Valdinei Tadeu Paulino, Marcos Siqueira Neto, Erika Maria Lima Celegato Teixeira, Keila Maria Roncato Duarte, Alan Joseph Franzluebbers
Abstract: Soil organic matter affects physical, chemical and biological conditions, and has been used as a soil quality index to differentiate the effects of different land uses and management practices. The objective of this study was to evaluate soil stocks of C and N under different land uses (conventional-tillage cropping, integrated crop-livestock system, and permanent pasture). The study area was located at the Institute of Animal Science in the municipality of Nova Odessa, São Paulo State (Brazil), with soil classified as Typic Acrudox with medium texture. Land use systems were: (1) integrated crop-livestock with maize and Urochloa brizantha cv. Marandu; (2) integrated crop-livestock with maize and U. ruziziensis; (3) integrated crop-livestock with maize and U. brizantha cv. Piatã; (4) long-term (25-yr-old) pasture with U. brizantha; and (5) conventional-tillage cropping with– maize only. The results showed that (to the layer 0-40 cm depth) the integrated crop-livestock systems (ICLS) had greater soil organic C (52.4 Mg ha-1) and N (4.3 Mg ha-1) than cropping (46.5 Mg C ha-1 and 4.0 Mg N ha-1) only or pasture only (47.6 Mg C ha-1 and 3.9 Mg N ha-1). The rotation with U. brizantha cv. Piatã had lower soil organic C (48.5 Mg ha-1) and N (3.9 Mg ha-1) than with U. brizantha cv. Marandu (56.2 Mg C ha-1 and 4.5 Mg N ha-1) and U. ruziziensis (56.6 Mg C ha-1 and 4.6 Mg N ha-1). These results suggest that integrated crop-livestock systems can be used to improve soil organic matter, and may have additional benefits in sustaining agricultural production in areas experiencing degradation from continuously grazed pastures.
Keywords: Conventional Tillage, Integrated Crop-Livestock System, Urochloa brizantha, Urochloa ruziziensis
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