The Effect of Including Legumes in Dairy Crop Rotations on Nitrous Oxide Emissions

dc.contributor.advisorWagner-Riddle, Claudia
dc.contributor.advisorVanderZaag, Andrew
dc.contributor.authorSingh, Jessica of Environmental Sciencesen_US of Guelphen_US of Scienceen_US Sciencesen_US
dc.description.abstractThis study examined whether substituting legumes for corn in dairy crop rotations could reduce N2O emissions. This was done by measuring the surface N2O emissions of four different two-year crop rotation treatments: corn-corn, corn (+cover crop)-corn, soybean-corn, and alfalfa-alfalfa over an 18 month period (May 1, 2014-Oct. 31, 2015) on sandy loam and clay soils. Emissions of dissolved N2O in subsurface tile drains in the clay soil were also measured for eight months (March 20, 2015-October 31, 2015) to determine the contribution of dissolved N2O to total N2O emissions as well as the effect of crop rotations on dissolved N2O emissions. In the sandy loam soil, alfalfa and soybeans had the lowest growing season N2O emissions (9.6 and 10.6 g ha-1 d-1, respectively), and alfalfa had the lowest annual emissions over two years at 3.0 and 3.6 kg N2O-N ha-1 yr-1. In the clay soil, the alfalfa had 3-4 times lower soil-surface N2O emissions than the other treatments in the second growing season only. Non-growing season emissions accounted for 56% of annual N2O emissions. Subsurface emissions accounted for 0.4% of N2O emissions over an eight month period and followed the same treatment effects as the clay soil surface emissions. This study suggests it is possible to reduce N2O emissions by substituting legumes for corn, especially when combined with the appropriate soil type; however, reductions can be negated by management practices that increase non-growing season emissions.en_US
dc.publisherUniversity of Guelphen_US
dc.rights.licenseAll items in the Atrium are protected by copyright with all rights reserved unless otherwise indicated.
dc.subjectgreenhouse gas emissionsen_US
dc.subjectnitrous oxideen_US
dc.subjectdairy crop rotationen_US
dc.subjectdissolved nitrous oxideen_US
dc.titleThe Effect of Including Legumes in Dairy Crop Rotations on Nitrous Oxide Emissionsen_US


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