Presentation on theme: "The Affects of Production Agriculture on Wildlife Original by Cliff Tippens Modified by the Georgia Agricultural Education Curriculum Office July 2004."— Presentation transcript:
The Affects of Production Agriculture on Wildlife Original by Cliff Tippens Modified by the Georgia Agricultural Education Curriculum Office July 2004
What is Production Agriculture?? Production agriculture is raising domesticated plants and animals for the consumption of humans. Examples in Georgia: PeanutsCotton PeachesCattle PoultryCorn
The Foundation of Agriculture…Soil Soil is the weathered outer layer of the Earth’s crust that supports life. Soil is NOT dirt! Dirt is simply soil that is out of place and cannot support life.
The Ideal Soil Type 5% organic material 45% soil minerals 25% soil gases 25% soil water
Soil Profiles A soil profile is a vertical view of the soil’s layers or horizons. Horizons are horizontal layers of soil that can be delineated by texture. A soil profile can be seen in road ditches and excavation sites.
Soil Profile with Horizons
Soil Texture Direct correlation to size of soil particles Sand=course texture Silt=medium texture Clay=fine texture
Effective Rooting Depth Effective rooting depth is the measure of how deep plant roots can penetrate the soil. Sand often has the deepest ERD. ERD is affected if there is a hard pan or compacted layer of subsoil.
Agricultural Uses of Soil Cropland is land on which the soil is worked and crops are planted, cared for, and harvested. Grazing land is planted in perennial forage in order for livestock to have free range. Forest are grown to provide humans with wood products such as paper and lumber.
Agriculture’s Adverse Affects on Wildlife Sedimentation of local streams from erosion of poorly managed fields. Mutation and other harmful affects of misuse of agriculture chemicals. Loss of habitat due to expansion of agricultural practices.
Sedimentation Poor tillage practices result in loss of rich topsoil through erosion. Soil particles and chemicals such as pesticides and fertilizers are washed into local streams and other waterways.
Affects of Sedimentation Lower dissolved oxygen levels Increased temperature Streams become narrow and slow moving which can increase chances of flooding Fertilizer runoff like nitrogen can cause algae blooms. Fish DIE!
Practices to Counteract Sedimentation Plowing on the contour No till farming Terracing Fields Grass covered drainage ways Streamside Management Zones
Agricultural Chemicals Fertilizers Nitrogen Pesticides DDT When used inappropriately, both have adverse affects on the environment.
Results of Chemicals Nitrogen and other fertilizers can cause algae blooms and fish kills. DDT and other pesticides build up in plants and animals and cause unnatural mutations like thinner egg shells. DDT has been outlawed for use in the United States.
Ways to Prevent Misuse Always follow instructions on chemicals. If not qualified, pay a professional. Only apply the required amount. Never over apply. Consult someone with experience.
Habitat Loss 100% of humans are feed by 2% of the population. Farmland capacity is reaching its peek. Urban sprawl is forcing farmers to use all of the land available to them.
Result Land that was once considered wildlife habitat is being converted into farmland. Wetlands are being drained to cultivate their rich soil.
Wetland to Farmland =
Characteristics of a Wetland Hydric Soils Anaerobic conditions are present long enough to prevent iron oxidation giving the soil a gray or brown color. Hydrophytes Present Year-round Vegetation that grows in a wet environment like cat tail.
Characteristics Continued Wetland Hydrology Water being present for extended periods of time. Hydrology varies depending on the type of wetland.
Wetlands-Wonderful for People and Wildlife For People Filter pollutants from water Drainage into wetlands reduces risk of flooding. For Wildlife Excellent cover Rich Vegetation and food sources
Managing a Farm with Wildlife in Mind Things to consider Desired species to manage Food Cover Shelter Water Cost of management
Why Should We Care??? Wildlife is key to a healthy ecosystem. Aesthetic value of wildlife Financial benefit of leasing hunting rights Hunting for sport or sustenance Responsibility
Managing for Bobwhite Quail
Cropland Improvements Disking of hedge rows, fence rows, and fallow fields Plant annual grains like corn, Egyptian wheat, and grain sorghum. Plantings should always be in strips and left fallow the next year.
Grazing Land Improvement Heavy grazing by cattle on quail habitat detrimentally affects quail population Set aside field corners, fence rows, and drainage ways for quail habitat.
Managing for the Mourning Dove
Cropland Improvements Due to range of the Mourning Dove, localized management is more difficult. Leave strips of unharvested crops. Millet is preferred. Plant in strips.
Managing for Ruffed Grouse
Forestland Management Clear cutting Downed trees and other debris should be left for cover Edges are used for travel and cover
Managing for Rabbits
Cropland Improvement Allow corners and edges to grow in blackberry, honeysuckle, plum, or other dense vegetation. Allow cover stripes to go and allow the rabbits access to more of the field.
Forestland Improvement Basal area of pines at 50 to 65 square feet per acre Small scattered openings throughout the stand Prescribed Burning
Managing for the Gray and Fox Squirrels Gray SquirrelFox Squirrel
Forestland Improvement-Pine Leave hardwood corridors along streams. Clearcuts should be a maximum of 50 acres. Combine prescribed burning with thinning.
Forestland Improvement- Hardwood Excluding fire Always leave at least one den tree for nesting while harvesting. Fertilize to increase mast production. Protect understory trees, shrubs, and vines.
Wrap-up Agriculture can be harmful to wildlife. Habitat Destruction Sedimentation of waterways Misuse of Agricultural Chemicals
Conclusion Agriculture and wildlife can co-exist. Farmers must manage their lands for the betterment of wildlife. Different species have varying needs of habitat, food, and cover. Wildlife can be managed to the benefit of all.