicting Water Availability in a Rapidly Growing, Semi-Arid Region under Future Climate Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Han, B.; Benner, S. G.; Glenn, N. F.; Lindquist, E.; Dahal, K. R.; Bolte, J.; Vache, K. B.; Flores, A. N.

    2014-12-01

    Climate change can lead to dramatic variations in hydrologic regime, affecting both surface water and groundwater supply. This effect is most significant in populated semi-arid regions where water availability are highly sensitive to climate-induced outcomes. However, predicting water availability at regional scales, while resolving some of the key internal variability and structure in semi-arid regions is difficult due to the highly non-linearity relationship between rainfall and runoff. In this study, we describe the development of a modeling framework to evaluate future water availability that captures elements of the coupled response of the biophysical system to climate change and human systems. The framework is built under the Envision multi-agent simulation tool, characterizing the spatial patterns of water demand in the semi-arid Treasure Valley area of Southwest Idaho - a rapidly developing socio-ecological system where urban growth is displacing agricultural production. The semi-conceptual HBV model, a population growth and allocation model (Target), a vegetation state and transition model (SSTM), and a statistically based fire disturbance model (SpatialAllocator) are integrated to simulate hydrology, population and land use. Six alternative scenarios are composed by combining two climate change scenarios (RCP4.5 and RCP8.5) with three population growth and allocation scenarios (Status Quo, Managed Growth, and Unconstrained Growth). Five-year calibration and validation performances are assessed with Nash-Sutcliffe efficiency. Irrigation activities are simulated using local water rights. Results show that in all scenarios, annual mean stream flow decreases as the projected rainfall increases because the projected warmer climate also enhances water losses to evapotranspiration. Seasonal maximum stream flow tends to occur earlier than in current conditions due to the earlier peak of snow melting. The aridity index and water deficit generally increase in the

  10. ARBUSCULAR MYCORRHIZAL FUNGI IN SUCCESSIONAL STAGES OF CAATINGA IN THE SEMI-ARID REGION OF BRAZIL

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carla da Silva Sousa

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available http://dx.doi.org/10.5902/1980509813331Caatinga is an exclusively Brazilian biome with areas in accentuated process of desertification. Arbuscularmycorrhizal fungi (AMF act in plant succession by favoring the establishment of plant species typical ofsuccessional stages and by accelerating recovery leading to a climax stage. The objective of the present workwas to evaluate the occurrence and diversity of AMF in successional stages of caatinga in the semi-aridregion of Paraíba State. Experimental plots (30 x 60 m were delimitated in 2007 in areas corresponding todifferent caatinga successional stages: early caatinga succession (natural revegetation during the previous15 years; intermediate (natural revegetation for about 35 years; late (mature caatinga with more than50 years without major disturbances; and also in pasture areas fenced and protected to represent the initialphase of succession. Plots of all four stages were implemented with three replicates. Soil and root sampleswere collected in the experimental plots, from the 0-15 cm soil layer in the dry and in the rainy seasons.All areas presented low infectivity potential suggesting that the introduction of mycorrhizal seedlings mayaccelerate the process of revegetation of degraded soils in this region. Except for the areas of late stage, theglomalin reservoirs increased along with the advancement of the succession process. Areas in the late stageof succession presented greater richness of AMF species, indicating that the establishment of the vegetationalso exerts a significant effect in the fungal community. Glomus and Acaulospora species were predominantin both seasons, possibly because they are well adapted to semi-arid conditions

  11. Soil Compressibility under Irrigated Perennial and Annual Crops in a Semi-Arid Environment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rafaela Watanabe

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT In irrigated soils, a continuous state of high moisture reduces resistance of the soil to applied external forces, favouring compaction. The aim of this study was to evaluate the susceptibility to compaction of developed calcareous soils in irrigated annual and perennial cropping systems of the Apodi Plateau, located in the Brazilian semi-arid region. Four areas of irrigated crops were evaluated: banana after two (B2 and 15 (B15 years cultivation, pasture (P, and a corn and beans succession (MB, as well as the reference areas for soil quality and corresponding natural vegetation (NVB2, NVB15, NVP and NVMB. Samples were collected at layers of 0.00-0.10 and 0.20-0.30 m; and for B2 and B15, samples were collected in the row and inter-row spaces. The following properties were determined: degree of compactness (DC, preconsolidation pressure (σp, compression index (Cc, maximum density (ρmax, critical water content (WCcrit, total organic carbon (TOC and carbon of light organic matter (Clom. Mean values were compared by the t-test at 5, 10, 15 and 20 % probability. An increase was seen in DC at a layer of 0.20-0.30 m in MB (p<0.15, showing the deleterious effects of preparing the soil by ploughing and chiselling, together with the cumulative traffic of heavy machinery. The TOC had a greater influence on ρmax than the stocks of Clom. Irrigation caused a reduction in Cc, and there was no effect on σp at field capacity. The planting rows showed different behaviour for Cc, ρmax, and WCcrit,, and in general the physical properties displayed better conditions than the inter-row spaces. Values for σp and Cc showed that agricultural soils display greater load-bearing capacity and are less susceptible to compaction in relation to soils under natural vegetation.

  12. BVOCs emission in a semi-arid grassland under climate warming and nitrogen deposition

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H. J. Wang

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available Biogenic volatile organic compounds (BVOCs profoundly affect atmospheric chemistry and ecosystem functioning. BVOCs emission and their responses to global change are still unclear in grasslands, which cover one quarter of the Earth's land surface and are currently undergoing the largest changes. Over two growing seasons, we conducted a field experiment in a semi-arid grassland (Inner Mongolia, China to examine the emission and the responses of BVOCs emissions to warming and nitrogen deposition. The natural emission rate (NER of monoterpene (dominant BVOCs here is 107 ± 16 μg m−2 h−1 in drought 2007, and 266 ± 53 μg m−2 h−1 in wet 2008, respectively. Warming decreased the standard emission factor (SEF by 24% in 2007, while it increased by 43% in 2008. The exacerbated soil moisture loss caused by warming in dry season might be responsible for the decrease of SEF in 2007. A possible threshold of soil moisture (8.2% (v/v, which controls the direction of warming effects on monoterpene emission, existed in the semiarid grassland. Nitrogen deposition decreased the coverage of Artemisia frigida and hence reduced the NER by 24% across the two growing seasons. These results suggest that the grasslands dominated by the extended Artemisia frigida are an important source for BVOCs, while the responses of their emissions to global changes are more uncertain since they depend on multifactorial in-situ conditions.

  13. Interpretation of environmental isotopic groundwater data. Arid and semi-arid zones

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Geyh, M.A.

    1980-01-01

    Various hydrodynamic aspects are discussed in order to show their implication for the hydrogeological interpretation of environmental isotope and hydrochemical groundwater data. Special attention is drawn to radiocarbon and tritium studies carried out in arid and semi-arid zones. An exponential model has been utilized to determine the mean residence time of the long-term water from springs in karst and crystalline regions. Hydrogeological parameters such as the porosity can be checked by this result. In addition, the exponential model offers the possibility of determining the initial 14 C content of spring water, which is sensitively dependent on the soil of the recharge area. A base-flow model has been introduced to interpret the 14 C and 3 H data of groundwater samples from older karst regions. Differences between pumped and drawn samples exist with respect to the groundwater budget. Owing to pumping, the old base flow is accelerated and becomes enriched in pumped groundwater in comparison to the short-term water. Radiocarbon ages of groundwater in alluvium may be dubious because of isotope exchange with the CO 2 in the root zone along the river bank. Under confined conditions 14 C groundwater ages are diminished if the hydraulic head of the confined aquifer is lower than that of the shallow one. This is due to the radiocarbon downwards transport by convection of shallow groundwater. The same effect occurs, though much faster, if the groundwater table is depleted by groundwater withdrawal. The decrease of the radiocarbon groundwater ages in time can be used to determine the hydraulic transmissibility coefficient of the aquitarde. According to the practical and theoretic results obtained the hydrodynamic aspects require at least the same attention for the interpretation of environmental isotope and hydrochemical data of groundwater as do hydrochemical and isotope fractionation processes. (author)

  14. Floristic similarity and dispersal syndromes in a rocky outcrop in semi-arid Northeastern Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Costa, Elainne Cristina Silva; Lopes, Sérgio de Faria; Melo, José Iranildo Miranda de

    2015-09-01

    Floristic studies provide valuable information on species richness in a region, and are particularly important if these areas belong to less studied environments, such as rocky outcrops, that may increase our knowledge. An important aspect for species colonization includes the mechanisms of diaspores dispersal in each community; these are essential to understand its structure, dynamics, and the regeneration process, and constitute an important tool for conservation. We developed a floristic survey on a granite-gneiss outcrop with the objective to increase the knowledge on plant diversity, through a floristic similarity analysis and detection of dispersal syndromes of sampled species, in a semi-arid region of Brazil. The fieldwork included collection and observation of the botanical material in loco during a period of 12 months. A total of 161 species belonging to 127 genera and 50 families of angiosperms were recorded. Fabaceae, Asteraceae and Convolvulaceae were the most representative families in number of species. Allophylus quercifolius (Mart.) Radlk. (Capparaceae) and Lafoensia pacari A. St.-Hil. (Lythraceae) represented new records for the State of Paraiba. The autochoric syndrome was the most representative, with 51.5 % of the recorded species; the anemochory was the second most representative syndrome with 26.7 % of the species; and finally the zoochory, representing 22.3 % of the species. The floristic similarity dendrogram showed the formation of three well-defined groups, whose area with the highest value (J = 33.2) is located in a Caatinga region called Cariri Paraibano, while the lowest value observed (J = 5.2), occurred in a settled area in two geomorphological units, a crystalline complex and a plateau region. These results may be due to the varying topographic conditions and edaphic heterogeneity arising from the specific geological formation of the region. These results yet demonstrate that, in rocky outcrops, abiotic syndromes represent an

  15. Evaluating management-induced soil salinization in golf courses in semi-arid landscapes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Young, J.; Udeigwe, T. K.; Weindorf, D. C.; Kandakji, T.; Gautam, P.; Mahmoud, M. A.

    2015-04-01

    Site-specific information on land management practices are often desired to make better assessments of their environmental impacts. A study was conducted in Lubbock, Texas, in the Southern High Plains of the United States, an area characterized by semi-arid climatic conditions, to (1) examine the potential management-induced alterations in soil salinity indicators in golf course facilities and (2) develop predictive relationships for a more rapid soil salinity examination within these urban landscape soils using findings from a portable X-ray fluorescence (PXRF) spectrometer. Soil samples were collected from managed (well irrigated) and non-managed (non-irrigated) areas of seven golf course facilities at 0-10, 10-20, and 20-30 cm depths and analyzed for a suite of chemical properties. Among the extractable cations, sodium (Na) was significantly (p golf facilities. Soil electrical conductivity (EC), exchangeable sodium percentage (ESP), and sodium adsorption ratio (SAR), parameters often used in characterizing soil salinity and sodicity, were for the most part significantly (p < 0.05) higher in the managed areas. Water quality reports collected over a 22-year period (1991-2013, all years not available) indicated a gradual increase in pH, EC, SAR, total alkalinity, and extractable ions, thus supporting the former findings. Findings from the PXRF suggested possible differences in chemical species and sources that contribute to salinity between the managed and non-managed zones. PXRF-quantified Cl and S, and to a lesser extent Ca, individually and collectively explained 23-85% of the variability associated with soil salinity at these facilities.

  16. Climate Change Sensitivity of Multi-Species Afforestation in Semi-Arid Benin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Florent Noulèkoun

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available The early growth stage is critical in the response of trees to climate change and variability. It is not clear, however, what climate metrics are best to define the early-growth sensitivity in assessing adaptation strategies of young forests to climate change. Using a combination of field experiments and modelling, we assessed the climate sensitivity of two promising afforestation species, Jatropha curcas L. and Moringa oleifera Lam., by analyzing their predicted climate–growth relationships in the initial two years after planting on degraded cropland in the semi-arid zone of Benin. The process-based WaNuLCAS model (version 4.3, World Agroforestry Centre, Bogor, Indonesia was used to simulate aboveground biomass growth for each year in the climate record (1981–2016, either as the first or as the second year of tree growth. Linear mixed models related the annual biomass growth to climate indicators, and climate sensitivity indices quantified climate–growth relationships. In the first year, the length of dry spells had the strongest effect on tree growth. In the following year, the annual water deficit and length of dry season became the strongest predictors. Simulated rooting depths greater than those observed in the experiments enhanced biomass growth under extreme dry conditions and reduced sapling sensitivity to drought. Projected increases in aridity implied significant growth reduction, but a multi-species approach to afforestation using species that are able to develop deep-penetrating roots should increase the resilience of young forests to climate change. The results illustrate that process-based modelling, combined with field experiments, can be effective in assessing the climate–growth relationships of tree species.

  17. Evaluating pasture and soil allowance of manganese for Kajli rams grazing in semi-arid environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khan, Zafar Iqbal; Ahmad, Kafeel; Ashraf, Muhammad; Naqvi, Syed Ali Hassan; Seidavi, Alireza; Akram, Nudrat Aisha; Laudadio, Vito; Tufarelli, Vincenzo

    2015-03-01

    The current research on the manganese (Mn) transfer from soil to plant as well as to grazing Kajli rams in the form of sampling periods was carried out under semi-arid environmental conditions. Forage, soil and blood plasma samples were collected during 4 months of the year after a 1-month interval, and Mn concentrations were assessed after wet digestion using an atomic absorption spectrophotometer. Results showed that Mn concentration in soil ranged from 48.28 to 59.44 mg/kg, with incoherent augment and decline across sampling periods, and effect of sampling period on soil Mn was also found to be significant (P soil appeared higher than the critical value and sufficient for forage crop requirement. The Mn concentration in forage ranged between 24.8 and 37.2 mg/kg, resulting deficient based on the requirement allowance of Mn for livestock grazing animals, therein with almost unchanged forage Mn concentration. The Mn values in blood plasma of rams varied from 0.066 to 0.089 mg/l, with a consistent increase based on sampling period, and the effect of sampling periods on plasma Mn was found to be highly significant (P soil and plant species amassing capability on the transport of Mn in the soil-plant-animal system. Results indicated a much higher accumulation rate at the sampling characterized by vegetation dominated by legumes in comparison to grasses, crop residues and mixed pasture and a pronounced seasonal supply of Mn at the four sampling period of grazing land of diverse botanical composition.

  18. Turbulent fluxes in atmospheric boundary layer of a semi-arid region of N-E Brazil

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Patel, S. R.; De Fatima Correia, M.; Da Silva, E. M.; Costa, A. M. N.

    2004-01-01

    The preliminary results of the Experiment 'Experimento de Microfisica de Nuvens-EmfiN' (Experiment of microphysics of clouds) conducted by Universidade Estatual de Ceara-UECE at Fortaleza, a semi-arid region of N-E Brazil, are presented. The mean kinematic fluxes of sensible heat and water vapor of the surface boundary layer are estimated by the thermodynamic energy and water vapor conservation equations; and by the Monin-Obukhov similarity theory. The results of the two methods are in good agreement. It is shown that in the absence of sophisticated fast-response turbulence instrumentation and wind data the conservations equations methods are better option for estimation of heat and water vapor fluxes. Further they are useful to study the turbulent fluxes in inhomogeneous condition in time like early morning and late evening boundary layer transitions

  19. Leachate generation from landfill in a semi-arid climate: A qualitative and quantitative study from Sousse, Tunisia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frikha, Youssef; Fellner, Johann; Zairi, Moncef

    2017-09-01

    Despite initiatives for enhanced recycling and waste utilization, landfill still represents the dominant disposal path for municipal solid waste (MSW). The environmental impacts of landfills depend on several factors, including waste composition, technical barriers, landfill operation and climatic conditions. A profound evaluation of all factors and their impact is necessary in order to evaluate the environmental hazards emanating from landfills. The present paper investigates a sanitary landfill located in a semi-arid climate (Tunisia) and highlights major differences in quantitative and qualitative leachate characteristics compared to landfills situated in moderate climates. Besides the qualitative analysis of leachate samples, a quantitative analysis including the simulation of leachate generation (using the HELP model) has been conducted. The results of the analysis indicate a high load of salts (Cl, Na, inorganic nitrogen) in the leachate compared to other landfills. Furthermore the simulations with HELP model highlight that a major part of the leachate generated originates form the water content of waste.

  20. Jojoba, Simmondsia chinensis: an alternative for the economic development of the arid and semi arid zones of Mexico

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sepulveda Betancourt, J I; Parra Hake, H

    1976-01-01

    Simmondsia chinensis is, in spite of its name, a species indigenous to SE California and Arizona (US) and to the states of Sonora, Baja California Norte and Baja California Sur in Mexico. It is a shrubby forage plant that reaches a height of 1.5 m and can grow under conditions of extreme drought and high salinity provided that frost does not occur; it is thus suitable for many arid and semi-arid parts of Mexico as well as other similar regions of the world. The seed, traditionally associated with medicinal properties, was found in 1933 to produce a liquid wax with properties similar to those of sperm-whale oil, an increasingly scarce product used for the lubrication of machinery run at high temperatures and speeds. Some other uses for S. chinensis wax are listed, and silvicultural research on the species in progress in Baja California Sur and elsewhere is briefly described.

  1. Jojoba, Simmondsia chinensis. An alternative for the economic development of the arid and semi arid zones of Mexico

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sepulveda Betancourt, J I; Parra Hake, H

    1976-01-01

    S. chinensis is, in spite of its name, a species indigenous to SE California and Arizona (US) and to the states of Sonora, Baja California Norte and Baja California Sur in Mexico. It is a shrubby forage plant that reaches a height of 1.5 m and can grow under conditions of extreme drought and high salinity provided that frost does not occur; it is thus suitable for many arid and semi-arid parts of Mexico as well as other similar regions of the world. The seed, traditionally associated with medicinal properties, was found in 1933 to produce a liquid wax with properties similar to those of sperm-whale oil, an increasingly scarce product used for the lubrication of machinery run at high temperatures and speeds. Some other uses for S. chinensis wax are listed, and silvicultural research on the species in progress in Baja California Sur and elsewhere is briefly described.

  2. Biodigestor for validation of the productive system self-sustainable in the Brazil semi-arid; Biodigestor para validacao de sistema produtivo auto-sustentavel no semi-arido

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Carvalho, Paulo C.M. [Universidade Federal do Ceara (UFCE), Fortaleza, CE (Brazil). Dept. de Engenharia Eletrica; Silveira Neto, Jose W; Diniz, Magilce M.N. [Instituto Joazeiro de Desenvolvimento Sustentavel, Fortaleza, CE (Brazil); Canafistula, Francisco J.F. [Universidade Federal do Ceara (UFCE), Fortaleza, CE (Brazil). Dept. de Engenharia Agricola

    2004-07-01

    The present paper shows the first phase of a project about the use of digester adapted to the conditions of the semi-arid areas of the Brazilian Northeast region. The project aims to analyze the technical, economical, financial and environmental viability of a production system based on the use of digesters. (author)

  3. Integrated modelling of climate, water, soil, agricultural and socio-economic processes: A general introduction of the methodology and some exemplary results from the semi-arid north-east of Brazil

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Krol, Martinus S.; Jaeger, Annekathrin; Bronstert, Axel; Güntner, Andreas

    2006-01-01

    Many semi-arid regions are characterised by water scarcity and vulnerability of natural resources, pronounced climatic variability and social stress. Integrated studies including climatology, hydrology, and socio-economic studies are required both for analysing the dynamic natural conditions and to

  4. Towards a physically-based multi-scale ecohydrological simulator for semi-arid regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caviedes-Voullième, Daniel; Josefik, Zoltan; Hinz, Christoph

    2017-04-01

    The use of numerical models as tools for describing and understanding complex ecohydrological systems has enabled to test hypothesis and propose fundamental, process-based explanations of the system system behaviour as a whole as well as its internal dynamics. Reaction-diffusion equations have been used to describe and generate organized pattern such as bands, spots, and labyrinths using simple feedback mechanisms and boundary conditions. Alternatively, pattern-matching cellular automaton models have been used to generate vegetation self-organization in arid and semi-arid regions also using simple description of surface hydrological processes. A key question is: How much physical realism is needed in order to adequately capture the pattern formation processes in semi-arid regions while reliably representing the water balance dynamics at the relevant time scales? In fact, redistribution of water by surface runoff at the hillslope scale occurs at temporal resolution of minutes while the vegetation development requires much lower temporal resolution and longer times spans. This generates a fundamental spatio-temporal multi-scale problem to be solved, for which high resolution rainfall and surface topography are required. Accordingly, the objective of this contribution is to provide proof-of-concept that governing processes can be described numerically at those multiple scales. The requirements for a simulating ecohydrological processes and pattern formation with increased physical realism are, amongst others: i. high resolution rainfall that adequately captures the triggers of growth as vegetation dynamics of arid regions respond as pulsed systems. ii. complex, natural topography in order to accurately model drainage patterns, as surface water redistribution is highly sensitive to topographic features. iii. microtopography and hydraulic roughness, as small scale variations do impact on large scale hillslope behaviour iv. moisture dependent infiltration as temporal

  5. Modelling hydrological connectivity in semi-arid flat areas: effect of the flow accumulation algorithm on the spatial pattern

    Science.gov (United States)

    López-Vicente, Manuel; Álvarez, Sara

    2017-04-01

    Much of the water and sediment fluxes in semi-arid landscapes are found to be concentrated in localized pathways. Identifying the location of these pathways is important for management and restoration. This task becomes more complicated in flat areas, such as alluvial terraces, where geomorphic features of concentrated overland flow (rills and ephemeral gullies) are scarce or inexistent. Field identification of sediment delivery pathways as well as depositional areas is also difficult and challenged. The concept of hydrological connectivity (HC) helps us to express the complexity of landscape non-linear responses to rainfall inputs. One of the unsolved issues in overland flow modelling studies is the choice of the right flow accumulation algorithm (FAA). There is an abundant literature on runoff generation under semi-arid conditions, and relating HC and land use management and changes. However, we found a scientific gap in the literature focussed on modelling of HC in flat areas under semi-arid conditions. This study aims to fill in this gap by modelling HC in alluvial terraces (28 ha) in NE Spain under semi-arid conditions (342 mm / year), mainly devoted to rain-fed cereal fields, by using eight FAA. For this purpose, we applied a modified version of the Borselli's index of runoff and sediment connectivity (IC). The study area includes seven fields on flat alluvial terraces, three fields on a gentle slope, small patches of scrubland, and twelve grass buffer strips that are located between each set of fields. Gentle and flat areas (S drone (model eBee by senseFly Ltd.). In order to minimize the effect of the vegetation on the photogrammetry restitution technique, pictures were taken in early spring, before the growth of the cereals. Then, several DEMs were generated independently. For this study, we chose the DEM at 0.5 x 0.5 m of spatial resolution. Before running the IC model, the continuity of the flow path lines throughout the landscape was ensured by removing

  6. Linking Bayesian and agent-based models to simulate complex social-ecological systems in semi-arid regions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aloah J Pope

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Interdependencies of ecologic, hydrologic, and social systems challenge traditional approaches to natural resource management in semi-arid regions. As a complex social-ecological system, water demands in the Sonoran Desert from agricultural and urban users often conflicts with water needs for its ecologically-significant riparian corridors. To explore this system, we developed an agent-based model to simulate complex feedbacks between human decisions and environmental conditions in the Rio Sonora Watershed. Cognitive mapping in conjunction with stakeholder participation produced a Bayesian model of conditional probabilities of local human decision-making processes resulting to changes in water demand. Probabilities created in the Bayesian model were incorporated into the agent-based model, so that each agent had a unique probability to make a positive decision based on its perceived environment at each point in time and space. By using a Bayesian approach, uncertainty in the human decision-making process could be incorporated. The spatially-explicit agent-based model simulated changes in depth-to-groundwater by well pumping based on an agent’s water demand. Changes in depth-to-groundwater feedback to influence agent behavior, as well as determine unique vegetation classes within the riparian corridor. Each vegetation class then provides varying stakeholder-defined quality values of ecosystem services. Using this modeling approach allowed us to examine effects on both the ecological and social system of semi-arid riparian corridors under various scenarios. The insight provided by the model contributes to understanding how specific interventions may alter the complex social-ecological system in the future.

  7. Performance of sorghum cultivars for biomass quality and biomethane yield grown in semi-arid area of Pakistan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hassan, Muhammad Umair; Chattha, Muhammad Umer; Mahmood, Athar; Sahi, Shahbaz Talib

    2018-05-01

    Biomass is a promising renewable energy source and its significance is escalating in the context of climate change and depletion of fossil foils. This study was conducted for two consecutive years 2016 and 2017, using five sorghum cultivars, i.e., JS-263, Jawar-2011, Hagari, JS-2002, and YS-2016, in order to determine the best cultivars in terms of dry matter yield, chemical composition, and biomethane yield grown under semi-arid conditions in Pakistan. The results revealed that sorghum cultivars responded differently in terms of growth, biomass yield, chemical composition, and methane yield. Cultivars Jawar-2011 produced maximum leaf area index, leaf area duration, crop growth rate, plant height, and leaves per plant, however, they were comparable with Sorghum-2016, whereas cultivar JS-2002 performed poorly among the tested cultivars. Similarly, cultivar Jawar-2011 produced maximum dry matter yield (16.37 t ha -1 ) similar to that of YS-2016, further cultivar JS-2002 performed poorly and gave lower dry matter yield (12.87 t ha -1 ). The maximum protein concentration (10.95), neutral detergent fibers (61.20), and lignin contents (5.55) found in Jawar-2011 were comparable with those in YS-2016, while the lowest neutral detergent fiber and lignin contents were found in JS-2002. Although JS-2002 produced the highest specific methane yield per kilogram of volatile solids, it was overcompensated by Jawar-2011 owing to higher dry matter yield per hectare. These results suggested that cultivar Jawar-2011 can be grown successfully in semi-arid conditions of Pakistan in order to get good biomass yield along with higher methane yield.

  8. Large-scale hydrological modelling in the semi-arid north-east of Brazil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Güntner, Andreas

    2002-07-01

    Semi-arid areas are, due to their climatic setting, characterized by small water resources. An increasing water demand as a consequence of population growth and economic development as well as a decreasing water availability in the course of possible climate change may aggravate water scarcity in future, which often exists already for present-day conditions in these areas. Understanding the mechanisms and feedbacks of complex natural and human systems, together with the quantitative assessment of future changes in volume, timing and quality of water resources are a prerequisite for the development of sustainable measures of water management to enhance the adaptive capacity of these regions. For this task, dynamic integrated models, containing a hydrological model as one component, are indispensable tools. The main objective of this study is to develop a hydrological model for the quantification of water availability in view of environmental change over a large geographic domain of semi-arid environments. The study area is the Federal State of Ceará (150 000 km2) in the semi-arid north-east of Brazil. Mean annual precipitation in this area is 850 mm, falling in a rainy season with duration of about five months. Being mainly characterized by crystalline bedrock and shallow soils, surface water provides the largest part of the water supply. The area has recurrently been affected by droughts which caused serious economic losses and social impacts like migration from the rural regions. The hydrological model Wasa (Model of Water Availability in Semi-Arid Environments) developed in this study is a deterministic, spatially distributed model being composed of conceptual, process-based approaches. Water availability (river discharge, storage volumes in reservoirs, soil moisture) is determined with daily resolution. Sub-basins, grid cells or administrative units (municipalities) can be chosen as spatial target units. The administrative units enable the coupling of Wasa in

  9. Concerns about irrigation efficiency as an adaptation measure to cope with droughts and climate change in semi-arid basins

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vicuna, S.; Henriquez, L.; Melo, O.

    2016-12-01

    As expected in the late 1960s, the Paloma reservoir was built in the Limari basin in the semi-arid region in central Chile with the premise that climate conditions of the past, including the recurrence of dry and wet periods, were going to repeat in the future. That was in fact the case for almost 30 years after the reservoir was built. During this period water supplies from the reservoir were reliable and irrigation efficiency was improved with the result of irrigated land in the basin increasing four times especially with high value-permanent-water-consumption crops (fruits, orchards). Since 2003, during a mega-drought that has affected large proportions of central Chile, inflows to the Paloma reservoir have never again equaled or surpassed average historic flows. The refill of the reservoir, an event that happened every 3-4 years has not occurred in the last 13 years. And the capacity of the basin to accommodate to such a drastic reduction in water availability is no longer present because of the already large "efficient" and permanent use of water. The results in terms of agriculture losses and runoff at the outlet of the basin have been dramatic. Some 400 kms. south of the Limari basin, with higher precipitation levels but still in the semi-arid region in Chile is located the Maipo basin home to the 6 million people city of Santiago and around 250,000 has of irrigated land. Irrigation efficiency is also improving in this basin with savings being used mostly to supply drinking water supply shortages via transfer of water rights. Considering costly infrastructure alternatives, adaptation to climate change projections in this basin will likely extend the improvements in irrigation efficiency most likely affecting downstream environmental uses and reducing overall resilience of the basin to cope with droughts.

  10. Response of deep soil moisture to land use and afforestation in the semi-arid Loess Plateau, China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Lei; Wei, Wei; Chen, Liding; Mo, Baoru

    2012-12-01

    SummarySoil moisture is an effective water source for plant growth in the semi-arid Loess Plateau of China. Characterizing the response of deep soil moisture to land use and afforestation is important for the sustainability of vegetation restoration in this region. In this paper, the dynamics of soil moisture were quantified to evaluate the effect of land use on soil moisture at a depth of 2 m. Specifically, the gravimetric soil moisture content was measured in the soil layer between 0 and 8 m for five land use types in the Longtan catchment of the western Loess Plateau. The land use types included traditional farmland, native grassland, and lands converted from traditional farmland (pasture grassland, shrubland and forestland). Results indicate that the deep soil moisture content decreased more than 35% after land use conversion, and a soil moisture deficit appeared in all types of land with introduced vegetation. The introduced vegetation decreased the soil moisture content to levels lower than the reference value representing no human impact in the entire 0-8 m soil profile. No significant differences appeared between different land use types and introduced vegetation covers, especially in deeper soil layers, regardless of which plant species were introduced. High planting density was found to be the main reason for the severe deficit of soil moisture. Landscape management activities such as tillage activities, micro-topography reconstruction, and fallowed farmland affected soil moisture in both shallow and deep soil layers. Tillage and micro-topography reconstruction can be used as effective countermeasures to reduce the soil moisture deficit due to their ability to increase soil moisture content. For sustainable vegetation restoration in a vulnerable semi-arid region, the plant density should be optimized with local soil moisture conditions and appropriate landscape management practices.

  11. Vulnerability Assessment of the Livelihoods in Tanzania’s Semi-Arid Agro-Ecological Zone under Climate Change Scenarios

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Msafiri Y. Mkonda

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Despite the established literature on the vulnerability to climate change in various parts of Tanzania, it is worthwhile to assess the extent of this vulnerability of the peoples’ livelihoods and predict its future outcome. This is particularly important in the vulnerable ecosystems, that is, the semi-arid zones of Tanzania where the people’s livelihoods are highly attached to the declining local condition. The present study aims to assess the livelihoods vulnerability in Kongwa District, the semi-arid zone of Central Tanzania. In doing so, a wide range of methods were employed during data collection and analyses including surveys, informative interviews, discussions and observation. The study sampled 400 (≤10% respondents during a survey. The Mann-Kendall Test with SPSS V20, Microsoft Excel and Theme content techniques were used for data analyses. The results indicate that climate stress has adversely impacted the quality of soil, vegetation, crop yields and intensified environmental degradation. Since most people depend upon the mentioned affected aspects, it is expected that also the level of livelihood vulnerability has elevated. Further, this situation has greatly contributed to increased poverty and thus, propagates the “tragedy of the common” to the available environmental resources. As a response to increased vulnerability, some farmers have abandoned thousands of hectares of agricultural farms that seemed to be less productive. Despite this, slight measures have been taken by both the government and other key stakeholders to limit vulnerability. The findings of this study provide a theoretical and practical basis for coordinating a sustainable man-environment relationship, ensuring the sustainability of the environment which is the major source of peoples’ livelihoods.

  12. Linking the spatial patterns of organisms and abiotic factors to ecosystem function and management: insights from semi-arid environments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    F. T. Maestre

    2006-12-01

    Full Text Available Numerous theoretical and modeling studies have demonstrated the ecological significance of the spatial patterning of organisms on ecosystem functioning and dynamics. However, there is a paucity of empirical evidence that quantitatively shows how changes in the spatial patterns of the organisms forming biotic communities are directly related to ecosystem structure and functioning. In this article, I review a series of experiments and observational studies conducted in semi-arid environments from Spain (degraded calcareous shrubland, steppes dominated by Stipa tenacissima, and gypsum shrublands to: 1 evaluate whether the spatial patterns of the dominant biotic elements in the community are linked to ecosystem structure and functioning, and 2 test if these patterns, and those of abiotic factors, can be used to improve ecosystem restoration. In the semiarid steppes we found a significant positive relationship between the spatial pattern of the perennial plant community and: i the water status of S. tenacissima and ii perennial species richness and diversity. Experimental plantings conducted in these steppes showed that S. tenacissima facilitated the establishment of shrub seedlings, albeit the magnitude and direction of this effect was dependent on rainfall conditions during the first yr after planting. In the gypsum shrubland, a significant, direct relationship between the spatial pattern of the biological soil crusts and surrogates of ecosystem functioning (soil bulk density and respiration was found. In a degraded shrubland with very low vegetation cover, the survival of an introduced population of the shrub Pistacia lentiscus showed marked spatial patterns, which were related to the spatial patterns of soil properties such as soil compaction and sand content. These results provide empirical evidence on the importance of spatial patterns for maintaining ecosystem structure and functioning in semi-arid ecosystems

  13. Qualitative soil moisture assessment in semi-arid Africa - the role of experience and training on inter-rater reliability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rinderer, M.; Komakech, H. C.; Müller, D.; Wiesenberg, G. L. B.; Seibert, J.

    2015-08-01

    Soil and water management is particularly relevant in semi-arid regions to enhance agricultural productivity. During periods of water scarcity, soil moisture differences are important indicators of the soil water deficit and are traditionally used for allocating water resources among farmers of a village community. Here we present a simple, inexpensive soil wetness classification scheme based on qualitative indicators which one can see or touch on the soil surface. It incorporates the local farmers' knowledge on the best soil moisture conditions for seeding and brick making in the semi-arid environment of the study site near Arusha, Tanzania. The scheme was tested twice in 2014 with farmers, students and experts (April: 40 persons, June: 25 persons) for inter-rater reliability, bias of individuals and functional relation between qualitative and quantitative soil moisture values. During the test in April farmers assigned the same wetness class in 46 % of all cases, while students and experts agreed on about 60 % of all cases. Students who had been trained in how to apply the method gained higher inter-rater reliability than their colleagues with only a basic introduction. When repeating the test in June, participants were given improved instructions, organized in small subgroups, which resulted in a higher inter-rater reliability among farmers. In 66 % of all classifications, farmers assigned the same wetness class and the spread of class assignments was smaller. This study demonstrates that a wetness classification scheme based on qualitative indicators is a robust tool and can be applied successfully regardless of experience in crop growing and education level when an in-depth introduction and training is provided. The use of a simple and clear layout of the assessment form is important for reliable wetness class assignments.

  14. Qualitative soil moisture assessment in semi-arid Africa: the role of experience and training on inter-rater reliability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rinderer, M.; Komakech, H.; Müller, D.; Seibert, J.

    2015-03-01

    Soil and water management is particularly relevant in semi-arid regions to enhance agricultural productivity. During periods of water scarcity soil moisture differences are important indicators of the soil water deficit and are traditionally used for allocating water resources among farmers of a village community. Here we present a simple, inexpensive soil wetness classification scheme based on qualitative indicators which one can see or touch on the soil surface. It incorporates the local farmers' knowledge on the best soil moisture conditions for seeding and brick making in the semi-arid environment of the study site near Arusha, Tanzania. The scheme was tested twice in 2014 with farmers, students and experts (April: 40 persons, June: 25 persons) for inter-rater reliability, bias of individuals and functional relation between qualitative and quantitative soil moisture values. During the test in April farmers assigned the same wetness class in 46% of all cases while students and experts agreed in about 60% of all cases. Students who had been trained in how to apply the method gained higher inter-rater reliability than their colleagues with only a basic introduction. When repeating the test in June, participants were given improved instructions, organized in small sub-groups, which resulted in a higher inter-rater reliability among farmers. In 66% of all classifications farmers assigned the same wetness class and the spread of class assignments was smaller. This study demonstrates that a wetness classification scheme based on qualitative indicators is a robust tool and can be applied successfully regardless of experience in crop growing and education level when an in-depth introduction and training is provided. The use of a simple and clear layout of the assessment form is important for reliable wetness class assignments.

  15. Effect of Planting Date on Reducing Growth Period of Spring Safflower Cultivars in Tabriz Cold and Semi-arid Climate

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    B Pasban Eslam

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Introduction Safflower is a plant adaptable to areas with limited rainfall during winter and spring and dry air at flowering, seed filling and maturity stages, and tolerant to water deficit. The positive correlation coefficient observed between safflower seed yield with precipitation and low air temperature during seed germination to flowering and flowering to seed maturity. Furthermore, precipitation and low temperature during flowering to seed maturity significantly increased seed oil percentage. Therefore, it seems that, by adjusting the planting time can be adapted phenological stages of plant with appropriate weather conditions. The aims of this research were study the possibility reducing the growth period of safflower spring varieties with maintaining performance through delay in planting time, evaluate seed and oil yields at different planting times, and identify the best varieties for cold and semi-arid areas. Materials and Methods The experiment was conducted at the East Azarbaijan Agriculture and Natural Resources Research Center (46°2¢E, 37°58¢N, 1347 m a.s.l. during 2014-2015 growing season. According to Koppen climatic classification system, the area climate is semi-arid and cold. This study was carried out as factorial experiment based on randomized complete block design with three replications. Treatments were four planting dates (30 March, 9, 19 and 29 April and three safflower spring cultivars (Sina, Soffeh and Goldasht. Plant spacing between rows was 24 cm and final plant density was 70 plant per m2. Each plot consisted of 6 rows in 5 meters. Plants were harvested on the 11th and 14th of August in the first and second years of experiment, respectively. At the harvest time, in order to control boarder effects, plants from the sides of each plot were removed. Measured traits were plant height, capitulum diameter, seed yield, capitula number per plant, seed number per capitulum and 1000-seed weight. Ten plants in each plot

  16. Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi in a semi-arid, limestone mining-impacted area of Brazil

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    Thaís Teixeira-Rios

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available The main goal of this study was to determine the diversity and activity of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF in an area degraded by limestone mining within the semi-arid region of Brazil known as the caatinga (shrublands. Near a limestone quarry, we selected two areas of caatinga (preserved and degraded for study. The number of glomerospores did not differ significantly between the two areas. There was a trend toward the most probable number of infective propagules being higher in the degraded area. Twenty AMF taxa were identified in the two sampled areas, species richness, diversity and evenness being higher in the preserved area. Two species of Racocetra represent new records for the semi-arid region of Brazil. Glomerospore production and AMF species richness were unaffected by mining activity in the study area.

  17. Water balance of two earthen landfill caps in a semi-arid climate

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Khire, M.V.; Benson, C.H.; Bosscher, P.J.

    1997-01-01

    Water balance data are presented that were obtained from two earthen cap test sections located in a semi-arid region. The test sections were constructed on a municipal solid waste landfill in East Wenatchee, Washington, USA. One test section represents a traditional resistive barrier, and is constructed with a compacted silty clay barrier 60 cm thick and a vegetated silty clay surface layer 15 cm thick. The other test section represents a capillary barrier and has a sand layer 75 cm thick overlain by a 15-cm-thick vegetated surface layer of silt. Extensive hydrological and meteorological data have been collected since November 1992. Unsaturated hydraulic properties of soils, hydrologic parameters, and vegetation have been extensively characterized. Results of the study show that capillary barriers can be effective caps in semi-arid and arid regions. They are also cheaper to construct and can perform better than traditional resistive barriers

  18. Spatial distribution of overland flow and sediment yield in semi-arid rangelands

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sarah, P.; Lavee, H.

    2009-01-01

    Feedbacks and mutual links exist among soil, vegetation and water; they enable co-evolution of these features within eco-geomorphic systems, These relations are fragile, especially in semi-arid areas where grazing is the main land use. The simples subdivision of the surface of many semi-arid rangelands is into a two-component mosaic pattern comprising shrub patches interspersed with open spaces, with the former acting s skinks for water and other resources, and the latter as sources. However close observations in areas under grazing in the northern Negev region of Israel suggested that the spatial patterns of surface components is more complicated, and that the open space between shrubs consists of two components: herbaceous areas, separated by trampling routes that support no vegetation. (Author)

  19. Soil quality improvement for crop production in semi-arid West Africa

    OpenAIRE

    Ouédraogo, E.

    2004-01-01

    Soil quality maintenance and crop production improvement in semi-arid West Africa require appropriate cropping technologies, which are ecologically sound and economically viable. Thus, on-farm and on-station experiments have been carried out on the central plateau and in the south of Burkina Faso The results show that adoption of improved soil fertility technologies such as composting by farmers is determined by soil fertility status, access to the market and social reasons. Organic amendment...

  20. Agroforestry parkland species diversity : uses and management in semi-arid West-Africa (Burkina Faso)

    OpenAIRE

    Nikiema, A.

    2005-01-01

    Agroforestry parkland in semi-arid West Africa is a rural land use system, which allows farmers to grow annual crops in combination with useful trees. In addition to cereals, tree products such as vegetables, fruits, vegetable oil, firewood, fodder, and medicines are obtained from the parklands. However the multiple function of the parkland system can only be fulfilled if parkland species diversity is adequately managed.This thesis is focused on assessing the woody species diversity in the pa...

  1. Changes in zinc speciation with mine tailings acidification in a semi-arid weathering environment

    OpenAIRE

    Hayes, Sarah M.; O’Day, Peggy A.; Webb, Sam M.; Maier, Raina M.; Chorover, Jon

    2011-01-01

    High concentrations of residual metal contaminants in mine tailings can be transported easily by wind and water, particularly when tailings remain unvegetated for decades following mining cessation, as is the case in semi-arid landscapes. Understanding the speciation and mobility of contaminant metal(loid)s, particularly in surficial tailings, is essential to controlling their phytotoxicities and to revegetating impacted sites. In prior work, we showed that surficial tailings samples from the...

  2. Competing effects of groundwater withdrawals and climate change on water availability in semi-arid India

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sishodia, R. P.; Shukla, S.

    2017-12-01

    India, a global leader in groundwater use (250 km3/yr), is experiencing groundwater depletion. There has been a 130-fold increase in number of irrigation wells since 1960. Anticipated future increase in groundwater demand is likely to exacerbate the water availability in the semi-arid regions of India. Depending on the direction of change, future climate change may either worsen or enhance the water availability. This study uses an integrated hydrologic modeling approach (MIKE SHE MIKE 11) to compare and combine the effects of future (2040-2069) increased groundwater withdrawals and climate change on surface and groundwater flows and availability for an agricultural watershed in semi-arid south India. Modeling results showed that increased groundwater withdrawals in the future resulted in reduced surface flows (25%) and increased frequency and duration (90 days/yr) of well drying. In contrast, projected future increase in rainfall (7-43%) under the changed climate showed increased groundwater recharge (15-67%) and surface flows (9-155%). Modeling results suggest that the positive effects of climate change may enhance the water availability in this semi-arid region of India. However, in combination with increased withdrawals, climate change was shown to increase the well drying and reduce the water availability especially during dry years. A combination of management options such as flood to drip conversion, energy subsidy reductions and water storage can support increased groundwater irrigated area in the future while mitigating the well drying. A cost-benefit analysis showed that dispersed water storage and flood to drip conversion can be highly cost-effective in this semi-arid region. The study results suggest that the government and management policies need to be focused towards an integrated management of demand and supply to create a sustainable food-water-energy nexus in the region.

  3. Estimating seasonal herbage production of a semi-arid grassland ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The relation between above-ground phytomass production and three independent variables, namely, seasonal rainfall, evapotranspiration (Et) and veld condition, were investigated using fourteen years' data (1977-1991) from the dry Themeda-Cymbopogon grassveld of the central Orange Free State. The data showed that ...

  4. Coprophilous Mucorales (ex Zygomycota from three areas in the semi-arid of Pernambuco, Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carlos Alberto Fragoso de Souza

    Full Text Available Abstract Mucorales comprises fungi commonly isolated as saprobes from soil, dung, stored grains and plants. Although these fungi have been studied in several countries, there are relatively a few reports of them in semi-arid areas. Therefore, the aims of the present study were to assess and compare the Mucorales communities in dung from different species and breeds of herbivores in the semi-arid of Pernambuco, based on the frequency of occurrence and species richness of these fungi. Samples of dung collected in the cities of Arcoverde, Serra Talhada and Sertânia were incubated in moist chambers in triplicate. Altogether, 24 taxa of Mucorales distributed in the genera Absidia, Circinella, Cunninghamella, Lichtheimia, Mucor, Pilobolus, Rhizopus and Syncephalastrum were identified. The highest species richness was found in sheep excrement. Mucor circinelloides f. griseo-cyanus was the most common taxon, followed by M. ramosissimus. The similarity of the composition of Mucorales species was greatest between the excrements of Guzerá and Sindi breeds (bovine. All mucoralean species isolated are being cited for the first time from animal dung found in Caatinga and a new species of Mucor was recorded. An identification key for species of Mucorales from dung in the semi-arid region of Brazil is provided.

  5. Coprophilous Mucorales (ex Zygomycota) from three areas in the semi-arid of Pernambuco, Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Souza, Carlos Alberto Fragoso de; Lima, Diogo Xavier; Gurgel, Luciana M S; Santiago, André Luiz Cabral Monteiro de Azevedo

    Mucorales comprises fungi commonly isolated as saprobes from soil, dung, stored grains and plants. Although these fungi have been studied in several countries, there are relatively a few reports of them in semi-arid areas. Therefore, the aims of the present study were to assess and compare the Mucorales communities in dung from different species and breeds of herbivores in the semi-arid of Pernambuco, based on the frequency of occurrence and species richness of these fungi. Samples of dung collected in the cities of Arcoverde, Serra Talhada and Sertânia were incubated in moist chambers in triplicate. Altogether, 24 taxa of Mucorales distributed in the genera Absidia, Circinella, Cunninghamella, Lichtheimia, Mucor, Pilobolus, Rhizopus and Syncephalastrum were identified. The highest species richness was found in sheep excrement. Mucor circinelloides f. griseo-cyanus was the most common taxon, followed by M. ramosissimus. The similarity of the composition of Mucorales species was greatest between the excrements of Guzerá and Sindi breeds (bovine). All mucoralean species isolated are being cited for the first time from animal dung found in Caatinga and a new species of Mucor was recorded. An identification key for species of Mucorales from dung in the semi-arid region of Brazil is provided. Copyright © 2016 Sociedade Brasileira de Microbiologia. Published by Elsevier Editora Ltda. All rights reserved.

  6. Effects of fishing technique on assessing species composition in aquatic systems in semi-arid Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    ESF Medeiros

    Full Text Available In most ecological field research, appropriate sampling is critical for the understanding of processes underlying fish populations and communities, and is even more important in heterogeneous environments such as the aquatic systems of the semi-arid region of Brazil. This study intends to make a contribution to the development of sampling programs and gear selection in aquatic systems of semi-arid Brazil by evaluating the effects of different fishing techniques on the assessment of richness and composition of the fish fauna in selected aquatic environments. Six sites were selected to represent typical artificial (reservoirs and natural (intermittent streams environments and four different types of sampling gear were applied to each site during four occasions. The present study shows that when selecting sampling techniques to be used in aquatic systems in semi-arid Brazil, one must consider the objectives of the study, e.g. ecological or taxonomic, in order to decide on inclusion of rare species in the sampling population. Also, the effect of the sampling gear on natural abundances of fish must be considered given that some sampling techniques are highly detrimental to fish population numbers.

  7. Variability of soil CO2 efflux in a semi-arid grassland in Arizona

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krishnan, P.; Meyers, T. P.; Heuer, M.

    2017-12-01

    Soil surface CO2 efflux or soil respiration (RS) is one of the most important components of the global carbon cycle. So it is critical to evaluate the response of soil respiration to environmental conditions to predict how future climate and land cover changes influence the ecosystem carbon balance. Continuous half-hourly measurements of RS were made between the end of March to December 2015 in a semi-arid temperate grassland located on the Audubon Research Ranch in south western Arizona (31.5907N, 110.5104W, elevation 1496 m), USA. This first time measurements of Rs over this site using an automated soil chamber were used to investigate the seasonal and diurnal variation of Rs and its relationship to environmental variables. The mean annual air temperature and precipitation at this site were 16 deg C and 370 mm with more than 60% of the annual precipitation was received during the North American monsoon period (July-September). Following the onset of the monsoon, drastic changes in vegetation growth occured turning the ecosystem to a carbon sink by August. Temporal variability in Rs was closely related to the changes in near surface soil temperature at 2 cm (Ts) and soil water content at 5 cm (θ). Half -hourly Rs varied from nearly 0.1 μmol m-2 s-1 in the winter months to a maximum of 5 μmol m-2 s-1 in the peak growing season in August. During the dry pre-monsoon period (May -June), Rs was relatively low ( 0.0.08 m3 m-3, RS was positively correlated to soil temperature at the 2 cm depth following an exponential relationship. Below this value of θ, RS was largely decoupled from TS dropping to less than half of their maximum values during wet soil conditions. Analysis of daily mean nighttime Rs for the year showed that for periods with θ below the threshold, the sensitivity of RS to temperature were substantially reduced resulting in a Q10 significantly < 2, thereby confirming that RS was less affected by soil temperature under low soil water conditions at this

  8. Human-Induced Vegetation Degradation in a Semi-Arid Rangeland

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jackson, Hasan

    Current assessments of anthropogenic land degradation and its impact on vegetation at regional scales are prone to large uncertainties due to the lack of an objective, transferable, spatially and temporally explicit measure of land degradation. These uncertainties have resulted in contradictory estimates of degradation extent and severity and the role of human activities. The uncertainties limit the ability to assess the effects on the biophysical environment and effectiveness of past, current, and future policies of land use. The overall objective of the dissertation is to assess degradation in a semi-arid region at a regional scale where the process of anthropogenic land degradation is evident. Net primary productivity (NPP) is used as the primary indicator to measure degradation. It is hypothesized that land degradation resulting from human factors on the landscape irreversibly reduces NPP below the potential set by environmental conditions. It is also hypothesized that resulting reductions in NPP are distinguishable from natural, spatial and temporal, variability in NPP. The specific goals of the dissertation are to (1) identify the extent and severity of degradation using productivity as the primary surrogate, (2) compare the degradation of productivity to other known mechanisms of degradation, and (3) relate the expression of degradation to components of vegetation and varying environmental conditions. This dissertation employed the Local NPP Scaling (LNS) approach to identify patterns of anthropogenic degradation of NPP in the Burdekin Dry Tropics (BDT) region of Queensland (14 million hectares), Australia from 2000 to 2013. The method started with land classification based on the environmental factors presumed to control NPP to group pixels having similar potential NPP. Then, satellite remotely sensing data were used to compare actual NPP with its potential. The difference, in units of mass of carbon fixed in NPP per unit area per monitoring interval and

  9. Modelling hydrologic and hydrodynamic processes in basins with large semi-arid wetlands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fleischmann, Ayan; Siqueira, Vinícius; Paris, Adrien; Collischonn, Walter; Paiva, Rodrigo; Pontes, Paulo; Crétaux, Jean-François; Bergé-Nguyen, Muriel; Biancamaria, Sylvain; Gosset, Marielle; Calmant, Stephane; Tanimoun, Bachir

    2018-06-01

    Hydrological and hydrodynamic models are core tools for simulation of large basins and complex river systems associated to wetlands. Recent studies have pointed towards the importance of online coupling strategies, representing feedbacks between floodplain inundation and vertical hydrology. Especially across semi-arid regions, soil-floodplain interactions can be strong. In this study, we included a two-way coupling scheme in a large scale hydrological-hydrodynamic model (MGB) and tested different model structures, in order to assess which processes are important to be simulated in large semi-arid wetlands and how these processes interact with water budget components. To demonstrate benefits from this coupling over a validation case, the model was applied to the Upper Niger River basin encompassing the Niger Inner Delta, a vast semi-arid wetland in the Sahel Desert. Simulation was carried out from 1999 to 2014 with daily TMPA 3B42 precipitation as forcing, using both in-situ and remotely sensed data for calibration and validation. Model outputs were in good agreement with discharge and water levels at stations both upstream and downstream of the Inner Delta (Nash-Sutcliffe Efficiency (NSE) >0.6 for most gauges), as well as for flooded areas within the Delta region (NSE = 0.6; r = 0.85). Model estimates of annual water losses across the Delta varied between 20.1 and 30.6 km3/yr, while annual evapotranspiration ranged between 760 mm/yr and 1130 mm/yr. Evaluation of model structure indicated that representation of both floodplain channels hydrodynamics (storage, bifurcations, lateral connections) and vertical hydrological processes (floodplain water infiltration into soil column; evapotranspiration from soil and vegetation and evaporation of open water) are necessary to correctly simulate flood wave attenuation and evapotranspiration along the basin. Two-way coupled models are necessary to better understand processes in large semi-arid wetlands. Finally, such coupled

  10. Use of carbon isotope analysis to understand semi-arid erosion dynamics and long-term semi-arid land degradation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turnbull, Laura; Brazier, Richard E; Wainwright, John; Dixon, Liz; Bol, Roland

    2008-06-01

    Many semi-arid areas worldwide are becoming degraded, in the form of C(4) grasslands being replaced by C(3) shrublands, which causes an increase in surface runoff and erosion, and altered nutrient cycling, which may affect global biogeochemical cycling. The prevention or control of vegetation transitions is hindered by a lack of understanding of their temporal and spatial dynamics, particularly in terms of interactions between biotic and abiotic processes. This research investigates (1) the effects of soil erosion on the delta(13)C values of soil organic matter (SOM) throughout the soil profile and its implications for reconstructing vegetation change using carbon-isotope analysis and (2) the spatial properties of erosion over a grass-shrub transition to increase understanding of biotic-abiotic interactions by using delta(13)C signals of eroded material as a sediment tracer. Results demonstrate that the soils over grass-shrub transitions are not in steady state. A complex interplay of factors determines the input of SOM to the surface horizon of the soil and its subsequent retention and turnover through the soil profile. A positive correlation between event runoff and delta(13)C signatures of eroded sediment was found in all plots. This indicates that the delta(13)C signatures of eroded sediment may provide a means of distinguishing between changes in erosion dynamics over runoff events of different magnitudes and over different vegetation types. The development of this technique using delta(13)C signatures of eroded sediment provides a new means of furthering existing understanding of erosion dynamics over vegetation transitions. This is critical in terms of understanding biotic-abiotic feedbacks and the evolution of areas subject to vegetation change in semi-arid environments. John Wiley & Sons, Ltd

  11. Water Governance and Adaptation to Disturbances in Irrigated Semi-Arid Agricultural Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Evans, T. P.; McCord, P. F.; McBride, L.; Gower, D.; Caylor, K. K.

    2013-12-01

    Climate and other physical drivers of environmental systems are modifying the global availability of water for irrigation. At the same time population growth is placing an increased demand on water resources as local municipalities promote agricultural production as a mechanism to support human welfare and development. Substantial has research focused on household-level agricultural decision-making and adaptation. But equally important are institutional dynamics, or the rules implemented to allocate water resources across different user groups. Previous work has identified design principles for common-pool resource systems that tend to lead to sustained governance regimes. Likewise, past research has addressed the issue of "institutional fit", or locally adapted governance arrangements characterized through governance structure. However, much of the complexity behind institutional dynamics and adaptive capacity lies in the translation of data to information to knowledge, and how this sequence contributes to effective cross-scale water management and decision-making - an arena that has arguably received less attention in the water management literature. We investigate the interplay between governance regimes, data/information and institutional dynamics in irrigation systems in semi-arid regions of Kenya. In particular, we articulate the role of knowledge and data in institutional dynamics at multiple levels of analysis. How do users at different decision-making levels incorporate social and hydrological information in water governance? What data is needed to develop the information and knowledge users need for effective management? While governance structure is certainly a critical component of water management systems - we emphasize the interplay between the data-information-knowledge sequence and institutional dynamics. We present findings from household and manager-level surveys examining irrigation practices and the institutions designed to equitably allocate

  12. Spatial and temporal estimation of runoff in a semi-arid microwatershed of Southern India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rejani, R; Rao, K V; Osman, M; Chary, G R; Pushpanjali; Reddy, K Sammi; Rao, Ch Srinivasa

    2015-08-01

    In a semi-arid microwatershed of Warangal district in Southern India, daily runoff was estimated spatially using Soil Conservation Service (SCS)-curve number (CN) method coupled with GIS. The groundwater status in this region is over-exploited, and precise estimation of runoff is very essential to plan interventions for this ungauged microwatershed. Rainfall is the most important factor governing runoff, and 75.8% of the daily rainfall and 92.1% of the rainy days which occurred were below 25 mm/day. The declines in rainfall and rainy days observed in recent years were 9.8 and 8.4%, respectively. The surface runoff estimated from crop land for a period of 57 years varied from 0 to 365 mm with a mean annual runoff of 103.7 mm or 14.1% of the mean annual rainfall. The mean annual runoff showed a significant reduction from 108.7 to 82.9 mm in recent years. The decadal variation of annual runoff from crop land over the years varied from 49.2 to 89.0% which showed the caution needed while planning watershed management works in this microwatershed. Among the four land use land cover conditions prevailing in the area, the higher runoff (20% of the mean annual rainfall) was observed from current fallow in clayey soil and lower runoff of 8.7% from crop land in loamy soil due to the increased canopy coverage. The drought years which occurred during recent years (1991-2007) in crop land have increased by 3.5%, normal years have increased by 15.6%, and the above normal years have decreased by 19.1%. This methodology can be adopted for estimating the runoff potential from similar ungauged watersheds with deficient data. It is concluded that in order to ensure long-term and sustainable groundwater utilization in the region, proper estimation of runoff and implementation of suitable water harvesting measures are the need of the hour.

  13. Seasonal Variations of the Surface Urban Heat Island in a Semi-Arid City

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sirous Haashemi

    2016-04-01

    effective. The only exception existed in the correlation between elevation and IS, which may be useful to simulate the SUHI at night. This study suggests that in semi-arid cities, such as Tehran, with the urban-rural indicator, a surface urban cool island may be observed in daytime while SUHI at nighttime; with other indicators, SUHI can be observed in both day and night. Thus, SUHI studies require the acquisition of remote sensing image data at both daytime and nighttime and careful selection of SUHI indicators.

  14. Where Does the River Run? Lessons from a Semi-Arid River

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meixner, T.; Soto, C. D.; Richter, H.; Uhlman, K.

    2009-12-01

    Spatial data sets to assess the nature of stream groundwater interactions and the resulting power law/fractal structure of travel time distributions are rare. Spatial data sets can be collected using high technology or by use of a large number of field assistants. The labor intensive way is expensive unless the public can be enlisted as citizen scientists to gather large, robust, spatial data sets robustly and cheaply. Such an effort requires public interest and the ability of a few to organize such an effort at a basin if not regional scale. The San Pedro basin offers such an opportunity for citizen science due to the water resource restrictions of the basins semi-arid climate. Since 1999 The Nature Conservancy, in cooperation with the Upper San Pedro Partnership, the public at large and various university and federal science agency participants, has been mapping where the San Pedro River has water present versus where it is dry. This mapping has used an army of volunteers armed with GPS units, clipboards and their eyes to make the determination if a given 10m reach of the river is wet or dry. These wet/dry mapping data now exist for 11 different annual surveys. These data are unique and enable an investigation of the hydrologic connectedness of flowing waters within this system. Analysis of these data reveals several important findings. The total river area that is wet is strongly correlated with stream flow as observed at three USGS gauges. The correlation is strongest however for 90 day and 1 year average flows rather than more local in time observations such as the daily, 7 day or monthly mean flow at the gauges. This result indicates that where the river is flowing depends on long term hydrologic conditions. The length of river reach that is mapped as wet or dry is indicative of the travel distance and thus time that water travels in the surface (wet) and subsurface (dry) of the river system. The reach length that is mapped as wet follows a power law function

  15. Iron and sulfur geochemistry in semi-arid mangrove soils (Ceará, Brazil) in relation to seasonal changes and shrimp farming effluents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nóbrega, G N; Ferreira, T O; Romero, R E; Marques, A G B; Otero, X L

    2013-09-01

    Iron and sulfur are key elements in the biogeochemistry of estuarine soils, in which Fe and sulfate reduction (SR) pathways are important for organic matter decomposition. In the semi-arid coast of NE Brazil, mangroves are characterized by large seasonal variations in weather and the presence of numerous shrimp farms. The objective was to determine the impacts of shrimp farm effluents on iron and sulfur geochemistry in mangrove soils under the semi-arid climate of NE Brazil. A seasonal study was made of two mangrove forest soils (SF, a mangrove forest that directly receives wastewater from shrimp ponds and CS, a control site). Pyrite Fe, oxyhydroxides Fe, acid volatile sulfide, degree of pyritization (DOP), pH, Eh, total organic carbon (TOC) and total S were determined. There was a clear decrease in pyritic Fe and DOP in the SF soils, which may be related to the anaerobic oxidation of pyrite coupled with nitrate reduction, or to the dominance of denitrification over SR. Lower TOC contents in the SF site suggest that below ground decomposition increased in response to eutrophication. The seasonal variations led to important changes in the semi-arid mangrove soils. During the dry period, both soils experienced oxidizing conditions with remarkable loss of reduced and oxidized forms of Fe, which may have important environmental implications as Fe is biolimiting for marine primary production. The data show that both factors (seasonal weather variations and shrimp effluents) play important roles in the geochemical processes that occur in these soils and, thus, may affect their functioning and maintenance.

  16. THE EFFECT OF INTRODUCED FORAGE LEGUMES ON IMPROVEMENT OF SOIL FERTILITY IN NATURAL PASTURES OF SEMI-ARID RANGELANDS OF KAJIADO DISTRICT, KENYA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter N Macharia

    2010-11-01

    Full Text Available A two phase study was carried out from 2002 to 2005 in the semi-arid rangelands of Kajiado District, Kenya to determine the effect of introduced forage legumes on soil fertility improvement of natural pastures. During legume evaluation phase, Neonotonia wightii (Glycine, Macroptilium atropurpureum (Siratro, Lablab purpureus cv. Rongai (Dolichos, Mucuna pruriens (Velvet bean and Stylosanthes scabra var. Seca (Stylo were screened for adaptability and growth performance under the semi-arid conditions for two years. Results of soil analysis showed there were significant increases in soil pH (4.92 to 5.36, organic carbon (1.17 to 2.57% , nitrogen (0.17 to 0.22% and potassium (1.23 to 1.68 me% probably due to the large amounts of organic residues produced by the legumes (particularly Glycine, Siratro and Stylo which are perennials. The calcium content decreased significantly from 7.97 to 4.50 me% (which was attributed to plant uptake while the decrease of phosphorus was not significant. During the second phase of study for 1½ years Glycine, Siratro and Stylo were integrated into natural pastures. The results showed that only the soil pH significantly increased from 5.23 to 5.31 while all the other nutrients decreased results, which were attributed to production of less organic residues by the legumes compared to the residues produced during the legume evaluation phase. The study concluded that Glycine, Siratro and Stylo were capable of improving the soil fertility of semi-arid natural pastures only if the respective dry matter production was 10.31, 7.81 and 3.52 tha-1, amounts which were able to produce large amounts of organic residues. Â

  17. Human health risk assessment of lead from mining activities at semi-arid locations in the context of total lead exposure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zheng, Jiajia; Huynh, Trang; Gasparon, Massimo; Ng, Jack; Noller, Barry

    2013-12-01

    Lead from historical mining and mineral processing activities may pose potential human health risks if materials with high concentrations of bioavailable lead minerals are released to the environment. Since the Joint Expert Committee on Food Additives of Food and Agriculture Organization/World Health Organization withdrew the Provisional Tolerable Weekly Intake of lead in 2011, an alternative method was required for lead exposure assessment. This study evaluated the potential lead hazard to young children (0-7 years) from a historical mining location at a semi-arid area using the U.S. EPA Integrated Exposure Uptake Biokinetic (IEUBK) Model, with selected site-specific input data. This study assessed lead exposure via the inhalation pathway for children living in a location affected by lead mining activities and with specific reference to semi-arid conditions and made comparison with the ingestion pathway by using the physiologically based extraction test for gastro-intestinal simulation. Sensitivity analysis for major IEUBK input parameters was conducted. Three groups of input parameters were classified according to the results of predicted blood concentrations. The modelled lead absorption attributed to the inhalation route was lower than 2 % (mean ± SE, 0.9 % ± 0.1 %) of all lead intake routes and was demonstrated as a less significant exposure pathway to children's blood, compared with ingestion. Whilst dermal exposure was negligible, diet and ingestion of soil and dust were the dominant parameters in terms of children's blood lead prediction. The exposure assessment identified the changing role of dietary intake when house lead loadings varied. Recommendations were also made to conduct comprehensive site-specific human health risk assessment in future studies of lead exposure under a semi-arid climate.

  18. Biomass and biomass water use efficiency in oilseed crop (Brassica juncea L.) under semi-arid microenvironments

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Adak, Tarun; Kumar, Gopal; Chakravarty, N.V.K.; Katiyar, R.K.; Deshmukh, P.S.; Joshi, H.C.

    2013-01-01

    Biomass production in arid and semi-arid regions requires a special attention owing to spatiotemporal scarcity of irrigation water wherein improved water use efficiency (WUE) of the crop is targeted. Under field conditions, the crop undergoes dynamic changes in near ground or within-canopy microenvironments. This changed microclimatic condition may have an impact on phenological response of the oilseed crop which in turn would affect biomass productivity, economic seed yield and water use efficiency of the crop. Henceforth, quantification of biomass production and its WUE of oilseed Brassica crop is essentially required owing to have better understanding of the crop water requirement under the era of climate change. Following a 2 years field experiment, it was revealed that the changes in leaf area index were explained by about 68–74%. The best fit polynomial third order regression analysis indicated >93% prediction in biomass production as a function of time factor. Improved biomass partitioning into economic sinks was also observed. Small scale change in near ground microenvironment may reduce the prediction of biomass variability to the extent of 3%. The mean ET variations were observed as 2.4, 1.5 and 3.2 mm day −1 during the critical phenological stages. Mean seed yield, biomass WUE and seed yield WUE ranged between 2.71 and 2.87 Mg ha −1 , 11.4 and 13.1 g m −2 mm −1 and 19.3 and 22.9 kg ha −1 mm −1 respectively. Variations in both biomass and seed yield water use efficiencies due to small scale change in near ground microclimates were revealed. -- Highlights: ► Assessing biomass productivity and its water use efficiency under arid and semi-arid regions is important. ► Under field conditions, the crop undergoes dynamic changes in near ground or within-canopy microenvironments. ► We have estimated changes in seasonal ET, within-canopy micrometeorological dynamics. ► Biomass productivity, partitioning and water use efficiencies were

  19. Geochemical Weathering Increases Lead Bioaccessibility in Semi-Arid Mine Tailings

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hayes, Sarah M.; Webb, Sam M.; Bargar, John R.; O'Day, Peggy A.; Maier, Raina M.; Chorover, Jon

    2012-01-01

    Mine tailings can host elevated concentrations of toxic metal(loid)s that represent a significant hazard to surrounding communities and ecosystems. Eolian transport, capable of translocating small (micrometer-sized) particles, can be the dominant mechanism of toxic metal dispersion in arid or semi-arid landscapes. Human exposure to metals can then occur via direct inhalation or ingestion of particulates. The fact that measured doses of total lead (Pb) in geomedia correlate poorly with blood Pb levels highlights a need to better resolve the precise distribution of molecularly-speciated metal-bearing phases in the complex particle mixtures. Species distribution controls bioaccessibility, thereby directly impacting health risk. This study seeks to correlate Pb-containing particle size and mineral composition with lability and bioaccessibility in mine tailings subjected to weathering in a semi-arid environment. We employed X-ray absorption spectroscopy (XAS) and X-ray fluorescence (XRF), coupled with sequential chemical extractions, to study Pb speciation in tailings from the semi-arid Arizona Klondyke State Superfund Site. Representative samples ranging in pH from 2.6 to 5.4 were selected for in-depth study of Pb solid-phase speciation. The principle lead-bearing phase was plumbojarosite (PbFe6(SO4)4(OH)12), but anglesite (PbSO4) and iron oxide-sorbed Pb were also observed. Anglesite, the most bioavailable mineral species of lead identified in this study, was enriched in surficial tailings samples, where Pb concentrations in the clay size fraction were 2–3 times higher by mass relative to bulk. A mobile and bioaccessible Pb phase accumulates in surficial tailings, with a corresponding increase in risk of human exposure to atmospheric particles. PMID:22553941

  20. Changes in semi-arid plant species associations along a livestock grazing gradient.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hugo Saiz

    Full Text Available In semi-arid ecosystems, vegetation is heterogeneously distributed, with plant species often associating in patches. These associations between species are not constant, but depend on the particular response of each species to environmental factors. Here, we investigated how plant species associations change in response to livestock grazing in a semi-arid ecosystem, Cabo de Gata-Níjar Natural Park in South East Spain. We established linear point-intercept transects at four sites with different grazing intensity, and recorded all species at each point. We investigated plant associations by comparing the number of times that each pair of species occurred at the same spatial point (co-occurrences, with the expected number of times based on species abundances. We also assessed associations for each shrub and grass species by considering all their pairs of associations and for the whole plant community by considering all pairs of associations on each site. At all sites, the plant community had a negative pattern of association, with fewer co-occurrences than expected. Negative association in the plant community increased at maximum grazing intensity. Most species associated as expected, particularly grass species, and positive associations were most important at intermediate grazing intensities. No species changed its type of association along the grazing gradient. We conclude that in the present plant community, grazing-resistant species compete among themselves and segregate in space. Some shrub species act as refuges for grazing-sensitive species that benefit from being spatially associated with shrub species, particularly at intermediate grazing intensities where positive associations were highest. At high grazing intensity, these shrubs can no longer persist and positive associations decrease due to the disappearance of refuges. Spatial associations between plant species and their response to grazing help identify the factors that organize

  1. A geochemical and isotopic approach to recharge evaluation in semi-arid zones. Past and present

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Edmunds, W.M.; Walton, N.R.G.

    1980-01-01

    The magnitude of any recharge to aquifers in semi-arid and arid zones is the principal uncertainty in estimating a water balance. Recent studies in Cyprus and Libyan Arab Jamahiriya are currently being used to demonstrate the application of geochemical and isotopic techniques, to the determination of both current and palaeo-recharge. In Cyprus, solute profiles of the unsaturated zone have been interpreted to provide estimates of the direct recharge component using a steady-state, mass-balance approach; results from the chloride profiles compare well with recharge estimates using tritium. In addition, it is found that some solute peaks, notably for specific electrical conductance, give a reasonably accurate record of the rainfall history during the period 1950-1975. The solute profile method is relatively unsophisticated and could be more widely applied to recharge estimation in other semi-arid areas of the world. In Libya, a clear distinction can be made using the combined isotopic, hydrological and geochemical results between regional groundwaters recharged to the upper, unconfined aquifer of the Sirte Basin before 13,000 years BP and younger waters recharged locally during the period 5000-7800 years BP. A well-defined fresh-water channel, superimposed upon the regional water quality pattern, can be traced within the aquifer for some 130 km and represents direct evidence of recharge during the Holocene. Some shallow groundwaters of similar composition to the fresh-water channel are also considered to represent recent, if intermittent, recharge which took place during historical times. It is concluded that geochemical and isotopic studies of both the unsaturated zone and of shallow groundwaters in semi-arid regions, can be used to determine not only the present-day direct recharge component, but also a recharge chronology of immediate historic times, which may be important in the estimation of long-term water resources. (author)

  2. Carbon storage capacity of semi-arid grassland soils and sequestration potentials in northern China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiesmeier, Martin; Munro, Sam; Barthold, Frauke; Steffens, Markus; Schad, Peter; Kögel-Knabner, Ingrid

    2015-10-01

    Organic carbon (OC) sequestration in degraded semi-arid environments by improved soil management is assumed to contribute substantially to climate change mitigation. However, information about the soil organic carbon (SOC) sequestration potential in steppe soils and their current saturation status remains unknown. In this study, we estimated the OC storage capacity of semi-arid grassland soils on the basis of remote, natural steppe fragments in northern China. Based on the maximum OC saturation of silt and clay particles soils (grazing land, arable land, eroded areas) were estimated. The analysis of natural grassland soils revealed a strong linear regression between the proportion of the fine fraction and its OC content, confirming the importance of silt and clay particles for OC stabilization in steppe soils. This relationship was similar to derived regressions in temperate and tropical soils but on a lower level, probably due to a lower C input and different clay mineralogy. In relation to the estimated OC storage capacity, degraded steppe soils showed a high OC saturation of 78-85% despite massive SOC losses due to unsustainable land use. As a result, the potential of degraded grassland soils to sequester additional OC was generally low. This can be related to a relatively high contribution of labile SOC, which is preferentially lost in the course of soil degradation. Moreover, wind erosion leads to substantial loss of silt and clay particles and consequently results in a direct loss of the ability to stabilize additional OC. Our findings indicate that the SOC loss in semi-arid environments induced by intensive land use is largely irreversible. Observed SOC increases after improved land management mainly result in an accumulation of labile SOC prone to land use/climate changes and therefore cannot be regarded as contribution to long-term OC sequestration. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  3. Land cover controls on summer discharge and runoff solution chemistry of semi-arid urban catchments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gallo, Erika L.; Brooks, Paul D.; Lohse, Kathleen A.; McLain, Jean E. T.

    2013-04-01

    SummaryRecharge of urban runoff to groundwater as a stormwater management practice has gained importance in semi-arid regions where water resources are scarce and urban centers are growing. Despite this trend, the importance of land cover in controlling semi-arid catchment runoff quantity and quality remains unclear. Here we address the question: How do land cover characteristics control the amount and quality of storm runoff in semi-arid urban catchments? We monitored summertime runoff quantity and quality from five catchments dominated by distinct urban land uses: low, medium, and high density residential, mixed use, and commercial. Increasing urban land cover increased runoff duration and the likelihood that a rainfall event would result in runoff, but did not increase the time to peak discharge of episodic runoff. The effect of urban land cover on hydrologic responses was tightly coupled to the magnitude of rainfall. At distinct rainfall thresholds, roads, percent impervious cover and the stormwater drainage network controlled runoff frequency, runoff depth and runoff ratios. Contrary to initial expectations, runoff quality did not vary in repose to impervious cover or land use. We identified four major mechanisms controlling runoff quality: (1) variable solute sourcing due to land use heterogeneity and above ground catchment connectivity; (2) the spatial extent of pervious and biogeochemically active areas; (3) the efficiency of overland flow and runoff mobilization; and (4) solute flushing and dilution. Our study highlights the importance of the stormwater drainage systems characteristics in controlling urban runoff quantity and quality; and suggests that enhanced wetting and in-stream processes may control solute sourcing and retention. Finally, we suggest that the characteristics of the stormwater drainage system should be integrated into stormwater management approaches.

  4. Effects of irrigation and plastic mulch on soil properties on semi-arid abandoned fields

    OpenAIRE

    van der Meulen, E.S.; Nol, L.; Cammeraat, L.H.

    2006-01-01

    The Guadalentín Basin in Spain is one of the driest areas of Europe and has problems with high evaporation rates, and high risks of desertification exist including soil quality loss and soil erosion. Farmers in this semi-arid region use polyethylene covers on their irrigated croplands to reduce evaporation in order to enhance crop yield. When farmers abandon the acres, they leave the plastic covers on the fields. Up to now research has been concentrating on the effects of plastic covers on cr...

  5. Estimation of groundwater recharge via deuterium labelling in the semi-arid Cuvelai-Etosha Basin, Namibia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beyer, Matthias; Gaj, Marcel; Hamutoko, Josefina Tulimeveva; Koeniger, Paul; Wanke, Heike; Himmelsbach, Thomas

    2015-01-01

    The stable water isotope deuterium ((2)H) was applied as an artificial tracer ((2)H2O) in order to estimate groundwater recharge through the unsaturated zone and describe soil water movement in a semi-arid region of northern central Namibia. A particular focus of this study was to assess the spatiotemporal persistence of the tracer when applied in the field on a small scale under extreme climatic conditions and to propose a method to obtain estimates of recharge in data-scarce regions. At two natural sites that differ in vegetation cover, soil and geology, 500 ml of a 70% (2)H2O solution was irrigated onto water saturated plots. The displacement of the (2)H peak was analyzed 1 and 10 days after an artificial rain event of 20 mm as well as after the rainy season. Results show that it is possible to apply the peak displacement method for the estimation of groundwater recharge rates in semi-arid environments via deuterium labelling. Potential recharge for the rainy season 2013/2014 was calculated as 45 mm a(-1) at 5.6 m depth and 40 mm a(-1) at 0.9 m depth at the two studied sites, respectively. Under saturated conditions, the artificial rain events moved 2.1 and 0.5 m downwards, respectively. The tracer at the deep sand site (site 1) was found after the rainy season at 5.6 m depth, corresponding to a displacement of 3.2 m. This equals in an average travel velocity of 2.8 cm d(-1) during the rainy season at the first site. At the second location, the tracer peak was discovered at 0.9 m depth; displacement was found to be only 0.4 m equalling an average movement of 0.2 cm d(-1) through the unsaturated zone due to an underlying calcrete formation. Tracer recovery after one rainy season was found to be as low as 3.6% at site 1 and 1.9% at site 2. With an in situ measuring technique, a three-dimensional distribution of (2)H after the rainy season could be measured and visualized. This study comprises the first application of the peak displacement method using a

  6. Changes in Trace Gas Nitrogen Emissions as a Response to Ecosystem Type Conversion in a Semi-Arid Climate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andrews, H.; Eberwein, J. R.; Jenerette, D.

    2016-12-01

    As humans continue to introduce exotic plants and to alter climate and fire regimes in semi-arid ecosystems, many plant communities have begun to shift from perennial forbs and shrubs to annual grasses with different functional traits. Shifts in plant types are also associated with shifts in microclimate, microbial activity, and litter inputs, all of which contribute to the efficiency of nitrogen processing and the magnitude of trace gas emissions (NOx and N2O), which are increasingly important fluxes in water-limited systems. Here, we explored how changes in plant litter impact trace gas emissions, asking the question: How does conversion from a native shrubland to exotic grassland ecosystem alter NOx and N2O fluxes in a semi-arid climate? We posed two hypotheses to explain the impacts of different types of litter on soils disturbed by exotic grasses and those that were still considered shrublands: 1.) Soils that have undergone conversion by exotic grasses release higher amounts of NOx and N2O than do those of unconverted shrublands, due to disruptions of native plant and soil processes by exotic grasses, and 2.) Because litter of exotic grasses has lower C:N than that of shrubs, litter inputs from exotic grasses will increase NOx and N2O emissions from soils more than will litter inputs from shrubs. As a preliminary study, we experimentally wetted mesocosms in a laboratory incubation containing converted and unconverted soils that had been mixed with no litter or either exotic grass or coastal sage scrub (CSS) litter. We measured N2O fluxes from mesocosms over a 48-hour period. 24 hours after wetting, samples with grass litter produced higher amounts of N2O than those with CSS litter; similarly, converted soils produced higher amounts of N2O than unconverted soils. These two effects combined resulted in exotic grassland conditions (converted soils with exotic grass litter) producing 10 times the amount of N2O as those containing native shrubland conditions

  7. Global patterns and environmental controls of perchlorate and nitrate co-occurrence in arid and semi-arid environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jackson, W Andrew; Böhlke, John Karl; Andraski, Brian J.; Fahlquist, Lynne S.; Bexfield, Laura M.; Eckardt, Frank D.; Gates, John B.; Davila, Alfonso F.; McKay, Christopher P.; Rao, Balaji; Sevanthi, Ritesh; Rajagopalan, Srinath; Estrada, Nubia; Sturchio, Neil C.; Hatzinger, Paul B.; Anderson, Todd A.; Orris, Greta J.; Betancourt, Julio L.; Stonestrom, David A.; Latorre, Claudio; Li, Yanhe; Harvey, Gregory J.

    2015-01-01

    Natural perchlorate (ClO4−) is of increasing interest due to its wide-spread occurrence on Earth and Mars, yet little information exists on the relative abundance of ClO4− compared to other major anions, its stability, or long-term variations in production that may impact the observed distributions. Our objectives were to evaluate the occurrence and fate of ClO4− in groundwater and soils/caliche in arid and semi-arid environments (southwestern United States, southern Africa, United Arab Emirates, China, Antarctica, and Chile) and the relationship of ClO4− to the more well-studied atmospherically deposited anions NO3−and Cl− as a means to understand the prevalent processes that affect the accumulation of these species over various time scales. ClO4− is globally distributed in soil and groundwater in arid and semi-arid regions on Earth at concentrations ranging from 10−1to 106 μg/kg. Generally, the ClO4− concentration in these regions increases with aridity index, but also depends on the duration of arid conditions. In many arid and semi-arid areas, NO3− and ClO4− co-occur at molar ratios (NO3−/ClO4−) that vary between ∼104and 105. We hypothesize that atmospheric deposition ratios are largely preserved in hyper-arid areas that support little or no biological activity (e.g. plants or bacteria), but can be altered in areas with more active biological processes including N2 fixation, N mineralization, nitrification, denitrification, and microbial ClO4− reduction, as indicated in part by NO3− isotope data. In contrast, much larger ranges of Cl−/ClO4− and Cl−/NO3−ratios indicate Cl− varies independently from both ClO4− and NO3−. The general lack of correlation between Cl− and ClO4− or NO3− implies that Cl− is not a good indicator of co-deposition and should be used with care when interpreting oxyanion cycling in arid systems. The Atacama Desert appears to be unique compared to all other terrestrial locations having a

  8. Global patterns and environmental controls of perchlorate and nitrate co-occurrence in arid and semi-arid environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jackson, W. Andrew; Böhlke, J. K.; Andraski, Brian J.; Fahlquist, Lynne; Bexfield, Laura; Eckardt, Frank D.; Gates, John B.; Davila, Alfonso F.; McKay, Christopher P.; Rao, Balaji; Sevanthi, Ritesh; Rajagopalan, Srinath; Estrada, Nubia; Sturchio, Neil; Hatzinger, Paul B.; Anderson, Todd A.; Orris, Greta; Betancourt, Julio; Stonestrom, David; Latorre, Claudio; Li, Yanhe; Harvey, Gregory J.

    2015-09-01

    Natural perchlorate (ClO4-) is of increasing interest due to its wide-spread occurrence on Earth and Mars, yet little information exists on the relative abundance of ClO4- compared to other major anions, its stability, or long-term variations in production that may impact the observed distributions. Our objectives were to evaluate the occurrence and fate of ClO4- in groundwater and soils/caliche in arid and semi-arid environments (southwestern United States, southern Africa, United Arab Emirates, China, Antarctica, and Chile) and the relationship of ClO4- to the more well-studied atmospherically deposited anions NO3- and Cl- as a means to understand the prevalent processes that affect the accumulation of these species over various time scales. ClO4- is globally distributed in soil and groundwater in arid and semi-arid regions on Earth at concentrations ranging from 10-1 to 106 μg/kg. Generally, the ClO4- concentration in these regions increases with aridity index, but also depends on the duration of arid conditions. In many arid and semi-arid areas, NO3- and ClO4- co-occur at molar ratios (NO3-/ClO4-) that vary between ∼104 and 105. We hypothesize that atmospheric deposition ratios are largely preserved in hyper-arid areas that support little or no biological activity (e.g. plants or bacteria), but can be altered in areas with more active biological processes including N2 fixation, N mineralization, nitrification, denitrification, and microbial ClO4- reduction, as indicated in part by NO3- isotope data. In contrast, much larger ranges of Cl-/ClO4- and Cl-/NO3- ratios indicate Cl- varies independently from both ClO4- and NO3-. The general lack of correlation between Cl- and ClO4- or NO3- implies that Cl- is not a good indicator of co-deposition and should be used with care when interpreting oxyanion cycling in arid systems. The Atacama Desert appears to be unique compared to all other terrestrial locations having a NO3-/ClO4- molar ratio ∼103. The relative

  9. Amphibian and reptile biodiversity in the semi-arid region of the municipality of Nopala de Villagrán, Hidalgo, Mexico

    OpenAIRE

    Roth-Monzón, Andrea J.; Mendoza-Hernández, Andrés Alberto; Flores-Villela, Oscar

    2018-01-01

    Current global changes are putting both biodiversity and the processes that depend on it at risk. This is especially true for semi-arid regions and the flagship groups that inhabit them, such as amphibians and reptiles. Semi-arid regions are often thought to have lower biodiversity and thus have been overlooked, resulting in the underestimation of their biological richness. Therefore, the aim of this study was to conduct an inventory of amphibians and reptiles in the semi-arid municipality of...

  10. Recovery of microbial community structure and functioning after wildfire in semi-arid environments: optimising methods for monitoring and assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muñoz-Rojas, Miriam; Martini, Dylan; Erickson, Todd; Merritt, David; Dixon, Kingsley

    2015-04-01

    Introduction In semi-arid areas such as northern Western Australia, wildfires are a natural part of the environment and many ecosystems in these landscapes have evolved and developed a strong relationship with fire. Soil microbial communities play a crucial role in ecosystem processes by regulating the cycling of nutrients via decomposition, mineralization, and immobilization processes. Thus, the structure (e.g. soil microbial biomass) and functioning (e.g. soil microbial activity) of microbial communities, as well as their changes after ecosystem disturbance, can be useful indicators of soil quality and health recovery. In this research, we assess the impacts of fire on soil microbial communities and their recovery in a biodiverse semi-arid environment of Western Australia (Pilbara region). New methods for determining soil microbial respiration as an indicator of microbial activity and soil health are also tested. Methodology Soil samples were collected from 10 similar ecosystems in the Pilbara with analogous native vegetation, but differing levels of post-fire disturbance (i.e. 3 months, 1 year, 5, 7 and 14 years after wildfire). Soil microbial activity was measured with the Solvita test which determines soil microbial respiration rate based on the measurement of the CO2 burst of a dry soil after it is moistened. Soils were dried and re-wetted and a CO2 probe was inserted before incubation at constant conditions of 25°C during 24 h. Measurements were taken with a digital mini spectrometer. Microbial (bacteria and fungi) biomass and community composition were measured by phospholipid fatty acid analysis (PLFA). Results Immediately after the fire (i.e. 3 months), soil microbial activity and microbial biomass are similar to 14 years 'undisturbed' levels (53.18±3.68 ppm CO2-CO and 14.07±0.65 mg kg-1, respectively). However, after the first year post-fire, with larger plant productivity, microbial biomass and microbial activity increase rapidly, peaking after 5

  11. Climate change mitigation by carbon stock - the case of semi-arid West Africa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lykke, A. M.; Barfod, A. S.; Tinggaard Svendsen, G.; Greve, M.; Svenning, J.-C.

    2009-11-01

    Semi-arid West Africa has not been integrated into the afforestation/reforestation (AR) carbon market. Most projects implemented under the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) have focused on carbon emission reductions from industry and energy consumption, whereas only few (only one in West Africa) have been certified for AR carbon sequestration. A proposed mechanism, Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation (REDD) to be discussed under COP15 aims to reduce emissions by conserving already existing forests. REDD has high potential for carbon stocking at low costs, but focuses primarily on rain forest countries and excludes semi-arid West Africa from the preliminary setup. African savannas have potential to store carbon in the present situation with degrading ecosystems and relatively low revenues from crops and cattle, especially if it is possible to combine carbon stocking with promotion of secondary crops such as food resources and traditional medicines harvested on a sustainable basis. Methods for modelling and mapping of potential carbon biomass are being developed, but are still in a preliminary state. Although economic benefits from the sale of carbon credits are likely to be limited, carbon stocking is an interesting option if additional benefits are considered such as improved food security and protection of biodiversity.

  12. Groundwater recharge in irrigated semi-arid areas: quantitative hydrological modelling and sensitivity analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiménez-Martínez, Joaquín; Candela, Lucila; Molinero, Jorge; Tamoh, Karim

    2010-12-01

    For semi-arid regions, methods of assessing aquifer recharge usually consider the potential evapotranspiration. Actual evapotranspiration rates can be below potential rates for long periods of time, even in irrigated systems. Accurate estimations of aquifer recharge in semi-arid areas under irrigated agriculture are essential for sustainable water-resources management. A method to estimate aquifer recharge from irrigated farmland has been tested. The water-balance-modelling approach was based on VisualBALAN v. 2.0, a computer code that simulates water balance in the soil, vadose zone and aquifer. The study was carried out in the Campo de Cartagena (SE Spain) in the period 1999-2008 for three different groups of crops: annual row crops (lettuce and melon), perennial vegetables (artichoke) and fruit trees (citrus). Computed mean-annual-recharge values (from irrigation+precipitation) during the study period were 397 mm for annual row crops, 201 mm for perennial vegetables and 194 mm for fruit trees: 31.4, 20.7 and 20.5% of the total applied water, respectively. The effects of rainfall events on the final recharge were clearly observed, due to the continuously high water content in soil which facilitated the infiltration process. A sensitivity analysis to assess the reliability and uncertainty of recharge estimations was carried out.

  13. Reduction of tree cover in West African woodlands and promotion in semi-arid farmlands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brandt, Martin; Rasmussen, Kjeld; Hiernaux, Pierre; Herrmann, Stefanie; Tucker, Compton J.; Tong, Xiaoye; Tian, Feng; Mertz, Ole; Kergoat, Laurent; Mbow, Cheikh; David, John L.; Melocik, Katherine A.; Dendoncker, Morgane; Vincke, Caroline; Fensholt, Rasmus

    2018-05-01

    Woody vegetation in farmland acts as a carbon sink and provides ecosystem services for local people, but no macroscale assessments of the impact of management and climate on woody cover exist for drylands. Here we make use of very high spatial resolution satellite imagery to derive wall-to-wall woody cover patterns in tropical West African drylands. Our study reveals that mean woody cover in farmlands along all semi-arid and sub-humid rainfall zones is 16%, on average only 6% lower than in savannahs. In semi-arid Sahel, farmland management promotes woody cover around villages (11%), while neighbouring savannahs had on average less woody cover. However, farmlands in sub-humid zones have a greatly reduced woody cover (21%) as compared with savannahs (33%). In the region as a whole, rainfall, terrain and soil are the most important (80%) determinants of woody cover, while management factors play a smaller (20%) role. We conclude that agricultural expansion causes a considerable reduction of trees in woodlands, but observations in Sahel indicate that villagers safeguard trees on nearby farmlands which contradicts simplistic ideas of a high negative correlation between population density and woody cover.

  14. Effects of rainfall on bird reproduction in a semi-arid Neotropical region

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Liana Monique Paiva Cavalcanti

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT In semi-arid ecosystems, birds commonly use rainfall as a reliable environmental cue to adjust the timing and strength of their reproductive activity. Here we evaluate this hypothesis for a community of birds in the Caatinga (the semi-arid region of northeastern Brazil, using brood patch information and nest abundance. Sampling occurred every 14 days between September 2012 and August 2013 (brood patch, and every three or four days during the reproductive period (nests. Abundance of brood patches and nests were correlated, and all brood patches were recorded between March and July (4.5 to 5.0 months. We recorded three peaks of brood patch abundance: the first 28 days after the first rains, the second 14 days after the second rainfall peak, and the third synchronously with the third rainy period. These results indicate that intra-annual variation in local rainfall has the potential to account for variations in the timing and intensity of reproduction in the studied birds.

  15. Rainwater harvesting to enhance water productivity of rainfed agriculture in the semi-arid Zimbabwe

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kahinda, Jean-marc Mwenge; Rockström, Johan; Taigbenu, Akpofure E.; Dimes, John

    Zimbabwe’s poor are predominantly located in the semi-arid regions and rely on rainfed agriculture for their subsistence. Decline in productivity, scarcity of arable land, irrigation expansion limitations, erratic rainfall and frequent dry spells, among others cause food scarcity. The challenge faced by small-scale farmers is to enhance water productivity of rainfed agriculture by mitigating intra-seasonal dry spells (ISDS) through the adoption of new technologies such as rainwater harvesting (RWH). The paper analyses the agro-hydrological functions of RWH and assesses its impacts (at field scale) on the crop yield gap as well as the Transpirational Water Productivity ( WPT). The survey in six districts of the semi-arid Zimbabwe suggests that three parameters (water source, primary use and storage capacity) can help differentiate storage-type-RWH systems from “conventional dams”. The Agricultural Production Simulator Model (APSIM) was used to simulate seven different treatments (Control, RWH, Manure, Manure + RWH, Inorganic Nitrogen and Inorganic Nitrogen + RWH) for 30 years on alfisol deep sand, assuming no fertiliser carry over effect from season to season. The combined use of inorganic fertiliser and RWH is the only treatment that closes the yield gap. Supplemental irrigation alone not only reduces the risks of complete crop failure (from 20% down to 7% on average) for all the treatments but also enhances WPT (from 1.75 kg m -3 up to 2.3 kg m -3 on average) by mitigating ISDS.

  16. Climate change mitigation by carbon stock - the case of semi-arid West Africa

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lykke, A M; Barfod, A S; Greve, M; Svenning, J-C; Svendsen, G Tinggaard

    2009-01-01

    Semi-arid West Africa has not been integrated into the afforestation/reforestation (AR) carbon market. Most projects implemented under the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) have focused on carbon emission reductions from industry and energy consumption, whereas only few (only one in West Africa) have been certified for AR carbon sequestration. A proposed mechanism, Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation (REDD) to be discussed under COP15 aims to reduce emissions by conserving already existing forests. REDD has high potential for carbon stocking at low costs, but focuses primarily on rain forest countries and excludes semi-arid West Africa from the preliminary setup. African savannas have potential to store carbon in the present situation with degrading ecosystems and relatively low revenues from crops and cattle, especially if it is possible to combine carbon stocking with promotion of secondary crops such as food resources and traditional medicines harvested on a sustainable basis. Methods for modelling and mapping of potential carbon biomass are being developed, but are still in a preliminary state. Although economic benefits from the sale of carbon credits are likely to be limited, carbon stocking is an interesting option if additional benefits are considered such as improved food security and protection of biodiversity.

  17. Ecology and functional roles of biological soil crusts in semi-arid ecosystems of Spain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maestre, Fernando T.; Bowker, Matthew A.; Cantón, Yolanda; Castillo-Monroy, Andrea P.; Cortina, Jordi; Escolar, Cristina; Escudero, Adrián; Lázaro, Roberto; Martínez, Isabel

    2015-01-01

    Biological soil crusts (BSCs), composed of lichens, cyanobacteria, mosses, liverworts and microorganisms, are key biotic components of arid and semi-arid ecosystems worldwide. Despite they are widespread in Spain, these organisms have been historically understudied in this country. This trend is beginning to change as a recent wave of research has been identifying BSCs as a model ecological system. Many studies and research projects carried out in Spain have explored the role of BSCs on water, carbon and nitrogen fluxes, the interactions between BSCs and vascular plants, their dynamics after disturbances, and their response to global change, among other topics. In this article we review the growing body of research on BSCs available from semi-arid areas of Spain, highlighting its importance for increasing our knowledge on this group of organisms. We also discuss how it is breaking new ground in emerging research areas on the ecology of BSCs, and how it can be use to guide management and restoration efforts. Finally, we provide directions for future research on the ecology of BSCs in Spain and abroad. PMID:25908884

  18. Genetic improvement of Nellore cattle in the semi-arid region of northeastern Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ana Carla Borges Barbosa

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available The semi-arid region of Brazil represents approximately 57% of the northeastern territory. The main economic activity in this region is agriculture and livestock, in most cases, using traditional technologies. However, there is little published information currently available on cattle-raising in this part of Brazil. The objective of this study was to estimate genetic parameters and trends for productive and reproductive traits of Nellore cattle raised in semi-arid region of northeastern Brazil. Data were collected on weight-adjusted at 205 (W205, 365 (W365 and 550 (W550 days of life, age at first calving (AFC, calving interval (CI and scrotal circumference (SC at 550 days of life of cattle born between 1965 and 2011. Estimates of covariance and variance were obtained through univariate analysis using a Gibbs sampler. The estimated coefficients of heritability (mode were 0.27 (W205, 0.36 (W365 and 0.39 (W550, 0.37 (SC, 0.22 (AFC and 0.03 (CI. Little or no gain from selection is apparent in the genetic trend analysis over the 45 years of the study. However, environmental improvement has allowed phenotypic progress in growth traits and age at first age calving.

  19. Groundwater Diffuse Recharge and its Response to Climate Changes in Semi-Arid Northwestern China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lin Deng

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Understanding the processes and rates of groundwater recharge in arid and semi-arid areas is crucial for utilizing and managing groundwater resources sustainably. We obtained three chloride profiles of the unsaturated-zone in the desert/loess transition zone of northwestern China and reconstructed the groundwater recharge variations over the last 11, 21, and 37 years, respectively, using the generalized chloride mass balance (GCMB method. The average recharge rates were 43.7, 43.5, and 45.1 mm yr-1, respectively, which are similar to those evaluated by the chloride mass balance (CMB or GCMB methods in other semi-arid regions. The results indicate that the annual recharge rates were not in complete linear proportion to the corresponding annual precipitations, although both exhibited descending tendencies on the whole. Comparisons between the daily precipitation aggregate at different intensity and recharge rates reveal that the occurrence of relatively heavy daily precipitation per year may contribute to such nonlinearity between annual precipitation and recharge. The possible influences of vegetation cover alterations following precipitation change cannot be excluded as well. The approximately negative correlation between the average annual recharge and temperature suggests that changes in temperature have had significant influences on recharge.

  20. Spatial and temporal dynamics of deep percolation, lag time and recharge in an irrigated semi-arid region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nazarieh, F.; Ansari, H.; Ziaei, A. N.; Izady, A.; Davari, K.; Brunner, P.

    2018-05-01

    The time required for deep percolating water to reach the water table can be considerable in areas with a thick vadose zone. Sustainable groundwater management, therefore, has to consider the spatial and temporal dynamics of groundwater recharge. The key parameters that control the lag time have been widely examined in soil physics using small-scale lysimeters and modeling studies. However, only a small number of studies have analyzed how deep-percolation rates affect groundwater recharge dynamics over large spatial scales. This study examined how the parameters influencing lag time affect groundwater recharge in a semi-arid catchment under irrigation (in northeastern Iran) using a numerical modeling approach. Flow simulations were performed by the MODFLOW-NWT code with the Vadose-Zone Flow (UZF) Package. Calibration of the groundwater model was based on data from 48 observation wells. Flow simulations showed that lag times vary from 1 to more than 100 months. A sensitivity analysis demonstrated that during drought conditions, the lag time was highly sensitive to the rate of deep percolation. The study illustrated two critical points: (1) the importance of providing estimates of the lag time as a basis for sustainable groundwater management, and (2) lag time not only depends on factors such as soil hydraulic conductivity or vadose zone depth but also depends on the deep-percolation rates and the antecedent soil-moisture condition. Therefore, estimates of the lag time have to be associated with specific percolation rates, in addition to depth to groundwater and soil properties.

  1. Cost/benefit analysis of biomass energy supply options for rural smallholders in the semi-arid eastern part of Shinyanga Region in Tanzania

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wiskerke, W.T.; Dornburg, V.; Faaij, A.P.C. [Department of Science, Technology and Society, Utrecht University, Heidelberglaan 2, 3584 CS, Utrecht (Netherlands); Rubanza, C.D.K. [Tanzania Forestry Research Institute (TAFORI)/National Forest Resource Management and Agroforestry Centre (NACRAF), P.O. Box 1257, Shinyanga (Tanzania); Malimbwi, R.E. [Faculty of Forestry and Natural Resources, Sokoine University, P.O. Box 3010, Morogoro (Tanzania)

    2010-01-15

    This study analyzes the economic feasibility of sustainable smallholder bio-energy production under semi-arid conditions. The eastern part of Shinyanga region in Tanzania was chosen as a case study area. Three different sustainable biomass energy supply systems were compared by means of cost/benefit analysis: a small-scale forestation project for carbon sequestration, a short rotation woodlot and a Jatropha plantation, thereby using the produced Jatropha oil as a substitute for fuelwood or diesel. Rotational woodlots are most profitable with a Net Present Value of up to US${sub 2007} 1165/ha, a return on labour of up to US${sub 2007} 6.69/man-day and a fuelwood production cost of US${sub 2007} 0.53/GJ, compared to a local market price of US${sub 2007} 1.95/GJ. With a production cost of US${sub 2007} 19.60/GJ, Jatropha oil is too expensive to be used as an alternative for fuelwood. Instead it can be utilized economically as a diesel substitute, at an observed diesel cost of US${sub 2007} 1.49/l. The mean annual biomass increment (MAI) in semi-arid East Shinyanga is too low to collect sufficient benefits from trading forestation carbon credits under the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) to cover the costs of forestation and forest management. (author)

  2. Yield and quality responses of drip-irrigated spinach to different irrigation quantities in a semi-arid region with a high altitude

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yasemin KUSLU

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available The effect of different irrigation quantities on the growth, marketable yield, crop quality (antioxidant activity, mineral and total phenolic content and irrigation water use efficiency (IWUE of spinach grown in a semi-arid region of high altitude (1795 m a.s.l. was determined. Plants were irrigated with three different irrigation quantities which determined considering 100 (I1, 85 (I2 and 70% (I3 of the evaporation obtained from a Class A pan. Irrigation quantities in the I1, I2 and I3 treatments as two years average were 290, 264.3 and 238.6 mm, respectively. The I1 treatment provided the highest growth, marketable yield (28.06 t*ha-1 and IWUE (9.7 kg*m-3. However, mineral and total phenolic content and antioxidant activity in the leaves of spinach were significantly higher under lower water application conditions. The I2 treatment resulted with the highest antioxidant activity and content of N, K, Mg, Na, Fe, Cu and total phenolics. As a result of the study, I1 treatment in spinach production could be suitable for water sufficient regions due to higher yield and IWUE. However, I2 treatment may be more appropriate for water scarce semi-arid regions of high altitude for obtaining higher minerals and antioxidant activity.

  3. Effects of temperature on embryonic and larval development and growth in the natterjack toad (Bufo calamita in a semi-arid zone

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sanuy, D.

    2008-06-01

    Full Text Available Temperature affects the duration of embryonic and larval periods in amphibians. Plasticity in time to metamorphosis is especially important in amphibian populations of Mediterranean semi-arid zones where temperatures are high and precipitation is low, increasing the rate of pond desiccation. In order to test the influence of water temperature on the larval development and growth of the natterjack toad (Bufo calamita, we collected two spawns in a semi¿arid zone at Balaguer (Lleida, NE Iberian peninsula. Approximately 50 (+/-10 eggs (stage 14-16 were raised in the lab at different temperature conditions: 10, 15, 20, 22.5 and 25ºC with 12:12 photoperiod. The results show a lengthening of development time with decreasing temperatures and a better survival performance of B. calamita to high temperatures. However, mean size at metamorphosis was not different across treatments, thus, suggesting that this population of B. calamita requires a minimum size to complete the metamorphosis. This study is the first approach to examine the effects that climatic factors have on the growth and development of B. calamita in semi-arid zones.

  4. Advancements in Hydrology and Erosion Process Understanding and Post-Fire Hydrologic and Erosion Model Development for Semi-Arid Landscapes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, C. Jason; Pierson, Frederick B.; Al-Hamdan, Osama Z.; Robichaud, Peter R.; Nearing, Mark A.; Hernandez, Mariano; Weltz, Mark A.; Spaeth, Kenneth E.; Goodrich, David C.

    2017-04-01

    Fire activity continues to increase in semi-arid regions around the globe. Private and governmental land management entities are challenged with predicting and mitigating post-fire hydrologic and erosion responses on these landscapes. For more than a decade, a team of scientists with the US Department of Agriculture has collaborated on extensive post-fire hydrologic field research and the application of field research to development of post-fire hydrology and erosion predictive technologies. Experiments funded through this research investigated the impacts of fire on vegetation and soils and the effects of these fire-induced changes on infiltration, runoff generation, erodibility, and soil erosion processes. The distribution of study sites spans diverse topography across grassland, shrubland, and woodland landscapes throughout the western United States. Knowledge gleaned from the extensive field experiments was applied to develop and enhance physically-based models for hillslope- to watershed-scale runoff and erosion prediction. Our field research and subsequent data syntheses have identified key knowledge gaps and challenges regarding post-fire hydrology and erosion modeling. Our presentation details some consistent trends across a diverse domain and varying landscape conditions based on our extensive field campaigns. We demonstrate how field data have advanced our understanding of post-fire hydrology and erosion for semi-arid landscapes and highlight remaining key knowledge gaps. Lastly, we briefly show how our well-replicated experimental methodologies have contributed to advancements in hydrologic and erosion model development for the post-fire environment.

  5. Machine learning for predicting soil classes in three semi-arid landscapes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brungard, Colby W.; Boettinger, Janis L.; Duniway, Michael C.; Wills, Skye A.; Edwards, Thomas C.

    2015-01-01

    Mapping the spatial distribution of soil taxonomic classes is important for informing soil use and management decisions. Digital soil mapping (DSM) can quantitatively predict the spatial distribution of soil taxonomic classes. Key components of DSM are the method and the set of environmental covariates used to predict soil classes. Machine learning is a general term for a broad set of statistical modeling techniques. Many different machine learning models have been applied in the literature and there are different approaches for selecting covariates for DSM. However, there is little guidance as to which, if any, machine learning model and covariate set might be optimal for predicting soil classes across different landscapes. Our objective was to compare multiple machine learning models and covariate sets for predicting soil taxonomic classes at three geographically distinct areas in the semi-arid western United States of America (southern New Mexico, southwestern Utah, and northeastern Wyoming). All three areas were the focus of digital soil mapping studies. Sampling sites at each study area were selected using conditioned Latin hypercube sampling (cLHS). We compared models that had been used in other DSM studies, including clustering algorithms, discriminant analysis, multinomial logistic regression, neural networks, tree based methods, and support vector machine classifiers. Tested machine learning models were divided into three groups based on model complexity: simple, moderate, and complex. We also compared environmental covariates derived from digital elevation models and Landsat imagery that were divided into three different sets: 1) covariates selected a priori by soil scientists familiar with each area and used as input into cLHS, 2) the covariates in set 1 plus 113 additional covariates, and 3) covariates selected using recursive feature elimination. Overall, complex models were consistently more accurate than simple or moderately complex models. Random

  6. Cyanobacterial blooms in stratified and destratified eutrophic reservoirs in semi-arid region of Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ênio W. Dantas

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available This study investigated the dynamics of cyanobacteria in two deep, eutrophic reservoirs in a semi-arid region of Brazil during periods of stratification and destratification. Four collections were carried out at each reservoir at two depths at three-month intervals. The following abiotic variables were analyzed: water temperature, dissolved oxygen, pH, turbidity, water transparency, total phosphorus, total dissolved phosphorus, orthophosphate and total nitrogen. Phytoplankton density was quantified for the determination of the biomass of cyanobacteria. The data were analyzed using CCA. Higher mean phytoplankton biomass values (29.8 mm³.L-1 occurred in the period of thermal stratification. A greater similarity in the phytoplankton communities also occurred in this period and was related to the development of cyanobacteria, mainly Cylindrospermopsis raciborskii (>3.9 mm³.L-1. During the period of thermal destratification, this species co-dominated the environment with Planktothrix agardhii, Geitlerinema amphibium, Microcystis aeruginosa and Merismopedia tenuissima, as well as with diatoms and phytoflagellates. Environmental instability and competition among algae hindered the establishment of blooms more during the mixture period than during the stratification period. Thermal changes in the water column caused by climatologic events altered other physiochemical conditions of the water, leading to changes in the composition and biomass of the cyanobacterial community in tropical reservoirs.Este estudo investigou a dinâmica das cianobactérias em dois reservatórios eutróficos e profundos localizados na região semi-árida do Brasil durante períodos de estratificação e desestratificação térmica. Quatro coletas foram feitas em cada reservatório em duas profundidades em intervalo de três meses. As variáveis abióticas analisadas foram: temperatura da água, oxigênio dissolvido, pH, turbidez, transparência da água, fósforo total, f

  7. Structural variations among monocot emergent and amphibious species from lakes of the semi-arid region of Bahia, Brazil

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    KRB Leite

    Full Text Available Temporary lakes are common in the semi-arid region of the State of Bahia and form water mirrors in the rainy season. In this period, various vegetal species appear having different life forms adapted to the seasonality conditions of the rainfall regime. This work surveyed the adaptive anatomical structures of some emergent and amphibious monocot species occurring in these lakes. We studied the anatomy of roots, rhizomes, leaves and scapes of Cyperus odoratus, Oxycaryum cubense, Pycreus macrostachyos (Cyperaceae - amphibious species; and of Echinodorus grandiflorus (Alismataceae, Eichhornia paniculata (Pontederiaceae and Habenaria repens (Orchidaceae - emergent species. The anatomical features of the dermal, fundamental and vascular systems confirming the tendency of the adaptive convergence of these plants to temporary lacustrine the environment include: single layered epidermal cells with a thin cuticle layer in the aerial organs; the presence of air canals in all the organs; few or no supporting tissues; and less numerous conducting elements and thinner cell walls in the xylem. The reduction of the supporting tissues, the number of stomata, which can even be absent, and the number of conducting elements and the degree of cell wall lignification in the xylem of the emergent species is more accentuated than that of the amphibious species. The pattern of distribution of aerenchyma in the roots of the studied species was considered important to distinguish between amphibious and emergent life forms.

  8. Structural variations among monocot emergent and amphibious species from lakes of the semi-arid region of Bahia, Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leite, K R B; França, F; Scatena, V I

    2012-02-01

    Temporary lakes are common in the semi-arid region of the State of Bahia and form water mirrors in the rainy season. In this period, various vegetal species appear having different life forms adapted to the seasonality conditions of the rainfall regime. This work surveyed the adaptive anatomical structures of some emergent and amphibious monocot species occurring in these lakes. We studied the anatomy of roots, rhizomes, leaves and scapes of Cyperus odoratus, Oxycaryum cubense, Pycreus macrostachyos (Cyperaceae) - amphibious species; and of Echinodorus grandiflorus (Alismataceae), Eichhornia paniculata (Pontederiaceae) and Habenaria repens (Orchidaceae) - emergent species. The anatomical features of the dermal, fundamental and vascular systems confirming the tendency of the adaptive convergence of these plants to temporary lacustrine the environment include: single layered epidermal cells with a thin cuticle layer in the aerial organs; the presence of air canals in all the organs; few or no supporting tissues; and less numerous conducting elements and thinner cell walls in the xylem. The reduction of the supporting tissues, the number of stomata, which can even be absent, and the number of conducting elements and the degree of cell wall lignification in the xylem of the emergent species is more accentuated than that of the amphibious species. The pattern of distribution of aerenchyma in the roots of the studied species was considered important to distinguish between amphibious and emergent life forms.

  9. Do invasive riparian Tamarix alter hydrology of riparian areas of arid and semi-arid regions under climate change scenarios?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhattarai, M. P.; Acharya, K.; Chen, L.

    2012-12-01

    Competitiveness of riparian invasive species, Tamarix, in arid and semi-arid riparian areas of the southwestern United States under climate change scenario (SRES A2) was investigated. Tamarix has been replacing native vegetation along the riparian corridors of these areas for the past several decades and is thought to alter water balance. Changes in depth to groundwater, soil moisture distribution and flood frequency are critical in survival and growth of a facultative phreatophyte such as Tamarix. In this study, a fully coupled 2d surface flow and 3d subsurface flow hydrologic model, HydroGeoSphere, was used to simulate surface-subsurface hydrology of the lower Virgin River basin (4500 sq. km), located in Nevada, Utah and Arizona. The hydrologic model results, depth to groundwater and soil saturation, were then applied to the species distribution model, Maxent, along with other bioclimatic parameters to asses future Tamarix distribution probability. Simulations were made for the climate scenarios of the end of 21st centry conditions. Depth to groundwater is found to be the most important predictor variable to the Maxent model. Future Tamarix distribution range is not uniform across the basin. It is likely to decrease at lower elevations and increase in some higher elevation areas.

  10. Water quality assessment of highly polluted rivers in a semi-arid Mediterranean zone Oued Fez and Sebou River (Morocco)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perrin, J. L.; Raïs, N.; Chahinian, N.; Moulin, P.; Ijjaali, M.

    2014-03-01

    Oued Fez (one of the Sebou River tributaries - Morocco) allowed us to study and quantify the effect of the lack of wastewater treatment on surface water quality in semi-arid hydrological context. The analysis is based on field data collected from June 2009 to December 2011. Concentration and load patterns of nitrogen, phosphorus and chromium (used in the processing of leather) are compared in stable hydrological conditions during low flow and high flow periods in an eight-location sampling network. The Oued Fez and the Sebou River are characterised by severe pollution downstream from the city of Fez, particularly TN (mainly NH4 and Norg), TP (mainly Ppart) and TCr. The most polluted sites are those directly under the influence of domestic and industrial waste water inputs, particularly tannery effluents. Obviously, the concentrations measured at these locations are above all environmental quality standards. Pollutant loads are very heavy in the Sebou River and can contaminate the river course for kilometres. Moreover, as the water of the Sebou River is used for the irrigation of vegetables, serious problems of public health could arise. A better understanding of contaminant dynamics and self-purifying processes in these rivers will help implement actions and steps aimed at improving water quality in the Sebou River, which is the primary water supply source in Morocco and is used for agricultural and industrials purposes as well as for drinking water.

  11. Leaf green-up in a semi-arid African savanna - separating tree and grass responses to environmental cues

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Archibald, S

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available -arid African savanna - 583 Journal of Vegetation Science 18: 583-594, 2007 © IAVS; Opulus Press Uppsala. Leaf green-up in a semi-arid African savanna – separating tree and grass responses to environmental cues Archibald, S.1* & Scholes, R.J.1,2 1Natural... to identify tree and grass green-up dates in a semi-arid savanna system, and are there predictable environmental cues for green-up for each life form? Location: Acacia nigrescens/Combretum apiculatum savanna, Kruger National Park, South Africa (25° S, 31...

  12. Surficial weathering of iron sulfide mine tailings under semi-arid climate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hayes, Sarah M; Root, Robert A; Perdrial, Nicolas; Maier, Raina; Chorover, Jon

    2014-09-15

    Mine wastes introduce anthropogenic weathering profiles to the critical zone that often remain unvegetated for decades after mining cessation. As such, they are vulnerable to wind and water dispersion of particulate matter to adjacent ecosystems and residential communities. In sulfide-rich ore tailings, propagation to depth of the oxidative weathering front controls the depth-variation in speciation of major and trace elements. Despite the prevalence of surficial mine waste deposits in arid regions of the globe, few prior studies have been conducted to resolve the near-surface profile of sulfide ore tailings weathered under semi-arid climate. We investigated relations between gossan oxidative reaction-front propagation and the molecular speciation of iron and sulfur in tailings subjected to weathering under semi-arid climate at an EPA Superfund Site in semi-arid central Arizona (USA). Here we report a multi-method data set combining wet chemical and synchrotron-based X-ray diffraction (XRD) and X-ray absorption near-edge spectroscopy (XANES) methods to resolve the tight coupling of iron (Fe) and sulfur (S) geochemical changes in the top 2 m of tailings. Despite nearly invariant Fe and S concentration with depth (130-140 and 100-120 g kg -1 , respectively), a sharp redox gradient and distinct morphological change was observed within the top 0.5 m, associated with a progressive oxidative alteration of ferrous sulfides to (oxyhydr)oxides and (hydroxy)sulfates. Transformation is nearly complete in surficial samples. Trends in molecular-scale alteration were co-located with a decrease in pH from 7.3 to 2.3, and shifts in Fe and S lability as measured via chemical extraction. Initial weathering products, ferrihydrite and gypsum, transform to schwertmannite, then jarosite-group minerals with an accompanying decrease in pH. Interestingly, thermodynamically stable phases such as goethite and hematite were not detected in any samples, but ferrihydrite was observed even in

  13. Modeling Linkages Between Effective Impervious Surface and Urban Vegetation Productivity in Semi-arid Environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shields, C. A.; Tague, C.

    2010-12-01

    With a majority of the world's population now living in urban areas, the role of vegetation in urban ecosystems warrants increased attention. We address the question of how the fine scale (significantly impact the productivity of vegetation and uptake of C and N. To gain insight into how landscape features influence vegetation productivity, we use a coupled ecohydrogic model to estimate impacts of the amount and arrangement of impervious surfaces on vegetation water use. We use the model to explore how concepts from research in natural semi-arid ecosystems can be applied in the urban context. Ecological research in semi-arid ecosystems has shown that the arrangement of vegetated and bare surfaces plays a key role in regulating both runoff and ecosystem water use and productivity. Systems that include a mixture of bare and vegetated surfaces, for example, tend to show less runoff and more productivity than those with more homogeneous cover. In some instances, patchiness of bare and vegetated surfaces is more important than total vegetated area in determining rates of runoff and vegetation use of rainfall. In an urban context, impervious surfaces can be viewed as analogous to the bare surfaces present in undeveloped ecosystems. We consider not only the total impervious area (TIA), but also the effect of impervious area with a direct hydrologic connection to the stream network, effective impervious area (EIA). While increases in total impervious area (TIA) have been widely shown to impact catchment hydrology, the role of effective impervious area (EIA) has been less extensively studied. A consensus is emerging from the literature that EIA is as important or even more important than TIA as an indicator of catchment response to urbanization. Ecohydrologic models offer a tool to quantify the role of EIA on water availability and plant productivity and demonstrate the potential of urban areas to act as C or N sinks (and minimize the impacts such as increased storm runoff

  14. Estimation of Spatial Trends in LAI in Heterogeneous Semi-arid Ecosystems using Full Waveform Lidar

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glenn, N. F.; Ilangakoon, N.; Spaete, L.; Dashti, H.

    2017-12-01

    Leaf area index (LAI) is a key structural trait that is defined by the plant functional type (PFT) and controlled by prevailing climate- and human-driven ecosystem stresses. Estimates of LAI using remote sensing techniques are limited by the uncertainties of vegetation inter and intra-gap fraction estimates; this is especially the case in sparse, low stature vegetated ecosystems. Small footprint full waveform lidar digitizes the total amount of return energy with the direction information as a near continuous waveform at a high vertical resolution (1 ns). Thus waveform lidar provides additional data matrices to capture vegetation gaps as well as PFTs that can be used to constrain the uncertainties of LAI estimates. In this study, we calculated a radiometrically calibrated full waveform parameter called backscatter cross section, along with other data matrices from the waveform to estimate vegetation gaps across plots (10 m x 10 m) in a semi-arid ecosystem in the western US. The LAI was then estimated using empirical relationships with directional gap fraction. Full waveform-derived gap fraction based LAI showed a high correlation with field observed shrub LAI (R2 = 0.66, RMSE = 0.24) compared to discrete return lidar based LAI (R2 = 0.01, RMSE = 0.5). The data matrices derived from full waveform lidar classified a number of deciduous and evergreen tree species, shrub species, and bare ground with an overall accuracy of 89% at 10 m. A similar analysis was performed at 1m with overall accuracy of 80%. The next step is to use these relationships to map the PFTs LAI at 10 m spatial scale across the larger study regions. The results show the exciting potential of full waveform lidar to identify plant functional types and LAI in low-stature vegetation dominated semi-arid ecosystems, an ecosystem in which many other remote sensing techniques fail. These results can be used to assess ecosystem state, habitat suitability as well as to constrain model uncertainties in

  15. WIRE project- Soil water repellence in biodiverse semi arid environments: new insights and implications for ecological restoration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muñoz-Rojas, Miriam; Jiménez-Morillo, Nicasio T.; Jordan, Antonio; Zavala, Lorena M.; Stevens, Jason; González-Pérez, Jose Antonio

    2017-04-01

    Background Soil water repellency (SWR) can have a critical effect on the restoration of disturbed ecosystems causing poor plant establishment and promoting erosion processes. Although SWR has been reported in most continents of the world for different soil types, climate conditions and land uses, there are still many research gaps in the knowledge of its causes and controlling factors (Doerr et al.,2000; Jordan et al., 2013), particularly in Mediterranean arid semi arid environments which are largely affected by this phenomenon. The WIRE project aims to investigate SWR in soils under different vegetation types of dominant biodiverse ecosystems of Western Australia (WA), e.g. hummock grasslands and Banksia woodlands, as well as characterizing organic compounds that induce hydrophobicity in these soils. Banksia woodlands (BW) are of particular interest in this project. These are iconic ecosystems of WA composed by an overstorey dominated by Proteaceae that are threatened by sand mining activities and urban expansion. Conservation and restoration of these woodlands are critical but despite considerable efforts to restore these areas, the success of current rehabilitation programs is poor due to the high sensitivity of the ecosystem to drought stress and the disruption of water dynamics in mature BW soils that result in low seedling survival rates (5-30%). The main objectives of this collaborative research are: i) to identify SWR intensity and severity under different vegetation types and evaluate controlling factors in both hummock grasslands and BW (ii) to characterize hydrophobic compounds in soils using analytical pyrolysis techniques and iii) to investigate the impact of SWR on water economy in relation with soil functioning and plant strategies for water uptake in pristine BW. Methods In a series of field trials and experimental studies, we measured SWR of soil samples under lab conditions in oven-dry samples (48 h, 105 °C) that were previously collected under

  16. Recharge estimation in semi-arid karst catchments: Central West Bank, Palestine

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jebreen, Hassan; Wohnlich, Stefan; Wisotzky, Frank; Banning, Andre; Niedermayr, Andrea; Ghanem, Marwan

    2018-03-01

    Knowledge of groundwater recharge constitutes a valuable tool for sustainable management in karst systems. In this respect, a quantitative evaluation of groundwater recharge can be considered a pre-requisite for the optimal operation of groundwater resources systems, particular for semi-arid areas. This paper demonstrates the processes affecting recharge in Palestine aquifers. The Central Western Catchment is one of the main water supply sources in the West Bank. Quantification of potential recharge rates are estimated using chloride mass balance (CMB) and empirical recharge equations over the catchment. The results showing the spatialized recharge rate, which ranges from 111-216 mm/year, representing 19-37% of the long-term mean annual rainfall. Using Water Balance models and climatological data (e. g. solar radiation, monthly temperature, average monthly relative humidity and precipitation), actual evapotranspiration (AET) is estimated. The mean annual actual evapotranspiration was about 66-70% of precipitation.

  17. Application of Isotope techniques in the arid and semi-arid zone hydrology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gonfiantini, R.; Louvat, D.; Aranyossy, J.F.

    1993-01-01

    The paper presents a brief introduction on the scientific background of isotope hydrology,and after, explains the applications of environment isotope techniques in groundwater hydrology of the arid and semi-arid zones. It includes the study of aquifer recharge and discharge, identification of palaeorecharge, groundwater movement and age in unconfined and confined aquifers, and interconnections between aquifers. The contribution of isotopes is highlighted with many examples of field case studies, with emphasis on studies carried out with IAEA support. Finally, a short description of IAEA program on isotope hydrology is given, with a list of regional projects supported through the IAEA Technical Cooperation program, and of Coordinated Research Programs. The latter give the modern research trends in isotope application to hydrology and hydrosphere environmental studies. (author). 2 tabs., 25 figs., 69 refs

  18. Transfer of 137Cs in Zea mays and Phaseolus vulgaris in a semi-arid ecosystem

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cervantes, M.L.; Segovia, N.; Gaso P, M.I.; Palacios, J.C.

    1999-01-01

    With the objective to analyse the transference of 137 Cs from soil to plants, it is realized a study in maize and bean plants in the Radioactive Waste Storage Center (CADER). This site is located in a semi-arid region with a characteristic vegetation of a sub humid temperature zone. So those plants maize and beans were cultivated in four zones near CADER during a four years period. The obtained results for 1991 to 1994 for 137 Cs in soil samples for those zones showed an evident contamination in zone 1, due to a rupture of an industrial source. In 1994 the effect of decontamination was evident since the values of specific activity found in roots were around magnitude lesser than found in 1992. In spite of exhaustive studies have been reported about the transference factors for 137 Cs in different agricultural foods, relatively few of them have paid attention to the interactions between cereals and leguminous associated in semiarid ecosystems. (Author)

  19. Isotopic composition of groundwater in semi-arid regions of Southern Africa

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vogel, J.C.; Urk, H. van

    1975-01-01

    Although the isotope content of precipitation in the semi-arid regions of southern Africa is extremely variable, groundwater samples from the same district are found to have a remarkably constant isotopic composition. The oxygen-18 content of the underground water, in general, varies by about 0.5% in a given area. The differences that occur between different regions are sufficiently large to allow the groundwater of an area to be characterized by means of its oxygen-18 content. In order to localize the infiltration area of an aquifer, radiocarbon dating of the water is used. It appears that the groundwater contains, in general, less of the heavy isotopes than does the precipitation in the recharge area. This indicates that infiltration only takes place during periods of heavy rainfall. Examples are given where the isotope content of the groundwater is used to distinguish between different aquifers in the same region

  20. Isotope techniques in water resource investigations in arid and semi-arid regions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2001-03-01

    The Co-ordinated Research Project (CRP) on the Use of Isotope Techniques in Water Resources Investigations in Arid and Semi-arid Regions was initiated with the aim od contributing to the assessment of groundwater resources in arid areas through the use of environmental isotope techniques, and thereby to help in better management of these valuable fresh groundwater resources. The main emphases identified were in three key areas: (i) the evaluation of water balance components such as recharge rate estimation and recharge and discharge cycles at different spatial scales, (ii) paleohydrology and hydroclimatic change and, (iii) anthropogenic impacts and the assessment of the vulnerability of arid zone ground waters to salinisation and pollution impacts. This publication presents individual projects carried out within the frameworks of the CRP. Each paper has been indexed separately

  1. Variability of atmospheric carbonyl sulfide at a semi-arid urban site in western India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mallik, Chinmay; Chandra, Naveen; Venkataramani, S; Lal, Shyam

    2016-05-01

    Atmospheric carbonyl sulfide (COS) is a major precursor for sulfate aerosols that play a critical role in climate regulation. Recent studies have highlighted the importance of COS measurements as a reliable means to constrain biospheric carbon assimilation. In a scenario of limited availability of COS data around the globe, we present gas-chromatographic measurements of atmospheric COS mixing ratios over Ahmedabad, a semi-arid, urban region in western India. These measurements, being reported for the first time over an Indian site, enable us to understand the diurnal and seasonal variation in atmospheric COS with respect to its natural, anthropogenic and photochemical sources and sinks. The annual mean COS mixing ratio over Ahmedabad is found to be 0.83±0.43ppbv, which is substantially higher than free tropospheric values for the northern hemisphere. Inverse correlation of COS with soil and skin temperature, suggests that the dry soil of the semi-arid study region is a potential sink for atmospheric COS. Positive correlations of COS with NO2 and CO during post-monsoon and the COS/CO slope of 0.78pptv/ppbv reveals influence of diesel combustion and tire wear. The highest concentrations of COS are observed during pre-monsoon; COS/CO2 slope of 44.75pptv/ppmv combined with information from air mass back-trajectories reveal marshy wetlands spanning over 7500km(2) as an important source of COS in Ahmedabad. COS/CO2 slopes decrease drastically (8.28pptv/ppmv) during post-monsoon due to combined impact of biospheric uptake and anthropogenic emissions. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  2. Determine the optimum spectral reflectance of juniper and pistachio in arid and semi-arid region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fadaei, Hadi; Suzuki, Rikie

    2012-11-01

    Arid and semi-arid areas of northeast Iran cover about 3.4 million ha are populated by two main tree species, the broadleaf Pistacia vera. L (pistachio) and the conifer Juniperus excelsa ssp. polycarpos (Persian juniper). Natural stands of pistachio in Iran are not only environmentally important but genetically essential as seed sources for pistachio production in orchards. In this study, we estimated the optimum spectral reflectance of juniper forests and natural pistachio stands using remote sensing to help in the sustainable management and production of pistachio in Iran. In this research spectral reflectance are able to specify of multispectral from Advanced Land Observing Satellite (ALOS) that provided by JAXA. These data included PRISM is a panchromatic radiometer with a 2.5 m spatial resolution at nadir, has one band with a wavelength of 0.52-0.77 μm and AVNIR-2 is a visible and near infrared radiometer for observing land and coastal zones with a 10 m spatial resolution at nadir, has four multispectral bands: blue (0.42-0.50 μm), green (0.52-0.60 μm), red (0.61-0.69 μm), and near infrared (0.76-0.89 μm). Total ratio vegetation index (TRVI) of optimum spectral reflectance of juniper and pistachio have been evaluated. The result of TRVI for Pistachio and juniper were (R2= 0.71 and 0.55). I hope this research can provide decision of managers to helping sustainable management for arid and semi-arid regions in Iran.

  3. Estimation of hourly ultraviolet solar irradiance in the semi-arid northeast region of Brasil

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Andrade, Ricardo C. de; Tiba, Chigueru [Dept. de Energia Nuclear da Univ. Federal de Pernambuco, Recife, Pernambuco (Brazil)

    2008-07-01

    Two computational codes, SPCTRAL2 and SMARTS2, were used for estimating ultraviolet solar irradiance in a locality of the semi-arid region of the Northeast of Brazil. The softwares presented simplicity of use, precision and relative ease in obtaining the input variables: zenith angle, atmospheric pressure in relation to sea level, relative humidity of the air, amount of precipitable water, total ozone and the aerosol optic depths (AOD). All these variables are measured in conventional meteorological stations, except for the aerosol optic depth. The AOD was measured with an apparatus that was constructed with a narrow band LED sensor, centered in 555nm which measures the monochromatic radiation transmission through the terrestrial atmosphere, which can be described by Beer's law. The measurements for obtaining the AOD were carried out during the months of December, 2006 and January, 2007 for Pesqueira-PE (Longitude -36.77 and Latitude 8.4 ) semi-arid region of Pernambuco, at intervals of 10 and 10 minutes, simultaneously. The ultraviolet solar irradiation was measured with a TURV (Total Ultraviolet Radiometer) Eppley Pyranometer on a minute scale. The computational simulations with SPCTRAL2 and SMARTS2 were made considering the following cases: (a) obtention of daily AOD, or be it, coming from the linear extrapolation of all the data along the day (b) obtention of hourly AOD, or be it the linearization by parts (piecewise). In the first case, the results of the simulations of ultraviolet solar irradiance and ultraviolet radiation index show an error of 4% and 13% for solar midday, and 78% at end of afternoon, when compared with the values measured with the TURV pyranometer. These results were significantly improved when using the AOD obtained on hourly bases: an error of 6.7 % for solar midday, a maximum error of 10% between 11 and 13 h, a maximum error of 20% between 10 and 14h and finally a maximum error of 30% between 9 and 15h. (orig.)

  4. Improving satellite-based post-fire evapotranspiration estimates in semi-arid regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poon, P.; Kinoshita, A. M.

    2017-12-01

    Climate change and anthropogenic factors contribute to the increased frequency, duration, and size of wildfires, which can alter ecosystem and hydrological processes. The loss of vegetation canopy and ground cover reduces interception and alters evapotranspiration (ET) dynamics in riparian areas, which can impact rainfall-runoff partitioning. Previous research evaluated the spatial and temporal trends of ET based on burn severity and observed an annual decrease of 120 mm on average for three years after fire. Building upon these results, this research focuses on the Coyote Fire in San Diego, California (USA), which burned a total of 76 km2 in 2003 to calibrate and improve satellite-based ET estimates in semi-arid regions affected by wildfire. The current work utilizes satellite-based products and techniques such as the Google Earth Engine Application programming interface (API). Various ET models (ie. Operational Simplified Surface Energy Balance Model (SSEBop)) are compared to the latent heat flux from two AmeriFlux eddy covariance towers, Sky Oaks Young (US-SO3), and Old Stand (US-SO2), from 2000 - 2015. The Old Stand tower has a low burn severity and the Young Stand tower has a moderate to high burn severity. Both towers are used to validate spatial ET estimates. Furthermore, variables and indices, such as Enhanced Vegetation Index (EVI), Normalized Difference Moisture Index (NDMI), and the Normalized Burn Ratio (NBR) are utilized to evaluate satellite-based ET through a multivariate statistical analysis at both sites. This point-scale study will able to improve ET estimates in spatially diverse regions. Results from this research will contribute to the development of a post-wildfire ET model for semi-arid regions. Accurate estimates of post-fire ET will provide a better representation of vegetation and hydrologic recovery, which can be used to improve hydrologic models and predictions.

  5. [Effect of Biochar on Soil Greenhouse Gas Emissions in Semi-arid Region].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guo, Yan-liang; Wang, Dan-dan; Zheng, Ji-yong; Zhao, Shi-wei; Zhang, Xing-chang

    2015-09-01

    This study aimed to investigate the effects of biochar addition on the emission of greenhouse gases from farmland soil in semi-arid region. Through an in-situ experiments, the influence of sawdust biochar(J) and locust tree skin biochar (H) at three doses (1%, 3%, and 5% of quality percentage) on C2, CH4 and N2O emissions were studied within the six months in the south of Ningxiaprovince. The results indicated that soil CO2 emission flux was slightly increased with the addition doses for both biochars, and the averaged CO2 emission flux for sawdust and locust tree skin biochar was enhanced by 1. 89% and 3. 34% compared to the control, but the difference between treatments was not statistically significant. The soil CH4 emission was decreased with the increasing of biochar doses, by 1. 17%, 2. 55%, 4. 32% for J1, J3, J5 and 2. 35%, 5. 83%, 7. 32% for H1, H3, H5, respectively. However, the difference was statistically significant only for J5, H3 and H5 treatments (P effect on soil N2O emission. Our study indicated that the biochar has no significant influence on soil CO2 and N2O emissions within six months in semi-arid region and can significantly influence soil CH4 emissions (P < 0. 05). As for biochar type, the locust tree skin biochar is significantly better than the sawdust biochar in terms of restraining CH4 emission(P = 0. 048).

  6. Analysis of Water Use and Water Scarcity in Arid and Semi-arid Regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Samayoa, S. D.

    2017-12-01

    Analysis of Water Use and Water Scarcity in Arid and Semi-arid Regions Susana Samayoa , Muhammed A. G. Chowdhury, Tushar Sinha Department of Environmental Engineering, Texas A & M University - Kingsville Freshwater sustainability in arid and semi-arid regions is highly uncertain under increasing demands due to population growth and urban development as well as limited water supply. In particular, six largest cities by population among the top twenty U.S. cities are located in Texas (TX), which also experience high variability in water availability due to frequent droughts and floods. Similarly, several regions in Arizona (AZ) are rapidly growing (e.g. Phoenix and Tucson) despite receiving scanty rainfall. Thus, the goal of this study is to analyze water use and water scarcity in watersheds within TX and AZ between 1985 and 2010. The water use data from U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) is analyzed by Hydrological Unit Code (HUC) - 8 within TX and AZ. Total freshwater use by county during 1985 and 2010 were converted into water use by HUC-8 using geospatial analysis. Water availability will be estimated by using a large scale Variable Infiltration Capacity (VIC) hydrologic model. The VIC model will be calibrated and validated for multiple basins located in Texas and Arizona. The VIC model simulated total streamflow will be aggregated across the 1/8 degree grids that are within each HUC-8 to estimate water supply. The excess water for upstream HUC-8s (= local supply minus demands) will be routed, in addition to locally generated streamflow, to estimate water availability in downstream HUC-8s. Water Scarcity Index, defined as the ratio of total freshwater demand to supply, will be estimated during 1985 and 2010 to evaluate the effects of water availability and demands on scarcity. Finally, water scarcity and use will be analyzed by HUC-8s within TX and AZ. Such information could be useful in water resources management and planning. Keywords: Water scarcity, water use

  7. Tree Morphologic Plasticity Explains Deviation from Metabolic Scaling Theory in Semi-Arid Conifer Forests, Southwestern USA.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tyson L Swetnam

    Full Text Available A significant concern about Metabolic Scaling Theory (MST in real forests relates to consistent differences between the values of power law scaling exponents of tree primary size measures used to estimate mass and those predicted by MST. Here we consider why observed scaling exponents for diameter and height relationships deviate from MST predictions across three semi-arid conifer forests in relation to: (1 tree condition and physical form, (2 the level of inter-tree competition (e.g. open vs closed stand structure, (3 increasing tree age, and (4 differences in site productivity. Scaling exponent values derived from non-linear least-squares regression for trees in excellent condition (n = 381 were above the MST prediction at the 95% confidence level, while the exponent for trees in good condition were no different than MST (n = 926. Trees that were in fair or poor condition, characterized as diseased, leaning, or sparsely crowned had exponent values below MST predictions (n = 2,058, as did recently dead standing trees (n = 375. Exponent value of the mean-tree model that disregarded tree condition (n = 3,740 was consistent with other studies that reject MST scaling. Ostensibly, as stand density and competition increase trees exhibited greater morphological plasticity whereby the majority had characteristically fair or poor growth forms. Fitting by least-squares regression biases the mean-tree model scaling exponent toward values that are below MST idealized predictions. For 368 trees from Arizona with known establishment dates, increasing age had no significant impact on expected scaling. We further suggest height to diameter ratios below MST relate to vertical truncation caused by limitation in plant water availability. Even with environmentally imposed height limitation, proportionality between height and diameter scaling exponents were consistent with the predictions of MST.

  8. Tree Morphologic Plasticity Explains Deviation from Metabolic Scaling Theory in Semi-Arid Conifer Forests, Southwestern USA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Swetnam, Tyson L; O'Connor, Christopher D; Lynch, Ann M

    2016-01-01

    A significant concern about Metabolic Scaling Theory (MST) in real forests relates to consistent differences between the values of power law scaling exponents of tree primary size measures used to estimate mass and those predicted by MST. Here we consider why observed scaling exponents for diameter and height relationships deviate from MST predictions across three semi-arid conifer forests in relation to: (1) tree condition and physical form, (2) the level of inter-tree competition (e.g. open vs closed stand structure), (3) increasing tree age, and (4) differences in site productivity. Scaling exponent values derived from non-linear least-squares regression for trees in excellent condition (n = 381) were above the MST prediction at the 95% confidence level, while the exponent for trees in good condition were no different than MST (n = 926). Trees that were in fair or poor condition, characterized as diseased, leaning, or sparsely crowned had exponent values below MST predictions (n = 2,058), as did recently dead standing trees (n = 375). Exponent value of the mean-tree model that disregarded tree condition (n = 3,740) was consistent with other studies that reject MST scaling. Ostensibly, as stand density and competition increase trees exhibited greater morphological plasticity whereby the majority had characteristically fair or poor growth forms. Fitting by least-squares regression biases the mean-tree model scaling exponent toward values that are below MST idealized predictions. For 368 trees from Arizona with known establishment dates, increasing age had no significant impact on expected scaling. We further suggest height to diameter ratios below MST relate to vertical truncation caused by limitation in plant water availability. Even with environmentally imposed height limitation, proportionality between height and diameter scaling exponents were consistent with the predictions of MST.

  9. The current bioenergy production potential of semi-arid and arid regions in sub-Saharan Africa

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wicke, B.; Smeets, E.M.W.; Watson, H.; Faaij, A.P.C.

    2011-01-01

    This article assesses the current technical and economic potential of three bioenergy production systems (cassava ethanol, jatropha oil and fuelwood) in semi-arid and arid regions of eight sub-Saharan African countries. The results indicate that the availability of land for energy production ranges

  10. Development of spatial heterogeneity in vegetation and soil properties after land abandonment in a semi-arid ecosystem

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lesschen, J.P.; Cammeraat, L.H.; Kooijman, A.M.; van Wesemael, B.

    2008-01-01

    To mitigate erosion on abandoned fields in semi-arid ecosystems, it is important to understand how vegetation and soil properties and patterns develop after land abandonment. Our objective was to investigate the development of spatial heterogeneity in vegetation and soil properties after land

  11. Soil nutrient and sediment loss as affected by erosion barriers and nutrient source in semi-arid Burkina Faso

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Zougmore, R.; Mando, A.; Stroosnijder, L.

    2009-01-01

    In semi-arid Sahel, soil erosion by water is one major factor accounting for negative nutrient balances in agricultural systems. A field experiment was conducted on a Ferric Lixisol in Burkina Faso to assess the effects of soil and water conservation barriers (stone rows or grass strips of

  12. Rainfed agriculture in a semi-arid tropical climate : aspects of land- and watermanagement for red soils in India

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Huibers, F.P.

    1985-01-01

    Rainfed agriculture is defined as the production of field crops that completely depend on the local precipitation for their water supply. Although in the semi-arid tropics the mean annual precipitation might seem to be sufficient to grow (adapted) crops, its variability over the years and

  13. Modeling gross primary production in semi-arid Inner Mongolia using MODIS imagery and eddy covariance data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ranjeet John; Jiquan Chen; Asko Noormets; Xiangming Xiao; Jianye Xu; Nan Lu; Shiping Chen

    2013-01-01

    We evaluate the modelling of carbon fluxes from eddy covariance (EC) tower observations in different water-limited land-cover/land-use (LCLU) and biome types in semi-arid Inner Mongolia, China. The vegetation photosynthesis model (VPM) and modified VPM (MVPM), driven by the enhanced vegetation index (EVI) and land-surface water index (LSWI), which were derived from the...

  14. Evaluation of soil and water conservation measures in a semi-arid river basin in Tunisia using SWAT

    Science.gov (United States)

    The Merguellil catchment (Central Tunisia) is a typical Mediterranean semi-arid basin which suffers from regular water shortage aggravated by current droughts. During the recent decades the continuous construction of small and large dams and Soil and Water Conservation Works (i.e. Contour ridges) ha...

  15. Tailoring conservation agriculture technologies to West Africa semi-arid zones: Building on traditional local practices for soil restoration

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lahmar, R.; Bationo, B.A.; Lamso, N.D.; Guéro, Y.; Tittonell, P.A.

    2012-01-01

    Low inherent fertility of tropical soils and degradation, nutrient deficiency and water stress are the key factors that hamper rainfed agriculture in semi-arid West Africa. Conservation Agriculture (CA) is currently promoted in the region as a technology to reduce soil degradation, mitigate the

  16. Small-Scale Farming in Semi-Arid Areas: Livelihood Dynamics between 1997 and 2010 in Laikipia, Kenya

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ulrich, Anne; Speranza, Chinwe Ifejika; Roden, Paul; Kiteme, Boniface; Wiesmann, Urs; Nusser, Marcus

    2012-01-01

    The rural population of semi-arid lands in Kenya face multiple challenges that result from population growth, poor markets, land use and climatic changes. In particular, subsistence oriented farmers face various risks and opportunities in their attempt to secure their livelihoods. This paper presents an analysis on how livelihood assets and…

  17. Overlap in nitrogen sources and redistribution of nitrogen between trees and grasses in a semi-arid savanna

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Priyadarshini, K.V.R.; Prins, H.H.T.; Bie, de S.; Heitkonig, I.M.A.; Woodborne, S.; Gort, G.; Kirkman, K.; Fry, B.; Kroon, de H.

    2014-01-01

    A key question in savanna ecology is how trees and grasses coexist under N limitation. We used N stable isotopes and N content to study N source partitioning across seasons from trees and associated grasses in a semi-arid savanna. We also used 15N tracer additions to investigate possible

  18. Effects of feral free-roaming horses on semi-arid rangeland ecosystems: an example from the sagebrush steppe

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feral horses (Equus caballus) are viewed as a symbol of freedom and power; however, they are also a largely unmanaged, non-native grazer in North America, South America, and Australia. Information on their influence on vegetation and soil characteristics in semi-arid rangelands has been limited by ...

  19. 'If only it would rain': Farmers' perceptions of rainfall and drought in semi-arid central Tanzania

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Slegers, M.F.W.

    2008-01-01

    Farmers in semi-arid East Africa prioritize drought as their major productivity-reducing problem, while scientists identify soil degradation as a major threat. The question that needs to be addressed is how farmers perceive drought. Insight into farmers¿ perceptions of drought could be the missing

  20. Simply obtained global radiation, soil temperature and soil moisture in an alley cropping system in semi-arid Kenya

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mungai, D.N.; Stigter, C.J.; Coulson, C.L.; Ng'ang'a, J.K.

    2000-01-01

    Global radiation, soil temperature and soil moisture data were obtained from a 4-6 year old Cassia siamea/maize (CM) alley cropping (or hedgerow intercropping) system, at a semi-arid site at Machakos, Kenya, in the late eighties. With the growing need to explore and manage variations in

  1. Drivers of inter-annual variability in Net Ecosystem Exchange in a semi-arid savanna ecosystem, South Africa

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Archibald, SA

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available and filling gaps in eddy-covariance data in semi-arid systems were developed. Net ecosystem exchange (NEE) in these systems occurs as pulses associated with rainfall events, a pattern not well-represented in current standard gap-filling procedures developed...

  2. Water-scarcity patterns : spatiotemporal interdependencies between water use and water availability in a semi-arid river basin

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Oel, P.R.

    2009-01-01

    This thesis addresses the interdependencies between water use and water availability and describes a model that has been developed to improve understanding of the processes that drive changes and variations in the spatial and temporal distribution of water resources in a semi-arid river basin. These

  3. Adaptive livelihood strategies employed by farmers to close the food gap in semi-arid south eastern Zimbabwe

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Murungweni, C.; Wijk, van M.T.; Giller, K.E.; Andersson, J.A.; Smaling, E.M.A.

    2014-01-01

    Rural households in semi-arid areas of southern Africa are confronted with numerous hazards that threaten the household food base. The new wildlife policy of establishing transfrontier conservation areas aims to increase conservation of wildlife resources while improving local livelihoods. This

  4. Forests and water - Friends or foes?. Hydrological implications of deforestation and land degradation in semi-arid Tanzania

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sandstroem, K.

    1995-01-01

    In the study area in Babati District in Tanzania a multi-component research approach was attempted. Two catchments, one forested and one deforested-degraded, were studied regarding soil properties, runoff and groundwater recharge. This was done both in the field and with the use of two computer models: one simulating groundwater recharge as a function of rainfall variability, and one simulating hydrological implications of massive land cover conversion on the flooding of nearby Lake Babati. Three major findings came out of the study. The first is that most forested catchments (in various hydroclimates and landscapes) will increase the runoff following deforestation (due to less evapotranspiration). This is well-established knowledge, but it also depends on the actual conditions at hand. These conditions are defined as hydroclimate, soil texture and slope. In humid-temperate climates with coarse soils on flat land, the conditions strongly favor increased runoff following deforestation. However, in dry regions with fine textured soils on hilly ground, and where deforestation also implies land degradation, less dry season flow is likely to develop after a considerable adjustment period has been allowed. Secondly, the prevalence of preferential flow in a forest soil, as compared to a compacted and eroded soil, must be a key component in an explanation of why more dry season flow can emerge from a forested as compared to a deforested catchment in the dry tropics. Thirdly, there are several aspects of semi-arid and arid tropical hydrology which make comparisons with humid-temperate regions difficult and require special attention in the management of water resources in the dry tropics. 14 refs, 18 figs, 1 tab

  5. New Possibilities for High-Resolution, Large-Scale Ecosystem Assessment of the World's Semi-Arid Regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burney, J. A.; Goldblatt, R.

    2016-12-01

    Understanding drivers of land use change - and in particular, levels of ecosystem degradation - in semi-arid regions is of critical importance because these agroecosystems (1) are home to the world's poorest populations, almost all of whom depend on agriculture for their livelihoods, (2) play a critical role in the global carbon and climate cycles, and (3) have in many cases seen dramatic changes in temperature and precipitation, relative to global averages, over the past several decades. However, assessing ecosystem health (or, conversely, degradation) presents a difficult measurement problem. Established methods are very labor intensive and rest on detailed questionnaires and field assessments. High-resolution satellite imagery has a unique role semi-arid ecosystem assessment in that it can be used for rapid (or repeated) and very simple measurements of tree and shrub density, an excellent overall indicator for dryland ecosystem health. Because trees and large shrubs are more sparse in semi-arid regions, sub-meter resolution imagery in conjunction with automated image analysis can be used to assess density differences at high spatial resolution without expensive and time-consuming ground-truthing. This could be used down to the farm level, for example, to better assess the larger-scale ecosystem impacts of different management practices, to assess compliance with REDD+ carbon offset protocols, or to evaluate implementation of conservation goals. Here we present results comparing spatial and spectral remote sensing methods for semi-arid ecosystem assessment across new data sources, using the Brazilian Sertão as an example, and the implications for large-scale use in semi-arid ecosystem science.

  6. Soil and vegetation-atmosphere exchange of NO, NH3, and N2O from field measurements in a semi arid grazed ecosystem in Senegal

    Science.gov (United States)

    Delon, C.; Galy-Lacaux, C.; Serça, D.; Loubet, B.; Camara, N.; Gardrat, E.; Saneh, I.; Fensholt, R.; Tagesson, T.; Le Dantec, V.; Sambou, B.; Diop, C.; Mougin, E.

    2017-05-01

    The alternating between dry and wet seasons and the consecutive microbial responses to soil water content in semiarid ecosystems has significant consequences on nitrogen exchanges with the atmosphere. Three field campaigns were carried out in a semi arid sahelian rangeland in Dahra (Ferlo, Senegal), two at the beginning of the wet season in July 2012 and July 2013, and the third one in November 2013 at the end of the wet season. The ammonia emission potentials of the soil ranged from 271 to 6628, indicating the soil capacity to emit NH3. The ammonia compensation point in the soil ranged between 7 and 150 ppb, with soil temperatures between 32 and 37 °C. Ammonia exchange fluctuated between emission and deposition (from -0.1-1.3 ng N.m-2 s-1), depending on meteorology, ambient NH3 concentration (5-11 ppb) and compensation point mixing ratios. N2O fluxes are supposed to be lower than NO fluxes in semi arid ecosystems, but in Dahra N2O fluxes (5.5 ± 1.3 ng N m-2 s-1 in July 2013, and 3.2 ± 1.7 ng N m-2 s-1 in November 2013) were similar to NO fluxes (5.7 ± 3.1 ng N m-2 s-1 in July 2012, 5.1 ± 2.1 ng N m-2 s-1 in July 2013, and 4.0 ± 2.2 ngN m-2 s-1 in November 2013). Possible reasons are the influence of soil moisture below the surface (where N2O is produced) after the beginning of the wet season, the potential aerobic denitrification in microsites, the nitrifier denitrification, and nitrification processes. The presence of litter and standing straw, and their decomposition dominated N compounds emissions in November 2013, whereas emissions in July 2012 and 2013, when the herbaceous strata was sparse, were dominated by microbial processes in the soil. CO2 respiration fluxes were high in the beginning (107 ± 26 mg m-2 h-1 in July 2013) and low in the end of the wet season (32 ± 5 mg m-2 h-1 in November 2013), when autotrophic and heterotrophic activity is reduced due to low soil moisture conditions These results confirm that contrasted ecosystem conditions due

  7. Evaporative Cooler Use Influences Temporal Indoor Relative Humidity but Not Dust Mite Allergen Levels in Homes in a Semi-Arid Climate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnston, James D; Tuttle, Steven C; Nelson, Morgan C; Bradshaw, Rebecca K; Hoybjerg, Taylor G; Johnson, Julene B; Kruman, Bryce A; Orton, Taylor S; Cook, Ryan B; Eggett, Dennis L; Weber, K Scott

    2016-01-01

    Concerns about energy consumption and climate change make residential evaporative coolers a popular alternative to central air conditioning in arid and semi-arid climates. However, evaporative coolers have been shown to significantly increase indoor relative humidity and dust mite allergen levels in some studies, while showing no association in other studies. Improved measurement of temporal fluctuations in indoor relative humidity may help identify factors that promote mite growth in homes in dry climates. Dust samples and continuous indoor relative humidity measurements were collected from homes with central air conditioning and homes with evaporative coolers in Utah. Samples were collected over two seasons, winter/spring (Jan-Apr) and summer (July-Sept), 2014. Dust samples were analyzed for Der p 1 and Der f 1 using a two-site monoclonal antibody-based enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) analysis. Housing characteristics including age of home, occupant density, and age of mattresses, furniture, and carpeting were also measured. Positive Der p 1 or Der f 1 samples were found in 25.0% of the homes and there was no difference in mean allergen levels by type of air conditioning. Indoor relative humidity was significantly higher in homes with evaporative coolers compared to those with central air conditioning during the summer. Homes with evaporative coolers also spent significantly more time during summer above 55.0% and 65.0% relative humidity compared to central air homes, but not above 75.0%. Findings from this study suggest that increased humidity from evaporative coolers may not be sufficient to exceed the critical equilibrium humidity or maintain humidity excursions for sufficient duration in relatively larger single-family homes in semi-arid climates to support mite growth and reproduction.

  8. Evaporative Cooler Use Influences Temporal Indoor Relative Humidity but Not Dust Mite Allergen Levels in Homes in a Semi-Arid Climate.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James D Johnston

    Full Text Available Concerns about energy consumption and climate change make residential evaporative coolers a popular alternative to central air conditioning in arid and semi-arid climates. However, evaporative coolers have been shown to significantly increase indoor relative humidity and dust mite allergen levels in some studies, while showing no association in other studies. Improved measurement of temporal fluctuations in indoor relative humidity may help identify factors that promote mite growth in homes in dry climates. Dust samples and continuous indoor relative humidity measurements were collected from homes with central air conditioning and homes with evaporative coolers in Utah. Samples were collected over two seasons, winter/spring (Jan-Apr and summer (July-Sept, 2014. Dust samples were analyzed for Der p 1 and Der f 1 using a two-site monoclonal antibody-based enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA analysis. Housing characteristics including age of home, occupant density, and age of mattresses, furniture, and carpeting were also measured. Positive Der p 1 or Der f 1 samples were found in 25.0% of the homes and there was no difference in mean allergen levels by type of air conditioning. Indoor relative humidity was significantly higher in homes with evaporative coolers compared to those with central air conditioning during the summer. Homes with evaporative coolers also spent significantly more time during summer above 55.0% and 65.0% relative humidity compared to central air homes, but not above 75.0%. Findings from this study suggest that increased humidity from evaporative coolers may not be sufficient to exceed the critical equilibrium humidity or maintain humidity excursions for sufficient duration in relatively larger single-family homes in semi-arid climates to support mite growth and reproduction.

  9. Dew measurement and estimation of rain-fed jujube (Zizyphus jujube Mill) in a semi-arid loess hilly region of China

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    WANG Xing; GAO Zhiyong; WANG Youke; Wang Zhi; JIN Shanshan

    2017-01-01

    Dew is an important water source for plants in arid and semi-arid regions.However,information on dew is scarce in such regions.In this study,we explored dew formation,amount,and duration of rain-fed jujube (Zi(w)phus jujube Mill) trees in a semi-arid loess hilly region of China (i.e.,Mizhi County).The data included dew intensity and duration,relative humidity,temperature,and wind speed measured from 26 July to 23 October,2012 and from 24 June to 17 October,2013 using a micro-climate system (including dielectric leaf wetness sensors,VP-3 Relative Humidity/Temperature Sensor,High Resolution Rain Gauge,and Davis Cup Anemometer).The results show that atmospheric conditions of relative humidity of >78% and dew point temperature of 1℃C-3℃C are significantly favorable to dew formation.Compared with the rainfall,dew was characterized by high frequency,strong stability,and long duration.Furthermore,heavy dew accounted for a large proportion of the total amount.The empirical models (i.e.,relative humidity model (RH model) and dew point depression model (DPD model)) for daily dew duration estimation performed well at 15-rain intervals,with low errors ranging between 1.29 and 1.60 h,respectively.But it should be noted that the models should be calibrated firstly by determining the optimal thresholds of relatively humidity for RH model and dew point depression for DPD model.For rain-fed jujube trees in the semi-arid loess hilly regions of China,the optimal threshold of relative humidity was 78%,and the optimal upper and lower thresholds of dew point depression were 1℃C and 5℃C,respectively.The study further demonstrates that dew is an important water resource that cannot be ignored for rain-fed jujube trees and may affect water balance at regional scales.

  10. Food resources used by three species of fish in the semi-arid region of Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Márcio J. da Silva

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Temporary and semi-permanent aquatic habitats in semi-arid Brazil have been reported as important sites supporting a diverse fish fauna. As such, they must be able to trophically sustain fish species that feed at different trophic levels. This study aims to describe the diets of Astyanax aff. bimaculatus, Hoplias malabaricus and Prochilodus brevis in aquatic systems in semi-arid Brazil, providing evidence of the importance of these habitats as supporters of large consumers like fish. The diet of the three species studied was diverse, feeding on a range of food items, from microalgae to fish. Despite that, a few items were more important to each of the study species. These results and the relatively high rates of stomach fullness indicate that a diverse and abundant food range is available in the study sites, but species seem to select some food resources. The present study provides evidence that despite being highly variable, intermittent and semi-permanent aquatic systems in semi-arid Brazil are able to trophically sustain large consumers.Os ambientes aquáticos temporários e semi-permanentes do semiárido brasileiro tem sido mostrados como importantes sítios que possuem uma diversa fauna de peixes. Desta forma, esses ambientes devem ser capazes de sustentar, do ponto de vista trófico, populações de peixes que se alimentam em diversos níveis tróficos. O presente estudo tem como objetivo descrever o hábito alimentar de Astyanax aff. bimaculatus, Hoplias malabaricus e Prochilodus brevis em ambientes aquáticos do semiárido brasileiro, fornecendo evidências da importância desses habitats para manutenção da diversidade de consumidores como os peixes. A composição da dieta das espécies estudadas foi diversificada, já que alimentaram-se de uma variedade de classes de itens, desde microalgas até peixes. Apesar disso, alguns itens foram mais importantes para cada uma das três espécies. Estes resultados, e as altas taxas de reple

  11. Seedling survival of Handroanthus impetiginosus (Mart ex DC Mattos in a semi-arid environment through modified germination speed and post-germination desiccation tolerance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. R. Martins

    Full Text Available Abstract Uniform rapid seed germination generally forms a great risk for the plant population if subsequent intermittent precipitation causes desiccation and seedling death. Handroanthus impetiginosus can be found commonly in a wide range of biomes within Brazil including those that are semi-arid. Germination and early growth was studied to understand how germinated seeds survive under these stringent conditions. Accessions were sampled from four seasonally dry biomes in Brazil. Precipitation at the start of the rainy season in the Caatinga, a semi-arid biome, is less predictable and the number of successive dry days per dry interval in the first four months of the rainy season was higher than in the other studied biomes. Plants from the Caatinga produced thicker seeds and this trait concurred with slow germination and stronger osmotic inhibition of germination across the accessions, forming a stress avoidance mechanism in the Caatinga. Post-germination desiccation tolerance was high in the Caatinga accession, could be re-induced in accessions from biomes with more regular precipitation (Cerrado and transition zone, but remained poor in the Cerradão accession; thus forming a stress tolerance mechanism. Production of adventitious roots ascertained survival of all tested individuals from all four locations, even if protruded radicles did not survive desiccation, forming an additional stress tolerance mechanism. A sequence of stress avoidance and stress tolerance mechanisms in seeds and germinated seeds was associated with precipitation patterns in different biomes. These mechanisms purportedly allow rapid seedling establishment when conditions are suitable and enable survival of the young seedling when conditions are adverse.

  12. Principal coordinate analysis of genotype × environment interaction for grain yield of bread wheat in the semi-arid regions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sabaghnia Naser

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Multi-environmental trials have significant main effects and significant multiplicative genotype × environment (GE interaction effect. Principal coordinate analysis (PCOA offers a more appropriate statistical analysis to deal with such situations, compared to traditional statistical methods. Eighteen bread wheat genotypes were grown in four semi-arid regions over three year seasons to study the GE interaction and yield stability and obtained data on grain yield were analyzed using PCOA. Combined analysis of variance indicated that all of the studied effects including the main effects of genotype and environments as well as the GE interaction were highly significant. According to grand means and total mean yield, test environments were grouped to two main groups as high mean yield (H and low mean yield (L. There were five H test environments and six L test environments which analyzed in the sequential cycles. For each cycle, both scatter point diagram and minimum spanning tree plot were drawn. The identified most stable genotypes with dynamic stability concept and based on the minimum spanning tree plots and centroid distances were G1 (3310.2 kg ha-1 and G5 (3065.6 kg ha-1, and therefore could be recommended for unfavorable or poor conditions. Also, genotypes G7 (3047.2 kg ha-1 and G16 (3132.3 kg ha-1 were located several times in the vertex positions of high cycles according to the principal coordinates analysis. The principal coordinates analysis provided useful and interesting ways of investigating GE interaction of barley genotypes. Finally, the results of principal coordinates analysis in general confirmed the breeding value of the genotypes, obtained on the basis of the yield stability evaluation.

  13. A simulation of soil water content based on remote sensing in a semi-arid Mediterranean agricultural landscape

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sanchez, N.; Martinez-Fernandez, J.; Rodriguez-Ruiz, M.; Torres, E.; Calera, A.

    2012-11-01

    This paper shows the application of a water balance based on remote sensing that integrated a Landsat 5 series from 2009 in an area of 1,300 km{sup 2} in the Duero Basin (Spain). The objective was to simulate the daily soil water content (SWC), actual evapotranspiration, deep percolation and irrigation rates. The accuracy of the application is tested in a semi-arid Mediterranean agricultural landscape with crops over natural conditions. The results of the simulated SWC were compared against 19 in situ stations of the Soil Moisture Measurement Stations Network (REMEDHUS), in order to check the feasibility and accuracy of the application. The theoretical basis of the application was the FAO56 calculation assisted by remotely sensed imagery. The basal crop coefficient (Kcb), as well as other parameters of the calculation came from the remote reflectance of the images. This approach was implemented in the computerized tool HIDROMORE+, which integrates various spatial databases. The comparison of simulated and observed values (at different depths and different land uses) showed a good global agreement for the area (R{sup 2} = 0.92, RMSE = 0.031 m{sup 3} m{sup -}3, and bias = -0.027 m{sup 3} m{sup -}3). The land uses better described were rainfed cereals (R2 = 0.86, RMSE = 0.030 m{sup 3} m{sup -}3, and bias = -0.025 m{sup 3} m{sup -}3) and vineyards (R{sup 2} = 0.86, RMSE = 0.016 m{sup 3} m{sup -}3, and bias = -0.013 m{sup 3} m{sup -}3). In general, an underestimation of the soil water content is noticed, more pronounced into the root zone than at surface layer. The final aim was to convert the application into a hydrological tool available for agricultural water management. (Author) 42 refs.

  14. Hydrological differentiation and spatial distribution of high altitude wetlands in a semi-arid Andean region derived from satellite data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Otto, M.; Scherer, D.; Richters, J.

    2011-05-01

    High Altitude Wetlands of the Andes (HAWA) belong to a unique type of wetland within the semi-arid high Andean region. Knowledge about HAWA has been derived mainly from studies at single sites within different parts of the Andes at only small time scales. On the one hand, HAWA depend on water provided by glacier streams, snow melt or precipitation. On the other hand, they are suspected to influence hydrology through water retention and vegetation growth altering stream flow velocity. We derived HAWA land cover from satellite data at regional scale and analysed changes in connection with precipitation over the last decade. Perennial and temporal HAWA subtypes can be distinguished by seasonal changes of photosynthetically active vegetation (PAV) indicating the perennial or temporal availability of water during the year. HAWA have been delineated within a region of 12 800 km2 situated in the Northwest of Lake Titicaca. The multi-temporal classification method used Normalized Differenced Vegetation Index (NDVI) and Normalized Differenced Infrared Index (NDII) data derived from two Landsat ETM+ scenes at the end of austral winter (September 2000) and at the end of austral summer (May 2001). The mapping result indicates an unexpected high abundance of HAWA covering about 800 km2 of the study region (6 %). Annual HAWA mapping was computed using NDVI 16-day composites of Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS). Analyses on the relation between HAWA and precipitation was based on monthly precipitation data of the Tropical Rain Measurement Mission (TRMM 3B43) and MODIS Eight Day Maximum Snow Extent data (MOD10A2) from 2000 to 2010. We found HAWA subtype specific dependencies on precipitation conditions. A strong relation exists between perennial HAWA and snow fall (r2: 0.82) in dry austral winter months (June to August) and between temporal HAWA and precipitation (r2: 0.75) during austral summer (March to May). Annual changes in spatial extend of perennial HAWA

  15. Ecotoxicology of organisms adapted to life in temporary freshwater ponds in arid and semi-arid regions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lahr, J

    1997-01-01

    Hot arid and semi-arid zones are characterized by an abundance of temporary ponds. Most of these depend on rain for their existence. These habitats are distinguished by fluctuating and unpredictable changes in their hydrological regime and of physical and chemical conditions.They contain a uniquely-adapted fauna that copes in different ways with changing and often extreme temperatures, oxygen levels, pH, salinity and turbidity. A classification is presented of the most distinctive adaptations,the various tactics that organisms apply to survive dry periods. The main strategies are dormancy (escape in time) and dispersal (escape in space). These adaptations may affect the impact of toxicants on individuals, populations and communities of temporary ponds. The physiological adaptations of species found in temporary ponds are likely to alter the sensitivity to pollutants of characteristic species. Results from laboratory experiments,for example, suggest that fairy shrimp (Branchiopoda, Anostraca) may react differently to heavy metals and pesticides as the standard test species Daphnia. Life history strategies influence recovery rates of populations after exposure to acutely toxic substances such as pesticides. It is also suggested that slow growth and decreased reproductive capacity of organisms caused by toxicants may, in ephemeral ponds, result in the failure of annual recruitment. Whether assemblages of organisms in temporary ponds are generally more vulnerable or more resilient than those in permanent waters or temperate regions could not be determined conclusively with the limited data available. Ecological concepts for studying the habitat and the development of risk assessment methods for temporary ponds are briefly discussed.

  16. Effects of Tillage on Yield and Economic Returns of Maize and Cowpea in Semi-Arid Eastern Kenya

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Miriti, M.J; Kironchi, G; Gachene, K.K.C; Esilaba, O.A.; Mwangi, M.D; Nyamwaro, S.O; Heng, K.L

    2014-01-01

    Crop yields and financial returns are important criteria for adoption of conservation tillage by farmers. A study was conducted between 2007-2010 to compare the financial returns of subsoiling-ripping and tied-ridge tillage with the conventional ox-plough tillage in the production of maize (Zea mays L.) and cowpea (Vigna unguiculata L.) under semi-arid subsistence farming conditions in lower eastern Kenya. Four cropping systems namely maize sole crop, cowpea sole crop, maize/cowpea intercrop and maize sole crop with manure were evaluated in a split-plot treatments arrangement with tillage practices as the main plots and cropping systems as the sub-plots. The grain yields of maize and cowpea, prevailing market prices for cowpea and maize grains, labour, inputs applied and other relevant socio-economic data were collected every season, to enable estimation of economic returns and acceptability of the technologies. The results showed that average grain yield for maize sole crop, cowpea sole crop, maize/cowpea intercrop and maize sole crop with manure cropping systems under tied-ridge were 5, 9, 97 and 27% greater than the yields under oxplough tillage, respectively. Crop yields produced under subsoiling-ripping and ox-plough tillage were generally similar. However, land preparation and weeding labour expenses (KES 4240 / ha) for ox-plough tillage were 34% greater than those for subsoiling-ripping tillage but 40% lower than those for tied-ridge tillage. When averaged across seasons and tillage systems, the highest gross margins (KES 8567 / ha) were obtained in sole cowpea cropping system, followed by sole maize with manure (KES 4070 / ha), intercrop (KES 864 / ha) and least (loss of KES 1330 / ha) in sole maize without manure cropping system. (author)

  17. Rehabilitation of semi-arid coal mine spoil bank soils with mine residues and farm organic by-products

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Salazar, M.; Bosch-Serra, A.; Estudillos, G.; Poch, R.M. [University of Lleida, Lleida (Spain). Dept. of Environmental & Soil Science

    2009-07-01

    A method of rehabilitating coal mine soils was studied under the conditions of a semi-arid climate, lack of topsoil but availability of farm by-products in NE Spain. The objectives of the research were to assess a new method in order to achieve a suitable substrate for the establishment of native vegetation, to evaluate environmental impacts associated with the reclamation process, and to determine the time necessary to integrate the treated area into the surrounding environment. Eight plots (10 x 35 m{sup 2}) were established in September 1997. Substrate combinations of two types of mine spoil (coal dust and coarse-sized material), two levels of pig slurry (39 and 94 Mg ha{sup -1}dry-wt), and cereal straw (0 and 15 Mg ha{sup -1}) were applied. Monitoring of select physical and chemical soil properties and vegetation characteristics was performed from 1997 until 2005. The bulk density and the saturated hydraulic conductivity measured did not limit plant development and water availability. Initial substrate salinity (1.37 S m{sup -1}) decreased with time and in the long term did not limit plant colonization to salinity-adapted species. Initial nitrate concentration was 298 mg kg{sup -1}, but was reduced significantly to acceptable values in 3 years (55 mg kg{sup -1}) and the measured pH (7.6) was maintained at the level of initial spoil values. Vegetation cover reached up to 90%. In the treated area, spontaneous vegetation cover (15 to 70%) colonized the nonsown areas widely. In the medium term, vegetation cover tended to be higher in plots with a thicker layer of coal dust material and the higher slurry rate. Soil rehabilitation and environmental reintegration, taking into account soil and vegetation indicators, was possible in the studied area with low cost inputs using residual materials from mining activities and animal husbandry by-products.

  18. Stable Isotopic Composition of Dissolved Organic Nitrogen Fueling Brown Tide in a Semi-Arid Texas Estuary

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campbell, J.; Felix, J. D. D.; Wetz, M.; Cira, E.

    2017-12-01

    Harmful algal blooms (HABs) have the potential to adversely affect the water quality of estuaries and, consequently, their ability to support healthy and diverse ecosystems. Since the early 1990s, Baffin Bay, a semi-arid south Texas estuary, has progressively experienced harmful algal blooms. The primary species of HAB native to the Baffin Bay region, Aureoumbra lagunensis, is unable to utilize nitrate as a nutrient source, but instead relies on forms of reduced nitrogen (such as dissolved organic nitrogen (DON) and ammonium (NH4+)) for survival. DON levels in Baffin Bay (77 ± 10 µM) exceed the DON concentrations of not only typical Texas estuaries, but estuaries worldwide. Additionally, DON accounts for 90% of the total dissolved nitrogen (TDN) in Baffin Bay, followed by NH4+ at 8%, and NO3-+NO2- contributing 2%. Due to the dependence of A. lagunensis on the reduced forms of nitrogen as an energy source and the elevated concentrations of DON throughout the bay, it is important to identify the origin of this nitrogen as well as how it's being processed as it cycles through the ecosystem. The presented work investigates the stable isotopic composition of reactive nitrogen (Nr) (δ15N-DON, δ15N-NH4+, and δ15N-NO3-) in Baffin Bay samples collected monthly at nine stations over the period of one year. The work provides preliminary evidence of Nr sources and mechanisms driving favorable conditions for HAB proliferation. This information can be useful and applicable to estuarine ecosystems in various settings, advancing scientific progress towards mitigating blooms. Additionally, since the elevated concentrations of DON make Baffin Bay uniquely suited to investigate its sources and processing, this project will aid in characterizing the role of this largely unstudied form of Nr, which could provide insight and change perceptions about the role of DON in nitrogen dynamics.

  19. Mixed crop-livestock production systems of smallholder farmers in sub-humid and semi-arid areas of Zambia

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lungu, J.C.N.

    2002-01-01

    Livestock production activities among small-scale farmers of semi-arid (Agro-ecological zone 1) and sub-humid (Agro-ecological zone 2) areas of Zambia are integrated with crop production activities in what is termed as crop/livestock farming system. This is a closed system in which production of one enterprise depends on the other. In Zambia, crop production depends on draught animals for tillage of cropping area, animal manure for fertilisation of crops while livestock depend on crop residues for dry season feeding. Good quality grass is generally available in adequate amounts to support reasonable level of livestock productivity during the rainy season. But livestock rely on low quantity and poor quality, highly fibrous perennial grass from veld and fibrous crop residues during the dry season. These resources are inadequate to support optimum livestock productivity activities. Poor nutrition results in low rates of reproduction and production as well as increased susceptibility to diseases. With the increasing human population cropping land is expanding, leading to increased production of crop residues. This has however, reduced the grazing land available for ruminant production. In Zambia large quantities of crop residues (stovers, husks and straws, legume tops and hulls, sugar cane tops, cassava leaves, potato vines, etc.) are left in the field where they are wasted each year because small-scale farmers lack the knowledge on how best to use them. There is a need to find ways to reverse this situation by adapting known and workable technologies to local conditions and by introducing new approaches for improving the use of crop residues and poor quality fibrous feeds. Efforts should also be made to enlarge feed resource base. The technologies should be simple and effective. In the presence of a dynamic market system, livestock production in a crop/livestock system could be intensified and made profitable for small-scale farmers. (author)

  20. Effectiveness of conservation agriculture practices on soil erosion processes in semi-arid areas of Zimbabwe

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chikwari, Emmanuel; Mhaka, Luke; Gwandu, Tariro; Chipangura, Tafadzwa; Misi Manyanga, Amos; Sabastian Matsenyengwa, Nyasha; Rabesiranana, Naivo; Mabit, Lionel

    2016-04-01

    - The application of fallout radionuclides (FRNs) in soil erosion and redistribution studies has gained popularity since the late 1980s. In Zimbabwe, soil erosion research was mostly based on conventional methods which included the use of erosion plots for quantitative measurements and erosion models for predicting soil losses. Only limited investigation to explore the possibility of using Caesium-137 (Cs-137) has been reported in the early 1990s for undisturbed and cultivated lands in Zimbabwe. In this study, the Cs-137 technique was applied to assess the impact of soil conservation practices on soil losses and to develop strategies and support effective policies that help farmers in Zimbabwe for sustainable land management. The study was carried out at the Makoholi research station 30 km north of the Masvingo region which is located 260 km south of Harare. The area is semi-arid and the study site comprises coarse loamy sands, gleyic lixisols. The conservation agriculture (CA) practices used within the area since 1988 include (i) direct seeding (DS) with mulch, (ii) CA basins with mulch, and (iii) 18 years direct seeding, left fallow for seven years and turned into conventional tillage since 2012 (DS/F/C). The Cs-137 reference inventory was established at 214 ± 16 Bq/m2. The mean inventories for DS, CA basins and DS/F/C were 195, 190 and 214 Bq/m2 respectively. Using the conversion Mass Balance Model 2 on the Cs-137 data obtained along transects for each of the practices, gross erosion rates were found to be 7.5, 7.3 and 2.6 t/ha/yr for direct seeding, CA basins and the DS/F/C while the net erosion rates were found to be 3.8, 4.6 and 0 t/ha/yr respectively. Sediment delivery ratios were 50%, 63% and 2% in the respective order. These preliminary results showed the effectiveness of DS over CA basins in erosion control. The efficiency of fallowing in controlling excessive soil loss was significant in the plot that started as DS for 18 years but left fallow for 7

  1. Hydrodynamic influence on reservoir sustainability in semi-arid climate: A physicochemical and environmental isotopic study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ammar, Rawaa; Kazpard, Véronique; El Samrani, Antoine G; Amacha, Nabil; Saad, Zeinab; Chou, Lei

    2017-07-15

    Water scarcity and increasing water demand require the development of water management plans such as establishing artificial lakes and dams. Plans to meet water needs are faced by uprising challenges to improve water quality and to ensure the sustainability of hydro-projects. Environmental isotopes coupled to water physicochemical characteristics were investigated over a biennial cycle to assess both geomorphological and environmental impacts on the water quality of a reservoir situated in an intensively used agricultural watershed under a Mediterranean semi-arid climate. The particularity of the semi-arid climate and the diverse topography generate a continental and orographic rain effect on the isotopic composition of precipitation and the water recharged sources. The studied reservoir responds quickly to land-use activities and climatic changes as reflected by temporal and spatial variations of water chemistry and isotopic composition. Increasing changes in precipitation rate and dry periods significantly modified the water isotopic composition in the reservoir. During the first year, hydrogen (δD) and oxygen (δ 18 O) isotopes are depleted by 6 and 2‰ between dry and wet season, respectively. While a shift of -2‰ for δD and -1‰ for δ 18 O was detected during the second annual cycle. Environmental isotopic compositions demonstrate for the first time the occurrence of groundwater inflow to the central (Cz) and dam (Dz) zones of the Qaraaoun reservoir. The Cz and Dz can be considered as open water bodies subjected to dilution by groundwater inflow, which induces vertical mixing and reverse isotopic stratification of the water column. In the contrary, the river mouth zone acts as a closed system without groundwater intrusion, where heavy water accumulates and may act as a sink for contaminants during dry season. Groundwater influx acts as a dilution factor that renews the hypolimnion, and minimizes the perturbations induced by both internal

  2. Surficial weathering of iron sulfide mine tailings under semi-arid climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hayes, Sarah M.; Root, Robert A.; Perdrial, Nicolas; Maier, Raina M.; Chorover, Jon

    2014-09-01

    Mine wastes introduce anthropogenic weathering profiles to the critical zone that often remain unvegetated for decades after mining cessation. As such, they are vulnerable to wind and water dispersion of particulate matter to adjacent ecosystems and residential communities. In sulfide-rich ore tailings, propagation to depth of the oxidative weathering front controls the depth-variation in speciation of major and trace elements. Despite the prevalence of surficial mine waste deposits in arid regions of the globe, few prior studies have been conducted to resolve the near-surface profile of sulfide ore tailings weathered under semi-arid climate. We investigated relations between gossan oxidative reaction-front propagation and the molecular speciation of iron and sulfur in tailings subjected to weathering in a semi-arid climate at an EPA Superfund Site in central Arizona (USA). Here we report a multi-method data set combining wet chemical and synchrotron-based X-ray diffraction (XRD) and X-ray absorption near-edge spectroscopy (XANES) methods to resolve the tight coupling of iron (Fe) and sulfur (S) geochemical changes in the top 2 m of tailings. Despite nearly invariant Fe and S concentration with depth (130-140 and 100-120 g kg-1, respectively), a sharp redox gradient and distinct morphological change was observed within the top 0.5 m, associated with a progressive oxidative alteration of ferrous sulfides to (oxyhydr)oxides and (hydroxy)sulfates. Transformation is nearly complete in surficial samples. Trends in molecular-scale alteration were co-located with a decrease in pH from 7.3 to 2.3, and shifts in Fe and S lability as measured via chemical extraction. Initial weathering products, ferrihydrite and gypsum, transform to schwertmannite, then jarosite-group minerals with an accompanying decrease in pH. Interestingly, thermodynamically stable phases such as goethite and hematite were not detected in any samples, but ferrihydrite was observed even in samples with

  3. Water volume reduction increases eutrophication risk in tropical semi-arid reservoirs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carlos Alberto Nascimento da Rocha Junior

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Aim Global patterns of temperature and precipitation have significantly changed over the last century and nearly all predictions point to even greater changes by the end of 2100. Long periods of drought in semi-arid regions generally reduce reservoirs and lakes water level, increasing the nutrients concentrations in the water. Our principal hypothesis is that water volume reduction, driven by prolonged droughts, will increase reservoirs susceptibility to eutrophication and accordingly an increase in trophic state. To test this hypothesis, we used a comparative analysis of ecosystems in a space-for-time substitution approach, in a Brazilian semi-arid region, to predict the consequences of reservoirs water volume reduction on key limnological variables. Methods We sampled 16 reservoirs located in two sub-basins with contrasting rainfall regimes, inserted on Piranhas-Açu watershed. The Seridó River basin (SB is dry and the Piancó River basin (SB is humid, with annual mean precipitation of 500 and 700 mm, respectively. Linear regressions analyzes were performed to assess whether the percentage of maximum volume stored (%MVS is a good predictor for total phosphorus (TP, total nitrogen (TN and chlorophyll-a (CHLA. In addition, a two factorial analysis of variance (two-way ANOVA was performed to test for period (dry, very dry and extremely dry, basin (SB and PB and their interactions effects on TP, TN, CHLA, conductivity, turbidity, and Secchi depth. Results The results showed a reduction in the reservoirs %MVS both for PB and SB regions. At the extremely dry period, all reservoirs were classified as eutrophic, but TP concentrations reached much higher values in SB than in PB. The linear regressions analyses showed that the TP and TN were negatively related to %MVS during all periods sampled. The two-way ANOVA showed that there were significant basin and period effects on TP, TN, Secchi depth and turbidity, whereas for CHLA and conductivity

  4. Water quality modelling of an impacted semi-arid catchment using flow data from the WEAP model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Slaughter, Andrew R.; Mantel, Sukhmani K.

    2018-04-01

    The continuous decline in water quality in many regions is forcing a shift from quantity-based water resources management to a greater emphasis on water quality management. Water quality models can act as invaluable tools as they facilitate a conceptual understanding of processes affecting water quality and can be used to investigate the water quality consequences of management scenarios. In South Africa, the Water Quality Systems Assessment Model (WQSAM) was developed as a management-focussed water quality model that is relatively simple to be able to utilise the small amount of available observed data. Importantly, WQSAM explicitly links to systems (yield) models routinely used in water resources management in South Africa by using their flow output to drive water quality simulations. Although WQSAM has been shown to be able to represent the variability of water quality in South African rivers, its focus on management from a South African perspective limits its use to within southern African regions for which specific systems model setups exist. Facilitating the use of WQSAM within catchments outside of southern Africa and within catchments for which these systems model setups to not exist would require WQSAM to be able to link to a simple-to-use and internationally-applied systems model. One such systems model is the Water Evaluation and Planning (WEAP) model, which incorporates a rainfall-runoff component (natural hydrology), and reservoir storage, return flows and abstractions (systems modelling), but within which water quality modelling facilities are rudimentary. The aims of the current study were therefore to: (1) adapt the WQSAM model to be able to use as input the flow outputs of the WEAP model and; (2) provide an initial assessment of how successful this linkage was by application of the WEAP and WQSAM models to the Buffalo River for historical conditions; a small, semi-arid and impacted catchment in the Eastern Cape of South Africa. The simulations of

  5. Using ISBA model for partitioning evapotranspiration into soil evaporation and plant transpiration of irrigated crops under semi-arid climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aouade, Ghizlane; Jarlan, Lionel; Ezzahar, Jamal; Er-raki, Salah; Napoly, Adrien; Benkaddour, Abdelfettah; Khabba, Said; Boulet, Gilles; Chehbouni, Abdelghani; Boone, Aaron

    2016-04-01

    The Haouz region, typical of southern Mediterranean basins, is characterized by a semi-arid climate, with average annual rainfall of 250, whilst evaporative demand is about 1600 mm per year. Under these conditions, crop irrigation is inevitable for growth and development. Irrigated agriculture currently consumes the majority of total available water (up to 85%), making it critical for more efficient water use. Flood irrigation is widely practiced by the majority of the farmers (more than 85 %) with an efficiency which does not exceed 50%. In this context, a good knowledge of the partitioning of evapotranspiration (ET) into soil evaporation and plant transpiration is of crucial need for improving the irrigation scheduling and thus water use efficiency. In this study, the ISBA (Interactions Soil-Biosphere-Atmosphere) model was used for estimating ET and its partition over an olive orchard and a wheat field located near to the Marrakech City (Centre of Morocco). Two versions were evaluated: standard version which simulates a single energy balance for the soil and vegetation and the recently developed multiple energy balance (MEB) version which solves a separate energy balance for each of the two sources. Eddy covariance system, which provides the sensible and latent heat fluxes and meteorological instruments were operated during years 2003-2004 for the Olive Orchard and during years 2013 for wheat. The transpiration component was measured using a Sap flow system during summer over the wheat crop and stable isotope samples were gathered over wheat. The comparison between ET estimated by ISBA model and that measured by the Eddy covariance system showed that MEB version yielded a remarkable improvement compared to the standard version. The root mean square error (RMSE) and the correlation coefficient (R²) were about 45wm-2 and 0.8 for MEB version. By contrast, for the standard version, the RMSE and R² were about 60wm-2 and 0.7, respectively. The result also showed that

  6. Socio-economic effect on socially-deprived communities of developing drinking water quality problems in arid and semi-arid area of central Rajasthan

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    I. Husain

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Rajasthan is well known for its Great Thar desert. Central Rajasthan has an arid to semi-arid environment. The area faces either scarcity of water or poor quality of drinking water. In some areas water is transported 2 km or more, which uses time, energy and money. Rich people have their own sources, which is restricted for use by others. Such conditions are affecting socially-deprived communities, both socially and economically. Groundwater is a major source of drinking water due to the unavailability of surface water. There is a lack of groundwater quality knowledge in the community and the data available is hard to understand by consumers. The CCME Water Quality Index is a tool to simplify the water quality report by rating the water on quality standards. It provides meaningful summaries of overall water quality and trends, which is accessible to non-technical lay people. In the present study the objective is to examine the groundwater quality of six districts (Ajmer, Bhilwara, Pali, Rajasamand, Nagaur and Jodhpur, centrally located in Rajasthan, with arid and semi-arid conditions. CCME WQI is also evaluated to produce quality data in a form to be understood by the community. A total of 4369 groundwater sources in 1680 villages from six districts (76 546 km2 were collected and examined. Results are outlined in the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS: 10500, 2012 and 2952 sources are unsafe for drinking. According to CCME WQI groundwater of 93 villages is poor, 343 villages are marginal, and 369 villages are fair in quality. Toxicological studies of unsafe drinking water and their remedial measures are also discussed. A tentative correlation between prevailing water-borne diseases and quality parameter has also been shown

  7. TANNIN POTENCIAL EVALUATION OF SIX FOREST SPECIES OF BRAZILIAN SEMI-ARID REGION

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    Juarez Benigno Paes

    2006-09-01

    Full Text Available The hide tanners of Brazil Northeast region have in Anadenanthera colubrina (Vell. Brenan var. cebil (Gris. Alts. their only source of tannins. As the activity of exploration is extractiviste without the concern of recovery of explored trees and the absence of other tannin sources, exposes the specie to exhaustion and the tanners and extractivistes family to go bankruptcy. Thus, this work aimed to evaluate the tanin potential of Prosopis juliflora, Anadenanthera colubrina var. cebil, Anacardium occidentale, Mimosa tenuiflora, Mimosa arenosa and Croton sonderianus. These species, Anacardium occidentale, Mimosa arenosa and Mimosa temuiflora showed, respectively, 19.83%, 18.11% and 17.74% of tannins. The Anadenanthera colubrina showed 11.89% and was inferior them mentioned species. The Prosopis juliflora and Croton sonderianus showed 3.02% and 6.62%, respectively. The abundance of Mimosa arenosa and Mimosa tenuiflora in the Brazilian Semi-arid proposes them as potential of tannin production. However, there is need of researches to verify their technical viability for skins, as well as for other uses for tannins.

  8. Aquaculture and mangrove ecosys of temproductivity in arid and semi-arid Balochistan coastal environments

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Khattak, M.I.

    2005-01-01

    A survey of coastal shrimp-pond operations, and the structure and functioning of coastal mangrove forest ecosystems with particular reference to Ecuador, indicates that certain physical parameters may be good predictors of key biological processes. The most important factors are those associated with the regional water balance, tidal and surface water circulation patterns, and the physicochemical properties of the underlying soils. One important conclusion to emerge from the analyses is that at both regional and local levels, well-developed and productive mangrove forest areas often represent the least desirable sites for the construction and operation of commercial shrimp ponds. In certain regards semi-arid and arid coastal environments where mangroves are poorly developed, shrimp ponds that are constructed on barren mud flats and inland salt pans appear to have the potential to produce higher yields of shrimp with fewer management problems and at a relatively lower production cost. The data and research results from coast of Baluchistan and elsewhere are briefly summarized to suggest why productive mangrove ecosystems to not make the best areas in which to obtain maximum shrimp-pond yields. (author)

  9. Evaluation of evapotranspiration methods for model validation in a semi-arid watershed in northern China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. Schneider

    2007-05-01

    Full Text Available This study evaluates the performance of four evapotranspiration methods (Priestley-Taylor, Penman-Monteith, Hargreaves and Makkink of differing complexity in a semi-arid environment in north China. The results are compared to observed water vapour fluxes derived from eddy flux measurements. The analysis became necessary after discharge simulations using an automatically calibrated version of the Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT failed to reproduce runoff measurements. Although the study area receives most of the annual rainfall during the vegetation period, high temperatures can cause water scarcity. We investigate which evapotranspiration method is most suitable for this environment and whether the model performance of SWAT can be improved with the most adequate evapotranspiration method.

    The evapotranspiration models were tested in two consecutive years with different rainfall amounts. In general, the simple Hargreaves and Makkink equations outmatch the more complex Priestley-Taylor and Penman-Monteith methods, although their performance depended on water availability. Effects on the quality of SWAT runoff simulations, however, remained minor. Although evapotranspiration is an important process in the hydrology of this steppe environment, our analysis indicates that other driving factors still need to be identified to improve SWAT simulations.

  10. Estimating soil erosion in Natura 2000 areas located on three semi-arid Mediterranean Islands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zaimes, George N; Emmanouloudis, Dimitris; Iakovoglou, Valasia

    2012-03-01

    A major initiative in Europe is the protection of its biodiversity. To accomplish this, specific areas from all countries of the European Union are protected by the establishment of the "Natura 2000" network. One of the major threats to these areas and in general to ecosystems is soil erosion. The objective of this study was to quantitatively estimate surface soil losses for three of these protected areas that are located on semi-arid islands of the Mediterranean. One Natura 2000 area was selected from each of the following islands: Sicily in Italy, Cyprus and Rhodes in Greece. To estimate soil losses, Gerlach troughs were used. These troughs were established on slopes that ranged from 35-40% in four different vegetation types: i) Quercus ilex and Quercus rotundifolia forests, ii) Pinus brutia forests, iii) "Phrygana" shrublands and iv) vineyards. The shrublands had the highest soil losses (270 kg ha(-1) yr(-1)) that were 5-13 times more than the other three vegetation types. Soil losses in these shrublands should be considered a major concern. However, the other vegetation types also had high soil losses (21-50 kg ha(-1) yr(-1)). Conclusively, in order to enhance and conserve the biodiversity of these Natura 2000 areas protective management measures should be taken into consideration to decrease soil losses.

  11. Assessing Rangeland Attributes On Semi-Arid Zone Of North Darfur State Sudan

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohamed Almontasir A. M. Mohamed

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract The study was conducted over a two years period of 2012 and 2013 at three sites of Alfashir locality Ummarahik 25km north of Alfashir Fashar in eastern part of Alfashir about 5km and Berka 30km west of Alfashir Western Sudan in semi-arid zone. The aim of this study was to assess rangeland attributes. Measurements of plant density vegetation cover range production and carrying capacity were assessed. Results showed that total forage production was low and inadequate to satisfy requirements of livestock for inhabiting the area average range production all over the area was found to be 50.68 kgha and 59.21 kgha for the seasons 2012 and 2013 respectively. The average ground cover was about 34.71 and 42.41 for two seasons. The average plant density for the first season was 27.1 plantm2 while the average plant density for the second season was 29.4 plantm2. The study concluded that unwise utilization and exploitation of the rangelands particularly by man causes range deterioration and serious reduction in range production in both quantity and quality so the study suggested that improvement and rehabilitation such lands rangelands should be done. Further research work is needed to assess rangeland attributes across different ecological zones in North Darfur State.

  12. The management of nutrients and water in the west African semi-arid tropics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bationo, A.; Bielders, C.L.; Duivenbooden, N. van; Buerkert, A.C.; Seyni, F.

    1998-01-01

    At present, the farming systems in the west African semi-arid tropics are unsustainable, low in productivity, and destructive to the environment. A striking feature of the soils is their inherently low fertility, with negative plant-nutrient balance in many cropping systems. Research in N-use efficiency (NUE) indicated that calcium ammonium nitrate (CAN) significantly outperformed urea on millet. Fertilizer losses, greater for urea (53%) than for CAN (25%) were believed to be due to ammonia volatilization. Continuous cropping resulted in lower yields compared to a cereal grown after cowpea or groundnut, and NUE was improved with crop rotation. Phosphorus deficiency is a major constraint. Phosphate rock (PR), indigenous to the region, e.g. at Tahoua in Niger and Tilemsi in Mali, is suitable for direct application. Partial acidulation of low-solubility PR improves agronomic effectiveness. Long-term soil-fertility management trials indicate that although application of mineral fertilizers increase yields, they alone cannot sustain productivity. When mineral fertilizers are combined with other technologies, such as the return of crop residues and manure, productive and sustainable production systems are possible. Water-use efficiency increased dramatically with the addition of plant nutrients. Technologies for land surface management and water harvesting, and appropriate cropping systems with careful varietal selection all contribute to the optimization of soil-water use. Future research should focus on water and nutrient interactions and on understanding why presently available improved technologies are not adopted by farmers even when using a participatory approach. (author)

  13. Tetracycline resistance in semi-arid agricultural soils under long-term swine effluent application.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Popova, Inna E; Josue, Rosemarie D R; Deng, Shiping; Hattey, Jeffory A

    2017-05-04

    Annually, millions pounds of antibiotics are released unmetabolized into environment along with animal wastes. Accumulation of antibiotics in soils could potentially induce the persistence of antibiotic resistant bacteria. Antibiotics such as tetracyclines and tetracycline-resistant bacteria have been previously detected in fields fertilized with animal manure. However, little is known about the accumulation of tetracyclines and the development of tetracycline resistance in semi-arid soils. Here we demonstrate that continuous land application with swine effluent, containing trace amounts of chlortetracycline, does not necessarily induce tetracycline resistance in soil bacteria. Based on the testing of more than 3,000 bacteria isolated from the amended soils, we found no significant increase in the occurrence and level of chlortetracycline resistant bacteria in soils after 15 years of continuous swine effluent fertilization. To account for a possible transfer of tetracycline-resistant bacteria originated from the swine effluent to soils, we analyzed two commonly found tetracycline resistant genes, tet(O) and tet(M), in the swine effluent and fertilized soils. Both genes were present in the swine effluent, however, they were not detectable in soils applied with swine effluent. Our data demonstrate that agronomic application of manure from antibiotic treated swine effluent does not necessarily result in the development of antibiotic bacterial resistance in soils. Apparently, concentrations of chlortetracycline present in manure are not significant enough to induce the development of antibiotic bacterial resistance.

  14. Aeolian dust nutrient contributions increase with substrate age in semi-arid ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coble, A. A.; Hart, S. C.; Ketterer, M. E.; Newman, G. S.

    2013-12-01

    Rock-derived nutrients supplied by mineral weathering become depleted over time, and without an additional nutrient source the ecosystem may eventually regress or reach a terminal steady state. Previous studies have demonstrated that aeolian dust act as parent materials of soils and important nutrients to plants in arid regions, but the relative importance of these exogenous nutrients to the function of dry ecosystems during soil development is uncertain. Here, using strontium isotopes as a tracer and a well-constrained, three million year old substrate age gradient, we show that aeolian-derived nutrients become increasingly important to plant-available soil pools and tree (Pinus edulis) growth during the latter stages of soil development in a semi-arid climate. Furthermore, the depth of nutrient uptake increased on older substrates, suggesting that trees in arid regions acquire nutrients from greater depths as ecosystem development progresses presumably in response to nutrient depletion in the more weathered surface soils. Our results contribute to the unification of biogeochemical theory by demonstrating the similarity in roles of atmospheric nutrient inputs during ecosystem development across contrasting climates.

  15. Hydric balance in subsistence culture in the semi-arid soil of Northeast Brazil

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Antonino, Antonio C.D.; Sampaio, Everardo V.S.B.; Dall'Olio, Attilio; Salcedo, Ignacio H.; Bernardo, Ana L.; Soares, Adriano A.M.

    1997-01-01

    In spite of being the limiting factor for agricultural production, little has been studied about water dynamics in the soil-plant-atmosphere system in the semi-arid northeastern Brazil. To fill this gap, an experiment was established at Coxixola, PB, with four treatments (corn and beans crops, bare soil and soil covered with mulch), plots 7.7 x 10 m and planting spacing between holes, of 1.1 x 1.0 m. Rainfall was monitored with a pluviometer, evaporation with a class A tank and soil water with a neutron probe with daily measurements each 10 cm until 100 cm depth. the crop cycle, from March to July, was divided into nine periods, 13-14 days each. Results confirm the water limitation, with 212 mm rainfall during the cycle, 81% concentrated in the four first periods. Variations in the water storage in the soil profile, for the four treatments, followed variations in rainfall. Bare soil and much had similar results. Average daily real evapotranspiration for beans was 1.8 mm and for corn 1.9 mm. Average daily real evaporation for bare soil and much was 0.78 e 0.85 mm, respectively. (author). 9 refs., 2 figs., 2 tabs

  16. Droughts and governance impacts on water scarcity: an~analysis in the Brazilian semi-arid

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. C. S. Silva

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Extreme events are part of climate variability. Dealing with variability is still a challenge that might be increased due to climate change. However, impacts of extreme events are not only dependent on their variability, but also on management and governance. In Brazil, its semi-arid region is vulnerable to extreme events, especially droughts, for centuries. Actually, other Brazilian regions that have been mostly concerned with floods are currently also experiencing droughts. This article evaluates how a combination between climate variability and water governance might affect water scarcity and increase the impacts of extreme events on some regions. For this evaluation, Ostrom's framework for analyzing social-ecological systems (SES was applied. Ostrom's framework is useful for understanding interactions between resource systems, governance systems and resource users. This study focuses on social-ecological systems located in a drought-prone region of Brazil. Two extreme events were selected, one in 1997–2000, when Brazil's new water policy was very young, and the other one in 2012–2015. The analysis of SES considering Ostrom's principle "Clearly defined boundaries" showed that deficiencies in water management cause the intensification of drought's impacts for the water users. The reasons are more related to water management and governance problems than to drought event magnitude or climate change. This is a problem that holdup advances in dealing with extreme events.

  17. Determining the Frequency of Dry Lake Bed Formation in Semi-Arid Mongolia From Satellite Data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yuta Demura

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available In the Mongolian Plateau, the desert steppe, mountains, and dry lake bed surfaces may affect the process of dust storm emissions. Among these three surface types, dry lake beds are considered to contribute a substantial amount of global dust emissions and to be responsible for “hot spots” of dust outbreaks. The land cover types in the study area were broadly divided into three types, namely desert steppe, mountains, and dry lake beds, by a classification based on Normalized Difference Water Index (NDWI calculated from MODIS Terra satellite images, and Digital Elevation Model (DEM. This dry lake beds extracting method using remote sensing offers a new technique for identifying dust hot spots and potential untapped groundwater in the dry lands of the Gobi region. In the study area, frequencies of dry lake bed formation were calculated during the period of 2001 to 2014. The potential dry lake area corresponded well with the length of the river network based on hydrogeological characterization (R2 = 0.77, p < 0.001. We suggest that the threshold between dry lake bed areas and the formation of ephemeral lakes in semi-arid regions is eight days of total precipitation.

  18. Analysis of Precipitation Characteristics during 1957-2012 in the Semi-Arid Loess Plateau, China.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Weijun Zhao

    Full Text Available Precipitation is the only water supply and most important factor affecting vegetation growth on the slopes of semi-arid Loess Plateau of China. Based on precipitation data from 7 synoptic stations in the study area over the period 1957-2012, the trends of precipitation and standardized precipitation index (SPI were analyzed by using linear regression, Mann-Kendall, and Spearman's Rho tests at the 5% significance level. The results show that (1 the precipitation fluctuation of monthly precipitation was intense (coefficients of variation> 100%, and the drier years were recorded as 1965 and 1995 at all stations. (2 The significant change trend of different stations varied on different time scales: the Changwu station had a significant decreasing trend in April (-0.488 mm/year and November (-0.249 mm/year, while Luochuan station was in April (-0.457 mm/year; Changwu station displayed a significant increasing trends in winter (0.220 mm/year and a significant decreasing trends in spring (-0.770 mm/year. The significant decreasing trends in annual precipitation were detected at the Suide (-2.034 mm/year and Yan'an (-2.129 mm/year stations. (3 The SPI-12 series analysis suggests that the drought degree of Yulin and Changwu was the lowest and that of Hengshan was the highest among the 7 synoptic stations.

  19. Influence of Microclimate on Semi-Arid Montane Conifer Forest Sapflux Velocity in Complex Terrain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thirouin, K. R.; Barnard, D. M.; Barnard, H. R.

    2016-12-01

    Microclimate variation in complex terrain is key to our understanding of large-scale climate change effects on montane ecosystems. Modern climate models forecast that semi-arid montane ecosystems in the western United States are to experience increases in temperature, number of extreme drought events, and decreases in annual snowpack, all of which will potentially influence ecosystem water, carbon, and energy balances. In this study, we developed response curves that describe the relationships between stem sapflux velocity, air temperature (Tair), incoming solar radiation (SWin), soil temperature (Tsoil), and soil moisture content (VWC) in sites of Pinus contorta and Pinus ponderosa distributed along an elevation and aspect gradient in the montane zone of the Central Rocky Mountains, Colorado, USA. Among sites we found sapflux velocity to be significantly correlated with all four environmental factors (p physiological differences, the highest elevation south-facing P. contorta site behaved similarly to the south-facing P. ponderosa, suggesting that environmental drivers may dominate the response. In response to Tair, peak sapflux velocity occurred at 12-13 degrees C at all sites except the mid-slope north-facing P. contorta site, which also had the lowest Tsoil. The responses of stem sapflux velocity to climate drivers indicate that forest transpiration is regulated by microclimate gradients across small spatial scales in complex terrain, which need to be characterized in order to understand broader ecosystem dynamics and the role that large-scale climate change will play in these systems.

  20. Radioecological characterization of a uranium mining site located in a semi-arid region in Brazil

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fernandes, Horst M.; Lamego Simoes Filho, F. Fernando; Perez, Valeska; Franklin, Mariza Ramalho; Gomiero, Luiz Alberto

    2006-01-01

    The work presents the radioecological characterization of the new Brazilian uranium mining and milling site located in a semi-arid region of the country. The process characterization demonstrated that in heap leach plants most of the 226 Ra remains in the leached ore. Despite the potential higher availability of radium isotopes in the soils of the studied region the lack of precipitation in that area reduces the leaching/mobilization of the radionuclides. High 226 Ra and 228 Ra concentrations were found in manioc while 21 Pb was significant in pasture. It was suggested that a range from 10 -3 to 10 -1 may conveniently encompass most of the transfer factors (TF) values for soil/plant systems (i.e. involving different cultures, different soils and natural radionuclides). Impacts due to aerial transportation of aerosols and radon generated in the mining were proved to be minimal and restricted to an area not greater than 15 km 2 . Finally, uranium complexation by carbonates was shown to be the main mechanism responding for the elevated radionuclide concentration in groundwater

  1. Droughts and governance impacts on water scarcity: an~analysis in the Brazilian semi-arid

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silva, A. C. S.; Galvão, C. O.; Silva, G. N. S.

    2015-06-01

    Extreme events are part of climate variability. Dealing with variability is still a challenge that might be increased due to climate change. However, impacts of extreme events are not only dependent on their variability, but also on management and governance. In Brazil, its semi-arid region is vulnerable to extreme events, especially droughts, for centuries. Actually, other Brazilian regions that have been mostly concerned with floods are currently also experiencing droughts. This article evaluates how a combination between climate variability and water governance might affect water scarcity and increase the impacts of extreme events on some regions. For this evaluation, Ostrom's framework for analyzing social-ecological systems (SES) was applied. Ostrom's framework is useful for understanding interactions between resource systems, governance systems and resource users. This study focuses on social-ecological systems located in a drought-prone region of Brazil. Two extreme events were selected, one in 1997-2000, when Brazil's new water policy was very young, and the other one in 2012-2015. The analysis of SES considering Ostrom's principle "Clearly defined boundaries" showed that deficiencies in water management cause the intensification of drought's impacts for the water users. The reasons are more related to water management and governance problems than to drought event magnitude or climate change. This is a problem that holdup advances in dealing with extreme events.

  2. Prevalence of gastrointestinal nematode infections in goat flocks on semi-arid rangelands of northeastern Mexico.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Olivas-Salazar, Raquel; Estrada-Angulo, Alfredo; Mellado, Miguel; Aguilar-Caballero, Armando Jacinto; Castro-Pérez, Beatriz Isabel; Gutiérrez-Blanco, Eduardo; Ruiz-Zárate, Fernando

    2018-04-01

    The objective of this study was to determine the prevalence of gastrointestinal nematode (GIN) infection in goat flocks on semi-arid rangelands of northeastern Mexico (25° N, 350-400 mm annual precipitation). The study included 668 pluriparous goats from 18 herds in five municipalities of Coahuila and Nuevo Leon, Mexico. Five genetic groups were considered (predominance of Boer, Nubian, Alpine, Saanen, and Toggenburg). Fecal samples were taken from the rectum of each animal to determine the number of eggs per gram (EPG) of GIN. The prevalence of flocks with GIN infections was 88.9%. Similar results were observed for the number of goats infected in the flocks. The Alpine breed presented the highest prevalence and highest EPG loads of GIN, whereas Boer and Nubian were the genetic groups with the lowest (P arid zones of Mexico was found a high prevalence of infections with gastrointestinal nematodes. The municipality and the breed of the animals were factors that showed influence on this prevalence and the level of infection of the goats.

  3. Leaf anatomy of six species of Heliotropiaceae Schrad. from the Brazilian semi-arid region

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elisabeth Emília Augusta Dantas Tölke

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available The family Heliotropiaceae has more than 450 species, mainly distributed in the tropics and subtropics. In Brazil, it is represented by the genera Euploca Nutt., Heliotropium L., Myriopus Small and Tournefortia L. The aim of this study was to describe the leaf anatomy of six species of Heliotropiaceae recorded in the semi-arid region of Brazil: E. polyphylla (Lehm. J.I.M. Melo & Semir, E. procumbens (Mill. Diane & Hilger, H. angiospermum Murray, H. curassavicum L., M. rubicundus (Salzm. ex DC. Luebert and M. salzmannii (DC. Diane & Hilger. Besides contributing to the knowledge of the anatomy of the representatives of the family in the Caatinga (Brazilian savannah, we also sought to determine and highlight the anatomical features adaptive to the region and to identify features with potential diagnostic value. Leaf structures were analyzed by light microscopy and scanning electron microscopy. Additional tests were also carried out to detect starch and total lipids. The morphological variation and the distribution of trichomes were the most relevant features for species diagnosis. The distribution of stomata in M. salzmannii and H. angiospermum differed from that described in other papers, which demonstrates the anatomical plasticity of these species. This is the first report describing the leaf blade of M. rubicundus.

  4. Leaf anatomy of six species of Heliotropiaceae Schrad. from the Brazilian semi-arid region

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elisabeth Tölke

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available http://dx.doi.org/10.5007/2175-7925.2015v28n3p1 The family Heliotropiaceae has more than 450 species, mainly distributed in the tropics and subtropics. In Brazil, it is represented by the genera Euploca Nutt., Heliotropium L., Myriopus Small and Tournefortia L. The aim of this study was to describe the leaf anatomy of six species of Heliotropiaceae recorded in the semi-arid region of Brazil: E. polyphylla (Lehm. J.I.M. Melo & Semir, E. procumbens (Mill. Diane & Hilger, H. angiospermum Murray, H. curassavicum L., M. rubicundus (Salzm. ex DC. Luebert and M. salzmannii (DC. Diane & Hilger. Besides contributing to the knowledge of the anatomy of the representatives of the family in the Caatinga (Brazilian savannah, we also sought to determine and highlight the anatomical features adaptive to the region and to identify features with potential diagnostic value. Leaf structures were analyzed by light microscopy and scanning electron microscopy. Additional tests were also carried out to detect starch and total lipids. The morphological variation and the distribution of trichomes were the most relevant features for species diagnosis. The distribution of stomata in M. salzmannii and H. angiospermum differed from that described in other papers, which demonstrates the anatomical plasticity of these species. This is the first report describing the leaf blade of M. rubicundus.

  5. Profiles of innovators in a semi-arid smallholder agricultural environment in south west Zimbabwe

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mutsvangwa-Sammie, Eness P.; Manzungu, Emmanuel; Siziba, Shephard

    2017-08-01

    Innovations are regarded as critical to improving the efficiency, productivity and effectiveness of African agriculture. However, few efforts have been directed at understanding 'agricultural innovators', especially among smallholder farmers in sub-Saharan Africa who face low agricultural productivity and widespread food insecurity. This paper investigates the profile of innovators from a local perspective in a semi-arid smallholder farming area in south-west Zimbabwe. The paper is based on data collected from key informant interviews and a household questionnaire survey administered to 239 households from Gwanda and Insiza districts between 2013 and 2014. Qualities or attributes of an innovator (which constitute the profile of an innovator) identified by key informants included: resource endowment; social networks; education; and enthusiasm (passionate and hardworking). The attributes were used in a logit regression model to estimate the probability of the 239 households exhibiting the attributes of an innovator. Social networks and resource endowment, as depicted by amount of land cultivated, were found to significantly influence the probability of an individual being an innovator. Interestingly, the common attributes of education or belonging to an innovation platform used by extension and development agents, were found not to influence the probability of one being an innovator. The paper concludes that understanding local perceptions of innovators, which is based on appreciation of the socio-economic and biophysical circumstances, should be used to identify a 'basket' of context specific innovations that have potential to address the diverse needs of rural households farming households.

  6. Declining agricultural production in rapidly urbanizing semi-arid regions: policy tradeoffs and sustainability indicators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dozier, André Q.; Arabi, Mazdak; Wostoupal, Benjamin C.; Goemans, Christopher G.; Zhang, Yao; Paustian, Keith

    2017-08-01

    In rapidly urbanizing semi-arid regions, increasing amounts of historically irrigated cropland lies permanently fallowed due to water court policies as agricultural water rights are voluntarily being sold to growing cities. This study develops an integrative framework for assessing the effects of population growth and land use change on agricultural production and evaluating viability of alternative management strategies, including alternative agricultural transfer methods, regional water ownership restrictions, and urban conservation. A partial equilibrium model of a spatially-diverse regional water rights market is built in application of the framework to an exemplary basin. The model represents agricultural producers as profit-maximizing suppliers and municipalities as cost-minimizing consumers of water rights. Results indicate that selling an agricultural water right today is worth up to two times more than 40 years of continued production. All alternative policies that sustain agricultural cropland and crop production decrease total agricultural profitability by diminishing water rights sales revenue, but in doing so, they also decrease municipal water acquisition costs. Defining good indicators and incorporating adequate spatial and temporal detail are critical to properly analyzing policy impacts. To best improve agricultural profit from production and sale of crops, short-term solutions include alternative agricultural transfer methods while long-term solutions incorporate urban conservation.

  7. Isotope studies of a thick unsaturated zone in a semi-arid area of Southern Africa

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Butler, M.J.; Verhagen, B.Th.

    2001-01-01

    Unsaturated zone profiles ranging in depth from 8 m to 22 m were obtained by hand augering an aeolian sand cover in the southern reaches of the semi-arid Kalahari thirstland. Moisture contents were rather low (<3 wt.%); in situ moisture chloride concentrations, measured by selective ion electrode following elutriation, are generally <500 ppm. Deuterium in the moisture was measured mass spectrometrically by direct quantitative conversion to hydrogen on zinc metal of moist soil samples. A novel technique of direct equilibration was developed for oxygen-18 analysis. Neither a thermonuclear tritium peak nor a stable isotope evaporation inversion near the surface could be observed in any of the profiles. Remarkable differences both laterally and vertically are observed in most parameters measured between profiles taken a few tens of metres apart. At greater depths, these differences become less pronounced. Recharge estimates based on chloride differ markedly from those obtained from tritium. Although the stable isotope values of the underlying saturated zone are similar to moisture in the deeper sections of the unsaturated zone profiles, the markedly lower chloride concentrations point towards preferential or bypass flow as an important mechanism of ground water recharge in the area. This can be regarded as a benchmark site on account of the wealth of unsaturated zone data as well as the detailed and ongoing rainfall record. (author)

  8. Groundwater recharge estimation under semi arid climate: Case of Northern Gafsa watershed, Tunisia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Melki, Achraf; Abdollahi, Khodayar; Fatahi, Rouhallah; Abida, Habib

    2017-08-01

    Natural groundwater recharge under semi arid climate, like rainfall, is subjected to large variations in both time and space and is therefore very difficult to predict. Nevertheless, in order to set up any strategy for water resources management in such regions, understanding the groundwater recharge variability is essential. This work is interested in examining the impact of rainfall on the aquifer system recharge in the Northern Gafsa Plain in Tunisia. The study is composed of two main parts. The first is interested in the analysis of rainfall spatial and temporal variability in the study basin while the second is devoted to the simulation of groundwater recharge. Rainfall analysis was performed based on annual precipitation data recorded in 6 rainfall stations over a period of 56 years (1960-2015). Potential evapotranspiration data were also collected from 1960 to 2011 (52 years). The hydrologic distributed model WetSpass was used for the estimation of groundwater recharge. Model calibration was performed based on an assessment of the agreement between the sum of recharge and runoff values estimated by the WetSpass hydrological model and those obtained by the climatic method. This latter is based on the difference calculated between rainfall and potential evapotranspiration recorded at each rainy day. Groundwater recharge estimation, on monthly scale, showed that average annual precipitation (183.3 mm/year) was partitioned to 5, 15.3, 36.8, and 42.8% for interception, runoff, actual evapotranspiration and recharge respectively.

  9. Dynamic modeling of potentially conflicting energy reduction strategies for residential structures in semi-arid climates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hester, Nathan; Li, Ke; Schramski, John R; Crittenden, John

    2012-04-30

    Globally, residential energy consumption continues to rise due to a variety of trends such as increasing access to modern appliances, overall population growth, and the overall increase of electricity distribution. Currently, residential energy consumption accounts for approximately one-fifth of total U.S. energy consumption. This research analyzes the effectiveness of a range of energy-saving measures for residential houses in semi-arid climates. These energy-saving measures include: structural insulated panels (SIP) for exterior wall construction, daylight control, increased window area, efficient window glass suitable for the local weather, and several combinations of these. Our model determined that energy consumption is reduced by up to 6.1% when multiple energy savings technologies are combined. In addition, pre-construction technologies (structural insulated panels (SIPs), daylight control, and increased window area) provide roughly 4 times the energy savings when compared to post-construction technologies (window blinds and efficient window glass). The model also illuminated the importance variations in local climate and building configuration; highlighting the site-specific nature of this type of energy consumption quantification for policy and building code considerations. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  10. Artemisia annua L.: agro-techniques for semi-arid environments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcello Scarcella

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available Artemisia annua L. is an aromatic annual plant native in Asia, probably in China, and is widespread in all temperate regions. Aerial parts contain aromatic volatile oils and non-volatile sesquiterpenes used in pharmacopoeia. The most important sesquiterpene is artemisinin and its derivatives, which are used as a remedy against malaria. In the Mediterranean region, interest in cultivating Artemisia resulted in emerging industrial activities demanding local biomass with high content of artemisinin to start new production chains. The goal of this paper was to find out appropriate agro-techniques for semi-arid climate regions to be followed by local growers in order to get convenient yield in terms of biomass and artemisinin content. The specific research objectives were to test germplasm and to develop a pilot model for A. annua, including the main agro-techniques (plant density, nitrogen supply and irrigation requirements. Results were obtained after a two-year field study carried out in an area of Salento region. The effects of the season and of the tested cultivars were not significant. The highest biomass production (36 t ha-1 of dry biomass, associated with a high percentage of artemisinin (0.97 % on dry weight, was achieved by using 7.3 plant m-2, and by supplying 60 Kg N ha-1 and 150 mm of irrigation water.

  11. Evaluating soil moisture and hydraulic conductivity in semi-arid rangeland soils

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Whitaker, M.P.L.

    1993-01-01

    The US DOE's Office of Civilian Radioactive Waste Management (DOE-OCRWM) Fellowship Program supports various disciplines of academic research related to the isolation of radionuclides from the biosphere. The purpose of this paper is to provide an example of a university research application in the specific discipline of hydrology and water resources (a multi-disciplinary field encompassing engineering and the earth sciences), and to discuss how this research pertains to the objectives of the DOE-OCRWM Fellowship Program. The university research application is twofold: One portion focuses on the spatial variability of soil moisture (θ) and the other section compares point measurements with small watershed estimates of hydraulic conductivity (K) in a semi-arid rangeland soil in Arizona. For soil moisture measurements collected over a range of horizontal sampling intervals, no spatial correlation was evident. This outcome is reassuring to computer modelers who have assumed no spatial correlation for soil moisture over smaller scales. In regard to hydraulic conductivity, point measurements differed significantly from small watershed estimates of hydraulic conductivity which were derived from a calibrated and verified rainfall-runoff computer model. The estimates of saturated hydraulic conductivity (Ks) were obtained from previous computer simulations in which measured data was collected in the same research location as the present study

  12. Monoterpene emissions from Pinus halepensis forests in a semi-arid region (Israel)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seco, R.; Karl, T.; Turnipseed, A. A.; Greenberg, J.; Guenther, A. B.; Llusia, J.; Penuelas, J.; Kim, S.; Dicken, U.; Rotenberg, E.; Rohatyn, S.; Preisler, Y.; Yakir, D.

    2013-12-01

    Atmospheric volatile organic compounds (VOCs) have key environmental and biological roles, and can affect atmospheric chemisty, secondary aerosol formation, and as a consequence also climate. At the same time, global changes in climate arising from human activities can modify the VOC emissions of vegetation in the coming years. Monoterpene emission fluxes were measured during April 2013 at two forests in the semi-arid climate of Israel. Both forests were dominated by the same pine species, Pinus halepensis, but differed in the amount of annual average precipitation received (280 and 800 mm at Yatir and Birya, respectively). Measurements performed included leaf-level sampling as well as canopy-level flux calculations. Leaf level monoterpene emissions were sampled from leaf cuvettes with adsorbent cartridges and later analyzed by GC-MS. Canopy scale fluxes were calculated with the Disjunct Eddy Covariance technique by means of a Quadrupole PTRMS. We report the differences observed between the two forests in terms of photosynthetic activity and monoterpene emissions, aiming to see the effect of the different precipitation regimes at each location.

  13. Season-ahead streamflow forecast informed tax strategies for semi-arid water rights markets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Delorit, J. D.; Block, P. J.

    2016-12-01

    In many semi-arid regions multisectoral demands stress available water supplies. The Elqui River valley of north central Chile, which draws on limited capacity reservoirs supplied largely by annually variable snowmelt, is one of these cases. This variability forces water managers to develop demand-based allocation strategies which have typically resulted in water right volume reductions, applied equally per right. Compounding this issue is often deferred or delayed infrastructure investments, which has been linked Chile's Coasian approach to water markets, under which rights holders do not pay direct procurement costs, non-use fees, nor taxes. Here we build upon our previous research using forecasts of likely water rights reductions, informed by season-ahead prediction models of October-January (austral growing season) streamflow, to construct annual, forecast-sensitive, per right tax. We believe this tax, to be borne by right holders, will improve the beneficial use of water resources by stimulating water rights trading and improving system efficiency by generating funds for infrastructure investment, thereby reducing free-ridership and conflict between rights holders. Research outputs will include sectoral per right tax assessments, tax revenue generation, Elqui River valley economic output, and water rights trading activity.

  14. Pattern solutions of the Klausmeier Model for banded vegetation in semi-arid environments I

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sherratt, Jonathan A

    2010-01-01

    In many semi-arid environments, vegetation cover is sparse, and is self-organized into large-scale spatial patterns. In particular, banded vegetation is typical on hillsides. Mathematical modelling is widely used to study these banded patterns, and many models are effectively extensions of a coupled reaction–diffusion–advection system proposed by Klausmeier (1999 Science 284 1826–8). However, there is currently very little mathematical theory on pattern solutions of these equations. This paper is the first in a series whose aim is a comprehensive understanding of these solutions, which can act as a springboard both for future simulation-based studies of the Klausmeier model, and for analysis of model extensions. The author focusses on a particular part of parameter space, and derives expressions for the boundaries of the parameter region in which patterns occur. The calculations are valid to leading order at large values of the 'slope parameter', which reflects a comparison of the rate of water flow downhill with the rate of vegetation dispersal. The form of the corresponding patterns is also studied, and the author shows that the leading order equations change close to one boundary of the parameter region in which there are patterns, leading to a homoclinic solution. Conclusions are drawn on the way in which changes in mean annual rainfall affect pattern properties, including overall biomass productivity

  15. Seasonality of vesicular-arbuscular mycorrhizae in sedges in a semi-arid tropical grassland

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muthukumar, T.; Udaiyan, K.

    2002-10-01

    Vesicular-arbuscular mycorrhizal (VAM) colonization and spore numbers in the rhizosphere of Cyperus iria L. and C. rotundus L., growing in a semi-arid tropical grassland, was studied during the 1993 and 1994 monsoons. In addition, climatic and chemical properties of the soils were determined in order to investigate their influence on mycorrhizal variables. VAM fungal association in the sedges was confirmed by plant- and root-trap culture techniques. The soil nutrients exhibited seasonal variations, but were highly variable between years. Intercellular hyphae and vesicles with occasional intraradical spores characterized mycorrhizal association in sedges. Dark septate fungi also colonized roots of sedges. Temporal variations in mycorrhizal colonization and spore numbers occurred, indicating seasonality. However, the patterns of mycorrhizal colonization and spore numbers were different during both the years. The VAM fungal structures observed were intercellular hyphae and vesicles. Changes in the proportion of root length with VAM structures, total colonization levels and spore numbers were related to climatic and edaphic factors. However, the intensity of influence of climatic and soil factors on VAM tended to vary with sedge species.

  16. Animal-Based Remedies as Complementary Medicines in the Semi-Arid Region of Northeastern Brazil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alves, Rômulo R. N.; Barbosa, José A. A.; Santos, Silene L. D. X.; Souto, Wedson M. S.; Barboza, Raynner R. D.

    2011-01-01

    Animals (and their derived products) are essential ingredients in the preparation of many traditional remedies. Despite its prevalence in traditional medical practices worldwide, research on medicinal animals has often been neglected in comparison to medicinal plant research. This work documents the medicinal animals used by a rural community in the semi-arid region, inserted in Caatinga Biome, where 66 respondents provided information on animal species used as medicine, body parts used to prepare the remedies and illnesses to which the remedies were prescribed. We calculated the informant consensus factor to determine the consensus over which species are effective for particular ailments, as well as the species use value to determine the extent of utilization of each species. We recorded the use of 51 animal species as medicines, whose products were recommended for the treatment of 68 illnesses. The informant consensus in the use of many specific remedies is fairly high, giving an additional validity to this folk medicine. Eight species not previously reported as having medicinal use were recorded. The local medicinal fauna is largely based on wild animals, including some endangered species. Given a high proportion of medicinal animals observed in the study area, it is logical to conclude that any conservation strategy should include access to modern health care. PMID:19729490

  17. Determination of uranium partition coefficients of a semi-arid soil in Bahia

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fernandes, Heloisa H.F.; Pontedeiro, Elizabeth M.; Su, Jian, E-mail: heloisa@lasme.coppe.ufrj.br, E-mail: bettinadulley@hotmail.com, E-mail: sujian@lasme.coppe.ufrj.br [Coordenacao dos Cursos de Pos-Graduacao em Engenharia (COPPE/UFRJ), Rio de Janeiro, RJ (Brazil). Lab. de Simulacao e Metodos de Engenharia; Dourado, Eneida R.G., E-mail: eneida@inb.gov.br [Industrias Nucleares do Brasil (INB), Rio de Janeiro, RJ (Brazil)

    2013-07-01

    In mining and processing industries, the subsurface is one of the most vulnerable compartments to environmental contamination. Understanding the interactions between soil and contaminants is critical for predicting the possible environmental impacts caused by mining and milling operations. One of the main parameters used for this purpose is the partition (or distribution) coefficient, K{sub d}, which allows a relatively simple modeling approach by grouping various sorption phenomena into a single value. However, this parameter is strongly influenced by the physical and chemical characteristics of the medium, such as soil type, pH and solution composition. Thus, this study aims to assess the values of K{sub d} for uranium of typical soils from Bahia's semi-arid region using two different types of solute, one being a standard solution of uranyl acetate and one the liquor of uranium generated during processing. To calculate this parameter, batch adsorption experiments were carried out and adsorption isotherms (linear, Langmuir and Freundlich) were constructed using the Mathematica software. Results obtained for a single type of soil showed reduced values of K{sub d} for a liquor containing uranium when compared to values obtained with the uranyl acetate solution. This indicates that uranium from liquor is less adsorbed onto soil particles, and hence may move more quickly into the subsurface. (author)

  18. Determination of uranium partition coefficients of a semi-arid soil in Bahia

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fernandes, Heloisa H.F.; Pontedeiro, Elizabeth M.; Su, Jian

    2013-01-01

    In mining and processing industries, the subsurface is one of the most vulnerable compartments to environmental contamination. Understanding the interactions between soil and contaminants is critical for predicting the possible environmental impacts caused by mining and milling operations. One of the main parameters used for this purpose is the partition (or distribution) coefficient, K d , which allows a relatively simple modeling approach by grouping various sorption phenomena into a single value. However, this parameter is strongly influenced by the physical and chemical characteristics of the medium, such as soil type, pH and solution composition. Thus, this study aims to assess the values of K d for uranium of typical soils from Bahia's semi-arid region using two different types of solute, one being a standard solution of uranyl acetate and one the liquor of uranium generated during processing. To calculate this parameter, batch adsorption experiments were carried out and adsorption isotherms (linear, Langmuir and Freundlich) were constructed using the Mathematica software. Results obtained for a single type of soil showed reduced values of K d for a liquor containing uranium when compared to values obtained with the uranyl acetate solution. This indicates that uranium from liquor is less adsorbed onto soil particles, and hence may move more quickly into the subsurface. (author)

  19. Ecosystem services provided by agricultural terraces in semi-arid climates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Romero-Díaz, Asunción; Díaz-Pereira, Elvira; Boix-Fayos, Carolina; de Vente, Joris

    2016-04-01

    Since ancient times, agricultural terraces are common features throughout the world, especially on steep slope gradients. Nowadays many terraces have been abandoned or removed and few new terraces are build due to increased mechanisation and intensification of agriculture. However, terraces are amongst the most effective soil conservation practices, reducing the slope gradient and slope length, as well as runoff rate and soil erosion, and without terraces, it would be impossible to cultivate on many hillslopes. Moreover, their scenic interest is undeniable, as in some cases, terraced slopes have even become part of UNESCO World Heritage. In order to highlight the potential benefits, requirements and limitations of terraces, we reviewed different types of sustainable land management practices related to terraces and characterised their implications for provisioning, regulating, supporting, and cultural ecosystem services. We centred our review on terraces in semi-arid environments worldwide, as were documented in the WOCAT (World Overview of Conservation Approaches and Technologies) database. Our results show that the most important ecosystem services provided by terraces relate to regulation of the on-site and off-site effects of runoff and erosion, and maintenance of soil fertility and vegetation cover. The presence of terraces also favours the provision of food, fiber, and clean water. In short, our results stress the crucial environmental, geomorphological and hydrological functions of terraces that directly relate to improving the quality of life of the people that use them. These results highlight the need for renewed recognition of the value of terraces for society, their preservation and maintenance.

  20. Response of three semi-arid plant species to fluoride; consequences for chlorophyll florescence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baunthiyal, M; Sharma, V

    2014-01-01

    The study was done to investigate the ability of three semi-arid plant species viz. Acacia tortilis, Cassia fistula and Prosopis juliflora to adapt to fluoride (F) stress. Here we examined the changes in activities of chlorophyll a fluorescence and photosynthetic pigment concentration during early growth of these plants. One month old plants were treated with 10, 20, and 50 mg kg(-1) F in soilrite. We did not observe any major change in photosynthetic performance of these plants during early growth. This was revealed by ETR, ETRmax, PPFD-sat and deltaF/Fm'-sat values which were higher in these plants. The decrease in chl a, chl b and total chl concentrations were significant only at 5 days. For most of the parameters, C. fistula was found to be more sensitive to F stress and P. juliflora showed least damage from F. The lesser inhibition in the parameters reflected the F tolerant nature of these plants with respect to photosynthesis. This opens the possibility of potential use of these species for treatment of F contaminated soil and water.

  1. Performance and effects of land cover type on synthetic surface reflectance data and NDVI estimates for assessment and monitoring of semi-arid rangeland

    Science.gov (United States)

    Olexa, Edward M.; Lawrence, Rick L

    2014-01-01

    Federal land management agencies provide stewardship over much of the rangelands in the arid andsemi-arid western United States, but they often lack data of the proper spatiotemporal resolution andextent needed to assess range conditions and monitor trends. Recent advances in the blending of com-plementary, remotely sensed data could provide public lands managers with the needed information.We applied the Spatial and Temporal Adaptive Reflectance Fusion Model (STARFM) to five Landsat TMand concurrent Terra MODIS scenes, and used pixel-based regression and difference image analyses toevaluate the quality of synthetic reflectance and NDVI products associated with semi-arid rangeland. Pre-dicted red reflectance data consistently demonstrated higher accuracy, less bias, and stronger correlationwith observed data than did analogous near-infrared (NIR) data. The accuracy of both bands tended todecline as the lag between base and prediction dates increased; however, mean absolute errors (MAE)were typically ≤10%. The quality of area-wide NDVI estimates was less consistent than either spectra lband, although the MAE of estimates predicted using early season base pairs were ≤10% throughout the growing season. Correlation between known and predicted NDVI values and agreement with the 1:1regression line tended to decline as the prediction lag increased. Further analyses of NDVI predictions,based on a 22 June base pair and stratified by land cover/land use (LCLU), revealed accurate estimates through the growing season; however, inter-class performance varied. This work demonstrates the successful application of the STARFM algorithm to semi-arid rangeland; however, we encourage evaluation of STARFM’s performance on a per product basis, stratified by LCLU, with attention given to the influence of base pair selection and the impact of the time lag.

  2. Assessing the biophysical and socio-economic potential of Sustainable Land Management and Water Harvesting Technologies for rainfed agriculture across semi-arid Africa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Irvine, Brian; Fleskens, Luuk; Kirkby, Mike

    2016-04-01

    Stakeholders in recent EU projects identified soil erosion as the most frequent driver of land degradation in semi-arid environments. In a number of sites, historic land management and rainfall variability are recognised as contributing to the serious environmental impact. In order to consider the potential of sustainable land management and water harvesting techniques stakeholders and study sites from the projects selected and trialled both local technologies and promising technologies reported from other sites . The combined PESERA and DESMICE modelling approach considered the regional effects of the technologies in combating desertification both in environmental and socio-economical terms. Initial analysis was based on long term average climate data with the model run to equilibrium. Current analysis, primarily based on the WAHARA study sites considers rainfall variability more explicitly in time series mode. The PESERA-DESMICE approach considers the difference between a baseline scenario and a (water harvesting) technology scenario, typically, in terms of productivity, financial viability and scope for reducing erosion risk. A series of 50 year rainfall realisations are generated from observed data to capture a full range of the climatic variability. Each realisation provides a unique time-series of rainfall and through modelling can provide a simulated time-series of crop yield and erosion risk for both baseline conditions and technology scenarios. Subsequent realisations and model simulations add to an envelope of the potential crop yield and cost-benefit relations. The development of such envelopes helps express the agricultural and erosional risk associated with climate variability and the potential for conservation measures to absorb the risk, highlighting the probability of achieving a given crop yield or erosion limit. Information that can directly inform or influence the local adoption of conservation measures under the climatic variability in semi-arid

  3. Inter-annual Variability of Evapotranspiration in a Semi-arid Oak-savanna Ecosystem: Measured and Modeled Buffering to Precipitation Changes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raz-Yaseef, N.; Sonnentag, O.; Kobayashi, H.; Baldocchi, D. D.

    2010-12-01

    Precipitation (P) is the primary control on vegetation dynamics and productivity, implying that climate induced disturbances in frequency and timing of P are intimately coupled with fluxes of carbon, water and energy. Future climate change is expected to increase extreme rainfall events as well as droughts, suggesting linked vegetation changes to an unknown extent. Semi-arid climates experience large inter-annual variability (IAV) in P, creating natural conditions adequate to study how year-to-year changes in P affect atmosphere-biosphere fluxes. We used a 10-year flux database collected at a semi-arid savanna site in order to: (1) define IAV in P by means of frequency and timing; (2) investigate how changes in P affect the ecohydrology of the forest and its partitioning into the main vapor fluxes, and (3) evaluate model capability to predict IAV of carbon and water fluxes above and below the canopy. This is based on the perception that the capability of process-oriented models to construct the deviation, and not the average, is important in order to correctly predict ecosystem sensitivity to climate change. Our research site was a low density and low LAI (0.8) semi-arid (P=523±180 mm yr-1) savanna site, combined of oaks and grass, and located at Tonzi ranch, California. Measurements of carbon and water fluxes above and below the tree canopy using eddy covariance and supplementary measurements have been made since 2001. Measured fluxes were compared to modeled based on two bio-meteorological process-oriented ecosystem models: BEPS and 3D-CAONAK. Our results show that IAV in P was large, and standard deviation (STD) was 38% of the average. Accordingly, the wet soil period (measured volumetric water content > 8%) varied between 156 days in dry years to 301 days in wet years. IAV of the vapor fluxes were lower than that of P (STD was 17% for the trees and 23% for the floor components), suggesting on ecosystem buffering to changes in P. The timing of grass green up

  4. Seedbed preparation influence on morphometric characteristics of perennial grasses of a semi-arid rangeland in Kenya

    OpenAIRE

    Opiyo, Francis EO; Ekaya, Wellington N; Nyariki, Dickson M; Mureithi, Stephen Mwangi

    2011-01-01

    Semi-arid rangelands in Kenya are an important source of forage for both domestic and wild animals. However, indigenous perennial grasses notably Cenchrus ciliaris (African foxtail grass), Eragrostis superba (Maasai love grass) and Enteropogon macrostachyus (Bush rye grass) are disappearing at an alarming rate. Efforts to re-introduce them through restoration programs have often yielded little success. This can partly be attributed to failure of topsoil to capture and store scarce water to me...

  5. Rainfed agriculture in a semi-arid tropical climate : aspects of land- and watermanagement for red soils in India

    OpenAIRE

    Huibers, F.P.

    1985-01-01

    Rainfed agriculture is defined as the production of field crops that completely depend on the local precipitation for their water supply. Although in the semi-arid tropics the mean annual precipitation might seem to be sufficient to grow (adapted) crops, its variability over the years and its erratic distribution over the season pose problems. During relatively dry periods, the crop might suffer from moisture stress, at other times excessive rainfall occurs, causing water logging an...

  6. Carbon dioxide emissions from semi-arid soils amended with biochar alone or combined with mineral and organic fertilizers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernández, José M; Nieto, M Aurora; López-de-Sá, Esther G; Gascó, Gabriel; Méndez, Ana; Plaza, César

    2014-06-01

    Semi-arid soils cover a significant area of Earth's land surface and typically contain large amounts of inorganic C. Determining the effects of biochar additions on CO2 emissions from semi-arid soils is therefore essential for evaluating the potential of biochar as a climate change mitigation strategy. Here, we measured the CO2 that evolved from semi-arid calcareous soils amended with biochar at rates of 0 and 20tha(-1) in a full factorial combination with three different fertilizers (mineral fertilizer, municipal solid waste compost, and sewage sludge) applied at four rates (equivalent to 0, 75, 150, and 225kg potentially available Nha(-1)) during 182 days of aerobic incubation. A double exponential model, which describes cumulative CO2 emissions from two active soil C compartments with different turnover rates (one relatively stable and the other more labile), was found to fit very well all the experimental datasets. In general, the organic fertilizers increased the size and decomposition rate of the stable and labile soil C pools. In contrast, biochar addition had no effects on any of the double exponential model parameters and did not interact with the effects ascribed to the type and rate of fertilizer. After 182 days of incubation, soil organic and microbial biomass C contents tended to increase with increasing the application rates of organic fertilizer, especially of compost, whereas increasing the rate of mineral fertilizer tended to suppress microbial biomass. Biochar was found to increase both organic and inorganic C contents in soil and not to interact with the effects of type and rate of fertilizer on C fractions. As a whole, our results suggest that the use of biochar as enhancer of semi-arid soils, either alone or combined with mineral and organic fertilizers, is unlikely to increase abiotic and biotic soil CO2 emissions. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  7. Crop Upgrading Strategies and Modelling for Rainfed Cereals in a Semi-Arid Climate—A Review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Festo Richard Silungwe

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Spatiotemporal rainfall variability and low soil fertility are the primary crop production challenges facing poor farmers in semi-arid environments. However, there are few solutions for addressing these challenges. The literature provides several crop upgrading strategies (UPS for improving crop yields, and biophysical models are used to simulate these strategies. However, the suitability of UPS is limited by systemization of their areas of application and the need to cope with the challenges faced by poor farmers. In this study, we reviewed 187 papers from peer-reviewed journals, conferences and reports that discuss UPS suitable for cereals and biophysical models used to assist in the selection of UPS in semi-arid areas. We found that four UPS were the most suitable, namely tied ridges, microdose fertilization, varying sowing dates, and field scattering. The DSSAT, APSIM and AquaCrop models adequately simulate these UPS. This work provides a systemization of crop UPS and models in semi-arid areas that can be applied by scientists and planners.

  8. PRODUCERS’ PERCEPTION OF GEOGRAPHICAL INDICATIONS AS A PRODUCT DIVERSIFICATION TOOL FOR AGRIFOOD PRODUCTS IN SEMI-ARID REGIONS OF KENYA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fredah Wangui Maina

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available The study assessed producers’ awareness and perceptions of territorial-based qualities and the economic potential of two potential origin-based geographical indications in two semi-arid counties in Kenya. Protection of the origin products as geographical indications is presented as an option for ecosystem approach in managing fragile semi-arid regions while providing producers economic incentives and social inclusion; key components of green growth. Factor analysis was conducted on Likert scale perception questions administered to producers of goats (Baringo and mangoes (Makueni. The producers were aware of the uniqueness of their products and its geographical source. The resultant factors reveal the importance of public policies, institutions, market access and public sector actors as important to producers’ perception of the success of protecting their products as geographical indications. Clustering revealed producer heterogeneity in their perceptions of protecting their respective products as geographical indications. The constitution of the clusters was significantly different based on the number of years the producers had practiced farming in the region, their awareness of the uniqueness of their goats, income received from goat production and institutional factors. Enhanced collective action for both goats and mangoes in the semi-arid regions would ensure collective reputation in the product presented to the market. The producers’ perceptions emphasise geographical indications as a marketing tool rather than an environmental tool, agreeing with Principle 4 of the ecosystem approach on managing ecosystem in an economic context.

  9. Prolonged limitation of tree growth due to warmer spring in semi-arid mountain forests of Tianshan, northwest China

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wu Xiuchen; Liu Hongyan; Wang Yufu; Deng Minghua

    2013-01-01

    Based on radial tree growth measurements in nine plots of area 625 m 2 (369 trees in total) and climate data, we explored the possibly changing effects of climate on regional tree growth in the temperate continental semi-arid mountain forests in the Tianshan Mountains in northwest China during 1933–2005. Tree growth in our study region is generally limited by the soil water content of pre- and early growing season (February–July). Remarkably, moving correlation functions identified a clear temporal change in the relationship between tree growth and mean April temperature. Tree growth showed a significant (p < 0.05) and negative relationship to mean April temperature since approximately the beginning of the 1970s, which indicated that the semi-arid mountain forests are suffering a prolonged growth limitation in recent years accompanying spring warming. This prolonged limitation of tree growth was attributed to the effects of soil water limitation in early spring (March–April) caused by the rapid spring warming. Warming-induced prolonged drought stress contributes, to a large part, to the marked reduction of regional basal area increment (BAI) in recent years and a much slower growth rate in young trees. Our results highlight that the increasing water limitation induced by spring warming on tree growth most likely aggravated the marked reduction in tree growth. This work provides a better understanding of the effects of spring warming on tree growth in temperate continental semi-arid forests. (letter)

  10. The semi-Arid integrated model (SIM), a regional integrated model assessing water availability, vulnerability, of ecossytems and society in NE-Brazil

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Krol, Martinus S.; Jaeger, A.; Bronstert, A.; Krywkow, Jorg

    2001-01-01

    Northeastern Brazil, an example of vulnerable semi-arid regions on the earth, is characterised by water scarcity and vulnerability of natural resources, pronounced climatic variability and social stress situations. Integrated studies involving hydrology, ecology, meteorology, climatology, pedology,

  11. Seasonal variation of carbon fluxes in a sparse savanna in semi arid Sudan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ardö, Jonas; Mölder, Meelis; El-Tahir, Bashir Awad; Elkhidir, Hatim Abdalla Mohammed

    2008-12-01

    Large spatial, seasonal and annual variability of major drivers of the carbon cycle (precipitation, temperature, fire regime and nutrient availability) are common in the Sahel region. This causes large variability in net ecosystem exchange and in vegetation productivity, the subsistence basis for a major part of the rural population in Sahel. This study compares the 2005 dry and wet season fluxes of CO2 for a grass land/sparse savanna site in semi arid Sudan and relates these fluxes to water availability and incoming photosynthetic photon flux density (PPFD). Data from this site could complement the current sparse observation network in Africa, a continent where climatic change could significantly impact the future and which constitute a weak link in our understanding of the global carbon cycle. The dry season (represented by Julian day 35-46, February 2005) was characterized by low soil moisture availability, low evapotranspiration and a high vapor pressure deficit. The mean daily NEE (net ecosystem exchange, Eq. 1) was -14.7 mmol d-1 for the 12 day period (negative numbers denote sinks, i.e. flux from the atmosphere to the biosphere). The water use efficiency (WUE) was 1.6 mmol CO2 mol H2O-1 and the light use efficiency (LUE) was 0.95 mmol CO2 mol PPFD-1. Photosynthesis is a weak, but linear function of PPFD. The wet season (represented by Julian day 266-273, September 2005) was, compared to the dry season, characterized by slightly higher soil moisture availability, higher evapotranspiration and a slightly lower vapor pressure deficit. The mean daily NEE was -152 mmol d-1 for the 8 day period. The WUE was lower, 0.97 mmol CO2 mol H2O-1 and the LUE was higher, 7.2 mumol CO2 mmol PPFD-1 during the wet season compared to the dry season. During the wet season photosynthesis increases with PPFD to about 1600 mumol m-2s-1 and then levels off. Based on data collected during two short periods, the studied ecosystem was a sink of carbon both during the dry and wet season

  12. Seasonal variation of carbon fluxes in a sparse savanna in semi arid Sudan

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    El-Tahir Bashir

    2008-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Large spatial, seasonal and annual variability of major drivers of the carbon cycle (precipitation, temperature, fire regime and nutrient availability are common in the Sahel region. This causes large variability in net ecosystem exchange and in vegetation productivity, the subsistence basis for a major part of the rural population in Sahel. This study compares the 2005 dry and wet season fluxes of CO2 for a grass land/sparse savanna site in semi arid Sudan and relates these fluxes to water availability and incoming photosynthetic photon flux density (PPFD. Data from this site could complement the current sparse observation network in Africa, a continent where climatic change could significantly impact the future and which constitute a weak link in our understanding of the global carbon cycle. Results The dry season (represented by Julian day 35–46, February 2005 was characterized by low soil moisture availability, low evapotranspiration and a high vapor pressure deficit. The mean daily NEE (net ecosystem exchange, Eq. 1 was -14.7 mmol d-1 for the 12 day period (negative numbers denote sinks, i.e. flux from the atmosphere to the biosphere. The water use efficiency (WUE was 1.6 mmol CO2 mol H2O-1 and the light use efficiency (LUE was 0.95 mmol CO2 mol PPFD-1. Photosynthesis is a weak, but linear function of PPFD. The wet season (represented by Julian day 266–273, September 2005 was, compared to the dry season, characterized by slightly higher soil moisture availability, higher evapotranspiration and a slightly lower vapor pressure deficit. The mean daily NEE was -152 mmol d-1 for the 8 day period. The WUE was lower, 0.97 mmol CO2 mol H2O-1 and the LUE was higher, 7.2 μmol CO2 mmol PPFD-1 during the wet season compared to the dry season. During the wet season photosynthesis increases with PPFD to about 1600 μmol m-2s-1 and then levels off. Conclusion Based on data collected during two short periods, the studied ecosystem

  13. Sandy soil plantation in semi-arid zones by polyacrylamide gel conditioner prepared by ionizing radiation. Part of a coordinated programme on radiation modified polymers for biomedical and biochemical applications

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Azzam, R.A.I.

    1983-07-01

    Polyacrylamide gel prepared by ionizing radiation was found to be capable of furnishing adequate conditions for sandy-soil plantation in semi-arid zones. The gel can be tailored for any soil texture under various climatic conditions. The sand-gel combination maintains three cycles of complete destruction and reformation without significant changes in erosion index. Water holding capacity and retention at different suctions in treated sand are increased. This increases water use efficiency. Fertilizers use efficiency is also increased to almost three times that of fertile clayey soil

  14. LONG-TERM COLLOID MOBILIZATION AND COLLOID-FACILITATED TRANSPORT OF RADIONUCLIDES IN A SEMI-ARID VADOSE ZONE

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Markus Flury; James B. Harsh; Fred Zhang; Glendon W. Gee; Earl D. Mattson; Peter C. L

    2012-08-01

    The main purpose of this project was to improve the fundamental mechanistic understanding and quantification of long-term colloid mobilization and colloid-facilitated transport of radionuclides in the vadose zone, with special emphasis on the semi-arid Hanford site. While we focused some of the experiments on hydrogeological and geochemical conditions of the Hanford site, many of our results apply to colloid and colloid-facilitated transport in general. Specific objectives were (1) to determine the mechanisms of colloid mobilization and colloid-facilitated radionuclide transport in undisturbed Hanford sediments under unsaturated flow, (2) to quantify in situ colloid mobilization and colloid-facilitated radionuclidetransport from Hanford sediments under field conditions, and (3) to develop a field-scale conceptual and numerical model for colloid mobilization and transport at the Hanford vadose zone, and use that model to predict long-term colloid and colloid- facilitated radionuclide transport. To achieve these goals and objectives, we have used a combination of experimental, theoretical, and numerical methods at different spatial scales, ranging from microscopic investigationsof single particle attachment and detachment to larger-scale field experiments using outdoor lysimeters at the Hanford site. Microscopic and single particle investigations provided fundamental insight into mechanisms of colloid interactions with the air-water interface. We could show that a moving air water interface (such as a moving water front during infiltration and drainage) is very effective in removing and mobilizing particles from a stationary surface. We further demonstrated that it is particularly the advancing air-water interface which is mainly responsible for colloid mobilization. Forces acting on the colloids calculated from theory corroborated our experimental results, and confirm that the detachment forces (surface tension forces) during the advancing air-water interface

  15. Changes in zinc speciation with mine tailings acidification in a semi-arid weathering environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hayes, Sarah M.; O’Day, Peggy A.; Webb, Sam M.; Maier, Raina M.; Chorover, Jon

    2011-01-01

    High concentrations of residual metal contaminants in mine tailings can be transported easily by wind and water, particularly when tailings remain unvegetated for decades following mining cessation, as is the case in semi-arid landscapes. Understanding the speciation and mobility of contaminant metal(loid)s, particularly in surficial tailings, is essential to controlling their phytotoxicities and to revegetating impacted sites. In prior work, we showed that surficial tailings samples from the Klondyke State Superfund Site (AZ, USA), ranging in pH from 5.4 to 2.6, represent a weathering series, with acidification resulting from sulfide mineral oxidation, long-term Fe hydrolysis, and a concurrent decrease in total (6,000 to 450 mg kg−1) and plant-available (590 to 75 mg kg−1) Zn due to leaching losses and changes in Zn speciation. Here, we used bulk and micro-focused Zn K-edge X-ray absorption spectroscopy (XAS) data and a six-step sequential extraction procedure to determine tailings solid phase Zn speciation. Bulk sample spectra were fit by linear combination using three references: Zn-rich phyllosilicate (Zn0.8talc), Zn sorbed to ferrihydrite (ZnadsFeOx), and zinc sulfate (ZnSO4·7H2O). Analyses indicate that Zn sorbed in tetrahedral coordination to poorly-crystalline Fe and Mn (oxyhydr)oxides decreases with acidification in the weathering sequence, whereas octahedral zinc in sulfate minerals and crystalline Fe oxides undergoes a relative accumulation. Micro-scale analyses identified hetaerolite (ZnMn2O4), hemimorphite (Zn4Si2O7(OH)2·H2O) and sphalerite (ZnS) as minor phases. Bulk and micro-focused spectroscopy complement the chemical extraction results and highlight the importance of using a multi-method approach to interrogate complex tailings systems. PMID:21761897

  16. Estimating Daily Reference Evapotranspiration in a Semi-Arid Region Using Remote Sensing Data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peshawa M. Najmaddin

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Estimating daily evapotranspiration is challenging when ground observation data are not available or scarce. Remote sensing can be used to estimate the meteorological data necessary for calculating reference evapotranspiration ETₒ. Here, we assessed the accuracy of daily ETₒ estimates derived from remote sensing (ETₒ-RS compared with those derived from four ground-based stations (ETₒ-G in Kurdistan (Iraq over the period 2010–2014. Near surface air temperature, relative humidity and cloud cover fraction were derived from the Atmospheric Infrared Sounder/Advanced Microwave Sounding Unit (AIRS/AMSU, and wind speed at 10 m height from MERRA (Modern-Era Retrospective Analysis for Research and Application. Four methods were used to estimate ETₒ: Hargreaves–Samani (HS, Jensen–Haise (JH, McGuinness–Bordne (MB and the FAO Penman Monteith equation (PM. ETₒ-G (PM was adopted as the main benchmark. HS underestimated ETₒ by 2%–3% (R2 = 0.86 to 0.90; RMSE = 0.95 to 1.2 mm day−1 at different stations. JH and MB overestimated ETₒ by 8% to 40% (R2= 0.85 to 0.92; RMSE from 1.18 to 2.18 mm day−1. The annual average values of ETₒ estimated using RS data and ground-based data were similar to one another reflecting low bias in daily estimates. They ranged between 1153 and 1893 mm year−1 for ETₒ-G and between 1176 and 1859 mm year−1 for ETₒ-RS for the different stations. Our results suggest that ETₒ-RS (HS can yield accurate and unbiased ETₒ estimates for semi-arid regions which can be usefully employed in water resources management.

  17. Hierarchy of responses to resource pulses in arid and semi-arid ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schwinning, Susanne; Sala, Osvaldo E

    2004-10-01

    In arid/semi-arid ecosystems, biological resources, such as water, soil nutrients, and plant biomass, typically go through periods of high and low abundance. Short periods of high resource abundance are usually triggered by rainfall events, which, despite of the overall scarcity of rain, can saturate the resource demand of some biological processes for a time. This review develops the idea that there exists a hierarchy of soil moisture pulse events with a corresponding hierarchy of ecological responses, such that small pulses only trigger a small number of relatively minor ecological events, and larger pulses trigger a more inclusive set and some larger ecological events. This framework hinges on the observation that many biological state changes, where organisms transition from a state of lower to higher physiological activity, require a minimal triggering event size. Response thresholds are often determined by the ability of organisms to utilize soil moisture pulses of different infiltration depth or duration. For example, brief, shallow pulses can only affect surface dwelling organisms with fast response times and high tolerance for low resource levels, such as some species of the soil micro-fauna and -flora, while it takes more water and deeper infiltration to affect the physiology, growth or reproduction of higher plants. This review first discusses how precipitation, climate and site factors translate into soil moisture pulses of varying magnitude and duration. Next, the idea of the response hierarchy for ecosystem processes is developed, followed by an exploration of the possible evolutionary background for the existence of response thresholds to resource pulses. The review concludes with an outlook on global change: does the hierarchical view of precipitation effects in ecosystems provide new perspectives on the future of arid/semiarid lands?

  18. Land cover/land use change in semi-arid Inner Mongolia: 1992-2004

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    John, Ranjeet; Chen Jiquan; Lu Nan; Wilske, Burkhard, E-mail: ranjeet.john@utoledo.ed [Department of Environmental Sciences, University of Toledo, Toledo, OH 43606 (United States)

    2009-10-15

    The semi-arid grasslands in Inner Mongolia (IM) are under increasing stress owing to climate change and rapid socio-economic development in the recent past. We investigated changes in land cover/land use and landscape structure between 1992 and 2004 through the analysis of AVHRR and MODIS derived land cover data. The scale of analysis included the regional level (i.e. the whole of IM) as well as the level of the dominant biomes (i.e. the grassland and desert). We quantified proportional change, rate of change and the changes in class-level landscape metrics using the landscape structure analysis program FRAGSTATS. The dominant land cover types, grassland and barren, 0.47 and 0.27 million km{sup 2}, respectively, have increased proportionally. Cropland and urban land use also increased to 0.15 million km{sup 2} and 2197 km{sup 2}, respectively. However, the results further indicated increases in both the homogeneity and fragmentation of the landscape. Increasing homogeneity was mainly related to the reduction in minority cover types such as savanna, forests and permanent wetlands and increasing cohesion, aggregation index and clumpy indices. Conversely, increased fragmentation of the landscape was based on the increase in patch density and the interspersion/juxtaposition index (IJI). It is important to note the socio-economic growth in this fragile ecosystem, manifested by an increasing proportion of agricultural and urban land use not just at the regional level but also at the biome level in the context of regional climate change and increasing water stress.

  19. Cyanobacterial occurrence and detection of microcystins and saxitoxins in reservoirs of the Brazilian semi-arid

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jessica Roberts Fonseca

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Aim:The rapid spread of cyanobacteria in water sources and reservoirs has caused serious environmental damage and public health problems, and consists in a problem that challenges the institutions responsible for providing water to the population. In this study, the quantification of microcystin, saxitoxins and cyanobacteria levels was performed over 3 years in the semi-arid reservoirs of Rio Grande do Norte (Brazil. In addition, we analyzed the seasonal distribution of cyanotoxins and the percentage of cyanobacteria and cyanotoxins which were above the limit established by Brazilian law.MethodsThe study was conducted between 2009 and 2011 in four dams with six sites: Armando Ribeiro Gonçalves (ARG in Itajá, San Rafael (SR and Jucurutu; Passagem das Traíras (PT; Itans and Gargalheiras (GARG. Cyanobacteria presence were quantified and identified and the presence of microcystins (MCYs and saxitoxins (STXs was investigated by ELISA.ResultsThe densities of cyanobacteria were found to be above the permitted in 76% of cases. The ELISA results showed that of the 128 samples analyzed, 27% were above the maximum allowed by the Brazilian Ministry of Health Order 2914/2011. A seasonal pattern for the presence of MCYs was found (0.00227 to 24.1954 µg.L–1, with the highest values in the rainy season. There was no clear seasonal pattern for STXs (0.003 to 0.766 µg.L–1.ConclusionsThis study showed the importance of establishing a water quality monitoring for human consumption and its potability standards since the concentration of MCYs in some samples was above the maximum limit allowed by Brazilian law, thus posing a risk to public health since the conventional water treatment is not able to eliminate these potent hepatotoxins.

  20. Spatiotemporal diversity, structure and trophic guilds of insect assemblages in a semi-arid Sabkha ecosystem

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Haroun Chenchouni

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available The current study highlights some knowledge on the diversity and structure of insect communities and trophic groups living in Sabkha Djendli (semi-arid area of Northeastern Algeria. The entomofauna was monthly sampled from March to November 2006 using pitfall traps at eight sites located at the vicinity of the Sabkha. Structural and diversity parameters (species richness, Shannon index, evenness were measured for both insect orders and trophic guilds. The canonical correspondence analysis (CCA was applied to determine how vegetation parameters (species richness and cover influence spatial and seasonal fluctuations of insect assemblages. The catches totalled 434 insect individuals classified into 75 species, 62 genera, 31 families and 7 orders, of which Coleoptera and Hymenoptera were the most abundant and constant over seasons and study stations. Spring and autumn presented the highest values of diversity parameters. Individual-based Chao-1 species richness estimator indicated 126 species for the total individuals captured in the Sabkha. Based on catch abundances, the structure of functional trophic groups was predators (37.3%, saprophages (26.7%, phytophages (20.5%, polyphages (10.8%, coprophages (4.6%; whereas in terms of numbers of species, they can be classified as phytophages (40%, predators (25.3%, polyphages (13.3%, saprophages (12%, coprophages (9.3%. The CCA demonstrated that phytophages and saprophages as well as Coleoptera and Orthoptera were positively correlated with the two parameters of vegetation, especially in spring and summer. While the abundance of coprophages was positively correlated with species richness of plants, polyphage density was positively associated with vegetation cover. The insect community showed high taxonomic and functional diversity that is closely related to diversity and vegetation cover in different stations of the wetland and seasons.

  1. How to Improve Water Usage Efficiency? Characterization of Family Farms in A Semi-Arid Area

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laura Piedra-Muñoz

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Water scarcity in Spain is partly due to poor management of this resource in the agricultural sector. The main aim of this study is to present the major factors related to water usage efficiency in farming. It focuses on the Almería coast, southeast Spain, which is one of the most arid areas of the country, and in particular, on family farms as the main direct managers of water use in this zone. Many of these farms are among the most water efficient in Spanish agriculture but this efficiency is not generalized throughout the sector. This work conducts a comprehensive assessment of water performance in this area, using on-farm water-use, structural, socio-economic, and environmental information. Two statistical techniques are used: descriptive analysis and cluster analysis. Thus, two groups are identified: farms that are less and farms that are more efficient regarding water usage. By analyzing both the common characteristics within each group and the differences between the groups with a one-way ANOVA analysis, several conclusions can be reached. The main differences between the two clusters center on the extent to which innovation and new technologies are used in irrigation. The most water efficient farms are characterized by more educated farmers, a greater degree of innovation, new irrigation technology, and an awareness of water issues and environmental sustainability. The findings of this study can be extended to farms in similar arid and semi-arid areas and contribute to fostering appropriate policies to improve the efficiency of water usage in the agricultural sector.

  2. Influence of agricultural management on chemical quality of a clay soil of semi-arid Morocco

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ibno Namr, Khalid; Mrabet, Rachid

    2004-06-01

    Morocco's semi-arid lands are characterized by unique challenges. The most important obstacles to the development of durable agriculture are (1) limited and unpredictable supply of soil moisture and (2) low soil quality. Intensive use of soil throughout history has led to depletion in soil quality, leading in return to reduced yields because of the consequent reduced organic matter. Recognizing the need to recover soil quality and production decline, INRA scientists began, in the early 1980s, research on the effects of crop rotations, tillage and residue management on the productivity and quality of cropped soils. The present study concerns the short-term effect of rotation, tillage and residue management on selected quality indices of a calcixeroll (organic matter, nitrogen, particulate organic carbon (Cpom), particulate organic nitrogen (Npom) and pH). Hence, three rotations (wheat-wheat, WW; fallow-wheat, FW; and fallow-wheat-barley, FWB), two tillage systems (conventional offset disking, CT and no-tillage, NT), and three levels of residue in the NT system (NT 0 = no-residue cover, NT 50 = half surface residue cover, NT 100 = full surface residue cover) were selected. Three surface horizons were sampled (0-2.5, 2.5-7 and 7-20 cm). The study results showed an improvement of measured soil chemical properties under NT compared to CT, at the surface layer. No-tillage system helped sequestration of carbon and nitrogen, build-up of particulate organic carbon and nitrogen and sensible reduction of pH only at the surface layer. Continuous wheat permitted a slight improvement of soil quality, mainly at the 0-2.5 cm depth. Effects of rotation, tillage and residue level were reduced with depth of measurements.

  3. The role of upland wetlands in modulating snowmelt runoff in the semi-arid Andes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hevia, Andres; Sproles, Eric; Soulsby, Chris; Tetzlaff, Doerthe

    2016-04-01

    The wetlands, or bofedales, of semi-arid northern central Chile (29°-32°S) provide a critical store of water that modulate spring snowmelt runoff. Water released from bofedales helps sustain flows throughout the dry portions of the year, providing fresh water to downstream residents and a robust tourist, agricultural, and mining economy. In the Río Claro watershed (30°S, 1515 km2, 800m to 5500 m a.s.l.) a series fourteen bofedales have formed at natural choke points in the valley bottoms of the headwater reaches. The highly erosive dynamic of this watershed provides ample sediment, and some of these bofedales are up to 30 m deep. Annual precipitation in the region is limited to 4-6 events annually that fall primarily as snow at elevations above 3500 m. The subsurface storage of the headwaters is limited by the steep terrain of the headwater catchments that are devoid of soils and primarily underlain by granite bedrock. Downstream, irrigated area has increased by 200% between 1985 and 2005, driven by the cultivation of table grapes for export. For over 70 years local water managers have flooded the bodfedales during spring runoff to augment late season flow when irrigation demand peaks. While this low-tech strategy has worked in the past, a recent 8-year drought has raised concerns over long-term water security. We apply geophysical and geographic measurements, water quality, and stable isotopic tracers to calculate the volume of water storage and residence times in the bofedales of Río Claro. This information will be used to evaluate the reliability of the bofedale system as compared to a proposed reservoir in the headwaters of the Río Claro. Additionally, estimating the storage and residence times of the will help reduce uncertainty for modeling efforts currently underway in Río Claro.

  4. Chemical-Structural Changes of Organic Matter in a Semi-Arid Soil After Organic Amendment

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    C.NICOL(A)S; G.MASCIANDARO; T.HERN(A)NDEZ; C.GARCIA

    2012-01-01

    A 9-month incubation experiment using composted and non-composted amendments derived from vine pruning waste and sewage sludge was carried out to study the effects of the nature and stability of organic amendments on the structural composition of organic matter (OM) in a semi-arid soil. The changes of soil OM,both in the whole soil and in the extractable carbon with pyrophosphate,were evaluated by pyrolysis-gas chromatography and chemical analyses.By the end of the experiment,the soils amended with pruning waste exhibited less organic carbon loss than those receiving sewage sludge.The non-composted residues increased the aliphatic-pyrolytic products of the OM,both in the whole soil and also in the pyrophosphate extract,with the products derived from peptides and proteins being significantly higher.After 9 months,in the soils amended with pruning waste the relative abundance of phenolic-pyrolytic products derived from phenolic compounds,lignin and proteins in the whole soil tended to increase more than those in the soils amended with sewage sludge.However,the extractable OM with pyrophosphate in the soils amended with composted residues tended to have higher contents of these phenolic-pyrolytic products than that in non-composted ones.Thus,despite the stability of pruning waste,the composting of this material promoted the incorporation of phenolic compounds to the soil OM.The pyrolytic indices (furfural/pyrrole and aliphatic/aromatic ratios) showed the diminution of aliphatic compounds and the increase of aromatic compounds,indicating the stabilization of the OM in the amended soils after 9 months.In conclusion,the changes of soil OM depend on the nature and stability of the organic amendments,with composted vine pruning waste favouring humification.

  5. Hydrological response in catchments whit debris covered glaciers in the semi-arid Andes, Chile

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caro, A.; McPhee, J.; MacDonell, S.; Pellicciotti, F.; Ayala, A.

    2016-12-01

    Glaciers in the semi-arid Andes Cordillera in Chile have shrank rapidly during the 20th century. Negative mass balance contributes to increase the surface area of debris-covered glaciers. Recent research in Chile suggests that contributions from glaciers to summer season river flow in dry years is very important, however hydrological processes determining the glacier contribution are still poorly understood in the region. This work seeks to determine appropriate parameters for the simulation of melt volume in two watersheds dominated by debris-covered glaciers, in order to understand its variability in time and space, in the area with the largest population in Chile. The hydrological simulation is performed for the Tapado (30°S) and Pirámide (33ºS) glaciers, which can be defined as cold and temperate respectively. To simulate the hydrological behaviour we adopt the physically-based TOPographic Kinematic wave APproximation model (TOPKAPI-ETH). The hydrometeorological records necessary model runs have been collected through fieldwork from 2013 to 2015. Regarding the calibration of the model parameters melting ETI, its observed that the value for TF in Pirámide is a third of the value for Tapado glacier, while SRF is half in Tapado regarding to Pirámide. The runoff in the glaciers, the constant snow and ice storage are higher in Tapado regarding Pirámide. Results show a contribution of glacial outflow to runoff during 2015 of 55% in Tapado and 77% in Pirámide, with maximum contributions between January and March in Tapado and Pirámide between November and March, presenting the relevance of the permanence of snow cover during spring and shelter that provides debris-covered in reducing the melting glacier. The results have allowed to know the relevance of the glacier contribution to mountain streams, allowing to know the calibration parameters most relevant in the hydrology balance of glacier basins in the Andes.

  6. Soil Moisture Variability and its Effects on Herbage Production in Semi-arid Rangelands of Kenya

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Too, D.K.; Trlica, M.J.; Swift, D.M.; Musembi, D.K.

    1999-01-01

    Results obtained from recent studies focused on rangelands potential as influenced by human activity and climatic factors in the semi-arid and arid pastoral ecosystems of Northern Kenya indicated great temporal and spatial forage production variability. The objective of the studies was to document primary production in relation to water stress (drought), herbivory and direct human activities. Efforts also focused on finding possibilities of increasing productivity while conserving the finite resources for sustainable use. Laboratory, field and numerical methods were employed over several seasons and years. Forb and grass production was more variable than that of the browse (dwarf shrub) layer. Compared to forbs and dwarf shrubs, the grass layer contributed less to the total production in all seasons, indicating that the region had less potential for grazers compared to browsers. Spatial-temporal variation in rangeland carrying capacity reflected the great spatial heterogeneity in vegetation types and production. Similarly, seasonal differences were very evident, with highest estimates in the long rainy and the lowest during the dry and short rainy seasons, respectively. Factors limiting rangeland production potential were identified to be moisture deficiency, resource-use conflicts, an increasing and partially sedentarised nomadic population, overgrazing, tree felling, and land degradation (desert encroachment). Measures that can improve rangeland production potential and provide a better way of life for the inhabitants of the region include: (a) identification of land degradation (e.g. by means of bio-indicators and Geographical Information Systems, GIS); (b) technical interventions (i.e. soil and water conservation, restoration of degraded areas, fodder production); (c) social-economic interventions (i.e. resolution of resource-use conflicts, alleviation of poverty, infrastructure development improvement of livestock marketing channels etc.) and (d) continued

  7. Transitions in Land Use Architecture under Multiple Human Driving Forces in a Semi-Arid Zone

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Issa Ouedraogo

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available The present study aimed to detect the main shifts in land-use architecture and assess the factors behind the changes in typical tropical semi-arid land in Burkina Faso. Three sets of time-series LANDSAT data over a 23-year period were used to detect land use changes and their underpinning drivers in multifunctional but vulnerable ecologies. Group discussions in selected villages were organized for mapping output interpretation and collection of essential drivers of change as perceived by local populations. Results revealed profound changes and transitions during the study period. During the last decade, shrub and wood savannahs exhibited high net changes (39% and −37% respectively with a weak net positive change for cropland (only 2%, while cropland and shrub savannah exhibited high swap (8% and 16%. This suggests that the area of cropland remained almost unchanged but was subject to relocation, wood savannah decreased drastically, and shrub savannah increased exponentially. Cropland exhibited a null net persistence while shrub and wood savannahs exhibited positive and negative net persistence (1.91 and −10.24, respectively, indicating that there is movement toward agricultural intensification and wood savannah tended to disappear to the benefit of shrub savannah. Local people are aware of the changes that have occurred and support the idea that illegal wood cutting and farming are inappropriate farming practices associated with immigration; absence of alternative cash generation sources, overgrazing and increasing demand for wood energy are driving the changes in their ecosystems. Policies that integrate restoration and conservation of natural ecosystems and promote sustainable agroforestry practices in the study zone are highly recommended.

  8. Kinetically limited weathering at low denudation rates in semi-arid climates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vanacker, V.; Schoonejans, J.; Opfergelt, S.; Ameijeiras-Marino, Y.; Christl, M.

    2016-12-01

    On Earth, the Critical Zone supports terrestrial life, being the near-surface environment where interactions between the atmosphere, lithosphere, hydrosphere, and biosphere take place Quantitative understanding of the interaction between mechanical rock breakdown, chemical weathering, and physical erosion is essential for unraveling Earth's biogeochemical cycles. In this study, we explore the role of soil water balance on regulating soil chemical weathering under water deficit regimes. Weathering rates and intensities were evaluated for nine soil profiles located on convex ridge crests of three mountain ranges in the Spanish Betic Cordillera. We present and compare quantitative information on soil weathering, chemical depletion and total denudation that were derived based on geochemical mass balance, 10Be cosmogenic nuclides and U-series disequilibria. Soil production rates determined based on U-series isotopes (238U, 234U, 230Th and 226Ra) are of the same order of magnitude as 10Be-derived denudation rates, suggesting steady state soil thickness, in two out of three sampling sites. The chemical weathering intensities are relatively low (˜5 to 30% of the total denudation of the soil) and negatively correlated with the magnitude of the water deficit in soils. Soil weathering extents increase (nonlinearly) with soil thickness and decrease with increasing surface denudation rates, consistent with kinetically limited or controlled weathering. Our study suggests that soil residence time and water availability limit weathering processes in semi-arid climates, which has not been validated previously with field data. An important implication of this finding is that climatic regimes may strongly regulate soil weathering by modulating soil solute fluxes.

  9. Calorific Value and Chemical Composition of Five Semi-Arid Mexican Tree Species

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maginot Ngangyo-Heya

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available The current global energy crisis has generated growing interest in looking for alternatives to traditional fossil fuels, presenting lignocellulosic materials as a promising resource for sustainable energy production. In this paper, the calorific values and chemical composition of the trunks, branches, twigs and leaves of five timber species of the semi-arid land of Mexico (Helietta parvifolia (Gray Benth., Ebenopsis ebano (Berl. Barneby, Acacia berlandieri (Benth., Havardia pallens (Benth. Britton & Rose and Acacia wrightii (Benth. were determined according to international standards. The results highlighted the calorific value ranges of 17.56 to 18.61 MJ kg−1 in trunks, 17.15 to 18.45 MJ kg−1 in branches, 17.29 to 17.92 MJ kg−1 in twigs, and 17.35to 19.36 MJ kg−1 in leaves. The pH presented an acidic trend (3.95–5.64. The content of mineral elements varied in trunks (1.09%–2.29%, branches (0.86%–2.75%, twigs (4.26%–6.76% and leaves (5.77%–11.79%, showing the higher proportion in Ca (57.03%–95.53%, followed by K (0.95%–19.21% and Mg (0.88%–13.47%. The highest amount of extractives was obtained in the methanolic solvent (3.96%–17.03%. The lignin recorded values of 28.78%–35.84% for trunks, 17.14%–31.39% for branches and 20.61%–29.92% for twigs. Lignin showed a moderately strong correlation (r = 0.66 with calorific value, but the best mathematical model was registered with the calorific value depending on the pH and lignin (R2 = 58.86%.

  10. Land cover/land use change in semi-arid Inner Mongolia: 1992-2004

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    John, Ranjeet; Chen Jiquan; Lu Nan; Wilske, Burkhard

    2009-01-01

    The semi-arid grasslands in Inner Mongolia (IM) are under increasing stress owing to climate change and rapid socio-economic development in the recent past. We investigated changes in land cover/land use and landscape structure between 1992 and 2004 through the analysis of AVHRR and MODIS derived land cover data. The scale of analysis included the regional level (i.e. the whole of IM) as well as the level of the dominant biomes (i.e. the grassland and desert). We quantified proportional change, rate of change and the changes in class-level landscape metrics using the landscape structure analysis program FRAGSTATS. The dominant land cover types, grassland and barren, 0.47 and 0.27 million km 2 , respectively, have increased proportionally. Cropland and urban land use also increased to 0.15 million km 2 and 2197 km 2 , respectively. However, the results further indicated increases in both the homogeneity and fragmentation of the landscape. Increasing homogeneity was mainly related to the reduction in minority cover types such as savanna, forests and permanent wetlands and increasing cohesion, aggregation index and clumpy indices. Conversely, increased fragmentation of the landscape was based on the increase in patch density and the interspersion/juxtaposition index (IJI). It is important to note the socio-economic growth in this fragile ecosystem, manifested by an increasing proportion of agricultural and urban land use not just at the regional level but also at the biome level in the context of regional climate change and increasing water stress.

  11. The hydrochemistry of a semi-arid pan basin case study: Sua Pan, Makgadikgadi, Botswana

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Eckardt, Frank D.; Bryant, Robert G.; McCulloch, Graham; Spiro, Baruch; Wood, Warren W.

    2008-01-01

    This study presents results on the fluid and salt chemistry for the Makgadikgadi, a substantial continental basin in the semi-arid Kalahari. The aims of the study are to improve understanding of the hydrology of such a system and to identify the sources of the solutes and the controls on their cycling within pans. Sampling took place against the backdrop of unusually severe flooding as well as significant anthropogenic extraction of subsurface brines. This paper examines in particular the relationship between the chemistry of soil leachates, fresh stream water, salty lake water, surface salts and subsurface brines at Sua Pan, Botswana with the aim of improving the understanding of the system's hydrology. Occasionally during the short wet season (December-March) surface water enters the saline environment and precipitates mostly calcite and halite, as well as dolomite and traces of other salts associated with the desiccation of the lake. The hypersaline subsurface brine (up to TDS 190,000 mg/L) is homogenous with minor variations due to pumping by BotAsh mine (Botswana Ash (Pty) Ltd.), which extracts 2400 m 3 of brine/h from a depth of 38 m. Notable is the decrease in TDS as the pumping rate increases which may be indicative of subsurface recharge by less saline water. Isotope chemistry for Sr ( 87 Sr/ 86 Sr average 0.722087) and S (δ 34 S average 34.35) suggests subsurface brines have been subject to a lithological contribution of undetermined origin. Recharge of the subsurface brine from surface water including the Nata River appears to be negligible

  12. Co-evolution of Vegetation, Sediment Transport and Infiltration on semi-arid hillslopes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harman, C. J.; Troch, P. A.; Lohse, K. A.; Sivapalan, M.

    2011-12-01

    Soils in semi-arid landscapes can vary over very small distances, with a great deal of variation associated with 'resource islands' created and maintained by woody vegetation. The distinct physical and hydraulic properties that arise in these islands can lead to spatial patterns of infiltration that have been implicated in the maintenance of the vegetation populating the island. Less well understood are the roles that the small-scale variability in soils plays in determining the transport of sediments, water and sediment-bound carbon and nitrogen across hillslopes. Here we explore these relationships using a coupled field and modeling approach. Detailed field data from hillslopes underlain by both granite and schist parent materials in the Santa Catalina mountains (part of the JSC Critical Zone Observatory) suggest that soils under individual velvet mesquite (latin name) contain higher concentration of soil organic matter and have higher hydraulic conductivity and water holding capacity. Greater infiltration and increased roughness under the canopy appears to lead to the formation of mounds that alter overland flow lines around the area under the canopy, particularly in the finer schist soils. This diversion leads to a complex distribution of shear stresses across the hillslope, creating systematic patterns in the transport of carbon and nitrogen rich soils under the canopies. The relationship between the small scale mechanism and the emergent pattern dynamics in the temporal variability of materials delivered to the stream from the hillslope are also examined, and the implications of these results for the modeling of water, sediment and nutrient fluxes at hillslope scales will be discussed.

  13. Energy for development in semi-arid areas of northeastern Brazil

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pereira, A F [Getulio Vargas Foundation, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; Warkov, S

    1979-09-01

    Work on the prospects for alternative energy systems, especially solar and biomass, and the interrelationship of energy and rural development in the semi-arid areas of North-East Brazil is reported. The approach is interdisciplinary and raises questions about some economic and social costs and benefits that may be associated with energy-policy choices in this one sub-region of Brazil. Following an appraisal of fuel wood, solar cookers, irrigation and fertilizers in the context of energy and rural development, the social, demographic and cultural characteristics of the region are described. The drought-stricken area of the rural Northeast (Sertao) is the poorest in the country, with small land units, scarce surface water, subsistance agriculture, low capital formation, transportation deficiencies, resistance to change, high rates of out-migration and the like. The description of some regional development projects leads to a comparison of various technologies that might efficiently improve the supply of water. Work performed in the State of Paraiba on simple water distillation technology is reviewed and a social and economic cost/benefit study proposed. Factors affecting rural electrification are considered. A social impact analysis of viable alternatives to conventional electrical energy systems is put forward and the status of wind and solar generation of electricity is reviewed. A final section describes the current status of work in Brazil on biomass alternatives and compares the prospects for sugar cane and manioc plant alcohol. A proposal is made for a multi-disciplinary assessment of the socio-economic impacts of alternate energy sources. 42 references.

  14. Survival strategies in semi-arid climate for isohydric and anisohydric species

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guerin, M. F.; Gentine, P.; Uriarte, M.

    2013-12-01

    The understanding of survival strategies in dry land remains a challenging problem aiming at the interrelationship between local hydrology, plant physiology and climate. Carbon starvation and hydraulic failure are thought to be the two main factors leading to drought-induced mortality beside biotic perturbation. In order to better comprehend mortality the understanding of abiotic mechanisms triggering mortality is being studied in a tractable model for soil-plant-atmosphere continuum emphasizing the role of soil hydraulic properties, photosynthesis, embolism, leaf-gas exchange and climate. In particular the role of the frequency vs. the intensity of droughts is highlighted within such model. The analysis of the model included a differentiation between isohydric and anisohydric tree regulation and is supported by an extensive dataset of Pinion and Juniper growing in a semi-arid ecosystem. An objective of reduced number of parameters was approached with allometric equations to characterize tree's main traits and their hydraulic controls. Leaf area, sapwood area and tree's height are used to derive capacitance, conductance and photosynthetic abilities of the plant. A parameter sensitivity is performed highlighting the role of root:shoot ratio, rooting depth, photosynthetic capacity, quantum efficiency, and most importantly water use efficiency. Analytic development emphasizes two regimes of transpiration/photosynthesis denoted as stage-I (no embolism) and stage-II (embolism dominated) in analogy with stage I-stage II treminology for evaporation (Phillip,1957). Anisohydric species tend to remain in stage-I during which they still can assimilate carbon at full potential thus avoiding carbon starvation. Isohydric species tend to remain longer in stage-II. The effects of drought intensity/frequency on those 2 stages are described. Figure: sensitivity of Piñons stage 1 (top left), stage 2 (top right), and total cavitation duration (sum of stage 1 and stage 2 - bottom left

  15. The influence of conservation tillage methods on soil water regimes in semi-arid southern Zimbabwe

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mupangwa, W.; Twomlow, S.; Walker, S.

    Planting basins and ripper tillage practices are major components of the recently introduced conservation agriculture package that is being extensively promoted for smallholder farming in Zimbabwe. Besides preparing land for crop planting, these two technologies also help in collecting and using rainwater more efficiently in semi-arid areas. The basin tillage is being targeted for households with limited or no access to draught animals while ripping is meant for smallholder farmers with some draught animal power. Trials were established at four farms in Gwanda and Insiza in southern Zimbabwe to determine soil water contributions and runoff water losses from plots under four different tillage treatments. The tillage treatments were hand-dug planting basins, ripping, conventional spring and double ploughing using animal-drawn implements. The initial intention was to measure soil water changes and runoff losses from cropped plots under the four tillage practices. However, due to total crop failure, only soil water and runoff were measured from bare plots between December 2006 and April 2007. Runoff losses were highest under conventional ploughing. Planting basins retained most of the rainwater that fell during each rainfall event. The amount of rainfall received at each farm significantly influenced the volume of runoff water measured. Runoff water volume increased with increase in the amount of rainfall received at each farm. Soil water content was consistently higher under basin tillage than the other three tillage treatments. Significant differences in soil water content were observed across the farms according to soil types from sand to loamy sand. The basin tillage method gives a better control of water losses from the farmers’ fields. The planting basin tillage method has a greater potential for providing soil water to crops than ripper, double and single conventional ploughing practices.

  16. Post-Fire Evapotranspiration and Net Ecosystem Exchange over A Semi-Arid Grassland in Arizona

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krishnan, P.; Meyers, T. P.; Heuer, M.

    2015-12-01

    The seasonal and interannual variability of evapotranspiration (E) and net ecosystem exchange (NEE) following a fire disturbance over a semi -arid grassland located on the Audubon Research Ranch in south western Arizona (31.5907N, 110.5104W, elevation 1496 m), USA, and their relationships to environmental variables were examined using continuous measurements of water vapour and CO2 fluxes made from first week of June 2002 to 2009 using the eddy covariance technique. The research ranch was established in 1969 as an ecological research preserve and it is now one of the largest ungrazed, privately managed grassland sites in Arizona. A wild fire occurred in April - May 2002, and burned all the standing vegetation and litter on in research ranch (~38,000 acres) including 500 acres of grassland. The mean annual temperature and precipitation (P) at this site were ~16 deg C and ~370 mm, respectively. More than 60% of the annual P was received during the North American monsoon period (July-September) with the lowest annual P in the drought years of 2004 and 2009. Drastic changes in albedo, vegetation growth and evapotranspiration occurred following the onset of the monsoon season in July. The ecosystem was mostly a carbon sink during monsoon period. Daily total evapotranspiration during July-August increased from 2 mm d-1 in 2002 to >3 mm d-1 in 2007. The mean annual E over the site was during 2003 -2009 was 352 ±75 mm. With the onset of monsoon the ecosystem turned to carbon sink in 2002, with daily total net ecosystem exchange (NEE) varying up to ~vegetation index, longest monsoon growing season and the highest annual and July-September P. The interannual variations in annual E and NEE were mostly controlled by annual P, July-September NDVI and growing season length during 2002-2009.

  17. Testing the assumptions of the pyrodiversity begets biodiversity hypothesis for termites in semi-arid Australia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davis, Hayley; Ritchie, Euan G; Avitabile, Sarah; Doherty, Tim; Nimmo, Dale G

    2018-04-01

    Fire shapes the composition and functioning of ecosystems globally. In many regions, fire is actively managed to create diverse patch mosaics of fire-ages under the assumption that a diversity of post-fire-age classes will provide a greater variety of habitats, thereby enabling species with differing habitat requirements to coexist, and enhancing species diversity (the pyrodiversity begets biodiversity hypothesis). However, studies provide mixed support for this hypothesis. Here, using termite communities in a semi-arid region of southeast Australia, we test four key assumptions of the pyrodiversity begets biodiversity hypothesis (i) that fire shapes vegetation structure over sufficient time frames to influence species' occurrence, (ii) that animal species are linked to resources that are themselves shaped by fire and that peak at different times since fire, (iii) that species' probability of occurrence or abundance peaks at varying times since fire and (iv) that providing a diversity of fire-ages increases species diversity at the landscape scale. Termite species and habitat elements were sampled in 100 sites across a range of fire-ages, nested within 20 landscapes chosen to represent a gradient of low to high pyrodiversity. We used regression modelling to explore relationships between termites, habitat and fire. Fire affected two habitat elements (coarse woody debris and the cover of woody vegetation) that were associated with the probability of occurrence of three termite species and overall species richness, thus supporting the first two assumptions of the pyrodiversity hypothesis. However, this did not result in those species or species richness being affected by fire history per se. Consequently, landscapes with a low diversity of fire histories had similar numbers of termite species as landscapes with high pyrodiversity. Our work suggests that encouraging a diversity of fire-ages for enhancing termite species richness in this study region is not necessary.

  18. Geochemical and isotopic studies of unsaturated zone moisture and recharge processes in semi-arid conditions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Edmunds, W.

    1988-07-01

    Against the background of recent droughts in the Sahel and the overexploitation of scarce water resources, new and improved techniques for recharge estimation in arid lands are now needed. Results have been obtained from the Butana area of Sudan where rainfall is presently well below 200 mm a -1 . Profiles of the unsaturated zone moisture were analysed for solutes and oxygen (δ 18 O) and hydrogen (δD) isotope ratios to estimate the extent of current recharge. Chloride concentrations were compared with those from rainfall inputs and the ratio used to estimate long term recharge values. Direct recharge proved to be below 1 mm a -1 and the unsaturated zone (25 m approx) contained around 2000 years storage. Isotopic profiles indicated that in some areas discharge from the water table was occurring. Within the Butana region of Sudan, therefore, current recharge rates in interfluve areas are effectively zero. Lateral recharge is however occurring, based on the presence of tritium, from the wadi systems. This forms the only replenishable resource which has been successfully exploited by traditional means, although under stress in the present dry period. The River Nile can be shown from isotopic results to recharge laterally some 10 km; but the deeper resources elsewhere are palaeowaters replenished during Holocene wet periods (6000-8000 BP). 2 refs, 6 figs

  19. Relations between radiation fluxes of a greenhouse in semi-arid conditions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Al-Riahi, M.; Al-Karaghouli, A.; Hasson, A.M.; Al-Kayssi, A.W.

    1989-01-01

    Measurements of global radiation, reflected radiation and net total radiation inside and outside the greenhouse were conducted in Fudhiliyah Agrometeorological Research Station during the period from 1 January to 30 April, 1987. From these measurements, several relationships were established. Linear regressions of hourly values of global radiation inside the greenhouse on hourly global radiation outside the greenhouse were fitted for each month of the recording period. The degree of fit was generally good (r > 0.95). Net short-wave radiation inside the greenhouse showed strong dependence on the global inside radiation (r = 0.998), also the net total radiation and global radiation inside the greenhouse correlate very strongly. From the above-mentioned relationships, it was found that the global, net short-wave and net total radiation could be successfully predicted when only global outside radiation is available. Using the linear regression equations correlating the above radiation parameters, albedo and heating coefficient were derived. Albedo showed strong dependence on solar altitude angle and period of day (forenoon and afternoon). Heating coefficients were consistently positive and their values varied between 0.10 and 0.393. Monthly average values of mean hourly night-time net long-wave radiation inside the greenhouse were −31, −32, −38 and −42 W m −2 for the months of January, February, March and April, respectively

  20. Differential effects of air conditioning type on residential endotoxin levels in a semi-arid climate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnston, J D; Kruman, B A; Nelson, M C; Merrill, R M; Graul, R J; Hoybjerg, T G; Tuttle, S C; Myers, S J; Cook, R B; Weber, K S

    2017-09-01

    Residential endotoxin exposure is associated with protective and pathogenic health outcomes. Evaporative coolers, an energy-efficient type of air conditioner used in dry climates, are a potential source of indoor endotoxins; however, this association is largely unstudied. We collected settled dust biannually from four locations in homes with evaporative coolers (n=18) and central air conditioners (n=22) in Utah County, Utah (USA), during winter (Jan-Apr) and summer (Aug-Sept), 2014. Dust samples (n=281) were analyzed by the Limulus amebocyte lysate test. Housing factors were measured by survey, and indoor temperature and relative humidity measures were collected during both seasons. Endotoxin concentrations (EU/mg) were significantly higher in homes with evaporative coolers from mattress and bedroom floor samples during both seasons. Endotoxin surface loads (EU/m 2 ) were significantly higher in homes with evaporative coolers from mattress and bedroom floor samples during both seasons and in upholstered furniture during winter. For the nine significant season-by-location comparisons, EU/mg and EU/m 2 were approximately three to six times greater in homes using evaporative coolers. A plausible explanation for these findings is that evaporative coolers serve as a reservoir and distribution system for Gram-negative bacteria or their cell wall components in homes. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  1. Yield gap analysis of Chickpea under semi-arid conditions: A simulation study

    OpenAIRE

    seyed Reza Amiri Deh ahmadi; mehdi parsa; mohammad bannayan aval; mahdi nassiri mahallati

    2016-01-01

    Yield gap analysis provides an essential framework to prioritize research and policy efforts aimed at reducing yield constraints. To identify options for increasing chickpea yield, the SSM-chickpea model was parameterized and evaluated to analyze yield potentials, water limited yields and yield gaps for nine regions representing major chickpea-growing areas of Razavi Khorasan province. The average potential yield of chickpea for the locations was 2251 kg ha-1, while the water limited yield wa...

  2. Fluorescent bioaerosol particle, molecular tracer, and fungal spore concentrations during dry and rainy periods in a semi-arid forest

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. I. Gosselin

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Bioaerosols pose risks to human health and agriculture and may influence the evolution of mixed-phase clouds and the hydrological cycle on local and regional scales. The availability and reliability of methods and data on the abundance and properties of atmospheric bioaerosols, however, are rather limited. Here we analyze and compare data from different real-time ultraviolet laser/light-induced fluorescence (UV-LIF instruments with results from a culture-based spore sampler and offline molecular tracers for airborne fungal spores in a semi-arid forest in the southern Rocky Mountains of Colorado. Commercial UV-APS (ultraviolet aerodynamic particle sizer and WIBS-3 (wideband integrated bioaerosol sensor, version 3 instruments with different excitation and emission wavelengths were utilized to measure fluorescent aerosol particles (FAPs during both dry weather conditions and periods heavily influenced by rain. Seven molecular tracers of bioaerosols were quantified by analysis of total suspended particle (TSP high-volume filter samples using a high-performance anion-exchange chromatography system with pulsed amperometric detection (HPAEC-PAD. From the same measurement campaign, Huffman et al. (2013 previously reported dramatic increases in total and fluorescent particle concentrations during and immediately after rainfall and also showed a strong relationship between the concentrations of FAPs and ice nuclei (Huffman et al., 2013; Prenni et al., 2013. Here we investigate molecular tracers and show that during rainy periods the atmospheric concentrations of arabitol (35.2 ± 10.5 ng m−3 and mannitol (44.9 ± 13.8 ng m−3 were 3–4 times higher than during dry periods. During and after rain, the correlations between FAP and tracer mass concentrations were also significantly improved. Fungal spore number concentrations on the order of 104 m−3, accounting for 2–5 % of TSP mass during dry periods and 17–23 % during rainy

  3. Examining the relationship between intermediate-scale soil moisture and terrestrial evaporation within a semi-arid grassland

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. B. Jana

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Interactions between soil moisture and terrestrial evaporation affect water cycle behaviour and responses between the land surface and the atmosphere across scales. With strong heterogeneities at the land surface, the inherent spatial variability in soil moisture makes its representation via point-scale measurements challenging, resulting in scale mismatch when compared to coarser-resolution satellite-based soil moisture or evaporation estimates. The Cosmic Ray Neutron Probe (CRNP was developed to address such issues in the measurement and representation of soil moisture at intermediate scales. Here, we present a study to assess the utility of CRNP soil moisture observations in validating model evaporation estimates. The CRNP soil moisture product from a pasture in the semi-arid central west region of New South Wales, Australia, was compared to evaporation derived from three distinct approaches, including the Priestley–Taylor (PT-JPL, Penman–Monteith (PM-Mu, and Surface Energy Balance System (SEBS models, driven by forcing data from local meteorological station data and remote sensing retrievals from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS sensor. Pearson's correlations, quantile–quantile (Q–Q plots, and analysis of variance (ANOVA were used to qualitatively and quantitatively evaluate the temporal distributions of soil moisture and evaporation over the study site. The relationships were examined against nearly 2 years of observation data, as well as for different seasons and for defined periods of analysis. Results highlight that while direct correlations of raw data were not particularly instructive, the Q–Q plots and ANOVA illustrate that the root-zone soil moisture represented by the CRNP measurements and the modelled evaporation estimates reflect similar distributions under most meteorological conditions. The PT-JPL and PM-Mu model estimates performed contrary to expectation when high soil moisture and cold

  4. Hydrological differentiation and spatial distribution of high altitude wetlands in a semi-arid Andean region derived from satellite data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Otto

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available High Altitude Wetlands of the Andes (HAWA belong to a unique type of wetland within the semi-arid high Andean region. Knowledge about HAWA has been derived mainly from studies at single sites within different parts of the Andes at only small time scales. On the one hand, HAWA depend on water provided by glacier streams, snow melt or precipitation. On the other hand, they are suspected to influence hydrology through water retention and vegetation growth altering stream flow velocity. We derived HAWA land cover from satellite data at regional scale and analysed changes in connection with precipitation over the last decade. Perennial and temporal HAWA subtypes can be distinguished by seasonal changes of photosynthetically active vegetation (PAV indicating the perennial or temporal availability of water during the year. HAWA have been delineated within a region of 12 800 km2 situated in the Northwest of Lake Titicaca. The multi-temporal classification method used Normalized Differenced Vegetation Index (NDVI and Normalized Differenced Infrared Index (NDII data derived from two Landsat ETM+ scenes at the end of austral winter (September 2000 and at the end of austral summer (May 2001. The mapping result indicates an unexpected high abundance of HAWA covering about 800 km2 of the study region (6 %. Annual HAWA mapping was computed using NDVI 16-day composites of Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS. Analyses on the relation between HAWA and precipitation was based on monthly precipitation data of the Tropical Rain Measurement Mission (TRMM 3B43 and MODIS Eight Day Maximum Snow Extent data (MOD10A2 from 2000 to 2010. We found HAWA subtype specific dependencies on precipitation conditions. A strong relation exists between perennial HAWA and snow fall (r2: 0.82 in dry austral winter months (June to August and between temporal HAWA and precipitation (r2: 0.75 during austral summer

  5. Water movement and fate of nitrogen during drip dispersal of wastewater effluent into a semi-arid landscape.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siegrist, Robert L; Parzen, Rebecca; Tomaras, Jill; Lowe, Kathryn S

    2014-04-01

    Drip dispersal of partially treated wastewater was investigated as an approach for onsite water reclamation and beneficial reuse of water and nutrients in a semi-arid climate. At the Mines Park Test Site in Golden, Colorado, a drip dispersal system (DDS) was installed at 20- to 30-cm depth in an Ascalon sandy loam soil profile. Two zones with the same layout were established to enable study of two different hydraulic loading rates. Zones 1 and 2 each had one half of the landscape surface with native vegetation and the other with Kentucky bluegrass sod. After startup activities, domestic septic tank effluent was dispersed five times a day at footprint loading rates of 5 L/m(2)/d for Zone 1 and 10 L/m(2)/d for Zone 2. Over a two-year period, monitoring included the frequency and volume of effluent dispersed and its absorption by the landscape. After the first year of operation in October a (15)N tracer test was completed in the sodded portion of Zone 1 and samples of vegetation and soil materials were collected and analyzed for water content, pH, nitrogen, (15)N, and bacteria. Research revealed that both zones were capable of absorbing the effluent water applied at 5 or 10 L/m(2)/d. Effluent water dispersed from an emitter infiltrates at the emitter and along the drip tubing and water movement is influenced by hydrologic conditions. Based on precipitation and evapotranspiration at the Test Site, only a portion of the effluent water dispersed migrated downward in the soil (approx. 34% or 64% for Zone 1 or 2, respectively). Sampling within Zone 1 revealed water filled porosities were high throughout the soil profile (>85%) and water content was most elevated along the drip tubing (17-22% dry wt.), which is also where soil pH was most depressed (pH 4.5) due to nitrification reactions. NH4(+) and NO3(-) retention occurred near the dispersal location for several days and approximately 51% of the N applied was estimated to be removed by plant uptake and denitrification

  6. Building resilience to social-ecological change through farmers' learning practices in semi-arid Makueni County Kenya

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ifejika Speranza, Chinwe; Kiteme, Boniface; Kimathi Mbae, John; Schmude, Miron

    2015-04-01

    Social-ecological change is resulting in various risks and opportunities to farmers, which they address through complex multi-strategies to sustain their agricultural-based livelihoods and agricultural landscapes. This paper examines how various stakeholders such as research and government organisations, local and international non-governmental organisations, private companies, farmer groups, individual actors and farmers draw on scientific, external and localised knowledge to address the needs of farmers in sustainable land management and food production. What is the structure of collaboration between the various actors and how does this influence the potential for learning, not only for the farmers but also for other stakeholders? How does the supplied knowledge meet farmers' knowledge needs and demands for sustainable land management and food production? To what extent and how is knowledge co-produced among the various stakeholders? What different types of learning can be identified and what are their influences on farmers' sustainable land management practices? How does farmer learning foster the resilience of agricultural landscapes? Answers to these questions are sought through a case study in the semi-arid areas of Makueni County, Kenya. Particular environmental risks in the study area relate to recurrent droughts and flooding, soil erosion and general land degradation. Opportunities in the study area arise short-term due to more conducive rainfall conditions for crop and vegetation growth, institutional arrangements that foster sustainable land management such as agroforestry programmes and conservation agriculture projects. While farmers observe changes in their environment, they weigh the various risks and opportunities that arise from their social-ecological context and their own capacity to respond leading to the prioritization of certain adaptations relative to others. This can mean that while certain farmers may have knowledge on sustainable land

  7. Implications of deep drainage through saline clay for groundwater recharge and sustainable cropping in a semi-arid catchment, Australia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    W. A. Timms

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available The magnitude and timing of deep drainage and salt leaching through clay soils is a critical issue for dryland agriculture in semi-arid regions (<500 mm yr−1 rainfall, potential evapotranspiration >2000 mm yr−1 such as parts of Australia's Murray-Darling Basin (MDB. In this rare study, hydrogeological measurements and estimations of the historic water balance of crops grown on overlying Grey Vertosols were combined to estimate the contribution of deep drainage below crop roots to recharge and salinization of shallow groundwater. Soil sampling at two sites on the alluvial flood plain of the Lower Namoi catchment revealed significant peaks in chloride concentrations at 0.8–1.2 m depth under perennial vegetation and at 2.0–2.5 m depth under continuous cropping indicating deep drainage and salt leaching since conversion to cropping. Total salt loads of 91–229 t ha−1 NaCl equivalent were measured for perennial vegetation and cropping, with salinity to ≥ 10 m depth that was not detected by shallow soil surveys. Groundwater salinity varied spatially from 910 to 2430 mS m−1 at 21 to 37 m depth (N = 5, whereas deeper groundwater was less saline (290 mS m−1 with use restricted to livestock and rural domestic supplies in this area. The Agricultural Production Systems Simulator (APSIM software package predicted deep drainage of 3.3–9.5 mm yr−1 (0.7–2.1% rainfall based on site records of grain yields, rainfall, salt leaching and soil properties. Predicted deep drainage was highly episodic, dependent on rainfall and antecedent soil water content, and over a 39 yr period was restricted mainly to the record wet winter of 1998. During the study period, groundwater levels were unresponsive to major rainfall events (70 and 190 mm total, and most piezometers at about 18 m depth remained dry. In this area, at this time, recharge appears to be negligible due to low

  8. Implications of deep drainage through saline clay for groundwater recharge and sustainable cropping in a semi-arid catchment, Australia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Timms, W. A.; Young, R. R.; Huth, N.

    2012-04-01

    The magnitude and timing of deep drainage and salt leaching through clay soils is a critical issue for dryland agriculture in semi-arid regions (2000 mm yr-1) such as parts of Australia's Murray-Darling Basin (MDB). In this rare study, hydrogeological measurements and estimations of the historic water balance of crops grown on overlying Grey Vertosols were combined to estimate the contribution of deep drainage below crop roots to recharge and salinization of shallow groundwater. Soil sampling at two sites on the alluvial flood plain of the Lower Namoi catchment revealed significant peaks in chloride concentrations at 0.8-1.2 m depth under perennial vegetation and at 2.0-2.5 m depth under continuous cropping indicating deep drainage and salt leaching since conversion to cropping. Total salt loads of 91-229 t ha-1 NaCl equivalent were measured for perennial vegetation and cropping, with salinity to ≥ 10 m depth that was not detected by shallow soil surveys. Groundwater salinity varied spatially from 910 to 2430 mS m-1 at 21 to 37 m depth (N = 5), whereas deeper groundwater was less saline (290 mS m-1) with use restricted to livestock and rural domestic supplies in this area. The Agricultural Production Systems Simulator (APSIM) software package predicted deep drainage of 3.3-9.5 mm yr-1 (0.7-2.1% rainfall) based on site records of grain yields, rainfall, salt leaching and soil properties. Predicted deep drainage was highly episodic, dependent on rainfall and antecedent soil water content, and over a 39 yr period was restricted mainly to the record wet winter of 1998. During the study period, groundwater levels were unresponsive to major rainfall events (70 and 190 mm total), and most piezometers at about 18 m depth remained dry. In this area, at this time, recharge appears to be negligible due to low rainfall and large potential evapotranspiration, transient hydrological conditions after changes in land use and a thick clay dominated vadose zone. This is in

  9. Integrated assessment of policy interventions for promoting sustainable irrigation in semi-arid environments: a hydro-economic modeling approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blanco-Gutiérrez, Irene; Varela-Ortega, Consuelo; Purkey, David R

    2013-10-15

    Sustaining irrigated agriculture to meet food production needs while maintaining aquatic ecosystems is at the heart of many policy debates in various parts of the world, especially in arid and semi-arid areas. Researchers and practitioners are increasingly calling for integrated approaches, and policy-makers are progressively supporting the inclusion of ecological and social aspects in water management programs. This paper contributes to this policy debate by providing an integrated economic-hydrologic modeling framework that captures the socio-economic and environmental effects of various policy initiatives and climate variability. This modeling integration includes a risk-based economic optimization model and a hydrologic water management simulation model that have been specified for the Middle Guadiana basin, a vulnerable drought-prone agro-ecological area with highly regulated river systems in southwest Spain. Namely, two key water policy interventions were investigated: the implementation of minimum environmental flows (supported by the European Water Framework Directive, EU WFD), and a reduction in the legal amount of water delivered for irrigation (planned measure included in the new Guadiana River Basin Management Plan, GRBMP, still under discussion). Results indicate that current patterns of excessive water use for irrigation in the basin may put environmental flow demands at risk, jeopardizing the WFD's goal of restoring the 'good ecological status' of water bodies by 2015. Conflicts between environmental and agricultural water uses will be stressed during prolonged dry episodes, and particularly in summer low-flow periods, when there is an important increase of crop irrigation water requirements. Securing minimum stream flows would entail a substantial reduction in irrigation water use for rice cultivation, which might affect the profitability and economic viability of small rice-growing farms located upstream in the river. The new GRBMP could contribute

  10. Examining the relationship between intermediate-scale soil moisture and terrestrial evaporation within a semi-arid grassland

    KAUST Repository

    Jana, Raghavendra B.

    2016-09-30

    Interactions between soil moisture and terrestrial evaporation affect water cycle behaviour and responses between the land surface and the atmosphere across scales. With strong heterogeneities at the land surface, the inherent spatial variability in soil moisture makes its representation via point-scale measurements challenging, resulting in scale mismatch when compared to coarser-resolution satellite based soil moisture or evaporation estimates. The Cosmic Ray Neutron Probe (CRNP) was developed to address such issues in the measurement and representation of soil moisture at intermediate scales. Here, we present a study to assess the utility of CRNP soil moisture observations in validating model evaporation estimates. The CRNP soil moisture product from a pasture in the semi-arid central west region of New South Wales, Australia, was compared to evaporation derived from three distinct approaches, including the Priestley–Taylor (PT-JPL), Penman–Monteith (PM-Mu), and Surface Energy Balance System (SEBS) models, driven by forcing data from local meteorological station data and remote sensing retrievals from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) sensor. Pearson’s correlations, quantile–quantile (Q–Q) plots, and analysis of variance (ANOVA) were used to qualitatively and quantitatively evaluate the temporal distributions of soil moisture and evaporation over the study site. The relationships were examined against nearly 2 years of observation data, as well as for different seasons and for defined periods of analysis. Results highlight that while direct correlations of raw data were not particularly instructive, the Q–Q plots and ANOVA illustrate that the root-zone soil moisture represented by the CRNP measurements and the modelled evaporation estimates reflect similar distributions under most meteorological conditions. The PT-JPL and PM-Mu model estimates performed contrary to expectation when high soil moisture and cold temperatures were

  11. Examining the relationship between intermediate scale soil moisture and terrestrial evaporation within a semi-arid grassland

    KAUST Repository

    Jana, Raghavendra Belur

    2016-05-17

    Interactions between soil moisture and terrestrial evaporation affect water cycle behaviour and responses between the land surface and the atmosphere across scales. With strong heterogeneities at the land surface, the inherent spatial variability in soil moisture makes its representation via point-scale measurements challenging, resulting in scale-mismatch when compared to coarser-resolution satellite-based soil moisture or evaporation estimates. The Cosmic Ray Soil Moisture Observing System (COSMOS) was developed to address such issues in the measurement and representation of soil moisture at intermediate scales. Here we present an examination of the links observed between COSMOS soil moisture retrievals and evaporation estimates over a pasture in the semi-arid central-west region of New South Wales, Australia. The COSMOS soil moisture product was compared to evaporation derived from three distinct approaches, including the Priestley-Taylor (PT-JPL), Penman-Monteith (PM-Mu) and Surface Energy Balance System (SEBS) models, driven by forcing data from local meteorological station data and remote sensing retrievals from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) sensor. Pearson’s Correlations, Quantile-Quantile (Q-Q) plots, and Analysis of Variance (ANOVA) were used to qualitatively and quantitatively evaluate the temporal distributions of soil moisture and evaporation over the study site. The relationships were examined against nearly two years of observation data, as well as for different seasons and for defined periods of analysis. Results highlight that while direct correlations of raw data were not particularly instructive, the Q-Q plots and ANOVA illustrate that the root-zone soil moisture represented by the COSMOS measurements and the modelled evaporation estimates reflect similar distributions under most meteorological conditions. The PT-JPL and PM-Mu model estimates performed contrary to expectation when high soil moisture and cold

  12. Study of the weekly irrigation cycle of a cultivated field in a semi-arid area (Marrakech region, Morocco) by using CR-39 and LR-115 II track detectors and radon as a natural tracer

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Misdaq, M.A.; Essaouif, Z.

    2007-01-01

    Uranium ( 238 U) and thorium ( 232 Th) concentrations were measured in the soil of a cultivated field situated in a semi-arid area (Marrakech, Morocco) by using CR-39 and LR-115 type II solid state nuclear track detectors (SSNTDs). The same track detectors were used for measuring alpha- and beta-activities due to radon and thoron gases emanating from the soil of the studied irrigated agricultural field. The influence of the humidity (soil water content), soil depth and climate conditions on the weekly irrigation cycle of the studied cultivated field was investigated by exploiting radon measurements

  13. Simulating the Dependence of Sagebrush Steppe Vegetation on Redistributed Snow in a Semi-Arid Watershed.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soderquist, B.; Kavanagh, K.; Link, T. E.; Strand, E. K.; Seyfried, M. S.

    2014-12-01

    snow. These results indicate that as snow water subsidies decrease, ecosystems may shift from tree and shrub dominated to grassland dominated. As climate change progresses, shifts in the precipitation regimes in semi-arid environments may lead to changes in species composition and carbon stores throughout the intermountain west.

  14. Yield and biological nitrogen fixation of cowpea varieties in the semi-arid region of Brazil

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Santiago de Freitas, Ana Dolores; Fernandes Silva, Acácia; Valadares de Sá Barretto Sampaio, Everardo

    2012-01-01

    Cowpea is an important crop in small properties of the Brazilian semi-arid region, where it is cultivated without fertilizer application. In spite of the fundamental role played by biological Nitrogen fixation (BNF), little is known of the symbiosis between cowpea varieties and native rhizobia or recommended rhizobia strains. A field experiment was conducted aiming to estimate BNF and productivities of local varieties, in association with two previously described bradyrhizobial inoculant strains and native rhizobia (no inoculation). The plants received 20 kg ha −1 of enriched 15 N fertilizer to allow the use of the isotopic dilution method. After harvest (80 days) straw and grain biomass was determined. The varieties differed in grain and straw productivity and in N and N derived from atmosphere (%Ndfa). Corujinha had the highest grain productivity (1147 kg ha −1 ), followed by Sempre Verde (920 kg ha −1 ), Azul (912 kg ha −1 ) and Cariri (889 kg ha −1 ). Costela de Vaca had the highest straw productivity (2258 kg ha −1 ), highest N content in the straw (28 g ha −1 ) and highest BNF (79 %Ndfa, corresponding to 45 kg ha −1 of N for total aboveground biomass and 39 kg ha −1 for the straw), but the lowest grain productivity (381 kg ha −1 ) and the lowest harvest index (0.14). The inoculations did not significantly alter productivities, N contents or %Ndfa but there was a tendency of lower grain productivities in the non-inoculated plants, which was reflected in lower total and biologically fixed N quantities, indicating that the native strains may be slightly less efficient. -- Highlights: ► We estimate N fixation and productivities of local cowpea varieties in Brazil. ► Plants were inoculated or not with two recommended rhizobia strains. ► All local varieties had high proportions of their N derived from the air (%Ndfa). ► They differed in BNF in grain and straw productivity. ► Inoculation did not alter productivities or %Ndfa but

  15. Direct radiative forcing properties of atmospheric aerosols over semi-arid region, Anantapur in India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kalluri, Raja Obul Reddy; Gugamsetty, Balakrishnaiah; Kotalo, Rama Gopal; Nagireddy, Siva Kumar Reddy; Tandule, Chakradhar Rao; Thotli, Lokeswara Reddy; Rajuru Ramakrishna, Reddy; Surendranair, Suresh Babu

    2016-10-01

    This paper describes the aerosols optical, physical characteristics and the aerosol radiative forcing pertaining to semi-arid region, Anantapur for the period January 2013-December 2014. Collocated measurements of Aerosol Optical Depth (AOD) and Black Carbon mass concentration (BC) are carried out by using MICROTOPS II and Aethalometer and estimated the aerosol radiative forcing over this location. The mean values of AOD at 500nm are found to be 0.47±0.09, 0.34±0.08, 0.29±0.06 and 0.30±0.07 during summer, winter, monsoon and post-monsoon respectively. The Angstrom exponent (α380-1020) value is observed maximum in March (1.25±0.19) and which indicates the predominance of fine - mode aerosols and lowest in the month of July (0.33±0.14) and may be due to the dominance of coarse-mode aerosols. The diurnal variation of BC is exhibited two height peaks during morning 07:00-08:00 (IST) and evening 19:00-21:00 (IST) hours and one minima noticed during afternoon (13:00-16:00). The highest monthly mean BC concentration is observed in the month of January (3.4±1.2μgm(-3)) and the lowest in July (1.1±0.2μgm(-3)). The estimated Aerosol Direct Radiative Forcing (ADRF) in the atmosphere is found to be +36.8±1.7Wm(-2), +26.9±0.2Wm(-2), +18.0±0.6Wm(-2) and +18.5±3.1Wm(-2) during summer, winter, monsoon and post-monsoon seasons, respectively. Large difference between TOA and BOA forcing is observed during summer which indicate the large absorption of radiant energy (36.80Wm(-2)) which contributes more increase in atmospheric heating by ~1K/day. The BC contribution on an average is found to be 64% and is responsible for aerosol atmospheric heating. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. Simple, spatial and predictive approach for cereal yield prediction in the semi-arid areas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toumi, Jihad; Khabba, Said; Er-Raki, Salah; Le page, Michel; Chahbi Bellakanji, Aicha; Lili Chabaane, Zohra; Ezzahar, Jamal; Zribi, Mehrez; Jarlan, Lionel

    2016-04-01

    The objective is to develop a simple, spatial and predictive approach of dry matter (DM) and grain yield (GY) of cereal in the semi-arid areas. The proposed method is based on the three efficiencies model of Monteith (1972). This approach summarizes the transformation of solar radiation to the dry matter (DM) by the climate (ɛc), interception (ɛi) and conversion (ɛconv) efficiencies. The method combines the maximum of ɛi and ɛconv (noted ɛimax and ɛconvmax) into a single parameter denoted ɛmax, calculating as a function of cumulating growing degree day (CGDD). Also, the stress coefficient ks, which affects the conversion of solar radiation to the biomass was calculated by the surface temperature or the water balance at the root zone. In addition, the expression of ks has been improved by the consideration of the results achieved by deficit irrigation (AquaCrop and STICS models) which showed that the value of ks from 0.7 to 1 didn't affect significantly the cereal production. For the partitioning of the dry matter developed, between straw and grain, the method proposed calculates a variable Harvest Index coefficient (HI). HI is deducted from CGDD and HI0max (maximal final harvest Index in the region of study). Finally, the approach calculates DM depending Satellite Information (NDVI and surface temperature Ts) and climatic data (solar radiation and air temperature). In the case of no availability of Ts, the amount of irrigation is required to calculate ks. Until now, the developed model has been calibrated and validated on the irrigated area R3, located 40 Km east of Marrakech. The evolutions of DM and GY were reproduced satisfactorily. R2 and RMSE are respectively 0.98 and 0.35 t/ha and 0.98 and 0.19 t/ha, respectively. Currently, additional tests are in progress on data relating to the Kairouan plain of Tunisia.

  17. Farming system context drives the value of deep wheat roots in semi-arid environments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lilley, Julianne M; Kirkegaard, John A

    2016-06-01

    The capture of subsoil water by wheat roots can make a valuable contribution to grain yield on deep soils. More extensive root systems can capture more water, but leave the soil in a drier state, potentially limiting water availability to subsequent crops. To evaluate the importance of these legacy effects, a long-term simulation analysis at eight sites in the semi-arid environment of Australia compared the yield of standard wheat cultivars with cultivars that were (i) modified to have root systems which extract more water at depth and/or (ii) sown earlier to increase the duration of the vegetative period and hence rooting depth. We compared simulations with and without annual resetting of soil water to investigate the legacy effects of drier subsoils related to modified root systems. Simulated mean yield benefits from modified root systems declined from 0.1-0.6 t ha(-1) when annually reset, to 0-0.2 t ha(-1) in the continuous simulation due to a legacy of drier soils (mean 0-32mm) at subsequent crop sowing. For continuous simulations, predicted yield benefits of >0.2 t ha(-1) from more extensive root systems were rare (3-10% of years) at sites with shallow soils (<1.0 m), but occurred in 14-44% of years at sites with deeper soils (1.6-2.5 m). Earlier sowing had a larger impact than modified root systems on water uptake (14-31 vs 2-17mm) and mean yield increase (up to 0.7 vs 0-0.2 t ha(-1)) and the benefits occurred on deep and shallow soils and in more years (9-79 vs 3-44%). Increasing the proportion of crops in the sequence which dry the subsoil extensively has implications for the farming system productivity, and the crop sequence must be managed tactically to optimize overall system benefits. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Experimental Biology.

  18. Future irrigation expansion outweigh groundwater recharge gains from climate change in semi-arid India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sishodia, Rajendra P; Shukla, Sanjay; Wani, Suhas P; Graham, Wendy D; Jones, James W

    2018-09-01

    ) management was recommended to achieve a sustainable food-water-energy nexus in semi-arid regions. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  19. New Approaches for Responsible Management of Offshore Springs in Semi-arid Regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shaban, Amin; de Jong, Carmen; Al-Sulaimani, Zaher

    2017-04-01

    In arid and semi-arid regions, such as the Mediterranean and Gulf Region where water is scarce water demand has been exacerbated and become a major environmental challenge. Presently there is massive pressure to develop new water sources to alleviate existing water stress. In the quest for more freshwater even groundwater discharge into the sea in the form of "off-shore freshwater springs" (or submarine groundwater discharge) has been contemplated as a potential source of unconventional water in coastal zones. Offshore-springs are derived from aquifers with complex geological controls mainly in the form of faults and karst conduits. Representing a border-line discipline, they have been poorly studied with only few submarine groundwater monitoring sites existing worldwide. Recently, innovative techniques have been developed enabling springs to be detected via remote sensing such as airborne surveys or satellite images. "Thermal Anomalies" can be clearly identified as evidence for groundwater discharge into the marine environment. A diversity of groundwater routes along which off-shore springs are fed from land sources can be recognized and near-shore and offshore springs differentiated and classified according to their geometry. This is well pronounced along the coast of Lebanon and offshore of Oman. Offshore springs play an important role in the marine ecosystem as natural sources of mercury, metals, nutrients, dissolved carbon species and in cooling or warming ocean water. However, they are extremely sensitive to variations in qualitative and quantitative water inputs triggered by climate change and anthropogenic impacts especially in their recharge zones. Pollutants such as sewage, detergents, heavy metals or herbicides that negatively affect water quality of offshore springs can transit the groundwater rapidly. Recently these springs have also been severely affected by uncontrolled water abstraction from land aquifers. In Bahrain, overpumping combined with

  20. Effects of Urbanization on the Flow Regimes of Semi-Arid Southern California Streams

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hawley, R. J.; Bledsoe, B. P.; Stein, E. D.

    2010-12-01

    Stream channel erosion and associated habitat degradation are pervasive in streams draining urban areas in the southwestern US. The prevalence of these impacts results from the inherent sensitivity of streams in semi-arid climates to changes in flow and sediment regimes, and past inattention to management of geomorphically effective flows. Addressing this issue is difficult due to the lack of data linking ranges of flow (from small to large runoff events) to geomorphic channel response. Forty-three U. S. Geological Survey gages with record lengths greater than ~15 yrs and watershed areas less than ~250 square kilometers were used to empirically model the effects of urbanization on streams in southern California. The watersheds spanned a gradient of urban development and ranged from 0 to 23% total impervious area in 2001. With little flow control at the subdivision scale to date, most impervious area in the region is relatively well-connected to surface-drainage networks. Consequently, total impervious area was an effective surrogate for urbanization, and emerged as a significant (p approach expands on previous scaling procedures to produce histogram-style cumulative flow duration graphs for ungaged sites based on urbanization extent and other watershed descriptors. Urbanization resulted in proportionally-longer durations of all geomorphically-effective flows, with a more pronounced effect on the durations of moderate flows. For example, an average watershed from the study domain with ~20% imperviousness could experience five times as many days of mean daily flows on the order of 100 cfs (3 cubic meters per second) and approximately three times as many days on the order of 1,000 cfs (30 cubic meters per second) relative to the undeveloped setting. Increased duration of sediment-transporting flows is a primary driver of accelerated changes in channel form that are often concurrent with urbanization throughout southern California, particularly in unconfined, fine

  1. Species diversity and drivers of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal communities in a semi-arid mountain in China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    He Zhao

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF play an essential role in complex ecosystems. However, the species diversity and composition of AMF communities remain unclear in semi-arid mountains. Further, it is not well understood if the characteristics of AMF community assemblies differ for different habitat types, e.g., agricultural arable land, artificial forest land, natural grassland, and bush/wood land. Here, using the high-throughput technology by Illumina sequencing on the MiSeq platform, we explored the species diversity and composition of soil AMF communities among different habitat types in a semi-arid mountain (Taihang Mountain, Mid-western region of China. Then, we analyzed the effect of nutrient composition and soil texture on AMF community assembly. Our results showed that members of the Glomus genera were predominated in all soil types. The distance-based redundancy analysis indicated that the content of water, available phosphorus, and available potassium were the most crucial geochemical factors that significantly affected AMF communities (p < 0.05. The analysis of the soil texture confirmed that AMF diversity was negatively correlated with soil clay content. The comparison of AMF diversity among the various habitat types revealed that the artificial forest land had the lowest AMF diversity in comparison with other land types. Our findings suggest that there were differences in species diversity and composition of soil AMF communities among different habitat types. These findings shed new light on the characteristics of community structure and drivers of community assembly in AMF in semi-arid mountains, and point to the potential importance of different habitat types on AMF communities.

  2. Insert Maranhao in O cial Semi-Arid Geography: A Requirement of Social Justice in the Brazilian Northeast

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    José de Jesus Sousa Lemos

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available The study attempts to show that the Brazilian semi-arid region is a region too needy. Even the Interior Ministry considering that there are municipalities only in the semiarid in eight of the Northeastern States excluding Maranhão, but incorporating municipalities in the state of Minas Gerais, the study also seeks to show that at least fteen municipalities of Maranhão has semiarid features and these municipalities have some of the largest pockets of poverty in this Brazilian ecosystem. In order to achieve its objectives the study uses data collected by the State University of Maranhão, the Demographic Census of IBGE 2010 and the GDP of the municipalities published by the IBGE in 2012. They use the estimated drought indices in a previous study of the State University of Maranhão to the Maranhão municipalities supposed to possess technical characteristics of semiarid region. Social indicators are estimated suchas education exclusion, income, running water, sanitation and garbage collection to all municipalities. The results showed that the average GDP of the semi-arid districts are much smaller than that of other municipalities in the Northeast. The ratio between the highest and the lowest GDP per capita in the semiarid region is 38.4. The iliteracy rates are high in all of them. Very high is also deprivation of access to piped water, sanitation and garbage collection also. e evidence of this study allow us to conclude that, in general, municipalities with technical characteristics of semi-arid in Maranhao State has economic, social and environmental indicators worse than the average of other municipalities already recognized in the Brazilian semiarid region.

  3. A pollution fate and transport model application in a semi-arid region: Is some number better than no number?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Özcan, Zeynep; Başkan, Oğuz; Düzgün, H Şebnem; Kentel, Elçin; Alp, Emre

    2017-10-01

    Fate and transport models are powerful tools that aid authorities in making unbiased decisions for developing sustainable management strategies. Application of pollution fate and transport models in semi-arid regions has been challenging because of unique hydrological characteristics and limited data availability. Significant temporal and spatial variability in rainfall events, complex interactions between soil, vegetation and topography, and limited water quality and hydrological data due to insufficient monitoring network make it a difficult task to develop reliable models in semi-arid regions. The performances of these models govern the final use of the outcomes such as policy implementation, screening, economical analysis, etc. In this study, a deterministic distributed fate and transport model, SWAT, is applied in Lake Mogan Watershed, a semi-arid region dominated by dry agricultural practices, to estimate nutrient loads and to develop the water budget of the watershed. To minimize the discrepancy due to limited availability of historical water quality data extensive efforts were placed in collecting site-specific data for model inputs such as soil properties, agricultural practice information and land use. Moreover, calibration parameter ranges suggested in the literature are utilized during calibration in order to obtain more realistic representation of Lake Mogan Watershed in the model. Model performance is evaluated using comparisons of the measured data with 95%CI for the simulated data and comparison of unit pollution load estimations with those provided in the literature for similar catchments, in addition to commonly used evaluation criteria such as Nash-Sutcliffe simulation efficiency, coefficient of determination and percent bias. These evaluations demonstrated that even though the model prediction power is not high according to the commonly used model performance criteria, the calibrated model may provide useful information in the comparison of the

  4. Do agrometeorological data improve optical satellite-based estimations of the herbaceous yield in Sahelian semi-arid ecosystems?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Diouf, Abdoul Aziz; Hiernaux, Pierre; Brandt, Martin Stefan

    2016-01-01

    evapotranspiration satellite gridded data to estimate the annual herbaceous yield in the semi-arid areas of Senegal. It showed that a machine-learning model combining FAPAR seasonal metrics with various agrometeorological data provided better estimations of the in situ annual herbaceous yield (R2 = 0.69; RMSE = 483...... kg·DM/ha) than models based exclusively on FAPAR metrics (R2 = 0.63; RMSE = 550 kg·DM/ha) or agrometeorological variables (R2 = 0.55; RMSE = 585 kg·DM/ha). All the models provided reasonable outputs and showed a decrease in the mean annual yield with increasing latitude, together with an increase...

  5. Deriving seasonal dynamics in ecosystem properties of semi-arid savanna grasslands from in situ-based hyperspectral reflectance

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tagesson, Håkan Torbern; Fensholt, Rasmus; Huber, S.

    2015-01-01

    strongly affected by solar zenith angles and sensor viewing geometry, as were many combinations of visible wavelengths. This study provides analyses based upon novel multi-angular hyperspectral data for validation of Earth-observation-based properties of semi-arid ecosystems, as well as insights...... between normalised difference spectral indices (NDSIs) and the measured ecosystem properties. Finally, the effects of variable sun sensor viewing geometry on different NDSI wavelength combinations were analysed. The wavelengths with the strongest correlation to seasonal dynamics in ecosystem properties...

  6. Ethno-ornithology and conservation of wild birds in the semi-arid Caatinga of northeastern Brazil

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-01-01

    The utilization of birds as pets has been recognized as one of the principal threats to global avifauna. Most of the information about the use and sale of birds as pets has been limited to areas of high biodiversity and whose impacts of anthropic actions have been widely broadcast internationally, for example for the Amazon Forest and forest remnants of Southeast Asia. The Caatinga predominates in the semi-arid region of Brazil, and is one of the semi-arid biomes with the greatest biological diversity in the world, where 511 species of birds exist. Many of these birds are used as pets, a common practice in the region, which has important conservationist implications but has been little studied. Therefore, the aim of the present study was to detail aspects of the use of birds as pets in a locality in the semi-arid region of Northeast Brazil. Information on the use of avifauna was obtained through interviews and visits to the homes of 78 wild bird keepers. A total of 41 species of birds were recorded, mostly of the families Emberizidae (n = 9 species), Columbidae (n = 7 species), Icteridae (n = 6 species) and Psittacidae (n = 3 species). The birds that were most often recorded were Paroaria dominicana (n = 79 especimens), Sporophila albogularis (n = 67), Aratinga cactorum (n = 49), Sporophila lineola (n = 36), Sicalis flaveola (n = 29) and Sporophila nigricollis (n = 27). The use of wild birds in the area studied, as an example of what occurs in other places in the semi-arid Northeast, demonstrates that such activities persist in the region, in spite of being illegal, and have been happening in clandestine or semi-clandestine manner. No statistically significant correlation were found between socioeconomic factors and keeping birds as pets reflects the cultural importance of this practice of rearing wild birds for pets in the region, which is widespread among the local population, independent of socioeconomic factors. Obviously

  7. Modeling interactions between saturated and un-saturated zones by Hydrus-1D in semi-arid regions (plain of Kairouan, Central Tunisia).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saâdi, Mariem; Zghibi, Adel; Kanzari, Sabri

    2018-02-24

    In semi-arid areas like the Kairouan region, salinization has become an increasing concern because of the constant irrigation with saline water and over use of groundwater resources, soils, and aquifers. In this study, a methodology has been developed to evaluate groundwater contamination risk based on the unsaturated zone hydraulic properties. Two soil profiles with different ranges of salinity, one located in the north of the plain and another one in the south of plain (each 30 m deep) and both characterized by direct recharge of the aquifer, were chosen. Simulations were conducted with Hydrus-1D code using measured precipitation data for the period 1998-2003 and calculated evapotranspiration for both chosen profiles. Four combinations of initial conditions of water content and salt concentration were used for the simulation process in order to find the best match between simulated and measured values. The success of the calibration of Hydrus-1D allowed the investigation of some scenarios in order to assess the contamination risk under different natural conditions. The aquifer risk contamination is related to the natural conditions where it increased while facing climate change and temperature increase and decreased in the presence of a clay layer. Hydrus-1D was a useful tool to predict the groundwater level and quality in the case of a direct recharge and in the absence of any information related to the soil layers except for the texture.

  8. Amphibian and reptile biodiversity in the semi-arid region of the municipality of Nopala de Villagrán, Hidalgo, Mexico.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roth-Monzón, Andrea J; Mendoza-Hernández, Andrés Alberto; Flores-Villela, Oscar

    2018-01-01

    Current global changes are putting both biodiversity and the processes that depend on it at risk. This is especially true for semi-arid regions and the flagship groups that inhabit them, such as amphibians and reptiles. Semi-arid regions are often thought to have lower biodiversity and thus have been overlooked, resulting in the underestimation of their biological richness. Therefore, the aim of this study was to conduct an inventory of amphibians and reptiles in the semi-arid municipality of Nopala de Villagrán, Mexico, and analyze its biodiversity in relation to the seasons, vegetation and microhabitat. During a year of fieldwork, we found 24 species in the area, most of them of low abundance, and one of which was recorded for the first time for the state of Hidalgo. We documented five amphibian species and 19 reptile species. We also found that observed species richness was higher in the rainy season and in xeric scrub vegetation, although only the season differences were significant according to rarefaction curves. Our findings highlight the importance of seasonality and vegetation type for the species that inhabit this semi-arid region. This study broadens our understanding of the importance of semi-arid regions and, by extension, that of other areas with similar characteristics.

  9. Amphibian and reptile biodiversity in the semi-arid region of the municipality of Nopala de Villagrán, Hidalgo, Mexico

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrea J. Roth-Monzón

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Current global changes are putting both biodiversity and the processes that depend on it at risk. This is especially true for semi-arid regions and the flagship groups that inhabit them, such as amphibians and reptiles. Semi-arid regions are often thought to have lower biodiversity and thus have been overlooked, resulting in the underestimation of their biological richness. Therefore, the aim of this study was to conduct an inventory of amphibians and reptiles in the semi-arid municipality of Nopala de Villagrán, Mexico, and analyze its biodiversity in relation to the seasons, vegetation and microhabitat. During a year of fieldwork, we found 24 species in the area, most of them of low abundance, and one of which was recorded for the first time for the state of Hidalgo. We documented five amphibian species and 19 reptile species. We also found that observed species richness was higher in the rainy season and in xeric scrub vegetation, although only the season differences were significant according to rarefaction curves. Our findings highlight the importance of seasonality and vegetation type for the species that inhabit this semi-arid region. This study broadens our understanding of the importance of semi-arid regions and, by extension, that of other areas with similar characteristics.

  10. Amphibian and reptile biodiversity in the semi-arid region of the municipality of Nopala de Villagrán, Hidalgo, Mexico

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mendoza-Hernández, Andrés Alberto; Flores-Villela, Oscar

    2018-01-01

    Current global changes are putting both biodiversity and the processes that depend on it at risk. This is especially true for semi-arid regions and the flagship groups that inhabit them, such as amphibians and reptiles. Semi-arid regions are often thought to have lower biodiversity and thus have been overlooked, resulting in the underestimation of their biological richness. Therefore, the aim of this study was to conduct an inventory of amphibians and reptiles in the semi-arid municipality of Nopala de Villagrán, Mexico, and analyze its biodiversity in relation to the seasons, vegetation and microhabitat. During a year of fieldwork, we found 24 species in the area, most of them of low abundance, and one of which was recorded for the first time for the state of Hidalgo. We documented five amphibian species and 19 reptile species. We also found that observed species richness was higher in the rainy season and in xeric scrub vegetation, although only the season differences were significant according to rarefaction curves. Our findings highlight the importance of seasonality and vegetation type for the species that inhabit this semi-arid region. This study broadens our understanding of the importance of semi-arid regions and, by extension, that of other areas with similar characteristics. PMID:29312825

  11. Mapping Soil hydrologic features in a semi-arid irrigated area in Spain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiménez-Aguirre, M.° Teresa; Isidoro, Daniel; Usón, Asunción

    2016-04-01

    The lack of soil information is a managerial problem in irrigated areas in Spain. The Violada Irrigation District (VID; 5234 ha) is a gypsic, semi-arid region in the Middle Ebro River Basin, northeast Spain. VID is under irrigation since the 1940's. The implementation of the flood irrigation system gave rise to waterlogging problems, solved along the years with the installation of an artificial drainage network. Aggregated water balances have been performed in VID since the early 1980's considering average soil properties and aggregated irrigation data for the calculations (crop evapotranspiration, canal seepage, and soil drainage). In 2008-2009, 91% of the VID was modernized to sprinkler irrigation. This new system provides detailed irrigation management information that together with detailed soil information would allow for disaggregated water balances for a better understanding of the system. Our goal was to draw a semi-detailed soil map of VID presenting the main soil characteristics related to irrigation management. A second step of the work was to set up pedotransfer functions (PTF) to estimate the water content and saturated hydraulic conductivity (Ks) from easily measurable parameters. Thirty four pits were opened, described and sampled for chemical and physical properties. Thirty three additional auger holes were sampled for water holding capacity (WHC; down to 60 cm), helping to draw the soil units boundaries. And 15 Ks tests (inverse auger hole method) were made. The WHC was determined as the difference between the field capacity (FC) and wilting point (WP) measured in samples dried at 40°C during 5 days. The comparison with old values dried at 105°C for 2 days highlighted the importance of the method when gypsum is present in order to avoid water removal from gypsum molecules. The soil map was drawn down to family level. Thirteen soil units were defined by the combination of five subgroups [Typic Calcixerept (A), Petrocalcic Calcixerept (B), Gypsic

  12. A 500-year history of floods in the semi arid basins of south-eastern Spain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sánchez García, Carlos; Schulte, Lothar; Peña, Juan Carlos; Carvalho, Filpe; Brembilla, Carla

    2016-04-01

    Floods are one of the natural hazards with higher incidence in the south-eastern Spain, the driest region in Europe, causing fatalities, damage of infrastructure and economic losses. Flash-floods in semi arid environments are related to intensive rainfall which can last from few hours to days. These floods are violent and destructive because of their high discharges, sediment transport and aggradation processes in the flood plain. Also during historical times floods affected the population in the south-eastern Spain causing sever damage or in some cases the complete destruction of towns. Our studies focus on the flood reconstruction from historical sources of the Almanzora, Aguas and Antas river basins, which have a surface between 260-2600 km2. We have also compiled information from the Andarax river and compared the flood series with the Guadalentín and Segura basins from previous studies (Benito et. al., 2010 y Machado et al., 2011). Flood intensities have been classified in four levels according to the type of damage: 1) ordinary floods that only affect agriculture plots; 2) extraordinary floods which produce some damage to buildings and hydraulic infrastructure; 3) catastrophic floods which caused sever damage, fatalities and partial or complete destruction of towns. A higher damage intensity of +1 magnitude was assigned when the event is recorded from more than one major sub-basin (stretches and tributaries such as Huércal-Overa basin) or catchment (e.g. Antas River). In total 102 incidences of damages and 89 floods were reconstructed in the Almanzora (2.611 km2), Aguas (539 km2), Antas (261 km2) and Andarax (2.100 km2) catchments. The Almanzora River was affected by 36 floods (1550-2012). The highest events for the Almanzora River were in 1580, 1879, 1973 and 2012 producing many fatalities and destruction of several towns. In addition, we identified four flood-clusters 1750-1780, 1870-1900, 1960-1977 and 1989-2012 which coincides with the periods of

  13. Direct radiative forcing properties of atmospheric aerosols over semi-arid region, Anantapur in India

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kalluri, Raja Obul Reddy; Gugamsetty, Balakrishnaiah [Aerosol & Atmospheric Research Laboratory, Department of Physics, Sri Krishnadevaraya University, Anantapur 515 003, Andhra Pradesh (India); Kotalo, Rama Gopal, E-mail: krgverma@yahoo.com [Aerosol & Atmospheric Research Laboratory, Department of Physics, Sri Krishnadevaraya University, Anantapur 515 003, Andhra Pradesh (India); Nagireddy, Siva Kumar Reddy; Tandule, Chakradhar Rao; Thotli, Lokeswara Reddy [Aerosol & Atmospheric Research Laboratory, Department of Physics, Sri Krishnadevaraya University, Anantapur 515 003, Andhra Pradesh (India); Rajuru Ramakrishna, Reddy [Aerosol & Atmospheric Research Laboratory, Department of Physics, Sri Krishnadevaraya University, Anantapur 515 003, Andhra Pradesh (India); Srinivasa Ramanujan Institute of Technology, B.K. Samudram Mandal, Anantapur 515 701, Andhra Pradesh (India); Surendranair, Suresh Babu [Space Physics Laboratory, Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre, Trivandrum 695 022, Kerala (India)

    2016-10-01

    This paper describes the aerosols optical, physical characteristics and the aerosol radiative forcing pertaining to semi-arid region, Anantapur for the period January 2013-December 2014. Collocated measurements of Aerosol Optical Depth (AOD) and Black Carbon mass concentration (BC) are carried out by using MICROTOPS II and Aethalometer and estimated the aerosol radiative forcing over this location. The mean values of AOD at 500 nm are found to be 0.47 ± 0.09, 0.34 ± 0.08, 0.29 ± 0.06 and 0.30 ± 0.07 during summer, winter, monsoon and post-monsoon respectively. The Angstrom exponent (α{sub 380–1020}) value is observed maximum in March (1.25 ± 0.19) and which indicates the predominance of fine - mode aerosols and lowest in the month of July (0.33 ± 0.14) and may be due to the dominance of coarse-mode aerosols. The diurnal variation of BC is exhibited two height peaks during morning 07:00–08:00 (IST) and evening 19:00–21:00 (IST) hours and one minima noticed during afternoon (13:00–16:00). The highest monthly mean BC concentration is observed in the month of January (3.4 ± 1.2 μg m{sup −3}) and the lowest in July (1.1 ± 0.2 μg m{sup −3}). The estimated Aerosol Direct Radiative Forcing (ADRF) in the atmosphere is found to be + 36.8 ± 1.7 W m{sup −2}, + 26.9 ± 0.2 W m{sup −2}, + 18.0 ± 0.6 W m{sup −2} and + 18.5 ± 3.1 W m{sup −2} during summer, winter, monsoon and post-monsoon seasons, respectively. Large difference between TOA and BOA forcing is observed during summer which indicate the large absorption of radiant energy (36.80 W m{sup −2}) which contributes more increase in atmospheric heating by ~ 1 K/day. The BC contribution on an average is found to be 64% and is responsible for aerosol atmospheric heating. - Highlights: • The mean values of AOD{sub 500} are found to be high during summer whereas low in monsoon. • The highest values of BC are observed in January and the lowest in the month of July. • The annual mean

  14. Direct radiative forcing properties of atmospheric aerosols over semi-arid region, Anantapur in India

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kalluri, Raja Obul Reddy; Gugamsetty, Balakrishnaiah; Kotalo, Rama Gopal; Nagireddy, Siva Kumar Reddy; Tandule, Chakradhar Rao; Thotli, Lokeswara Reddy; Rajuru Ramakrishna, Reddy; Surendranair, Suresh Babu

    2016-01-01

    This paper describes the aerosols optical, physical characteristics and the aerosol radiative forcing pertaining to semi-arid region, Anantapur for the period January 2013-December 2014. Collocated measurements of Aerosol Optical Depth (AOD) and Black Carbon mass concentration (BC) are carried out by using MICROTOPS II and Aethalometer and estimated the aerosol radiative forcing over this location. The mean values of AOD at 500 nm are found to be 0.47 ± 0.09, 0.34 ± 0.08, 0.29 ± 0.06 and 0.30 ± 0.07 during summer, winter, monsoon and post-monsoon respectively. The Angstrom exponent (α_3_8_0_–_1_0_2_0) value is observed maximum in March (1.25 ± 0.19) and which indicates the predominance of fine - mode aerosols and lowest in the month of July (0.33 ± 0.14) and may be due to the dominance of coarse-mode aerosols. The diurnal variation of BC is exhibited two height peaks during morning 07:00–08:00 (IST) and evening 19:00–21:00 (IST) hours and one minima noticed during afternoon (13:00–16:00). The highest monthly mean BC concentration is observed in the month of January (3.4 ± 1.2 μg m"−"3) and the lowest in July (1.1 ± 0.2 μg m"−"3). The estimated Aerosol Direct Radiative Forcing (ADRF) in the atmosphere is found to be + 36.8 ± 1.7 W m"−"2, + 26.9 ± 0.2 W m"−"2, + 18.0 ± 0.6 W m"−"2 and + 18.5 ± 3.1 W m"−"2 during summer, winter, monsoon and post-monsoon seasons, respectively. Large difference between TOA and BOA forcing is observed during summer which indicate the large absorption of radiant energy (36.80 W m"−"2) which contributes more increase in atmospheric heating by ~ 1 K/day. The BC contribution on an average is found to be 64% and is responsible for aerosol atmospheric heating. - Highlights: • The mean values of AOD_5_0_0 are found to be high during summer whereas low in monsoon. • The highest values of BC are observed in January and the lowest in the month of July. • The annual mean atmospheric forcing is found to be

  15. Optimizing irrigation and nitrogen for wheat through empirical modeling under semi-arid environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saeed, Umer; Wajid, Syed Aftab; Khaliq, Tasneem; Zahir, Zahir Ahmad

    2017-04-01

    reducing irrigation from I 300 to I 240 mm during 2012-2013 and 2013-2014 did not reduce crop yield significantly (P nitrogen application ranged from 31.2 to 55.4% at N 180 and N 240 kg ha -1 for different levels of irrigation. It is concluded from study that irrigation and nitrogen relationship can be used for efficient management of irrigation and nitrogen and to reduce nitrogen losses. The empirical equations developed in this study can help farmers of semi-arid environment to calculate optimum level of irrigation and nitrogen for maximum economic return from wheat.

  16. Effect of multiple stress factors (thermal, nutritional and pregnancy type) on adaptive capability of native ewes under semi-arid environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dias E Silva, Tairon Pannunzio; Costa Torreão, Jacira Neves da; Torreão Marques, Carlo Aldrovandi; de Araújo, Marcos Jácome; Bezerra, Leílson Rocha; Kumar Dhanasekaran, Dinesh; Sejian, Veerasamy

    2016-07-01

    responses of breeds. Environmental factor (period of the day) had influenced the physiological responses of ewes during all gestational period. Santa Inês ewes had greater serum glucose concentration at 105d and 120d of gestation compared to the Morada Nova ewes. Morada Nova ewes had greater concentrations of triglycerides, urea at 120d, 150d and also greater cholesterol at 105d, 135d and 150d of gestation compared with Santa Inês ewes. The present result indicates that thermal condition was most important factor that modified the physiological responses of ewes in a semi-arid tropical environment. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Optimizing conjunctive use of surface water and groundwater for irrigation in arid and semi-arid areas: an integrated modeling approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Xin; Wu, Bin; Zheng, Yi; Tian, Yong; Liu, Jie; Zheng, Chunmiao

    2015-04-01

    In arid and semi-arid agricultural areas, groundwater (GW) is an important water source of irrigation, in addition to surface water (SW). Groundwater pumping would significantly alter the regional hydrological regime, and therefore complicate the water resources management process. This study explored how to optimize the conjunctive use of SW and GW for agricultural irrigation at a basin scale, based on integrated SW-GW modeling and global optimization methods. The improved GSFLOW model was applied to the Heihe River Basin, the second largest inland river basin in China. Two surrogate-based global optimization approaches were implemented and compared, including the well-established DYCORS algorithm and a new approach we proposed named as SOIM, which takes radial basis function (RBF) and support vector machine (SVM) as the surrogate model, respectively. Both temporal and spatial optimizations were performed, aiming at maximizing saturated storage change of midstream part conditioned on non-reduction of irrigation demand, constrained by certain annual discharge for the downstream part. Several scenarios for different irrigation demand and discharge flow are designed. The main study results include the following. First, the integrated modeling not only provides sufficient flexibility to formulation of optimization problems, but also makes the optimization results more physically interpretable and managerially meaningful. Second, the surrogate-based optimization approach was proved to be effective and efficient for the complex, time-consuming modeling, and is quite promising for decision-making. Third, the strong and complicated SW-GW interactions in the study area allow significant water resources conservation, even if neither irrigation demand nor discharge for the downstream part decreases. Under the optimal strategy, considerable part of surface water division is replaced by 'Stream leakage-Pump' process to avoid non-beneficial evaporation via canals. Spatially

  18. URJC GB dataset: Community-based seed bank of Mediterranean high-mountain and semi-arid plant species at Universidad Rey Juan Carlos (Spain).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alonso, Patricia; Iriondo, José María

    2014-01-01

    The Germplasm Bank of Universidad Rey Juan Carlos was created in 2008 and currently holds 235 accessions and 96 species. This bank focuses on the conservation of wild-plant communities and aims to conserve ex situ a representative sample of the plant biodiversity present in a habitat, emphasizing priority ecosystems identified by the Habitats Directive. It is also used to store plant material for research and teaching purposes. The collection consists of three subcollections, two representative of typical habitats in the center of the Iberian Peninsula: high-mountain pastures (psicroxerophylous pastures) and semi-arid habitats (gypsophylic steppes), and a third representative of the genus Lupinus. The high-mountain subcollection currently holds 153 accessions (63 species), the semi-arid subcollection has 76 accessions (29 species,) and the Lupinus subcollection has 6 accessions (4 species). All accessions are stored in a freezer at -18 °C in Kilner jars with silica gel. The Germplasm Bank of Universidad Rey Juan Carlos follows a quality control protocol which describes the workflow performed with seeds from seed collection to storage. All collectors are members of research groups with great experience in species identification. Herbarium specimens associated with seed accessions are preserved and 63% of the records have been georreferenced with GPS and radio points. The dataset provides unique information concerning the location of populations of plant species that form part of the psicroxerophylous pastures and gypsophylic steppes of Central Spain as well as populations of genus Lupinus in the Iberian Peninsula. It also provides relevant information concerning mean seed weight and seed germination values under specific incubation conditions. This dataset has already been used by researchers of the Area of Biodiversity and Conservation of URJC as a source of information for the design and implementation of experimental designs in these plant communities. Since

  19. Genetic Variability and Symbiotic Efficiency of Erythrina velutina Willd. Root Nodule Bacteria from the Semi-Arid Region in Northeastern Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kelly Alexsandra Souza Menezes

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT Legume-rhizobia symbiosis is a cross-kingdom association that results in large amounts of nitrogen incorporated in food webs. For the Brazilian semi-arid region, data on genetic variability and symbiotic efficiency of Papilionoidae rhizobial communities are very scarce. The aim of this study was to evaluate the genetic variability and the symbiotic efficiency of eight rhizobial isolates obtained from “mulungu” (Erythrina velutina Willd. nodules. For 16S rRNA gene sequencing, the genomic DNA was extracted using a commercial kit, amplified with universal primers, and subjected to sequencing reactions. For the isolate ESA 71, PCR amplifications for nodC and nodA genes were attempted. Rhizobial efficiency was assessed by two greenhouse experiments. The first assay was carried out under gnotobiotic conditions, with sterile sand as a substrate; the second experiment was conducted in a non-sterile soil. For both experiments, the inoculation treatments consisted of a single inoculation of each isolate, in addition to a treatment with Bradyrhizobium elkanii BR 5609 as a reference strain. Furthermore, two non-inoculated control treatments, supplied and not supplied with mineral N, were also evaluated. Bacterial identification indicated that both α and β-rhizobia could be found in “mulungu” root nodules. Three isolates where classified within the Rhizobium genus, four bacteria belonged to Bradyrhizobium and one isolate clustered with Burkholderia. Positive amplification of an intragenic fragment of the nodA gene using a primer set to β-rhizobia could be found for ESA 71 (Burkholderia. All bacterial isolates were effective in colonizing “mulungu” roots. In the first experiment, all inoculated treatments and N fertilization increased the N concentration in “mulungu” shoot tissues. For total N in the shoots, the isolates ESA 70, ESA 72, and ESA 75 stood out. In the non-sterile substrate experiment, the isolates ESA 70, ESA 71, ESA

  20. URJC GB dataset: Community-based seed bank of Mediterranean high-mountain and semi-arid plant species at Universidad Rey Juan Carlos (Spain

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Patricia Alonso

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available The Germplasm Bank of Universidad Rey Juan Carlos was created in 2008 and currently holds 235 accessions and 96 species. This bank focuses on the conservation of wild-plant communities and aims to conserve ex situ a representative sample of the plant biodiversity present in a habitat, emphasizing priority ecosystems identified by the Habitats Directive. It is also used to store plant material for research and teaching purposes. The collection consists of three subcollections, two representative of typical habitats in the center of the Iberian Peninsula: high-mountain pastures (psicroxerophylous pastures and semi-arid habitats (gypsophylic steppes, and a third representative of the genus Lupinus. The high-mountain subcollection currently holds 153 accessions (63 species, the semi-arid subcollection has 76 accessions (29 species, and the Lupinus subcollection has 6 accessions (4 species. All accessions are stored in a freezer at -18 °C in Kilner jars with silica gel. The Germplasm Bank of Universidad Rey Juan Carlos follows a quality control protocol which describes the workflow performed with seeds from seed collection to storage. All collectors are members of research groups with great experience in species identification. Herbarium specimens associated with seed accessions are preserved and 63% of the records have been georreferenced with GPS and radio points. The dataset provides unique information concerning the location of populations of plant species that form part of the psicroxerophylous pastures and gypsophylic steppes of Central Spain as well as populations of genus Lupinus in the Iberian Peninsula. It also provides relevant information concerning mean seed weight and seed germination values under specific incubation conditions. This dataset has already been used by researchers of the Area of Biodiversity and Conservation of URJC as a source of information for the design and implementation of experimental designs in these plant

  1. Tectonic uplift and denudation rate influence soil chemical weathering intensity in a semi-arid environment, southeast Spain: physico-chemical and mineralogical evidence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ameijeiras-Mariño, Yolanda; Opfergelt, Sophie; Schoonejans, Jérôme; Vanacker, Veerle; Sonnet, Philippe; Delmelle, Pierre

    2015-04-01

    Tectonic uplift is known to influence denudation rates. Denudation, including chemical weathering and physical erosion, affects soil production rates and weathering intensities. At topographic steady state, weathering can be transport- or weathering-limited. In the transport-limited regime, low denudation rates should lead to comparatively high weathering intensities, while in the weathering-limited case high denudation rates are associated with lower weathering intensities. Here, we test if this relationship applies to semi-arid environments where chemical weathering is generally slow. Three catchments (EST, FIL and CAB) were studied in the Internal Zone of the Betic Cordillera in southeast Spain, spanning a range of increasing uplift rates (10-170 mm/kyr) and increasing denudation rates (20-250 mm/kyr) from EST to CAB. In each catchment, two ridgetop soil profiles were sampled down to the bedrock. The three catchments have similar vegetation and climatic conditions, with precipitation of 250- 315 mm/yr and mean annual temperature of 15-17 °C. The mineralogy of the bedrock, as determined by XRD, is similar across the three catchments and is characterized by the presence of quartz, muscovite, clinochlore, biotite and plagioclase. This primary mineral assemblage is also found in the catchment soils, indicating that the soils studied derive from the same parent material. The soil clay-size fraction is dominated by kaolinite, vermiculite and illite. However, the proportions of the soil primary and secondary minerals vary between the catchment sites. The abundance of biotite decreases from CAB (14%) to EST (4%), whereas the quartz and clay contents show an opposite tendency (from 30 to 69% and 9.9 to 14.3%, respectively). Further, the abundance of vermiculite increases from CAB to EST. The results are interpreted in terms of increasing weathering intensity from CAB to EST by weathering of biotite into vermiculite and enrichment of soils on more weathering resistant

  2. Seasonality of Overstory and Understory Fluxes in a Semi-Arid Oak Savanna: What can be Learned from Comparing Measured and Modeled Fluxes?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raz-Yaseef, N.; Sonnentag, O.; Kobayashi, H.; Chen, J. M.; Verfaillie, J. G.; Ma, S.; Baldocchi, D. D.

    2011-12-01

    Semi-arid climates experience large seasonal and inter-annual variability in radiation and precipitation, creating natural conditions adequate to study how year-to-year changes affect atmosphere-biosphere fluxes. Especially, savanna ecosystems, that combine tree and below-canopy components, create a unique environment in which phenology dramatically changes between seasons. We used a 10-year flux database in order to define seasonal and interannual variability of climatic inputs and fluxes, and evaluate model capability to reproduce observed variability. This is based on the perception that model capability to construct the deviation, and not the average, is important in order to correctly predict ecosystem sensitivity to climate change. Our research site is a low density and low LAI (0.8) semi-arid savanna, located at Tonzi Ranch, Northern California. In this system, trees are active during the warm season (Mar - Oct), and grasses are active during the wet season (Dec - May). Measurements of carbon and water fluxes above and below the tree canopy using eddy covariance and supplementary measurements have been made since 2001. Fluxes were simulated using bio-meteorological process-oriented ecosystem models: BEPS and 3D-CAONAK. Models were partly capable of reproducing fluxes on daily scales (R2=0.66). We then compared model outputs for different ecosystem components and seasons, and found distinct seasons with high correlations while other seasons were purely represented. Comparison was much higher for ET than for GPP. The understory was better simulated than the overstory. CANOAK overestimated spring understory fluxes, probably due to the capability to directly calculated 3D radiative transfer. BEPS underestimated spring understory fluxes, following the pre-description of grass die-off. Both models underestimated peak spring overstory fluxes. During winter tree dormant, modeled fluxes were null, but occasional high fluxes of both ET and GPP were measured following

  3. Hierarchical distance-based fuzzy approach to evaluate urban water supply systems in a semi-arid region.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yekta, Tahereh Sadeghi; Khazaei, Mohammad; Nabizadeh, Ramin; Mahvi, Amir Hossein; Nasseri, Simin; Yari, Ahmad Reza

    2015-01-01

    Hierarchical distance-based fuzzy multi-criteria group decision making was served as a tool to evaluate the drinking water supply systems of Qom, a semi-arid city located in central part of Iran. A list of aspects consisting of 6 criteria and 35 sub-criteria were evaluated based on a linguistic term set by five decision-makers. Four water supply alternatives including "Public desalinated distribution system", "PET Bottled Drinking Water", "Private desalinated water suppliers" and "Household desalinated water units" were assessed based on criteria and sub-criteria. Data were aggregated and normalized to apply Performance Ratings of Alternatives. Also, the Performance Ratings of Alternatives were aggregated again to achieve the Aggregate Performance Ratings. The weighted distances from ideal solution and anti-ideal solution were calculated after secondary normalization. The proximity of each alternative to the ideal solution was determined as the final step. The alternatives were ranked based on the magnitude of ideal solutions. Results showed that "Public desalinated distribution system" was the most appropriate alternative to supply the drinking needs of Qom population. Also, "PET Bottled Drinking Water" was the second acceptable option. A novel classification of alternatives to satisfy the drinking water requirements was proposed which is applicable for the other cities located in semi-arid regions of Iran. The health issues were considered as independent criterion, distinct from the environmental issues. The constraints of high-tech alternatives were also considered regarding to the level of dependency on overseas.

  4. Ideal proportion of roughage and concentrate for Malpura ewes to adapt and reproduce in a semi-arid tropical environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Indu, Shekhawat; Sejian, Veerasamy; Kumar, Davendra; Pareek, Arvind; Naqvi, Syed Mohammad Krusheed

    2015-12-01

    The study was designed to identify the most appropriate roughage to concentrate ratio for Malpura ewes under semi-arid tropical environments. The study was conducted for a period of 35 days and included 30 (2 years old) non-pregnant Malpura ewes weighing between 30 and 35 kg. Estrus synchronization was carried out in all the animals using indigenously developed intravaginal sponges impregnated with progesterone. The ewes were randomly divided into three groups (n = 10/group) namely R50 (n = 10; roughage to concentrate, 50:50), R60 (n = 10; roughage to concentrate, 60:40), and R70 (n = 10; roughage to concentrate, 70:30). Individual feed and water intake was recorded on a daily basis throughout the course of the study. Growth variables, physiological responses, blood metabolites, and endocrine responses were estimated at weekly intervals. Results of the study indicated that nutritional treatment significantly influenced growth variables including body weight (p progesterone, PCV, total cholesterol, total protein, albumin, estrus%, and estrus cycle length. Since the additional concentrate supplementation in R50 and R60 did not improve the production variables, it can be concluded that providing 70 % roughage and 30 % concentrate could be a more appropriate and economically feasible ration composition for Malpura ewes reared in semi-arid tropical environments.

  5. Impact of Surface Soil Moisture Variations on Radar Altimetry Echoes at Ku and Ka Bands in Semi-Arid Areas

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christophe Fatras

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Radar altimetry provides information on the topography of the Earth surface. It is commonly used for the monitoring not only sea surface height but also ice sheets topography and inland water levels. The radar altimetry backscattering coefficient, which depends on surface roughness and water content, can be related to surface properties such as surface soil moisture content. In this study, the influence of surface soil moisture on the radar altimetry echo and backscattering coefficient is analyzed over semi-arid areas. A semi-empirical model of the soil’s complex dielectric permittivity that takes into account that small-scale roughness and large-scale topography was developed to simulate the radar echoes. It was validated using waveforms acquired at Ku and Ka-bands by ENVISAT RA-2 and SARAL AltiKa respectively over several sites in Mali. Correlation coefficients ranging from 0.66 to 0.94 at Ku-band and from 0.27 to 0.96 at Ka-band were found. The increase in surface soil moisture from 0.02 to 0.4 (i.e., the typical range of variations in semi-arid areas increase the backscattering from 10 to 15 dB between the core of the dry and the maximum of the rainy seasons.

  6. Agronomic performance of onion hybrids in Baraúna, in the semi-arid region of Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Renato Leandro Costa Nunes

    Full Text Available In the Brazilian state of Rio Grande do Norte, the significant planting of onions is relatively recent, with producers seeking alternative ways to reduce losses. As a result, it was aimed to evaluate the agronomic performance of onion hybrids in the town of Baraúna in the semi-arid region of Rio Grande do Norte. The experimental design was of randomised blocks with six replications. Treatments consisted of eight hybrids (Cronus F1, Predilata F1, Serena F1, Fortaleza F1, Mata Hari, Luana, Lambada, Don Victor and a control cultivar (IPA 11. The following were evaluated: average plant height; average number of leaves; diameter of the pseudostem; productivity; average bulb weight; rate of survival; leaf-waxiness; cultivar cycle; commercial classification of the bulbs. The Serena F1 and Mata Hari cultivars are recommended for the northeast semi-arid region due to high productivity, early cycle and better bulb classification. The use of these cultivars may help, in the short term, to change cultivation of the onion in the state of Rio Grande do Norte.

  7. Hydrological Design of Two Low-Impact Development Techniques in a Semi-Arid Climate Zone of Central Mexico

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Liliana Lizárraga-Mendiola

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available This paper deals with the design of a bioretention cell and an infiltration trench in a semi- arid micro watershed. The study area was analyzed by characteristics such as slope changes (S, direction and maximum length of the urban runoff (L, and soil use (runoff coefficient, Rc. The bioretention cell was designed by the calculation of variables such as drainage area (A, concentration time (Tc, rainfall intensity (i, maximum peak drained (Qmax, inlet and outlet runoff (Qa and Qout, respectively, temperature (T, evaporation (Ev, potential evapotranspiration (PEm, consumptive use (U for tolerant plants to semi-arid climates, and soil infiltration capacity (Inf. To design the infiltration trench, only Tc, Qmax, and i were taken into account. The results showed that the designed bioretention cell could retain between 5.37% and 2.25% of runoff volume. As the efficiency of the bioretention cell can be defined by the need for additional irrigation, our results showed that the cell is inefficient in some of the dry months (November and December, even in years characterized by abundant rainfall. Besides, it was shown that the designed infiltration trench could store or infiltrate the water from typical rain events. Based on these results, it is the implementation of more Low-Impact Development (LID for runoff management in the study area is recommended.

  8. Using RapidEye and MODIS Data Fusion to Monitor Vegetation Dynamics in Semi-Arid Rangelands in South Africa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andreas Tewes

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Image time series of high temporal and spatial resolution capture land surface dynamics of heterogeneous landscapes. We applied the ESTARFM (Enhanced Spatial and Temporal Adaptive Reflectance Fusion Model algorithm to multi-spectral images covering two semi-arid heterogeneous rangeland study sites located in South Africa. MODIS 250 m resolution and RapidEye 5 m resolution images were fused to produce synthetic RapidEye images, from June 2011 to July 2012. We evaluated the performance of the algorithm by comparing predicted surface reflectance values to real RapidEye images. Our results show that ESTARFM predictions are accurate, with a coefficient of determination for the red band 0.80 < R2 < 0.92, and for the near-infrared band 0.83 < R2 < 0.93, a mean relative bias between 6% and 12% for the red band and 4% to 9% in the near-infrared band. Heterogeneous vegetation at sub-MODIS resolution is captured adequately: A comparison of NDVI time series derived from RapidEye and ESTARFM data shows that the characteristic phenological dynamics of different vegetation types are reproduced well. We conclude that the ESTARFM algorithm allows us to produce synthetic remote sensing images at high spatial combined with high temporal resolution and so provides valuable information on vegetation dynamics in semi-arid, heterogeneous rangeland landscapes.

  9. Influence of hydraulic and geomorphologic components of a semi-arid watershed on depleted-uranium transport

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Becker, N.M.

    1991-01-01

    Investigations were undertaken to determine the fate and transport of depleted uranium away from high explosive firing sites at Los Alamos National Laboratory in north-central New Mexico. Investigations concentrated on a small, semi-arid watershed which drains 5 firing sites. Sampling for uranium in spring/summer/fall runoff, snowmelt runoff, in fallout, and in soil and in sediments revealed that surface water is the main transport mechanism. Although the watershed is less than 8 km 2 , flow discontinuity was observed between the divide and the outlet; flow discontinuity occurs in semi-arid and arid watersheds, but was unexpected at this scale. This region, termed a discharge sink, is an area where all flow infiltrates and all sediment, including uranium, deposits during nearly all flow events; it is estimated that the discharge sink has provided the locale for uranium detention during the last 23 years. Mass balance calculations indicate that over 90% of uranium expended still remains at or nearby the firing sites. Leaching experiments determined that uranium can rapidly dissolve from the solid phase. It is postulated that precipitation and runoff which percolate vertically through uranium-contaminated soil and sediment are capable of transporting uranium in the dissolved phase to deeper strata. This may be the key transport mechanism which moves uranium out of the watershed

  10. Synchronic historical patterns of species diversification in seasonal aplocheiloid killifishes of the semi-arid Brazilian Caatinga.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Costa, Wilson J E M; Amorim, Pedro F; Mattos, José Leonardo O

    2018-01-01

    The Caatinga is the largest nucleus of seasonally dry tropical forests in South America, but little is known about the evolutionary history and biogeography of endemic organisms. Evolutionary diversification and distribution of terrestrial vertebrates endemic to the Caatinga have been explained by palaeogeographical Neogene episodes, mostly related to changes in the course of the São Francisco River, the largest river in the region. Our objective is to estimate the timing of divergence of two endemic groups of short-lived seasonal killifishes inhabiting all ecoregions of the Caatinga, testing the occurrence of synchronic events of spatial diversification in light of available data on regional palaeogeography. We performed independent time-calibrated phylogenetic molecular analyses for two clades of sympatric and geographically widespread seasonal killifishes endemic to the Caatinga, the Hypsolebias antenori group and the Cynolebias alpha-clade. Our results consistently indicate that species diversification took place synchronically in both groups, as well as it is contemporary to diversification of other organisms adapted to life in the semi-arid Caatinga, including lizards and small mammals. Both groups originated during the Miocene, but species diversification started between the Late Miocene and Early Pliocene, when global cooling probably favoured the expansion of semi-arid areas. Synchronic diversification patterns found are chronologically related to Tertiary palaeogeographical reorganizations associated to continental drift and to Quaternary climatic changes, corroborating the recent proposal that South American biodiversity has been continuously shaped between the Late Paleogene and Pleistocene.

  11. Diurnal and Seasonal Variation of Surface Urban Cool and Heat Islands in the Semi-Arid City of Erbil, Iraq

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Azad Rasul

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available The influence of land surface temperature (LST makes the near-surface layer of the troposphere a key driver of urban climate. This paper assesses the temporal formation of the daytime Surface Urban Cool Island (SUCI and night-time Surface Urban Heat Island (SUHI effect in Erbil, Iraq, situated in a semi-arid climate region. LST retrievals from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS Aqua and Terra and MODIS Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI from January 2003 to December 2014 are analysed. The relationships of LST with NDVI and the Normalized Multi-band Drought Index (NMDI are investigated in order to assess the influence of vegetation and moisture on the observed patterns of LST and the SUCI/SUHI. The results indicate that during the daytime, in summer, autumn and winter, densely built-up areas had lower LST acting as a SUCI compared to the non-urbanised area around the city. In contrast, at night-time, Erbil experienced higher LST and demonstrated a significant SUHI effect. The relationship between LST and NDVI is affected by seasonality and is strongly inverted during spring (r2 = 0.73; p < 0.01. Contrary to previous studies of semi-arid cities, a SUCI was detected, not only in the morning, but also during the afternoon.

  12. Synchronic historical patterns of species diversification in seasonal aplocheiloid killifishes of the semi-arid Brazilian Caatinga.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wilson J E M Costa

    Full Text Available The Caatinga is the largest nucleus of seasonally dry tropical forests in South America, but little is known about the evolutionary history and biogeography of endemic organisms. Evolutionary diversification and distribution of terrestrial vertebrates endemic to the Caatinga have been explained by palaeogeographical Neogene episodes, mostly related to changes in the course of the São Francisco River, the largest river in the region. Our objective is to estimate the timing of divergence of two endemic groups of short-lived seasonal killifishes inhabiting all ecoregions of the Caatinga, testing the occurrence of synchronic events of spatial diversification in light of available data on regional palaeogeography. We performed independent time-calibrated phylogenetic molecular analyses for two clades of sympatric and geographically widespread seasonal killifishes endemic to the Caatinga, the Hypsolebias antenori group and the Cynolebias alpha-clade. Our results consistently indicate that species diversification took place synchronically in both groups, as well as it is contemporary to diversification of other organisms adapted to life in the semi-arid Caatinga, including lizards and small mammals. Both groups originated during the Miocene, but species diversification started between the Late Miocene and Early Pliocene, when global cooling probably favoured the expansion of semi-arid areas. Synchronic diversification patterns found are chronologically related to Tertiary palaeogeographical reorganizations associated to continental drift and to Quaternary climatic changes, corroborating the recent proposal that South American biodiversity has been continuously shaped between the Late Paleogene and Pleistocene.

  13. A Tool for the Evaluation of Irrigation Water Quality in the Arid and Semi-Arid Regions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lucia Bortolini

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available In the Mediterranean arid and semi-arid regions, large amounts of low quality waters could be used for crop irrigation, but the adoption of articulated classifications with too rigid quality limits can often reduce the recoverable quantities of water and make the monitoring of water quality too much expensive. Therefore, an evaluation of irrigation water quality based on only a few crucial parameters, which consider the crop species to be irrigated and the type of irrigation system and management adopted, can be an easy and flexible method for maximizing the reuse of wastewater and low-quality water for agricultural purposes. In this view, an irrigation water quality tool (IWQT was developed to support farmers of arid and semi-arid regions on evaluating the use of low quality water for crop irrigation. The most significant and cheapest parameters of irrigation water quality were identified and clustered in three quality classes according to their effects on crop yield and soil fertility (agronomic quality indicators, human health (hygiene and health quality indicators, and irrigation systems (management quality indicators. According to IWQT parameters, a tool reporting a series of recommendations, including water treatment types, was implemented to guide farmers on the use of low quality irrigation water.

  14. Quality of urban runoff in wet and dry seasons: a case study in a semi-arid zone.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ortiz-Hernández, Joyce; Lucho-Constantino, Carlos; Lizárraga-Mendiola, Liliana; Beltrán-Hernández, Rosa Icela; Coronel-Olivares, Claudia; Vázquez-Rodríguez, Gabriela

    2016-12-01

    Urban runoff (UR) is a promising new resource that may alleviate growing tensions in numerous arid and semi-arid regions of the world. However, it is precisely in these zones that the available UR quality characteristics are scarcer. This work aims to evaluate a wide set of parameters to establish a detailed approach to both the quality of UR in a midsized city in Central Mexico and the feasibility of using UR to recharge aquifers. UR from an institutional land use site was sampled during wet and dry seasons and assessed for suspended solids, organic matter, nutrients, microorganisms, metals, and persistent organic chemicals (i.e., polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, PAH). The results were analyzed using multivariate statistical methods to identify relationships among the variables, the sampling sites and the seasons. The soil erosion and the leaching of materials due to the water flow through vegetated areas were identified as the most influencing factor on the quality of the site runoff in both dry and wet seasons. Additionally, data were more heterogeneous during the dry season, and higher pollutant concentrations were found both during the dry season and in more pervious zones. We consider UR a promising water source for recharging aquifers in arid and semi-arid zones if a program is implemented that can integrate an adequate runoff treatment system, soil protection, and other non-structural measures.

  15. LEAF AREA DYNAMICS AND ABOVEGROUND BIOMASS OF SPECIFIC VEGETATION TYPES OF A SEMI-ARID GRASSLAND IN SOUTHERN ETHIOPIA

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    Bosco Kidake Kisambo

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Leaf Area Index (LAI dynamics and aboveground biomass of a semi-arid grassland region in Southern Ethiopia were determined over a long rain season. The vegetation was categorized into four distinct vegetation types namely Grassland (G, Tree-Grassland (TG, Bushed-Grassland (BG and Bush-Tree grassland (BT. LAI was measured using a Plant Canopy Analyzer (LAI2000. Biomass dynamics of litter and herbaceous components were determined through clipping while the above ground biomass of trees and shrubs were estimated using species-specific allometric equations from literature. LAI showed a seasonal increase over the season with the maximum recorded in the BG vegetation (2.52. Total aboveground biomass for the different vegetation types ranged from 0.61 ton C/ha in areas where trees were non-existent to 8.80 ± 3.81ton C/ha in the Tree-Grassland vegetation in the study site. A correlation of LAI and AGB yielded a positive relationship with an R2 value of 0.55. The results demonstrate the importance of tropical semi-arid grasslands as carbon sinks hence their potential in mitigation of climate change.

  16. Water Resources Response to Climate and Land-Cover Changes in a Semi-Arid Watershed, New Mexico, USA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joonghyeok Heo

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available This research evaluates a climate-land cover-water resources interconnected system in a semi-arid watershed with minimal human impact from 1970 - 2009. We found _ increase in temperature and 10.9% decrease in precipitation. The temperature exhibited a lower increase trend and precipitation showed a similar decrease trend compared to previous studies. The dominant land-cover change trend was grass and forest conversion into bush/shrub and developed land and crop land into barren and grass land. These alterations indicate that changes in temperature and precipitation in the study area may be linked to changes in land cover, although human intervention is recognized as the major land-cover change contributor for the short term. These alterations also suggest that decreasing human activity in the study area leads to developed land and crop land conversion into barren and grass land. Hydrological responses to climate and land-cover changes for surface runoff, groundwater discharge, soil water content and evapotranspiration decreased by 10.2, 10.0, 4.1, and 10.5%, respectively. Hydrological parameters generally follow similar trends to that of precipitation in semi-arid watersheds with minimal human development. Soil water content is sensitive to land-cover change and offset relatively by the changes in precipitation.

  17. Mapping Ecological Processes and Ecosystem Services for Prioritizing Restoration Efforts in a Semi-arid Mediterranean River Basin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trabucchi, Mattia; O'Farrell, Patrick J.; Notivol, Eduardo; Comín, Francisco A.

    2014-06-01

    Semi-arid Mediterranean regions are highly susceptible to desertification processes which can reduce the benefits that people obtain from healthy ecosystems and thus threaten human wellbeing. The European Union Biodiversity Strategy to 2020 recognizes the need to incorporate ecosystem services into land-use management, conservation, and restoration actions. The inclusion of ecosystem services into restoration actions and plans is an emerging area of research, and there are few documented approaches and guidelines on how to undertake such an exercise. This paper responds to this need, and we demonstrate an approach for identifying both key ecosystem services provisioning areas and the spatial relationship between ecological processes and services. A degraded semi-arid Mediterranean river basin in north east Spain was used as a case study area. We show that the quantification and mapping of services are the first step required for both optimizing and targeting of specific local areas for restoration. Additionally, we provide guidelines for restoration planning at a watershed scale; establishing priorities for improving the delivery of ecosystem services at this scale; and prioritizing the sub-watersheds for restoration based on their potential for delivering a combination of key ecosystem services for the entire basin.

  18. Analysis of the Current Nutrient Management Practices in Semi-Arid Areas of Eastern Kenya: A Nutmon Approach

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Karuku, A.M.

    2002-01-01

    Declining soil fertility caused mainly by continuous cultivation without adequate replenishment of nutrients, is a major factor contributing to low crop yields in the arid and semi arid areas of Kenya. Development of appropriate nutrient management strategies for suitable agricultural production in these areas is, therefore, a priority issue. in the study reported here, analyses of the current nutrient management practices were carried out using the nutrient monitoring (NUTMON) approach in order to create farm house-hold awareness on nutrient management aspects. The procedure involved participatory soil and nutrient flow maps and soil sampling at farm level. laboratory analysis of the soil samples was later carried out. Structured questionnaires were used for systematic collection of information on farm management practices in order to quantify flows of materials with emphasis on soil nutrients and cash. Results of the laboratory soil analysis were also presented to the farmers and discussed during feedback sessions. The test was carried out in three places namely, Kibwezi, Kasikeu and Kiomo. In all the three clusters, off-farm income was an important component of the total family income. Farm net cash flow was highest in Kibwezi cluster due to horticultural crop production activities. Household net cash flow was highest in Kasikeu, largely originating from off-farm income. It was concluded that NUTMON methodology appeared a suitable tool for the diagnostic of the farming system analysis and design in the arid and semi-arid lands of Kenya

  19. Hydric soils and the relationship to plant diversity within reclaimed stream channels in semi-arid environments

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schladweiler, B.K.; Rexroat, S.; Benson, S.

    1999-01-01

    Wetlands are especially important in semi-arid environments, such as the Powder River Basin of northeastern Wyoming, where water is a limiting factor for living organisms. Within this coal mining region of northeastern Wyoming, jurisdictional wetlands are mapped according to the US Army Corps of Engineers 1987 delineation procedure. Within the coal mining region of northeastern Wyoming, little or no full-scale mitigation or reconstruction attempts of jurisdictional wetland areas have been made until recently. Based on the importance of wetlands in a semi-arid environment and lack of information on existing or reconstructed areas, the specific objectives of the 1998 fieldwork were: (1) To define the pre-disturbance ecological state of hydric soils within jurisdictional sections of stream channels on two coal permit areas in northeastern Wyoming, and (2) To determine the effect that hydric soil parameters have on plant community distribution and composition within the two coal permit areas. Undisturbed sections of stream channels and disturbed sections of reconstructed or modified stream channels at the Rawhide Mine and Buckskin Mine, located north of Gillette, Wyoming, were selected for the study. Soils field and laboratory information and field vegetation cover were collected during 1998 within native stream channels and disturbed stream channels that had been reclaimed at each mine. Soils laboratory information is currently preliminary and included pH, electrical conductivity and sodium adsorption ratio. Results and statistical comparisons between soils and vegetation data will be presented

  20. Overlap in nitrogen sources and redistribution of nitrogen between trees and grasses in a semi-arid savanna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Priyadarshini, K V R; Prins, Herbert H T; de Bie, Steven; Heitkönig, Ignas M A; Woodborne, Stephan; Gort, Gerrit; Kirkman, Kevin; Fry, Brian; de Kroon, Hans

    2014-04-01

    A key question in savanna ecology is how trees and grasses coexist under N limitation. We used N stable isotopes and N content to study N source partitioning across seasons from trees and associated grasses in a semi-arid savanna. We also used (15)N tracer additions to investigate possible redistribution of N by trees to grasses. Foliar stable N isotope ratio (δ(15)N) values were consistent with trees and grasses using mycorrhiza-supplied N in all seasons except in the wet season when they switched to microbially fixed N. The dependence of trees and grasses on mineralized soil N seemed highly unlikely based on seasonal variation in mineralization rates in the Kruger Park region. Remarkably, foliar δ(15)N values were similar for all three tree species differing in the potential for N fixation through nodulation. The tracer experiment showed that N was redistributed by trees to understory grasses in all seasons. Our results suggest that the redistribution of N from trees to grasses and uptake of N was independent of water redistribution. Although there is overlap of N sources between trees and grasses, dependence on biological sources of N coupled with redistribution of subsoil N by trees may contribute to the coexistence of trees and grasses in semi-arid savannas.

  1. Interaction of water components in the semi-arid Huasco and Limarí river basins, North Central Chile

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G. Strauch

    2009-10-01

    Full Text Available For sustainable water resource management in semi-arid regions, sound information is required about interactions between the different components of the water system: rain/snow precipitation, surface/subsurface run-off, groundwater recharge. Exemplarily, the Huasco and Limarí river basins as water stressed river catchments have been studied by isotope and hydrochemical methods for (i the origin of water, (ii water quality, (iii relations of surface and groundwater.

    Applying the complex multi-isotopic and hydrochemical methodology to the water components of the Huasco and Limarí basins, a differentiation of water components concerning subsurface flow and river water along the catchment area and by anthropogenic impacts are detected. Sulphate and nitrate concentrations indicate remarkable input from mining and agricultural activities along the river catchment.

    The 2H-18O relations of river water and groundwater of both catchments point to the behaviour of river waters originated in an arid to semi-arid environment.

    Consequently, the groundwater from several production wells in the lower parts of the catchments is related to the rivers where the wells located, however, it can be distinguished from the river water. Using the hydrological water balance and the isotope mixing model, the interaction between surface and subsurface flows and river flow is estimated.

  2. Adaptation to New Climate by an Old Strategy? Modeling Sedentary and Mobile Pastoralism in Semi-Arid Morocco

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Korbinian P. Freier

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available In a modeling study we examine vulnerability of income from mobile (transhumant pastoralism and sedentary pastoralism to reduced mean annual precipitation (MAP and droughts. The study is based on empirical data of a 3410 km2 research region in southern, semi-arid Morocco. The land use decision model integrates a meta-model of the Environmental Policy Integrated Climate (EPIC simulator to depict perennial and annual forage plant development. It also includes livestock dynamics and forward-looking decision making under uncertain weather. Mobile livestock in the model moves seasonally, sedentary livestock is restricted to pastures around settlements. For a reduction of MAP by 20%, our model shows for different experimental frequencies of droughts a significant decrease of total income from pastoralism by 8%–19% (p < 0.05. Looking separately at the two modes of pastoralism, pronounced income losses of 18%–44% (p < 0.05 show that sedentary pastoralism is much more vulnerable to dryer climate than mobile pastoralism, which is merely affected. Dedicating more pasture area and high quality fodder to mobile pastoralism significantly abates impacts from reduced MAP and droughts on total income by 11% (p < 0.05. Our results indicate that promotion of mobile pastoralism in semi-arid areas is a valuable option to increase resilience against climate change.

  3. Mapping ecological processes and ecosystem services for prioritizing restoration efforts in a semi-arid Mediterranean river basin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trabucchi, Mattia; O'Farrell, Patrick J; Notivol, Eduardo; Comín, Francisco A

    2014-06-01

    Semi-arid Mediterranean regions are highly susceptible to desertification processes which can reduce the benefits that people obtain from healthy ecosystems and thus threaten human wellbeing. The European Union Biodiversity Strategy to 2020 recognizes the need to incorporate ecosystem services into land-use management, conservation, and restoration actions. The inclusion of ecosystem services into restoration actions and plans is an emerging area of research, and there are few documented approaches and guidelines on how to undertake such an exercise. This paper responds to this need, and we demonstrate an approach for identifying both key ecosystem services provisioning areas and the spatial relationship between ecological processes and services. A degraded semi-arid Mediterranean river basin in north east Spain was used as a case study area. We show that the quantification and mapping of services are the first step required for both optimizing and targeting of specific local areas for restoration. Additionally, we provide guidelines for restoration planning at a watershed scale; establishing priorities for improving the delivery of ecosystem services at this scale; and prioritizing the sub-watersheds for restoration based on their potential for delivering a combination of key ecosystem services for the entire basin.

  4. Changes of soil bacterial diversity as a consequence of agricultural land use in a semi-arid ecosystem.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guo-Chun Ding

    Full Text Available Natural scrublands in semi-arid deserts are increasingly being converted into fields. This results in losses of characteristic flora and fauna, and may also affect microbial diversity. In the present study, the long-term effect (50 years of such a transition on soil bacterial communities was explored at two sites typical of semi-arid deserts. Comparisons were made between soil samples from alfalfa fields and the adjacent scrublands by two complementary methods based on 16S rRNA gene fragments amplified from total community DNA. Denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE analyses revealed significant effects of the transition on community composition of Bacteria, Actinobacteria, Alpha- and Betaproteobacteria at both sites. PhyloChip hybridization analysis uncovered that the transition negatively affected taxa such as Acidobacteria, Chloroflexi, Acidimicrobiales, Rubrobacterales, Deltaproteobacteria and Clostridia, while Alpha-, Beta- and Gammaproteobacteria, Bacteroidetes and Actinobacteria increased in abundance. Redundancy analysis suggested that the community composition of phyla responding to agricultural use (except for Spirochaetes correlated with soil parameters that were significantly different between the agricultural and scrubland soil. The arable soils were lower in organic matter and phosphate concentration, and higher in salinity. The variation in the bacterial community composition was higher in soils from scrubland than from agriculture, as revealed by DGGE and PhyloChip analyses, suggesting reduced beta diversity due to agricultural practices. The long-term use for agriculture resulted in profound changes in the bacterial community and physicochemical characteristics of former scrublands, which may irreversibly affect the natural soil ecosystem.

  5. Integrated physiological and molecular approaches to improvement of abiotic stress tolerance in two pulse crops of the semi-arid tropics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arbind K. Choudhary

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Chickpea (Cicer arietinum L. and pigeonpea [Cajanus cajan L. (Millsp.] play an important role in mitigating protein malnutrition for millions of poor vegetarians living in regions of the semi-arid tropics. Abiotic stresses such as excess and limited soil moisture (water-logging and drought, heat and chilling (high and low temperature stresses, soil salinity, and acidity are major yield constraints, as these two crops are grown mostly under rainfed conditions in risk-prone marginal and degraded lands with few or no inputs. Losses due to such stresses vary from 30% to 100% depending on their severity. The literature abounds in basic information concerning screening techniques, physiological mechanisms, and genetics of traits associated with resistance/tolerance to abiotic stresses in these two crops. However, the final outcome in terms of resistant/tolerant varieties has been far from satisfactory. This situation calls for improving selection efficiency through precise phenotyping and genotyping under high-throughput controlled conditions using modern tools of genomics. In this review, we suggest that an integrated approach combining advances from genetics, physiology, and biotechnology needs to be used for higher precision and efficiency of breeding programs aimed at improving abiotic stress tolerance in both chickpea and pigeonpea.

  6. EVOLUTION DES PARAMETRES ZOOTECHNIQUES DE LA CARPE ARGENTEE (HYPOPHTHALMICHTHYS MOLITRIX ELEVEE SOUS CLIMAT SEMI-ARIDE A LA STATION DE PISCICULTURE DEROUA, MAROC.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sana FARID

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available The growth rate of Silver carp (Hypophthalmichthys molitrix artificially reproduced in the Deroua Fisheries Station (Morocco since 1990 varies according to the temperature (seasons and rearing modes (monoculture or polyculture. The condition coefficient, always greater than 1, shows that this species is well adapted to its habitat, which has offered the optimum physicochemical and biological conditions for its growth. The growth parameters (weight and length of the silver carp in monoculture monitored from January 2013 to March 2014 show values greater than those found in polyculture (silver Carp + Grass Carp + Common Carp or (silver Carp + Grass Carp with a slowing of growth in Spring 2013. Its growth rate remains clearly lower than that of the grass carp and the common carp in spite of the some improvement in the growth rate observed beyond July. This is due, on the one hand, to the lack of adequate food for the silver carp, mainly phytoplankton, which shows very low densities, due the excessive development of Chara vulgaris and Ceratophyllum submersum. These macrophytes extract the mineral elements (nitrate and phosphate necessary for phytoplankton development. Thus, we recommend that in a similar case and in a semi-arid climate, the provision of additional food to silver carp is desirable.

  7. Reconstruction of the sediment flow regime in a semi-arid Mediterranean catchment using check dam sediment information.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bussi, G.; Rodríguez, X.; Francés, F.; Benito, G.; Sánchez-Moya, Y.; Sopeña, A.

    2012-04-01

    When using hydrological and sedimentological models, lack of historical records is often one of the main problems to face, since observed data are essential for model validation. If gauged data are poor or absent, a source of additional proxy data may be the slack-water deposits accumulated in check dams. The aim of this work is to present the result of the reconstruction of the recent hydrological and sediment yield regime of a semi-arid Mediterranean catchment (Rambla del Poyo, Spain, 184 square km) by coupling palaeoflood techniques with a distributed hydrological and sediment cycle model, using as proxy data the sandy slack-water deposits accumulated upstream a small check dam (reservoir volume 2,500 square m) located in the headwater basin (drainage area 13 square km). The solid volume trapped into the reservoir has been estimated using differential GPS data and an interpolation technique. Afterwards, the total solid volume has been disaggregated into various layers (flood units), by means of a stratigraphical description of a depositional sequence in a 3.5 m trench made across the reservoir sediment deposit, taking care of identifying all flood units; the separation between flood units is indicated by a break in deposition. The sedimentary sequence shows evidence of 15 flood events that occurred after the dam construction (early '90). Not all events until the present are included; for the last ones, the stream velocity and energy conditions for generating slack-water deposits were not fulfilled due to the reservoir filling. The volume of each flood unit has been estimated making the hypothesis that layers have a simple pyramidal shape (or wedge); every volume represents an estimation of the sediments trapped into the reservoir corresponding to each flood event. The obtained results have been compared with the results of modeling a 20 year time series (1990 - 2009) with the distributed conceptual hydrological and sediment yield model TETIS-SED, in order to

  8. Applying soil science for restoration of post mining degraded landscapes in semi-arid Australia: challenges and opportunities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muñoz-Rojas, Miriam; Martini, Dylan; Erickson, Todd; Merritt, David; Dixon, Kingsley

    2015-04-01

    Introduction Current challenges in ecological restoration of post mining environments include the deficit of original topsoil which is frequently lost or damaged, and the lack of soil forming materials. A comprehensive knowledge of soil properties and processes and an adequate management of soil resources are critical to improve the restoration success of these degraded areas. In particular, understanding soil physical, chemical and biological parameters is decisive in environments where water is a limiting factor for seedling establishment and plant survival. To improve the restoration success of biodiverse semi-arid areas disturbed by mining activities (Pilbara region, Western Australia), we conducted experiments to (i) analyse changes in soil physico-chemical properties and soil microbial activity of topsoil stockpiles to optimise its handling and minimise deterioration of nutrients and soil biota, (ii) test climate effects on seedling emergence of native plant species and (iii) assess the potential of mine waste materials as a suitable growth medium for seedling emergence of native plant species under various water regimes. Methods The experimental studies were conducted in controlled environment facilities where air temperature, relative humidity and soil moisture were monitored routinely. Watering regimes were selected to represent rainfall patterns of the area. As a growth media we used material obtained from topsoil stockpiles and waste materials from an active mine site, which were mixed at different ratios. Samples were collected from different parts of the topsoil stockpiles and analysed to determine physical, chemical and biological properties. Results No large discrepancies in physical and chemical values were detected at different positions of the stockpiles. However, microbial activity was highly variable, particularly inside the stockpiles. Seedling emergence on topsoil growth media was highly dependent on climate factors with emergence rates

  9. Religiousness/spirituality do not necessarily matter: Effect on risk perception and adaptive strategies in the semi-arid region of NE Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Regina Célia da Silva Oliveira

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available The impact of environmental changes is a major threat to livelihoods, especially for small farmers in semi-arid regions. Therefore, local communities undertake efforts to cope with these new environmental conditions and researchers try to understand the limits of possible adaptive strategies. Religiousness/spirituality are two important factors that can influence environmental awareness and adaptive responses to risks caused by natural phenomena. However, studies addressing the relationship between such factors are either scarce or based on anecdotal information. This article discusses the influence of religiousness/spirituality on the perception of environmental risks by farmers in a rural community in Brazil's northeast region, and their knowledge of adaptive strategies to deal with such concerns. Religiousness/spirituality can positively or negatively influence the perception of risk and knowledge of adaptive strategies when facing environmental uncertainty. We note that dimensions of religiousness/spirituality such as religious history, values/beliefs, commitment, and daily spiritual experiences influence wealth and the sharing of natural perceived risks, as well as adaptive strategies. Based on our results, we conclude that religiousness/spirituality dimensions exert both positive and negative effects on the perception of environmental risks and ways of coping with the impacts of rapid environmental changes.

  10. Vertical and temporal dynamics of phytoplanktonic associations and the application of index assembly in tropical semi-arid eutrophic reservoir, northeastern Brazil

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    Pryscila Cynara Soares Vieira

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available AimTo determine the composition and biomass of functional groups around the vertical and temporal gradient correlated with environmental conditions and apply the index Q in a water-supply reservoir.MethodsWater samples were collected monthly (n = 92 between 2009 and 2011 in two points of the dam for physicochemical and biological analysis.ResultsThe pH, dissolved oxygen and water temperature showed significant differences between the photic and aphotic zones (p<0.05. The vertical variation of dissolved oxygen and water temperature, showed a profile of stratification. The phytoplankton community was represented by 11 functional groups: S1, M, H1, Lo, P, F, SN, J, W2, MP and R.ConclusionsThe vertical variations were less pronounced than the temporal variations in the phytoplankton community. The Q index pointed out poor water quality, corresponding to the current state of eutrophication in the reservoir and it was sensitive to responsive to environmental and hydrodynamic changes in these systems, demonstrating to be an appropriate tool for monitoring and evaluating the quality of water in tropical semi-arid reservoirs.

  11. Do Red Edge and Texture Attributes from High-Resolution Satellite Data Improve Wood Volume Estimation in a Semi-Arid Mountainous Region?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schumacher, Paul; Mislimshoeva, Bunafsha; Brenning, Alexander

    2016-01-01

    to overcome this issue. However, clear recommendations on the suitability of specific proxies to provide accurate biomass information in semi-arid to arid environments are still lacking. This study contributes to the understanding of using multispectral high-resolution satellite data (RapidEye), specifically...... red edge and texture attributes, to estimate wood volume in semi-arid ecosystems characterized by scarce vegetation. LASSO (Least Absolute Shrinkage and Selection Operator) and random forest were used as predictive models relating in situ-measured aboveground standing wood volume to satellite data...

  12. Mapping Annual Forest Cover in Sub-Humid and Semi-Arid Regions through Analysis of Landsat and PALSAR Imagery

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    Yuanwei Qin

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Accurately mapping the spatial distribution of forests in sub-humid to semi-arid regions over time is important for forest management but a challenging task. Relatively large uncertainties still exist in the spatial distribution of forests and forest changes in the sub-humid and semi-arid regions. Numerous publications have used either optical or synthetic aperture radar (SAR remote sensing imagery, but the resultant forest cover maps often have large errors. In this study, we propose a pixel- and rule-based algorithm to identify and map annual forests from 2007 to 2010 in Oklahoma, USA, a transitional region with various climates and landscapes, using the integration of the L-band Advanced Land Observation Satellite (ALOS PALSAR Fine Beam Dual Polarization (FBD mosaic dataset and Landsat images. The overall accuracy and Kappa coefficient of the PALSAR/Landsat forest map were about 88.2% and 0.75 in 2010, with the user and producer accuracy about 93.4% and 75.7%, based on the 3270 random ground plots collected in 2012 and 2013. Compared with the forest products from Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA, National Land Cover Database (NLCD, Oklahoma Ecological Systems Map (OKESM and Oklahoma Forest Resource Assessment (OKFRA, the PALSAR/Landsat forest map showed great improvement. The area of the PALSAR/Landsat forest was about 40,149 km2 in 2010, which was close to the area from OKFRA (40,468 km2, but much larger than those from JAXA (32,403 km2 and NLCD (37,628 km2. We analyzed annual forest cover dynamics, and the results show extensive forest cover loss (2761 km2, 6.9% of the total forest area in 2010 and gain (3630 km2, 9.0% in southeast and central Oklahoma, and the total area of forests increased by 684 km2 from 2007 to 2010. This study clearly demonstrates the potential of data fusion between PALSAR and Landsat images for mapping annual forest cover dynamics in sub-humid to semi-arid regions, and the resultant forest maps would be

  13. Analysis of energy fluxes and vegetation-atmosphere parameters in irrigated and natural ecosystems of semi-arid Brazil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teixeira, A. H. de Castro; Bastiaanssen, W. G. M.; Ahmad, M. D.; Moura, M. S. B.; Bos, M. G.

    2008-11-01

    SummaryKnowledge on evapotranspiration is essential in quantifying water use depletion and to allocate scarce water resources to competing uses. Despite that an extensive literature describes the theoretical mechanisms of turbulent water vapour transport above and within crop canopies fewer studies have examined land surface parameters within composite landscapes of irrigated crops and semi-arid natural vegetation. Aiming to improve parameterizations of the radiation and energy balance in irrigated crops and natural vegetation, micro-climatic measurements were carried out on irrigated land (vineyards and mango orchard) and natural vegetation (caatinga) in the semi-arid zone of the São Francisco River basin (Brazil) from 2002 to 2005. The fractions of 24 h incident solar radiation available for net radiation were 46%, 55%, 51% and 53%, for wine grape, table grape, mango orchard and caatinga, respectively. Daily evaporative fractions of the net available energy used as latent heat flux ( λE) were 0.80, 0.88, 0.75 and 0.33 respectively. The daylight values of bulk surface resistances ( rs) averaged 128 s m -1, 73 s m -1, 133 s m -1 and 1940 s m -1 for wine grape, table grape, mango orchard and caatinga, respectively. Simplified parameterizations on roughness and evaporation resistances were performed. It could be concluded that net radiation can be estimated by means of a linear expression with incident global solar radiation depending on the type of vegetation. The variability of aerodynamic resistance ( ra) could be mainly explained by the friction velocity ( u ∗) which on turn depends on the surface roughness length for momentum transport ( z 0m). The experimental data showed that for sparse canopies z 0m being 9% of the mean vegetation height is a doable operational rule for the semi-arid region of São Francisco River basin. The seasonal values of rs for irrigated crops were highly correlated with water vapour pressure deficit. The availability of analytical

  14. Modeled Impacts of Chronic Wasting Disease on White-Tailed Deer in a Semi-Arid Environment.

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    Aaron M Foley

    Full Text Available White-tailed deer are a culturally and economically important game species in North America, especially in South Texas. The recent discovery of chronic wasting disease (CWD in captive deer facilities in Texas has increased concern about the potential emergence of CWD in free-ranging deer. The concern is exacerbated because much of the South Texas region is a semi-arid environment with variable rainfall, where precipitation is strongly correlated with fawn recruitment. Further, the marginally productive rangelands, in combination with erratic fawn recruitment, results in populations that are frequently density-independent, and thus sensitive to additive mortality. It is unknown how a deer population in semi-arid regions would respond to the presence of CWD. We used long-term empirical datasets from a lightly harvested (2% annual harvest population in conjunction with 3 prevalence growth rates from CWD afflicted areas (0.26%, 0.83%, and 2.3% increases per year via a multi-stage partially deterministic model to simulate a deer population for 25 years under four scenarios: 1 without CWD and without harvest, 2 with CWD and without harvest, 3 with CWD and male harvest only, and 4 with CWD and harvest of both sexes. The modeled populations without CWD and without harvest averaged a 1.43% annual increase over 25 years; incorporation of 2% annual harvest of both sexes resulted in a stable population. The model with slowest CWD prevalence rate growth (0.26% annually without harvest resulted in stable populations but the addition of 1% harvest resulted in population declines. Further, the male age structure in CWD models became skewed to younger age classes. We incorporated fawn:doe ratios from three CWD afflicted areas in Wisconsin and Wyoming into the model with 0.26% annual increase in prevalence and populations did not begin to decline until ~10%, ~16%, and ~26% of deer were harvested annually. Deer populations in variable environments rely on high

  15. The problems of over exploitation of aquifers in semi-arid areas: characteristics and proposals for mitigation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rodriguez-Estrella, T.

    2014-01-01

    This article presents a general analysis of the problems arising from overexploited aquifers in semi-arid areas, based on research carried out in the Region of Murcia (one of the most over-exploited areas in Europe). Among the negative impacts of this over exploitation are: the drying up of springs, the continuous drawdown of water levels (up to 10 m/y), piezo metric drops (over 30 m in one year if it is a karstic aquifer), an increase in pumping costs (elevating water from a depth of more than 450 m), abandonment of wells, diminishing groundwater reserves, deteriorating water quality, presence of CO 2 , compartmentalizing of aquifers, etc. A series of internal measures is proposed to alleviate the over exploitation of the region. (Author)

  16. Renewable energies and regional development. Photovoltaic energy, micro-grid systems in the Brazilian semi-arid

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Arrais de Miranda Mousinho, Maria Candida

    2012-07-01

    This article tackles the issue of the development related to the insertion of new renewable energy technologies. It also presents the experience of the region of the Sao Francisco River Valley - named after the largest river genuinely Brazilian located in the semi-arid region -, focusing mainly on two municipalities: Xique-Xique and Barra. Its focus is the use of solar energy for rural communities. To present the results of that experience, the support of the Rio Sao Francisco Project: culture, identity and development, of the Deutsche Gesellschaft fuer Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) and of Eurosolar was essential. The research on which this article is based was fruit of a volunteer research project linked to the Partners of the Americas Bahia-Pennsylvania Committee.

  17. Nematodes associated with Iguana iguana (Linnaeus, 1758) (Squamata, Iguanidae) in Semi-arid areas of Northeastern Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teles, D A; Brito, S V; Teixeira, A A M; Ribeiro, S C; Araujo-Filho, J A; Lima, V F; Pereira, A M A; Almeida, W O

    2017-01-01

    Nematodes were analyzed in Iguana iguana, a large lizard Iguanidae that is widely distributed throughout the Americas. The aims of the study were investigate the helminths associated with the lizard, I. iguana in semi-arid areas of northeastern Brazil and analyze the parasitological indices (prevalence, and mean intensity of infection). A total of 18 specimens of I. iguana were examined (8 males and 10 females). The overall prevalence of infection was 66.6% (12/18), while in males, it was 75% (6/8) and in females, 60% (6/10). Iguana iguana was identified as a new host for Physaloptera sp., Atractis sp., Piratuba sp. and Subulura sp. This registered contributes to the knowledge of helminth diversity associated with this host.

  18. Nematodes associated with Iguana iguana (Linnaeus, 1758 (Squamata, Iguanidae in Semi-arid areas of Northeastern Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. A. Teles

    Full Text Available Abstract Nematodes were analyzed in Iguana iguana, a large lizard Iguanidae that is widely distributed throughout the Americas. The aims of the study were investigate the helminths associated with the lizard, I. iguana in semi-arid areas of northeastern Brazil and analyze the parasitological indices (prevalence, and mean intensity of infection. A total of 18 specimens of I. iguana were examined (8 males and 10 females. The overall prevalence of infection was 66.6% (12/18, while in males, it was 75% (6/8 and in females, 60% (6/10. Iguana iguana was identified as a new host for Physaloptera sp., Atractis sp., Piratuba sp. and Subulura sp. This registered contributes to the knowledge of helminth diversity associated with this host.

  19. Anthelmintic resistance of nematodes in communally grazed goats in a semi-arid area of South Africa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    F.R. Bakunzi

    2003-07-01

    Full Text Available A survey was conducted on the occurrence of anthelmintic resistance of nematodes in communally grazed goats in a semi-arid area in SouthAfrica. In herds belonging to 10 smallholder goat farmers, the efficacies of fenbendazole, levamisole and rafoxanide were tested by faecal egg count reduction (FECR tests. Efficacies of 80 % were considered a threshold for anthelmintic resistance. The FECR tests showed that all drugs tested more than 80 % effective in most instances, but there were notable exceptions. In 1 case, rafoxanide was only 31 % effective and in another case fenbendazole was only 47 % effective. The occurrence of anthelmintic resistance in this farming sector is of concern. Steps should be taken to prevent its further spread and to avoid the development of a situation as onnumerous commercial sheep farms in South Africa where resistance is very common.

  20. Necrophagous beetles associated with carcasses in a semi-arid environment in northeastern Brazil: implications for forensic entomology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mayer, Ana C G; Vasconcelos, Simão D

    2013-03-10

    Data on the ecology and bionomics of necrophagous beetles are scarce in tropical countries despite their relevance in forensic investigations. We performed a survey on the diversity and temporal pattern of colonization of beetles on pig carcasses in a fragment of dry forest in northeastern Brazil. We collected 1550 adults of diverse feeding habits from 12 families, of which 96% had necrophagous and/or copro-necrophagous habits and belonged to four families: Dermestidae, Scarabaeidae, Cleridae and Trogidae. Three species, Dermestes maculatus, Necrobia rufipes and Omorgus suberosus are reported for the first time with an expanded geographical distribution that includes the semi-arid region in Brazil. Adult beetles were collected as early as 24h after death. One endemic species, Deltochilum verruciferum, stood out in terms of numerical dominance and temporal occurrence during different stages of decomposition. Its intimate association with carrion emphasizes their potential role in forensic entomology in the region. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. Towards prediction of soil erodibility using hyperspectral information: a case study in a semi-arid region of Iran

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ostovari, Yaser; Ghorbani-Dashtaki, Shoja; Bahrami, Hossein-Ali

    2018-01-01

    and develop Spectrotransfer Function (STF) using spectral reflectance information and Pedotransfer Function (PTF) to predict the K-factor, respectively. The derived STF was compared with developed PTF using measurable soil properties by Ostovari et al. (2016) and the Universal Soil Loss Equation (USLE......Soil Visible–Near-Infrared (Vis-NIR) spectroscopy has become an applicable and interesting technique to evaluate a number of soil properties because it is a fast, cost-effective, and non-invasive measurement technique. The main objective of the study to predict soil erodibility (K-factor), soil...... organic matter (SOM), and calcium carbonate equivalent (CaCO3) in calcareous soils of semi-arid regions located in south of Iran using spectral reflectance information in the Vis-NIR range. The K-factor was measured in 40 erosion plots under natural rainfall and the spectral reflectance of soil samples...

  2. Moa (Aves : Dinornithiformes) nesting material from rockshelters in the semi-arid interior of South Island, New Zealand

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wood, J.R.

    2008-01-01

    The first descriptions of plant remains from the nests of extinct moa (Aves: Dinornithiformes) are presented. The samples of desiccated nesting material were collected during excavation of Holocene sediments within five rockshelters in semi-arid regions of southern South Island, New Zealand, between 1964 and 2006. The nesting materials were attributed to moa on the basis of associated moa coprolites, feathers and eggshell fragments. The nesting material includes short, clipped twigs from a range of locally available tree, shrub and liane species. These twig clippings show a size distribution similar to those recorded from moa gizzard content samples. Other nesting material from the sites includes longer twigs and fragments of bark. The plant materials suggest general similarities between the nests of moa and those of the extant Australasian ratites, emu (Dromaius novaehollandiae) and cassowary (Casuarius spp.). (author). 37 refs., 7 figs., 1 tab

  3. Environmental isotope profiles of the soil water in loess unsaturated zone in semi-arid areas of china

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lin Ruifen; Wei Keqin

    2001-01-01

    According to the IAEA Research Contract No. 9402, soil cores CHN/97 and CHN/98 were taken from loess deposits of China in Inner-Mongolia and Shanxi Province, respectively. Isotope and chemical constituents of the interstitial water from these cores, compared with data obtained from the same places before, were used for estimating the infiltration rate. Tritium profiles from the loess unsaturated zone show clearly defined peaks of 1963 fallout. It implies that piston-flow model is the dominant process for soil water movement in the highly homogeneous loess deposits. It has been shown from this study that vertical infiltration through the unsaturated zone accounts for 12%-13% of the annual precipitation and perhaps is not the main mechanism of groundwater recharge in semi-arid loess areas. (author)

  4. The problems of over exploitation of aquifers in semi-arid areas: characteristics and proposals for mitigation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rodriguez-Estrella, T.

    2014-06-01

    This article presents a general analysis of the problems arising from overexploited aquifers in semi-arid areas, based on research carried out in the Region of Murcia (one of the most over-exploited areas in Europe). Among the negative impacts of this over exploitation are: the drying up of springs, the continuous drawdown of water levels (up to 10 m/y), piezo metric drops (over 30 m in one year if it is a karstic aquifer), an increase in pumping costs (elevating water from a depth of more than 450 m), abandonment of wells, diminishing groundwater reserves, deteriorating water quality, presence of CO{sub 2}, compartmentalizing of aquifers, etc. A series of internal measures is proposed to alleviate the over exploitation of the region. (Author)

  5. Reproductive performance and body weight changes in draught cows in a smallholder semi-arid farming area of Zimbabwe.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chimonyo, M; Kusina, N T; Hamudikuwanda, H; Nyoni, O

    2000-12-01

    The reproductive performance of 46 cows in a semi-arid, smallholder farming area of Zimbabwe was monitored for a year. Half the cows were used throughout the monitoring period for various draught purposes, including ploughing and procurement of farm produce for marketing using carts. All the cows lost body weight between July and October, after which the cows that were not worked gained weight until June of the following year. In contrast, the cows that were worked continued to lose body weight until January, throughout the time during which they were used to provide draught power, after which they gained weight. Body weights were significantly higher (p draught purposes caused loss of body weight and reduced ovarian activity and conception rates.

  6. Impacts of water development on aquatic macroinvertebrates, amphibians, and plants in wetlands of a semi-arid landscape

    Science.gov (United States)

    Euliss, Ned H.; Mushet, David M.

    2004-01-01

    We compared the macroinvertebrate and amphibian communities of 12 excavated and 12 natural wetlands in western North Dakota, USA, to assess the effects of artificially lengthened hydroperiods on the biotic communities of wetlands in this semi-arid region. Excavated wetlands were much deeper and captured greater volumes of water than natural wetlands. Most excavated wetlands maintained water throughout the study period (May to October 1999), whereas most of the natural wetlands were dry by June. Excavated wetlands were largely unvegetated or contained submergent and deep-marsh plant species. The natural wetlands had two well-defined vegetative zones populated by plant species typical of wet meadows and shallow marshes. Excavated wetlands had a richer aquatic macroinvertebrate community that included several predatory taxa not found in natural wetlands. Taxa adapted to the short hydroperiods of seasonal wetlands were largely absent from excavated wetlands. The amphibian community of natural and excavated wetlands included the boreal chorus frog (Pseudacris maculata), northern leopard frog (Rana pipiens), plains spadefoot (Scaphiopus bombifrons), Woodhouse's toad (Bufo woodhousii woodhousii), and tiger salamander (Ambystoma tigrinum). The plains spadefoot occurred only in natural wetlands while tiger salamanders occurred in all 12 excavated wetlands and only one natural wetland. Boreal chorus frogs and northern leopard frogs were present in both wetland types; however, they successfully reproduced only in wetlands lacking tiger salamanders. Artificially extending the hydroperiod of wetlands by excavation has greatly influenced the composition of native biotic communities adapted to the naturally short hydroperiods of wetlands in this semi-arid region. The compositional change of the biotic communities can be related to hydrological changes and biotic interactions, especially predation related to excavation.

  7. Seasonal diet and prey preference of the African lion in a waterhole-driven semi-arid savanna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davidson, Zeke; Valeix, Marion; Van Kesteren, Freya; Loveridge, Andrew J; Hunt, Jane E; Murindagomo, Felix; Macdonald, David W

    2013-01-01

    Large carnivores inhabiting ecosystems with heterogeneously distributed environmental resources with strong seasonal variations frequently employ opportunistic foraging strategies, often typified by seasonal switches in diet. In semi-arid ecosystems, herbivore distribution is generally more homogeneous in the wet season, when surface water is abundant, than in the dry season when only permanent sources remain. Here, we investigate the seasonal contribution of the different herbivore species, prey preference and distribution of kills (i.e. feeding locations) of African lions in Hwange National Park, Zimbabwe, a semi-arid African savanna structured by artificial waterholes. We used data from 245 kills and 74 faecal samples. Buffalo consistently emerged as the most frequently utilised prey in all seasons by both male (56%) and female (33%) lions, contributing the most to lion dietary biomass. Jacobs' index also revealed that buffalo was the most intensively selected species throughout the year. For female lions, kudu and to a lesser extent the group "medium Bovidae" are the most important secondary prey. This study revealed seasonal patterns in secondary prey consumption by female lions partly based on prey ecology with browsers, such as giraffe and kudu, mainly consumed in the early dry season, and grazers, such as zebra and suids, contributing more to female diet in the late dry season. Further, it revealed the opportunistic hunting behaviour of lions for prey as diverse as elephants and mice, with elephants taken mostly as juveniles at the end of the dry season during droughts. Jacobs' index finally revealed a very strong preference for kills within 2 km from a waterhole for all prey species, except small antelopes, in all seasons. This suggested that surface-water resources form passive traps and contribute to the structuring of lion foraging behaviour.

  8. An integrative approach to characterize hydrological processes and water quality in a semi-arid watershed in Northeastern Brazil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Franklin, M. R.; Fernandes, N.; Veiga, L. H. S.; Melo, L. R.; Santos, A. C. S.; Araujo, V. P.

    2014-12-01

    Arid and semi-arid regions face serious challenges in the management of scarce water resources. This situation tends to become worse with the increasing population growth rates and consequently increasing water demand. Groundwater is the most important water resource in these areas and, therefore, the sustainability of its use depends on the effectiveness in which it is managed, both in terms of quantity and quality. The Caetité Experimental Basin (CEB), located in a semi-arid region of Northeastern Brazil, faces not only the challenges associated with water scarcity, but also changes in landscape and potential contamination processes due to mining activity. The only active uranium production center in Brazil (URA) is located in this watershed and the sustainability of mining and milling operations as well as the survival of the local community are highly dependent on the availability of groundwater resources. Hydrogeological studies in this area are scarce, and the potential contamination and overexploitation of groundwater can not be ruled out. Therefore, a national project was launched in order to improve the understanding and quantification of the interaction between the hydrogeological system and human health. The methodological approach involved hydrological and geochemical monitoring and characterization of the CEB, use of isotopic techniques, groundwater modeling, water quality diagnosis and human health risk assessment due to water ingestion. The results suggested that the groundwater in the CEB are not totally connected, with evidence of a mixture of recent and old waters. The Na-Ca-HCO3-Cl is the dominant water type (50%) followed by Ca-Na-HCO3-Cl water type (17%). The relevant non-radioactive contaminants are Mn, F, NO3 and Ba, mostly from natural origin, with the exception of NO3 that could be associated with the livestock activities. The estimated effective doses due to groundwater ingestion containing radionuclides are below the recommended

  9. Seasonal diet and prey preference of the African lion in a waterhole-driven semi-arid savanna.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zeke Davidson

    Full Text Available Large carnivores inhabiting ecosystems with heterogeneously distributed environmental resources with strong seasonal variations frequently employ opportunistic foraging strategies, often typified by seasonal switches in diet. In semi-arid ecosystems, herbivore distribution is generally more homogeneous in the wet season, when surface water is abundant, than in the dry season when only permanent sources remain. Here, we investigate the seasonal contribution of the different herbivore species, prey preference and distribution of kills (i.e. feeding locations of African lions in Hwange National Park, Zimbabwe, a semi-arid African savanna structured by artificial waterholes. We used data from 245 kills and 74 faecal samples. Buffalo consistently emerged as the most frequently utilised prey in all seasons by both male (56% and female (33% lions, contributing the most to lion dietary biomass. Jacobs' index also revealed that buffalo was the most intensively selected species throughout the year. For female lions, kudu and to a lesser extent the group "medium Bovidae" are the most important secondary prey. This study revealed seasonal patterns in secondary prey consumption by female lions partly based on prey ecology with browsers, such as giraffe and kudu, mainly consumed in the early dry season, and grazers, such as zebra and suids, contributing more to female diet in the late dry season. Further, it revealed the opportunistic hunting behaviour of lions for prey as diverse as elephants and mice, with elephants taken mostly as juveniles at the end of the dry season during droughts. Jacobs' index finally revealed a very strong preference for kills within 2 km from a waterhole for all prey species, except small antelopes, in all seasons. This suggested that surface-water resources form passive traps and contribute to the structuring of lion foraging behaviour.

  10. Water quality and health in a Sahelian semi-arid urban context: an integrated geographical approach in Nouakchott, Mauritania

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Doulo Traoré

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available Access to sufficient quantities of safe drinking water is a human right. Moreover, access to clean water is of public health relevance, particularly in semi-arid and Sahelian cities due to the risks of water contamination and transmission of water-borne diseases. We conducted a study in Nouakchott, the capital of Mauritania, to deepen the understanding of diarrhoeal incidence in space and time. We used an integrated geographical approach, combining socio-environmental, microbiological and epidemiological data from various sources, including spatially explicit surveys, laboratory analysis of water samples and reported diarrhoeal episodes. A geospatial technique was applied to determine the environmental and microbiological risk factors that govern diarrhoeal transmission. Statistical and cartographic analyses revealed concentration of unimproved sources of drinking water in the most densely populated areas of the city, coupled with a daily water allocation below the recommended standard of 20 l per person. Bacteriological analysis indicated that 93% of the non-piped water sources supplied at water points were contaminated with 10-80 coliform bacteria per 100 ml. Diarrhoea was the second most important disease reported at health centres, accounting for 12.8% of health care service consultations on average. Diarrhoeal episodes were concentrated in municipalities with the largest number of contaminated water sources. Environmental factors (e.g. lack of improved water sources and bacteriological aspects (e.g. water contamination with coliform bacteria are the main drivers explaining the spatio-temporal distribution of diarrhoea. We conclude that integrating environmental, microbiological and epidemiological variables with statistical regression models facilitates risk profiling of diarrhoeal diseases. Modes of water supply and water contamination were the main drivers of diarrhoea in this semi-arid urban context of Nouakchott, and hence require a

  11. Seasonal change detection of riparian zones with remote sensing images and genetic programming in a semi-arid watershed.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Makkeasorn, Ammarin; Chang, Ni-Bin; Li, Jiahong

    2009-02-01

    Riparian zones are deemed significant due to their interception capability of non-point source impacts and the maintenance of ecosystem integrity region wide. To improve classification and change detection of riparian buffers, this paper developed an evolutionary computational, supervised classification method--the RIparian Classification Algorithm (RICAL)--to conduct the seasonal change detection of riparian zones in a vast semi-arid watershed, South Texas. RICAL uniquely demonstrates an integrative effort to incorporate both vegetation indices and soil moisture images derived from LANDSAT 5 TM and RADARSAT-1 satellite images, respectively. First, an estimation of soil moisture based on RADARSAT-1 Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) images was conducted via the first-stage genetic programming (GP) practice. Second, for the statistical analyses and image classification, eight vegetation indices were prepared based on reflectance factors that were calculated as the response of the instrument on LANDSAT. These spectral vegetation indices were then independently used for discriminate analysis along with soil moisture images to classify the riparian zones via the second-stage GP practice. The practical implementation was assessed by a case study in the Choke Canyon Reservoir Watershed (CCRW), South Texas, which is mostly agricultural and range land in a semi-arid coastal environment. To enhance the application potential, a combination of Iterative Self-Organizing Data Analysis Techniques (ISODATA) and maximum likelihood supervised classification was also performed for spectral discrimination and classification of riparian varieties comparatively. Research findings show that the RICAL algorithm may yield around 90% accuracy based on the unseen ground data. But using different vegetation indices would not significantly improve the final quality of the spectral discrimination and classification. Such practices may lead to the formulation of more effective management strategies

  12. Spatial and temporal variability in the Quality of Surface water in a semi-arid mediterranean region (river orontes- Lebanon)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    SLIM, K.; SAAD, Z.; KAZPARD, V.; EL SAMAD, O.; NASREDDINE, M.

    2004-01-01

    The Orontes River is an international river, with its headwaters in Lebanon, its middle section in Syria and its mouth in Turkey. Fresh surface waters were sampled monthly during the year 2000 and analyzed for major ions and for trace metals. Sea-salt aerosols in rainwater partially influence the major ion composition in the river. The concentration of major cations and anions fall within the range of the most common natural Concentration of major ion assemblages established for world river(MCNC), with a cation and anion dominance in the order of Ca > Mg > Na> K and HCO3 > SO4 > Cl, which tend to be predominantly influenced by chemical weathering of rocks and minerals in a semi-arid region. Ca and HCO3 are mostly derived from the dissolution of carbonate rocks. The sources of SO4 could be attributed to anhydrite minerals and to anthropogenic impact from fertilizers. Increases in nutrient concentrations are attributed mainly to the increasing influence of agricultural runoff. δ18 0/ δH plots shows that the data either fits the Mediterranean Meteoric Water Line(MMWL) or have elevated values that indicate evaporative isotope enrichment in a semi-arid climate. The correlation matrix for trace elements shows a high coefficient of correlation for Fe, Zn and Cu indicating that these elements could be controlled by the same chemistry in water. The bicarbonate-alkaline type of Orontes surface water contribute to the formation of trace metals-carbonate complexes such as FeCO3(aq) and ZnCO3 (aq). The good correlation between Pb, Cd and Cr reflects the effect of increasing urbanization in the catchments. (author)

  13. Investigating transport capacity equations in sediment yield modelling for the Cariri semi-arid region of Paraiba-PB/Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. E. De Figueiredo

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available In the semi arid Cariri region of the state of Paraiba, Brazil, runoff is of the Hortonian type generated by excess of rainfall over infiltration capacity, and soil erosion is governed by rainfall intensity and sediment size. However, the governing sediment transport mechanism is not well understood. Sediment transport generally depends on the load of sediment provided by soil erosion and on the transport capacity of the flow. The latter is mainly governed by mechanisms such as water shear stress, or stream power. Accordingly, the load of sediment transported by the flow may vary depending on the mechanism involved in the equation of estimation. Investigation of the sediment transport capacity of the flow via a distributed physically-based model is an important and necessary task, but quite rare in semi-arid climates, and particularly in the Cariri region of the state of Paraíba/Brazil. In this study, the equations of Yalin, Engelund & Hansen, Laursen, DuBoys and Bagnold have been coupled with the MOSEE distributed physically based model aiming at identifying the mechanisms leading to the best model simulations when compared with data observed at various basin scales and land uses in the study region. The results obtained with the investigated methods were quite similar and satisfactory suggesting the feasibility of the mechanisms involved, but the observed values were better represented with Bagnold’s equation, which is physically grounded on the stream power, and we recommend it for simulations of similar climate, runoff generation mechanisms and sediment characteristics as in the study region.

  14. Plan and Some Results of "Advanced Study on Precipitation Enhancement in Arid and Semi-Arid Regions"

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murakami, M.

    2016-12-01

    There are several technologies to secure water resources, including the desalination of seawater, recycling of industrial water and reuse of wastewater. However precipitation enhancement is the only way we can create a large amount of water for industrial use, for example, water for irrigation, provided we find clouds suitable for cloud seeding and apply appropriate and effective methods to increase precipitation. Therefore, rain enhancement research is critical in the quest for new water security options and innovative solutions in the UAE and other arid and semi-arid regions. The main objective of our project is to better evaluate, and ultimately improve, the effectiveness of rain enhancement in the UAE and other arid and semi-arid regions using hygroscopic and glaciogenic seeding techniques. One of the major questions regarding rain enhancement today is the effectiveness of hygroscopic seeding for warm and supercooled convective clouds. Our research will investigate the microphysical processes in seeded and unseeded clouds using a combination of laboratory experiments, numerical simulations and in-situ aircraft measurements in order to decipher the mechanism responsible for precipitation augmentation due to hygroscopic seeding. In our research, major elements of cloud seeding, e.g., assessment of seedability, development of optimal seeding methods and evaluation of seeding effects, will be investigated in the most efficient and realistic way, within three years, using mainly the numerical models with the sophisticated seeding scheme, which is developed on a basis of laboratory experiments and then validated against in-situ and remote sensing observations. In addition to the research plan, the outcomes of the research projects, which will be made available to the public at the end of the project and benefit the broader society, is discussed.

  15. Performance of Jatropha curcas L. in Semi-arid Zone: Seed Germination, Seedling Growth and Early Field Growth

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sharif AHAMAD

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available There is a lack of information on basic agronomic properties of Jatropha curcas L. (jatropha cultivation on the marginal lands in the semi-arids. Evaluation of agronomic performance of identified elite strains of J. curcas in marginal lands would be of paramount importance for addressing gap areas in their agronomic properties and subsequently for harnessing their optimum economic potentials. The present study undertook the task of analysing the growth performance of a high oil bearing elite strain of J. curcas–DARL-2 in degraded land in semi-arid zone of Deccan Plateau, India. While undertaking the assessment of growth performance of elite strain DARL-2, two other native (wild strains (namely AHN-1 and AHN-2 of J. curcas were also considered so that a comparative evaluation could be carried out. The role of gypsum was also investigated on J. curcas in the nursery stage as well its carry over effects on growth performance of transplanted trees in the field. Two types of substrates, gypsum-treated soil (GS and untreated soil (SL were used for growing seedlings of all the three jatropha strains. Seedlings (120-days-old of DARL-2 exhibited greater plant height, collar diameter and number of branches but root length was greater in the local strains. In the second year of field transplantation, DARL-2 strain exhibited significantly (p<0.05 greater plant height and number of branches/plant. No carry over effects of gypsum treatment were observed in field transplanted plants as none of the growth parameters significantly varied among the substrate types.

  16. Shrub mound formation and stability on semi-arid slopes in the Northern Negev Desert of Israel: A field and simulation study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Buis, E.; Temme, A.J.A.M.; Veldkamp, A.; Boeken, B.; Jongmans, A.G.; Breemen, van N.; Schoorl, J.M.

    2010-01-01

    In semi-arid areas vegetation is scarce and often dominated by individual shrubs on raised mounds. The processes of formation of these mounds are diverse and still debated. Often, shrub mound formation is directly related to the formation of vegetation patterns, thereby assuming that shrub mound

  17. Exploring options for integrated nutrient management in semi-arid tropics using farmer field schools: a case study in Mbeere District, eastern Kenya

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Onduru, D.D.; Preez, Du C.C.; Muchena, F.N.; Gachimbi, L.N.; Jager, de A.

    2008-01-01

    The farmer field school (FFS) approach was used in semi-arid eastern Kenya in the period 2002–2003 to explore technology options for addressing declining soil fertility and to institute learning processes on integrated nutrient management (INM).
    The farmer field school (FFS) approach was used in

  18. Soil moisture and its consequences under different management in a six year old hedged agroforestry demonstration plot in semi-arid Kenya, for two successive contrasting seasons

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Otengi, S.B.B.; Stigter, C.J.; Ng'anga, J.K.; Liniger, H.

    2007-01-01

    Hedged agroforestry (AF) demonstration plots with maize/bean intercrops were studied at Matanya in Laikipia district, Kenya, between 1991 and 1995 inclusive, to understand crop yield behaviour due to selected soil moisture conservation methods applicable in semi-arid areas. The treatments were:

  19. Influence of grazing on soil seed banks determines the restoration potential of aboveground vegetation in a semi-arid savanna in Ethiopia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tessema, Z.K.; Boer, de W.F.; Baars, R.M.T.; Prins, H.H.T.

    2012-01-01

    Species composition, number of emerging seedlings, species diversity and functional group of the soil seed banks, and the influence of grazing on the similarity between the soil seed banks and aboveground vegetation, were studied in 2008 and 2009 in a semi-arid savanna of Ethiopia. We tested whether

  20. Feedback mechanisms between water availability and water use in a semi-arid river basin: a geographically explicit multi-agent simulation approach

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Oel, P.R.; Krol, Martinus S.; Hoekstra, Arjen Ysbert; Taddei, Renzo R.

    2010-01-01

    Understanding the processes responsible for the distribution of water availability over space and time is of great importance to spatial planning in a semi-arid river basin. In this study the usefulness of a multi-agent simulation (MAS) approach for representing these processes is discussed. A MAS

  1. Voluntary cooperation in the provision of a semi-public good : Community-based soil and water conservation in semi-arid India

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bouma, J.A.

    2008-01-01

    This dissertation analyses the question whether households in India’s semi-arid tropics can be expected to voluntarily maintain semi-public investments in soil and water conservation. Increasingly, public investment programs decentralise project planning, implementation and management to local

  2. Toward structural assessment of semi-arid African savannahs and woodlands: The potential of multitemporal polarimetric RADARSAT-2 fine beam images

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Mathieu, R

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available variables but for all three seasons. The C-band SAR data thus provided encouraging results in open, semi-arid savannahs and hint at larger area structural assessments than is possible with LiDAR sensors alone. The combined use of C-band and L-band (ALOS...

  3. On the operationalization of a spatially explicit evaluation of the complexity of land use trajectories in semi-arid Mediterranean agro-ecosystems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nainggolan, Doan

    This thesis aims to unpack the complexity of trajectories of land use change in semi-arid Mediterranean agro-ecosystems – illustrated using findings from the Torrealvilla catchment in south-eastern Spain. The research looks at multiple dimensions of land use change and addresses the past, present...

  4. Is the future blue-green or brown? The effects of extreme events on phytoplankton dynamics in a semi-arid man-made lake

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Meideiros, L.D.C.; Mattos, A.; Lurling, M.F.L.L.W.; Becker, V.

    2015-01-01

    In arid and semi-arid regions, a hydrological regime characterized by an annual cycle of drought and rainy seasons changes the volume and retention time of reservoirs. Such changes affect the limnological characteristics and lead to changes on phytoplankton community. Phytoplankton seasonal

  5. Application of factor analysis and electrical resistivity to understand groundwater contributions to coastal embayments in semi-arid and hypersaline coastal settings

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bighash, Paniz; Murgulet, Dorina

    2015-01-01

    Groundwater contributions and sources of salinity to Oso Bay in south Texas were investigated using multivariate statistical analysis of geochemical data and multitemporal electrical resistivity tomography surveys. Both analysis of geochemical data and subsurface imaging techniques identified two commonalities for the investigated system: 1) hypersaline water occurs near the groundwater/surface water interface during wet conditions creating reverse hydraulic gradients due to density effects. The development and downward movement of these fluids as continuous plumes deflect fresher groundwater discharge downward and laterally away from the surface; and 2) more pronounced upwelling of fresher groundwater occurs during drought periods when density inversions are more defined and are expected to overcome dispersion and diffusion processes and create sufficiently large-enough unstable gradients that induce density-difference convection. Salinity mass-balance models derived from time-difference resistivity tomograph and in-situ salinity data reaffirm these findings indicating that groundwater upwelling is more prominent during dry to wet conditions in 2013 (~ 545.5 m 3 /d) and is less pronounced during wet to dry conditions in 2012 (~ 262.7 m 3 /d) for the 224 m 2 area surveyed. Findings show that the highly saline nature of water in this area and changes in salinity regimes can be attributed to a combination of factors, namely: surface outflows, evapoconcentration, recirculation of hypersaline groundwaters, and potential trapped oil field brines. Increased drought conditions will likely exacerbate the rate at which salinity levels are increasing in bays and estuaries in semi-arid regions where both hypersaline groundwater discharge and high evaporation rates occur simultaneously. - Highlights: • Study of salinity regimes in relation to groundwater in a coastal semiarid setting • Factor analysis defined dominant factors influencing water quality variations.

  6. Application of factor analysis and electrical resistivity to understand groundwater contributions to coastal embayments in semi-arid and hypersaline coastal settings

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bighash, Paniz, E-mail: Bighash.p@gmail.com; Murgulet, Dorina

    2015-11-01

    Groundwater contributions and sources of salinity to Oso Bay in south Texas were investigated using multivariate statistical analysis of geochemical data and multitemporal electrical resistivity tomography surveys. Both analysis of geochemical data and subsurface imaging techniques identified two commonalities for the investigated system: 1) hypersaline water occurs near the groundwater/surface water interface during wet conditions creating reverse hydraulic gradients due to density effects. The development and downward movement of these fluids as continuous plumes deflect fresher groundwater discharge downward and laterally away from the surface; and 2) more pronounced upwelling of fresher groundwater occurs during drought periods when density inversions are more defined and are expected to overcome dispersion and diffusion processes and create sufficiently large-enough unstable gradients that induce density-difference convection. Salinity mass-balance models derived from time-difference resistivity tomograph and in-situ salinity data reaffirm these findings indicating that groundwater upwelling is more prominent during dry to wet conditions in 2013 (~ 545.5 m{sup 3}/d) and is less pronounced during wet to dry conditions in 2012 (~ 262.7 m{sup 3}/d) for the 224 m{sup 2} area surveyed. Findings show that the highly saline nature of water in this area and changes in salinity regimes can be attributed to a combination of factors, namely: surface outflows, evapoconcentration, recirculation of hypersaline groundwaters, and potential trapped oil field brines. Increased drought conditions will likely exacerbate the rate at which salinity levels are increasing in bays and estuaries in semi-arid regions where both hypersaline groundwater discharge and high evaporation rates occur simultaneously. - Highlights: • Study of salinity regimes in relation to groundwater in a coastal semiarid setting • Factor analysis defined dominant factors influencing water quality

  7. Application of factor analysis and electrical resistivity to understand groundwater contributions to coastal embayments in semi-arid and hypersaline coastal settings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bighash, Paniz; Murgulet, Dorina

    2015-11-01

    Groundwater contributions and sources of salinity to Oso Bay in south Texas were investigated using multivariate statistical analysis of geochemical data and multitemporal electrical resistivity tomography surveys. Both analysis of geochemical data and subsurface imaging techniques identified two commonalities for the investigated system: 1) hypersaline water occurs near the groundwater/surface water interface during wet conditions creating reverse hydraulic gradients due to density effects. The development and downward movement of these fluids as continuous plumes deflect fresher groundwater discharge downward and laterally away from the surface; and 2) more pronounced upwelling of fresher groundwater occurs during drought periods when density inversions are more defined and are expected to overcome dispersion and diffusion processes and create sufficiently large-enough unstable gradients that induce density-difference convection. Salinity mass-balance models derived from time-difference resistivity tomograph and in-situ salinity data reaffirm these findings indicating that groundwater upwelling is more prominent during dry to wet conditions in 2013 (~545.5m(3)/d) and is less pronounced during wet to dry conditions in 2012 (~262.7 m(3)/d) for the 224 m(2) area surveyed. Findings show that the highly saline nature of water in this area and changes in salinity regimes can be attributed to a combination of factors, namely: surface outflows, evapoconcentration, recirculation of hypersaline groundwaters, and potential trapped oil field brines. Increased drought conditions will likely exacerbate the rate at which salinity levels are increasing in bays and estuaries in semi-arid regions where both hypersaline groundwater discharge and high evaporation rates occur simultaneously. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  8. CMIP5 land surface models systematically underestimate inter-annual variability of net ecosystem exchange in semi-arid southwestern North America.

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacBean, N.; Scott, R. L.; Biederman, J. A.; Vuichard, N.; Hudson, A.; Barnes, M.; Fox, A. M.; Smith, W. K.; Peylin, P. P.; Maignan, F.; Moore, D. J.

    2017-12-01

    Recent studies based on analysis of atmospheric CO2 inversions, satellite data and terrestrial biosphere model simulations have suggested that semi-arid ecosystems play a dominant role in the interannual variability and long-term trend in the global carbon sink. These studies have largely cited the response of vegetation activity to changing moisture availability as the primary mechanism of variability. However, some land surface models (LSMs) used in these studies have performed poorly in comparison to satellite-based observations of vegetation dynamics in semi-arid regions. Further analysis is therefore needed to ensure semi-arid carbon cycle processes are well represented in global scale LSMs before we can fully establish their contribution to the global carbon cycle. In this study, we evaluated annual net ecosystem exchange (NEE) simulated by CMIP5 land surface models using observations from 20 Ameriflux sites across semi-arid southwestern North America. We found that CMIP5 models systematically underestimate the magnitude and sign of NEE inter-annual variability; therefore, the true role of semi-arid regions in the global carbon cycle may be even more important than previously thought. To diagnose the factors responsible for this bias, we used the ORCHIDEE LSM to test different climate forcing data, prescribed vegetation fractions and model structures. Climate and prescribed vegetation do contribute to uncertainty in annual NEE simulations, but the bias is primarily caused by incorrect timing and magnitude of peak gross carbon fluxes. Modifications to the hydrology scheme improved simulations of soil moisture in comparison to data. This in turn improved the seasonal cycle of carbon uptake due to a more realistic limitation on photosynthesis during water stress. However, the peak fluxes are still too low, and phenology is poorly represented for desert shrubs and grasses. We provide suggestions on model developments needed to tackle these issues in the future.

  9. High Spatial Resolution Visual Band Imagery Outperforms Medium Resolution Spectral Imagery for Ecosystem Assessment in the Semi-Arid Brazilian Sertão

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ran Goldblatt

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Semi-arid ecosystems play a key role in global agricultural production, seasonal carbon cycle dynamics, and longer-run climate change. Because semi-arid landscapes are heterogeneous and often sparsely vegetated, repeated and large-scale ecosystem assessments of these regions have to date been impossible. Here, we assess the potential of high-spatial resolution visible band imagery for semi-arid ecosystem mapping. We use WorldView satellite imagery at 0.3–0.5 m resolution to develop a reference data set of nearly 10,000 labeled examples of three classes—trees, shrubs/grasses, and bare land—across 1000 km 2 of the semi-arid Sertão region of northeast Brazil. Using Google Earth Engine, we show that classification with low-spectral but high-spatial resolution input (WorldView outperforms classification with the full spectral information available from Landsat 30 m resolution imagery as input. Classification with high spatial resolution input improves detection of sparse vegetation and distinction between trees and seasonal shrubs and grasses, two features which are lost at coarser spatial (but higher spectral resolution input. Our total tree cover estimates for the study area disagree with recent estimates using other methods that may underestimate treecover because they confuse trees with seasonal vegetation (shrubs and grasses. This distinction is important for monitoring seasonal and long-run carbon cycle and ecosystem health. Our results suggest that newer remote sensing products that promise high frequency global coverage at high spatial but lower spectral resolution may offer new possibilities for direct monitoring of the world’s semi-arid ecosystems, and we provide methods that could be scaled to do so.

  10. Understanding environmental drivers in the regulation of soil respiration dynamics after fire in semi-arid ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muñoz-Rojas, Miriam; Lewandrowski, Wolfgang; Erickson, Todd E.; Dixon, Kingsley W.; Merritt, David J.

    2016-04-01

    Keywords: Pilbara, soil CO2 efflux, soil C, soil moisture, soil temperature Introduction Soil respiration (Rs) has become a major research focus given the increase in atmospheric CO2 emissions and the large contribution of these CO2 fluxes from soils (Van Groenigen et al., 2014). In addition to its importance in the global C cycle, Rs is a fundamental indicator of soil health and quality that reflects the level of microbial activity and provides an indication of the ability of soils to support plant growth (Oyonarte et al., 2012; Munoz-Rojas et al., 2015). Wildfires can have a significant impact on Rs rates, with the scale of the impact depending on environmental factors such as temperature and moisture, and organic C content in the soil. Vegetation cover can have a significant effect on regulating organic C contents; and while advances are made into understanding the effects of fire on organic C contents and CO2 fluxes (Granged et al., 2011; Willaarts et al., 2015; Muñoz-Rojas et al., 2016), there is limited knowledge of the variability of Rs across ecosystem types, vegetation communities, and responses to fire. In this research we aimed to assess the impacts of a wildfire on the soil CO2 fluxes and soil respiration in a semi-arid ecosystem of Western Australia (Pilbara biogeographical region), and to understand the main environmental drivers controlling these fluxes in different vegetation types. The study has application for other arid and semi-arid regions of the world. Methods The study area was selected following a wildfire that affected 25 ha in February 2014. Twelve plots were established in the burnt site (B) within a 400 m2 area, and 12 plots in an adjacent unburnt control site. At each site, three plots were installed below the canopy of each of the most representative vegetation types of the areas: Eucalyptus trees, Acacia shrubs and Triodia grasses, and three on bare soil. Soil sampling and measurement of soil CO2 efflux, temperature and moisture were

  11. Predicting the long-term durability of hemp-lime renders in inland and coastal areas using Mediterranean, Tropical and Semi-arid climatic simulations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arizzi, Anna; Viles, Heather; Martín-Sanchez, Inés; Cultrone, Giuseppe

    2016-01-15

    Hemp-based composites are eco-friendly building materials as they improve energy efficiency in buildings and entail low waste production and pollutant emissions during their manufacturing process. Nevertheless, the organic nature of hemp enhances the bio-receptivity of the material, with likely negative consequences for its long-term performance in the building. The main purpose of this study was to study the response at macro- and micro-scale of hemp-lime renders subjected to weathering simulations in an environmental cabinet (one year was condensed in twelve days), so as to predict their long-term durability in coastal and inland areas with Mediterranean, Tropical and Semi-arid climates, also in relation with the lime type used. The simulated climatic conditions caused almost unnoticeable mass, volume and colour changes in hemp-lime renders. No efflorescence or physical breakdown was detected in samples subjected to NaCl, because the salt mainly precipitates on the surface of samples and is washed away by the rain. Although there was no visible microbial colonisation, alkaliphilic fungi (mainly Penicillium and Aspergillus) and bacteria (mainly Bacillus and Micrococcus) were isolated in all samples. Microbial growth and diversification were higher under Tropical climate, due to heavier rainfall. The influence of the bacterial activity on the hardening of samples has also been discussed here and related with the formation and stabilisation of vaterite in hemp-lime mixes. This study has demonstrated that hemp-lime renders show good durability towards a wide range of environmental conditions and factors. However, it might be useful to take some specific preventive and maintenance measures to reduce the bio-receptivity of this material, thus ensuring a longer durability on site. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  12. Étude analytique des comptages cellulaires somatiques du lait en élevage bovin hors sol dans la Tunisie littorale semi-aride

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Y.M’SADAK

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available The objective of this work is to analyze individual cell counts (ICC for a complete cow lactation and identify risk factors for mastitis. The study was conducted on a sample of 113 cattle farms on three areas of the semi-arid coastal Tunisia: Sousse, Monastir and Mahdia. The majority of the examined sample flocks had high ICC. The analysis of the ICC in relation to husbandry and milking conditions in three regions helped highlight some factors that significantly affects ICC and the likelihood of the spread of mastitis. For the region of Sousse, the use of a litter reduced to half the ICC that were proven to be highly related to the cleanliness of both the sleeping area and the udder. The milking parameters “udder depth”, “udder cleanliness” and “No teat disinfection” have been shown to affect the ICC and are regarded as causal factors of bovine mastitis. In the region of Monastir, factors that significantly increased ICC (P <0.05 were: free stalling, cleaning milking machine with only water, the poor condition of the pipes, non removal of the first streams of milk and poor cleanliness of the udder and the legs of the cows. For the region of Mahdia, the statistical study revealed that the lack of cleaning and wiping of the udder was associated with high ICC. Regarding the operating parameters of the milking machine, the Pulse Frequency (PF and the Pulse Report (PR had a significant influence on the rise of the ICC.

  13. Managing Environmental Flows for Impounded Rivers in Semi-Arid Regions- A Habitat Suitability Index (HSI) Approach for the Assessment of River Habitat for Salmonid Populations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pai, H.; Sivakumaran, K.; Villamizar, S. R.; Flanagan, J.; Guo, Q.; Harmon, T. C.

    2013-12-01

    Balancing ecosystem health in water-scarce, agriculturally dominated river basins remains a challenge. In dry water years, maintaining conditions for restored and sustained indigenous fish populations (a frequently used indicator for ecosystem health) is particularly challenging. Competing human demands include urban and agricultural water supplies, hydropower, and flood control. In many semi-arid regions, increasing drought intensity and frequency under future climate scenarios will combine with population increases to water scarcity. The goal of this work is to better understand how reservoir releases affect fish habitat and overall river aquatic ecosystem quality. Models integrating a diverse array of physical and biological processes and system state are used to forecast the river ecosystem response to changing drivers. We propose a distributed parameter-based Habitat Suitability Index (HSI) approach for assessing fish habitat quality. Our river ecosystem HSI maps are based on a combination of the following: (1) In situ data describing stream flow and water quality conditions; (2) Spatial observations, including surveyed cross-sections, aerial imagery and digital elevation maps (DEM) of the river and its riparian corridor; and (3) Simulated spatially distributed water depths, flow velocities, and temperatures estimated from 1D and 2D river flow and temperature models (HEC-RAS and CE-QUAL-W2, respectively). With respect to (2), image processing schemes are used to classify and map key habitat features, namely riparian edge and shallow underwater vegetation. HSI maps can be modified temporally to address specific life cycle requirements of indicator fish species. Results are presented for several reaches associated with the San Joaquin River Restoration Project, focusing on several components of the Chinook salmon life cycle. HSI maps and interpretations are presented in the context of a range of prescribed reservoir release hydrographs linked to California water

  14. A study on reproductive performance and related factors of zebu cows in pastoral herds in a semi-arid area of Tanzania.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kanuya, N L; Matiko, M K; Kessy, B M; Mgongo, F O; Ropstad, E; Reksen, O

    2006-06-01

    A prospective longitudinal study was carried out from September 2001 to June 2004 in three adjacent villages in a semi-arid area of Tanzania. The objectives of this study were to measure the intervals between calving and either resumption of cyclical activity or confirmation of pregnancy, to estimate calving intervals, and to investigate the effect of factors assumed to be related to postpartum reproductive performance. A total of 275 lactation periods from 177 Tanzanian Shorthorn Zebu cows managed in a traditional pastoral system in 46 households were initially included. Animals were initially screened for brucelosis and thereafter examined by palpation per rectum at 2-week intervals. Body condition score (scale 1 to 5) was assessed and girth measurement (cm) taken. Occurrence of other reproductive events such as calving, abortion, death of calf, culling and reason for culling were recorded. In a subset of 98 lactation periods from 91 cows milk samples for progesterone (P4) determination were collected twice per week from day 7 after calving to the time of confirmed pregnancy or until milk production ceased before pregnancy. The data were analysed both univariately and in multivariable Cox proportional hazard (frailty) models. The mean (+/-S.E.M.) calving interval was 500+/-13.6 days. Positive reactors in the brucellosis test were 15.6% of the tested animals. Milk P4 analysis showed the rate of abortion/late embryo loss to be 14.3%. Calf mortality rates varied between 14.6 and 17.4%. A positive relationship was found between the outcome variables likelihood of cyclical activity and likelihood of pregnancy in the Cox model, and the explanatory variables: parity and body condition score (BCS) at calving. A negative relationship was found between the outcome variables, and the explanatory variables: maximum BCS loss and calf survival/mortality. Calving in the rainy season was associated with an increased likelihood of pregnancy.

  15. Assessment of vulnerability in karst aquifers using a quantitative integrated numerical model: catchment characterization and high resolution monitoring - Application to semi-arid regions- Lebanon.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doummar, Joanna; Aoun, Michel; Andari, Fouad

    2016-04-01

    Karst aquifers are highly heterogeneous and characterized by a duality of recharge (concentrated; fast versus diffuse; slow) and a duality of flow which directly influences groundwater flow and spring responses. Given this heterogeneity in flow and infiltration, karst aquifers do not always obey standard hydraulic laws. Therefore the assessment of their vulnerability reveals to be challenging. Studies have shown that vulnerability of aquifers is highly governed by recharge to groundwater. On the other hand specific parameters appear to play a major role in the spatial and temporal distribution of infiltration on a karst system, thus greatly influencing the discharge rates observed at a karst spring, and consequently the vulnerability of a spring. This heterogeneity can only be depicted using an integrated numerical model to quantify recharge spatially and assess the spatial and temporal vulnerability of a catchment for contamination. In the framework of a three-year PEER NSF/USAID funded project, the vulnerability of a karst catchment in Lebanon is assessed quantitatively using a numerical approach. The aim of the project is also to refine actual evapotranspiration rates and spatial recharge distribution in a semi arid environment. For this purpose, a monitoring network was installed since July 2014 on two different pilot karst catchment (drained by Qachqouch Spring and Assal Spring) to collect high resolution data to be used in an integrated catchment numerical model with MIKE SHE, DHI including climate, unsaturated zone, and saturated zone. Catchment characterization essential for the model included geological mapping and karst features (e.g., dolines) survey as they contribute to fast flow. Tracer experiments were performed under different flow conditions (snow melt and low flow) to delineate the catchment area, reveal groundwater velocities and response to snowmelt events. An assessment of spring response after precipitation events allowed the estimation of the

  16. Current and future groundwater withdrawals: Effects, management and energy policy options for a semi-arid Indian watershed

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sishodia, Rajendra P.; Shukla, Sanjay; Graham, Wendy D.; Wani, Suhas P.; Jones, James W.; Heaney, James

    2017-12-01

    Effects of future expansion/intensification of irrigated agriculture on groundwater and surface water levels and availability in a semi-arid watershed were evaluated using an integrated hydrologic model (MIKE SHE/MIKE 11) in conjunction with biophysical measurements. Improved water use efficiency, water storage, and energy policy options were evaluated for their ability to sustain the future (2035) increased groundwater withdrawals. Three future withdrawal scenarios (low = 20, medium = 30, high = 50 wells/100 km2/year) based on the historical rate of growth of irrigation wells were formulated. While well drying from falling groundwater levels was limited to drought and consecutive below average rainfall years, under the current (2015) withdrawals, significant increases in frequency and duration (17-97 days/year) of well drying along with 13-26% (19-37 mm) reductions in surface flows were predicted under the future withdrawals. Higher (27-108%) energy demands of existing irrigation pumps due to declining groundwater levels and reduced hydroelectric generation due to decreased surface flows would create a vicious water-food-energy nexus in the future. Crop failure, one of the main causes of farmers' emotional distress and death in the region, is predicted to exacerbate under the future withdrawal scenarios. Shift to negative net recharge (-63 mm) and early and prolonged drying of wells under the high scenario will reduce the groundwater availability and negatively affect crop production in more than 60% and 90% of cropped areas in the Rabi (November-February) and summer (March-May) seasons, respectively during a drought year. Individual and combined demand (drip irrigation and reduced farm electricity subsidy) and supply (water storage) management options improved groundwater levels and reduced well drying by 55-97 days/year compared to business-as-usual management under the high scenario. The combined management (50% drip conversion, 50% reduction in subsidy, and

  17. Impact of vegetation dynamics on hydrological processes in a semi-arid basin by using a land surface-hydrology coupled model

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jiao, Yang; Lei, Huimin; Yang, Dawen; Huang, Maoyi; Liu, Dengfeng; Yuan, Xing

    2017-08-01

    Land surface models (LSMs) are widely used to understand the interactions between hydrological processes and vegetation dynamics, which is important for the attribution and prediction of regional hydrological variations. However, most LSMs have large uncertainties in their representations of ecohydrological processes due to deficiencies in hydrological parameterizations. In this study, the Community Land Model version 4 (CLM4) LSM was modified with an advanced runoff generation and flow routing scheme, resulting in a new land surface-hydrology coupled model, CLM-GBHM. Both models were implemented in the Wudinghe River Basin (WRB), which is a semi-arid basin located in the middle reaches of the Yellow River, China. Compared with CLM, CLM-GBHM increased the Nash Sutcliffe efficiency for daily river discharge simulation (1965–1969) from 0.03 to 0.23 and reduced the relative bias in water table depth simulations (2010–2012) from 32.4% to 13.4%. The CLM-GBHM simulations with static, remotely sensed and model-predicted vegetation conditions showed that the vegetation in the WRB began to recover in the 2000s due to the Grain for Green Program but had not reached the same level of vegetation cover as regions in natural eco-hydrological equilibrium. Compared with a simulation using remotely sensed vegetation cover, the simulation with a dynamic vegetation model that considers only climate-induced change showed a 10.3% increase in evapotranspiration, a 47.8% decrease in runoff, and a 62.7% and 71.3% deceleration in changing trend of the outlet river discharge before and after the year 2000, respectively. This result suggests that both natural and anthropogenic factors should be incorporated in dynamic vegetation models to better simulate the eco-hydrological cycle.