Biella, Italy


Biella, Italy
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Lourente E.R.P.,Federal University of Grande Dourados | da Silva E.F.,Grande Rio University | Mercante F.M.,Brazilian Agricultural Research Corporation EMBRAPA Western Agriculture | Serra A.P.,Brazilian Agricultural Research Corporation EMBRAPA Beef Cattle | And 7 more authors.
Australian Journal of Crop Science | Year: 2016

The purpose of this research was to assess the effects of replacement of native "Cerrado" vegetation (NV) into croplands on soil chemical, physical and microbial properties. This research was carried out on a farm under Rhodic Hapludox soil with different types of agricultural managements systems, and it was used a NV to compare the systems. The experimental design was set up in completely randomized with five treatments and five repetitions. The treatments adopted were several agricultural management systems as follow; NV; CS_Crop system; LS_Livestock system; ICLS-4-Integrated crop-livestock system with four years of implementation; ICLS-8_Integrated crop-livestock system with eight years of implementation. It was assessed some chemical, physical, and microbial parameters in the soil, as soil pH, P content, exchangeable cations, cation exchange capacity, base saturation, cations saturation, soil organic carbon (SOC), soil bulk density (SBD), aggregate stability, microbial biomass carbon (MBC), basal breathing, and microbial quotient. The replacement of NV to ICLS decreased SOC, MBC, soil aggregate stability and increase of SBD. The ICLS improved "Cerrado" soil fertility over time adoption. This integrated system increased the quantity of exchangeable K+ and P content in "Cerrado" soil. The ICLS-8 showed soil environment nearby the NV. Even the difficulty in obtaining the same physical and microbial condition of NV, the results of this research point out quite important observations, because just no-till system is not enough to obtain improvement of soil quality and the ICLS can return the soil properties close to native "Cerrado" vegetation.

Kumar P.M.,Bharathiar University | Murugan K.,Bharathiar University | Madhiyazhagan P.,Bharathiar University | Kovendan K.,Bharathiar University | And 13 more authors.
Parasitology Research | Year: 2016

Aedes albopictus is an important arbovirus vector, including dengue. Currently, there is no specific treatment for dengue. Its prevention solely depends on effective vector control measures. In this study, silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) were biosynthesized using a cheap leaf extract of Berberis tinctoria as reducing and stabilizing agent and tested against Ae. albopictus and two mosquito natural enemies. AgNPs were characterized by using UV–vis spectrophotometry, X-ray diffraction, and scanning electron microscopy. In laboratory conditions, the toxicity of AgNPs was evaluated on larvae and pupae of Ae. albopictus. Suitability Index/Predator Safety Factor was assessed on Toxorhynchites splendens and Mesocyclops thermocyclopoides. The leaf extract of B. tinctoria was toxic against larval instars (I–IV) and pupae of Ae. albopictus; LC50 was 182.72 ppm (I instar), 230.99 ppm (II), 269.65 ppm (III), 321.75 ppm (IV), and 359.71 ppm (pupa). B. tinctoria-synthesized AgNPs were highly effective, with LC50 of 4.97 ppm (I instar), 5.97 ppm (II), 7.60 ppm (III), 9.65 ppm (IV), and 14.87 ppm (pupa). Both the leaf extract and AgNPs showed reduced toxicity against the mosquito natural enemies M. thermocyclopoides and T. splendens. Overall, this study firstly shed light on effectiveness of B. tinctoria-synthesized AgNPs as an eco-friendly nanopesticide, highlighting the concrete possibility to employ this newer and safer tool in arbovirus vector control programs. © 2015, Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg.

Johnson M.-V.V.,Agronomist | Norfleet M.L.,Soil Scientist | Atwood J.D.,Economist | Behrman K.D.,Research Agronomist | And 4 more authors.
IOP Conference Series: Earth and Environmental Science | Year: 2015

The Conservation Effects Assessment Project (CEAP) was initiated to quantify the impacts of agricultural conservation practices at the watershed, regional, and national scales across the United States. Representative cropland acres in all major U.S. watersheds were surveyed in 2003-2006 as part of the seminal CEAP Cropland National Assessment. Two process-based models, the Agricultural Policy Environmental eXtender(APEX) and the Soil Water Assessment Tool (SWAT), were applied to the survey data to provide a quantitative assessment of current conservation practice impacts, establish a benchmark against which future conservation trends and efforts could be measured, and identify outstanding conservation concerns. The flexibility of these models and the unprecedented amount of data on current conservation practices across the country enabled Cropland CEAP to meet its Congressional mandate of quantifying the value of current conservation practices. It also enabled scientifically grounded exploration of a variety of conservation scenarios, empowering CEAP to not only inform on past successes and additional needs, but to also provide a decision support tool to help guide future policy development and conservation practice decision making. The CEAP effort will repeat the national survey in 2015-2016, enabling CEAP to provide analyses of emergent conservation trends, outstanding needs, and potential costs and benefits of pursuing various treatment scenarios for all agricultural watersheds across the United States. © Published under licence by IOP Publishing Ltd.

Giannousi K.,Aristotle University of Thessaloniki | Avramidis I.,Agronomist | Dendrinou-Samara C.,Aristotle University of Thessaloniki
RSC Advances | Year: 2013

Copper based nanoparticles (Cu-based NPs) of different composition and sizes have been hydrothermally synthesized by varying the reaction temperature and in the presence of biocompatible surfactants; polyoxyethylene (20) sorbitan laurate, polyethylene glycol 1000 and polyethylene glycol 8000. Effective control of the above synthetic parameters gave rise to Cu-based NPs of 11-55 nm. CuO, Cu2O nanoparticles and Cu/Cu2O composite nanoparticles of nearly similar size and shape were selected among the isolated samples and tested in the field on tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum) plants against Phytophthora infestans. Their activity has been evaluated by assessing the fungal infection on the leaves in comparison to the performance of the registered commercially used copper based products Kocide 2000, Kocide Opti, Cuprofix disperss and Ridomil Gold Plus. The results showed that the prepared Cu-based NPs can be applied in a lower formulated product and active ingredient rate and are more effective than the trade agrochemicals. Moreover, assessments regarding phytotoxicity indicated that they can be used without any deleterious effect on plants. This journal is © The Royal Society of Chemistry 2013.

Novella Benvenuti M.,University of Pisa | Goracci J.,Agronomist | Giuliotti L.,University of Pisa
Large Animal Review | Year: 2013

The Zeri ewe is an indigenous Italian breed that is spread throughout the homonymous area located in northwest Tuscany. This article presents the history and evolution of Zerasca sheep, describes the breed's characteristics in terms of somatic and productive traits, managerial and health practices, meat quality; moreover it underlines its contribution to the preservation of the rural land and population of the Zeri district. First documentation on this breed dates back to the 19th Century. Zerasca breed has a medium-large size with white fleece. Males present horns while in females can be absent. Currently Zerasca ovine population totals more than 2,000 heads. Sheep husbandry is currently predominant in Zeri area thanks to the great availability of woody vegetation (oak, chestnut, hazel, alder and beech trees), meadows and pastures. Animals' nutrition depends mostly on grazing pastures, infact flocks are generally supported only with a little nutritional supplementation. The first typical production is the heavy lamb that is gaining more and more relevance thanks to its excellent meat quality, unique in taste; infact, Zeri lamb is included in the list of Slow Food Presidia, reflecting the recognized quality of this product in the world.Most of shepherds jointed in a consortium for the valorization and safeguarding of Zerasca sheep and lambs, whose regulation points towards the implementation of extensive farming systems with an optimal exploitation of local pasture resources. One of the most important problem that Zerasca sheep farmers often complain is represented by gastrointestinal parasitism, almost endemic in sheep husbandry and particularly in sheep raised under extensive systems. Today, "Zeri lamb" has a considerable economic impact on its territory, ensuring increasing profits for shepherds. The aim of this review is to collect information about a native breed in endangered status that it is gaining importance thanks to the high-quality of products.

Benvenuti M.N.,University of Pisa | Giuliotti L.,University of Pisa | Pasqua C.,Agronomist | Gatta D.,University of Pisa | Bagliacca M.,University of Pisa
Italian Journal of Animal Science | Year: 2012

The effect of partial substitution of corn (-20%) and soybean meal (-10%) with buckwheat bran (+30%) (Fagopyrum esculentum Moench) in the diet of ISA-Brown hens was investigated in sixteen 74-week old hens, housed in couple wire cages and submitted to a 16 h light:8 h dark photoperiod. The following traits were measured: body weight, egg production, egg mass, egg quality, feed intake, feed conversion, comparative palatability of ingredients and digestibility of diet. χ 2 and non-parametric tests were used for production rate and yolk color score, respectively. ANOVA was used for all other parameters. Comparative choice of buckwheat, corn and soy was checked under different forms in 3 free choice tests. Results show that egg production rate (43.3% vs 50.5%; P<0.05) and feed intake (78.3±0.68 eggs/hen d vs 87.8±0.68 eggs/hen d; P<0.05) increased with the partial introduction of buckwheat bran in the diet. There was no difference in feed conversion between treatments. Nutrient balance confirmed that AMEn of diet was deeply lowered by the buckwheat bran use (6.5 MJ/kg vs 10.1 MJ/kg), due to the high fibre content of buckwheat bran (263 g/kg). Maize was always the most preferred ingredient, buckwheat bran was consumed more than expected in absence of any preference, and soybean was the food least chosen. Buckwheat bran can be used as an ingredient feed for low-producing laying hens; it induces a feed-intake increase, partially balanced by improved egg-production rates and a tendency to better albumen Haugh units. © M.N. Benvenuti et al., 2012.

PubMed | Agronomist, PROGER S.p.A., University of Bologna and University of Camerino
Type: | Journal: Chemosphere | Year: 2015

The study reports an integrated environmental quality monitoring of a 100 km2 area in central Italy mostly occupied by an underground station of methane storage, working since 1982. The nitrogen oxides, ozone and isoprene concentration detached with a network monitoring of passive filters were compared with the results of lichens biomonitoring. Data from the two monitorings were in accordance: there was an inversely correlation between lichen biodiversity index (IBL) and NOx (-0.96) and ozone (-0.80), and a positive correlation between IBL and isoprene (0.67). IBL indicated that the area ranged between medium naturalness and medium alteration status, values fully compatible with the medium-high level of eutrophication, caused by intensive agriculture. Only two areas were in high alteration status, due to their proximity to glass factories and to a quarries area. Despite almost thirty years of activity, the environment quality of the area around the station did not show signs of declining.

Cocuzza G.E.M.,University of Catania | Mazzeo G.,University of Catania | Russo A.,University of Catania | Giudice V.L.,Agronomist | Bella S.,Centro Of Ricerca Per Lagrumicoltura E Le Colture Mediterranee
Phytoparasitica | Year: 2016

Here we review the arthropod pests most damaging to pomegranate cultivation in the main production regions of the Circum-Mediterranean area, and discuss the eventual phytosanitary risks linked to some newly introduced species in this geographical area. The arthropod species mentioned here are based on their occurrence and economic importance. These are either mites (Tenuipalpidae) or insects belonging to Hemiptera (Flatidae, Aphididae, Aleyrodidae, Coccidae, Diaspididae, and Pseudococcidae), Lepidoptera (Cossidae, Lycaenidae, Erebidae, and Pyralidae), Diptera (Tephritidae), and Coleoptera (Bostrichidae and Nitidulidae). In the Circum-Mediterranean area, the major pests are Aphis punicae, A. gossypii, Planococcus spp., Zeuzera pyrina, Apomyelois ceratoniae, Deudorix livia and Cryptoblades gnidiella. A nod is also given to those species normally considered as minor pests that, in some environment and under specific conditions, can be of major concern. Particular attention should be paid toward avoiding the introduction of two species that could become a serious problem for pomegranate that are Thaumatotibia leucotreta and Deudorix isocrates. The main morphological and biological characteristics of each pomegranate pest species and the tools available in their integrated and organic control are briefly presented. © 2016 Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht

Mattias J.L.,Ciencias Agro Ambientais UNOCHAPECO | Ceretta C.A.,Federal University of Santa Maria | Nesi C.N.,Agronomist | Girotto E.,Federal University of Santa Maria | And 3 more authors.
Revista Brasileira de Ciencia do Solo | Year: 2010

Systematic pig slurry application to crop soils may lead to the accumulation of heavy metals in regions with intensive pig raising. The aim of this study was to evaluate the accumulation of Cu, Zn and Mn in soils under systematic pig slurry application. For this purpose, soil samples were collected from two of the most representative watersheds of Santa Catarina where the predominant activity is pig raising. In each watershed, 12 properties were chosen to evaluate the different systems of pig husbandry (complete cycle (CC), farrowing (FaU) and finishing units (FiU)). Based on information of the producers, soil samples were collected in areas with and without systematic manure application. To determine the total Cu, Zn and Mn content in soils and manure, a methodology proposed by the Environmental Protection Agency of the United States (USEPA), method n° 3050B, was used. For the available heavy metal content, Cu and Zn was extracted with HCl 0.1 mol L-1 and Mn with KCl 1 mol L-1. Data were subjected to multivariate analysis, using the canonical discriminant analysis to identify the metals that best differentiate the soils studied within each swine housing system. Successive pig slurry applications cause an increase in Cu, Zn and Mn availability in the soil and this indicates the need for monitoring of the metal concentrations over time. The critical values of Cu in the soil can be reached and exceeded more rapidly than Zn. The results showed that the soil type may be one of the attribute underlying the determination of public policies in pig raising and waste management because soils such as Inceptisols were shown to be more prone to possible contamination since they may more rapidly reach total critical Cu levels.

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