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Journal of Environmental Quality Abstract -

Phosphorus Status of Forest and Agricultural Soils from a Watershed of High Animal Density


This article in JEQ

  1. Vol. 24 No. 5, p. 1010-1017
    Received: Aug 25, 1994

    * Corresponding author(s): simardr@em.agr.ca
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  1. R. R. Simard *,
  2. D. Cluis,
  3. G. Gangbazo and
  4. S. Beauchemin
  1. Soils and Crops Res. Centre, Agriculture Canada, 2560 Hochelaga Blvd., Sainte-Foy, QC, Canada, G1V 2J3;
    INRS-Eau, P.O. Box 7500, Sainte-Foy, QC, Canada, G1V 4C7;
    MEF, DEA, 930 Ch. Sainte-Foy, Sainte-Foy, QC, Canada, G1S 2L4.



The objective of this work was to study the impact of animal density on P status in soils from the Beaurivage River Watershed, Quebec, Canada. Twenty-five samples from A, B, and C horizons from the five most representative soil series were taken from sites under forest, hay fields of dairy farms, and farms with a known surplus of on-farm manure N (SN). Profiles were characterized for water-soluble P (Pw), Mehlich-3 extractable P (M3P), and fractions. The Pw was 3.6 times larger in agricultural than in forest soils in the A horizon. Excessive amounts of 66.5 mg kg−1 of M3P and of 95 mg kg−1 Resin-P were found in the plow layer of agricultural soils and M3P was increased, on average, by 10 mg kg−1 in the C horizon compared with forest soils. The accumulation of added P has lead to an increase in labile (Resin + NaHCO3 + NaOH-Po) P pools in the A horizon, whereas the resilient (total labile P) pools were the major sinks in B and C horizons. For SN farms, total P was increased by 435 mg kg−1 in the A, 86 mg kg−1 in B, and by 141 mg kg−1 in the C horizon compared with forest soils. Dairy farms soils had labile P contents similar to those from SN farms but were less enriched in resilient-Pi forms. The observed large P loads in surface horizons and Pw increases in the subsoil of the agricultural soils probably contribute to the contamination of surface waters in this watershed.

Contribution of the Soils and Crop Research Centre no. 503.

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