Agricultural and Forestry Science

Shifts in rice farming practices in China reduce greenhouse gas methane

Changes to farming practices in rice paddies in China may have led to a decrease in methane emissions, and an observed decline in the rate that methane has entered the Earth’s atmosphere over the last 20 years, a NASA-funded study finds.

Changsheng Li, a professor of natural resources in the University of New Hampshire’s Institute for the Study of Earth, Oceans, and Space, and lead author of the study, notes that in the early 1980s Chinese farmers began draining their paddies midw

IFDC innovative technology increases farmers’ agricultural productivity, maintains resource base

IFDC — an International Center for Soil Fertility and Agricultural Development — has developed an innovative approach to agricultural development called Integrated Soil Fertility Management (ISFM), involving not just farmers, researchers, and extension workers but also bankers and traders, including inputs dealers and fertilizer enterprises. The holistic approach, based on the agribusiness system at the regional level, combines participatory methods to develop and extend ISFM technologies

UC Riverside entomologists report bee-dancing brings more food to honeybee colonies

Honeybees communicate by dancing. The dances tell worker bees where to find nectar. A UC Riverside study reports that under natural foraging conditions the communication of distance and direction in the dance language can increase the food collection of honeybee colonies. The study also confirms that bees use this directional information in locating the food sources advertised in the dance.

Based on work done in 2001 in the Agricultural Experiment Station at UC Riverside, P. Kirk Visscher,

Environmental impact of fertilisers on agriculture

The problem is intensive agriculture. Nowadays, some farmers have too many heads of cattle in comparison with their land under tillage. Due to this, purines (manure and stable/barn droppings) are applied in high concentrations on these soils, above all on those around the barns. Also, in order to feed the land which is further afield, farmers buy mineral feeds. Great problems for the environment arise out of the application of high quantities of mineral fertilisers and purines.

The Departmen

Stung by success: Intensive farming may suppress pollinating bees

Study shows native bee species provide valuable services when allowed to flourish

Intensive, industrial-scale farming may be damaging one of the very natural resources that successful crops require: pollinating bees. A study by Princeton scientists found that native bee populations decline dramatically as agricultural intensity goes up.
In farms studied in and around the Sacramento Valley in California, concentrated farming appeared to reduce bee populations by eliminating natura

Scientists Find New Way to Assess Where Cotton-Killing Pests Develop

In a finding that could have broad implications for farmers’ ability to stop pests from decimating cotton crops, scientists from North Carolina State University and agricultural research stations in the Cotton Belt have developed a new technique to determine where the larvae of certain agricultural pests develop.

The study, which looks at the characteristics of the moths that the larvae turn into, shows that a large majority of late-season moths in the Cotton Belt – specifically Helico

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