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Enhancing the P trapping of pasture filter strips: Successes and pitfalls in the use of water supply residue and polyacrylamide

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Redding, M.R., Welten, B. and Kear, M. (2008) Enhancing the P trapping of pasture filter strips: Successes and pitfalls in the use of water supply residue and polyacrylamide. European Journal of Soil Science, 59 (2). pp. 257-264. ISSN 1365-2389

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Article Link: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2389.2007.00990.x


In intensive pastoral systems the landscape at ground level is clad in dense, filtering vegetation – yet phosphorus losses in overland flow do occur, and pollution of surface waters is a serious consequence. The use of pre-applied polyacrylamide (PAM) or chitosan to trap particulate phosphorus (PP) and P-sorbing potable water treatment alum residue (PWTR) to enhance vegetative filtering effects is examined here using field and laboratory overland flow simulation (flows from 0.43 to 0.34 litres s−1 (m width)−1) and analysis.

Fitted equations suggest that up to 40% of dissolved reactive P applied (0.75 mg P litre−1) in overland flow could be captured in a flow length of 2.1 m (1 kg PWTR m−2). Unfortunately, drying decreased PWTR effectiveness, though little of the P captured was readily desorbed. This effect did not appear to be the result of gibbsite formation. Compared with the other treatments, there was a strong treatment effect of pre-applied PAM on the change in PP losses (P < 0.001) over time, though evidence suggests the PAM effect declined during a 44 minute flow period.

We showed that the investigated two-pronged approach to the enhancement of the effectiveness of P trapping by pasture had limitations. Laboratory sheet-flow simulations suggest that a field-stable P sorber with sorption characteristics similar to those of the un-dried PWTR could be an effective retention enhancer for dissolved P. Pre-applied PAM can have an effect on particulate-P trapping but was rapidly dissolved and removed by flow.

Item Type:Article
Subjects:Science > Statistics > Simulation modelling
Agriculture > Agriculture (General) > Soils. Soil science
Live Archive:20 Feb 2024 03:52
Last Modified:20 Feb 2024 03:52

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