Range Cattle Research and Education Center

Winona, FL, United States

Range Cattle Research and Education Center

Winona, FL, United States
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Liu K.,China Agricultural University | Sollenberger L.E.,University of Florida | Silveira M.L.,Range Cattle Research and Education Center | Vendramini J.M.B.,Range Cattle Research and Education Center | Newman Y.C.,University of Wisconsin - River Falls
Crop Science | Year: 2017

Nitrogen (N) fertilization affects grassland herbage accumulation and nutritive value, but its effect on the distribution of nutrients among soil and plant nutrient pools is less understood. This 2-yr study determined the effect of N fertilization levels of rotationally stocked ‘Tifton 85’ bermudagrass (Cynodon spp.) pastures on nutrient concentration and content in soil (top 20 cm), live root-rhizome mass, live herbage mass, and aboveground plant litter pools. Treatments were 50, 150, and 250 kg N ha−1 yr−1. Greater N fertilization increased N concentration in all plant nutrient pools and potassium (K) concentration in live herbage and plant litter, but plant-pool phosphorus (P) concentrations changed little across N levels. With increasing N fertilization, live herbage (118–159 kg ha−1) and plant litter (8–14 kg ha−1) K pools increased linearly, but the Mehlich-1 extractable soil K pool decreased linearly (182–139 kg ha−1); live herbage (50–92 kg ha−1), plant litter (30–49 kg ha−1), and root rhizome (63–95 kg ha−1) N pools also increased with increasing N fertilization. The proportion of K in various pools was affected more by N fertilization than were proportions of N, P, or carbon. Soil was the dominant pool for all nutrients, with the exception of K in pastures fertilized at the greatest N level. Increasing N fertilization increased the proportion of K and N contained in plant pools and decreased the proportion in soil. Although N fertilization affected quantity and proportion of nutrients in pools in Tifton 85 pastures, changes occurred to a limited extent, with the exception of plant and soil K pools. © Crop Science Society of America.


Erickson J.E.,University of Florida | Helsel Z.R.,Rutgers University | Woodard K.R.,University of Florida | Vendramini J.M.B.,Range Cattle Research and Education Center | And 3 more authors.
Agronomy Journal | Year: 2011

Sweet sorghum [Sorghum bicolor (L.) Moench] is a potential bioenergy crop that is capable of high biomass and sugar yields, but production for biofuel in the Southeast is not well understood. The present study examined the effects of planting date (three dates from mid-March to mid-June) on primary and ratoon crop fresh biomass, brix, and estimated sugar yield of three sweet sorghum cultivars ('Dale', 'Topper 76-6', and 'M-81E') grown at three sites from North (29°24′ N) to South Florida (26°40′ N). Across all treatments, primary crop fresh biomass, brix and estimated sugar yields were 70 Mg ha -1, 148 g kg -1, and 5.69 Mg ha -1, respectively. Primary crop yields were greatest for the two earliest planting dates (mid-March to mid-May), and for our southernmost site. The yield potential for ratoon crops was in general only about half as much as the primary crop across all years, sites, and cultivars for the earliest planting date. An exception, however, was ratoon crop yields at the southernmost site, which were in some cases equal to or greater than primary crop yields. Low primary crop brix values were found for all cultivars on the muck soils in South Florida compared to the other two sites, and for M-81E compared to Dale and Topper 76-6. These low brix values were correlated with greater fresh biomass production. Further research is needed on planting dates for optimizing primary and ratoon crop yields along with varietal development with improved ratoon crop yields.


Hersom M.J.,University of Florida | Hansen G.R.,North Florida Research and Education Center | Arthington J.D.,Range Cattle Research and Education Center
Journal of Animal Science | Year: 2010

Dietary constituents can affect cow acid-base physiology and uterine pH. Dietary cation-anion difference (DCAD) has been shown to affect cow acid-base physiology, but the effect on uterine pH has not been demonstrated. The objective of this work was to determine if DCAD [(Na + K + 0.15Ca + 0.15Mg) - (Cl + 0.60S + 0.50P)] could affect cow DMI, acid-base physiology, and uterine pH, and second, to determine if dietary supplements could alleviate any negative effects of DCAD on these variables. In Exp. 1, 21 cows were utilized to determine the effect of a negative DCAD (-0.9 mEq/100 g of DM; low-DCAD) or positive DCAD (+25.0 mEq/100 g of DM; high-DCAD) diet on cow BW, DMI, and pH of blood, urine, and uterine flush fluid. In Exp. 2, 21 cows were randomly allotted to 1 of 3 treatments: control (-3.1 mEq/100 g of DM), molasses (+2.9 mEq/100 g of DM), or molasses+buffer (+25.8 mEq/100 g of DM) to determine if supplemental liquid molasses or liquid molasses with a buffer could alleviate the effects of a negative DCAD, forage-based diet. Cows were individually fed their respective diets for 42 d in both experiments. Cow BW, blood, urine, and uterine flush were collected on d 0, 21, and 42 during both experiments. Cow ADG was not different (P = 0.71) in Exp. 1 or Exp. 2 (P = 0.47). Hay DMI did not differ (P < 0.70) between high-DCAD and low-DCAD cows before d 28, but was greater (P < 0.001) for high-DCAD cows after d 28 in Exp. 1. In Exp. 2, mean hay DMI did not differ (P = 0.39) among treatments. In Exp. 1, a treatment x day interaction (P < 0.05) was apparent for blood, pH, base excess, bicarbonate, pCO2, and urine pH. Blood gas and pH measures peaked on d 21 for high-DCAD and declined from d 0 to 42 in low-DCAD cows. High-DCAD cows had greater (P = 0.08) uterine flush pH compared with low-DCAD cows. In contrast, during Exp. 2 there were no differences (P > 0.14) among treatments for blood, pH, base excess, pCO2, or uterine flush pH. Urine pH exhibited a treatment x day interaction (P < 0.0001). On d 21 molasses supplemented cow urine pH was greater (P < 0.0001) than control cows, whereas on d 42 molasses+buffer had greater (P = 0.01) urine pH compared with control and molasses cows. Dietary cation-anion difference and the use of molasses-based supplements had minimal effect on forage-fed beef cow DMI. However, DCAD has the capacity to alter forage-fed beef cow acid-base physiology and potentially affect uterine physiology. © 2010 American Society of Animal Science.


Castillo M.S.,University of Florida | Sollenberger L.E.,University of Florida | Vendramini J.M.B.,Range Cattle Research and Education Center | Woodard K.R.,University of Florida | And 4 more authors.
Agronomy Journal | Year: 2010

High-yielding bioenergy crops remove large quantities of soil nutrients. Nutrients must be replenished in a manner that minimizes production costs and negative environmental impact. Class A municipal biosolids (MBS) were evaluated as an alternative nutrient source to inorganic fertilizer for 'Merkeron' and Chinese Cross elephantgrasses (Pennisetum purpureum Schum.) in a 2-yr field experiment in Florida. Elephantgrass plots received 0, 33, 67, or 100% of total N applied (350 kg ha-1 yr-1) from MBS, with the remainder from NH4NO3. Dry matter (DM) yield, tissue N and P concentrations and removal, and soil C and P concentrations were assessed. Elephantgrass yield decreased linearly from 24.2 to 20.1 (Merkeron) and 24.3 to 16.9 Mg ha-1 (Chinese Cross) as the percentage of N supplied by MBS increased from 0 to 100. Nitrogen removal decreased from 208 to 127 kg ha-1 yr-1 over the same range of N from MBS. Phosphorus removal ranged from 28 to 43 kg ha-1 yr-1, but the effect of N source was not consistent. There was no effect of percentage of N from MBS treatment on soil responses including water-extractable (WEP), Mehlich-1, or total P, nor was there an effect on total C concentration in the Ap horizon. Replacing 33% of N from inorganic fertilizer with N from MBS reduced elephantgrass biomass production 0 to 11%, so there is potential benefit to including MBS in a fertilization program for bioenergy crops, even in situations where MBS are limited to P-based application rates. © 2010 by the American Society of Agronomy.


Castillo M.S.,University of Florida | Sollenberger L.E.,University of Florida | Vendramini J.M.B.,Range Cattle Research and Education Center | Woodard K.R.,University of Florida | And 3 more authors.
Agronomy Journal | Year: 2011

Municipal biosolids (MBS) represents an alternative source of nutrients for the production of bioenergy crops like elephantgrass (Pennisetum purpureum Schum.). Two experiments were conducted during 2 yr in Florida to evaluate the effect of soil incorporation vs. surface application of MBS on: (i) elephantgrass dry matter (DM) yield, tissue N and P concentration and removal, and soil C and P (Exp. 1); and (ii) organic N mineralization and DM decomposition rates of MBS measured in the field using a litter bag incubation technique (Exp. 2). In Exp. 1, three treatments supplied 350 kg total N ha-1 yr-1 from surface-applied municipal biosolids (MBSSA), soil-incorporated municipal biosolids (MBS-INC), and surface-applied ammonium nitrate (NH4NO3). A fourth treatment provided 700 kg total N ha-1 yr-1 from MBS-SA (double rate of municipal biosolids, 2x-MBS). In Exp. 2, MBS was field incubated in litter bags placed on the soil surface or at a 5-cm soil depth. Elephantgrass DM yield, and N and P removal were greater for MBSINC than MBS-SA. Dry matter yield for MBS-INC was not different than for NH4NO3 fertilizer (22.5 vs. 24.3 Mg ha-1). Removal of N and P increased 39 and 10 kg ha-1 yr-1, respectively, for MBS-INC and MBS-SA. Total organic N mineralized was greater for MBS-INC (386 g kg-1) than MBS-SA (308 g kg-1). Incorporation of MBS increases elephantgrass DM yield and nutrient removal compared to surface application and allows MBS to replace a greater proportion of inorganic N fertilizer. © 2011 by the American Society of Agronomy.


Liu K.,University of Florida | Sollenberger L.E.,University of Florida | Silveira M.L.,Range Cattle Research and Education Center | Vendramini J.M.B.,Range Cattle Research and Education Center | Newman Y.C.,University of Florida
Crop Science | Year: 2011

Choice of grazing intensity (i.e., stocking rate or grazed sward height) has an important role in the functioning of grassland ecosystems; however, the effect of grazing intensity on size and relative importance of various grassland nutrient pools is not well understood. The objective of this 2-yr study, conducted on soils from the Plummer and Sparr series, was to determine the effect of stubble height after grazing (SH) on nutrient distribution among plant and soil (0- to 20-cm depth) nutrient pools in 'Tifton 85' bermudagrass (Cynodon spp.) pastures. Swards were stocked rotationally and grazed every 28 d to SH of 8, 16, and 24 cm. Green herbage, plant litter, and root-rhizome pool masses increased as SH increased. Plant nutrient concentrations (g kg-1) were relatively unresponsive to SH, but soil C and N concentrations increased by 23 and 34%, respectively, as SH increased. Nutrient content (kg ha-1) of all plant pools increased as SH increased, mainly a function of increasing pool mass. Soil pool P and K content (Mehlich-1) were not affected by SH, but total C (17%) and N (27%) content increased with taller SH. The soil pool to 20 cm contained approximately 40, 85, 90, and 80% of K, P, N, and C, respectively. Reducing grazing intensity of Tifton 85 bermudagrass pastures appears to be a viable strategy for increasing nutrient content of most plant pools and for increasing the N and C content of the soil pool. © Crop Science Society of America.


Mullenix M.K.,Auburn University | Sollenberger L.E.,University of Florida | Wallau M.O.,Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul | Rowland D.L.,University of Florida | And 3 more authors.
Crop Science | Year: 2016

‘Florigraze’ rhizoma peanut (RP; Arachis glabrata Benth.) is a persistent forage legume for the US Gulf Coast, but peanut stunt virus (Cucumovirus spp.) reduces herbage accumulation (HA). Less susceptible germplasms and cultivars of RP have been released, but their responses to grazing management are not known. The objective was to quantify aboveground and belowground sward responses to grazing management of RP entries differing in growth habit to explain HA and persistence. Treatments were all combinations of four RP entries (Florigraze, ‘UF Peace’, ‘UF Tito’, and germplasm Ecoturf), two grazing intensities (50 and 75% removal of pre-grazing canopy height), and two regrowth intervals (3 or 6 wk). UF Tito swards were the tallest and Ecoturf the shortest, but Ecoturf had greater herbage bulk density than any entry. Pre-grazing Ieaf percentage was greatest for Ecoturf (61%); there were no differences among the upright entries (56-57%). Ecoturf (0.88) and UF Tito (0.76) had greater post-grazing residual Ieaf area index than Florigraze (0.61). Ecoturf and UF Tito had greater rhizome-root mass (4450 and 4110 kg ha-1, respectively) than Florigraze and UF Peace (3490 and 3170 kg ha-1, respectively). Pre-grazing light interception was greater for the 6- than 3-wk grazing frequency (85 vs. 70%, respectively), and rhizome-root mass followed a similar pattern (3990 vs. 2730 kg ha-1, respectively). Sward structure, leaf, and rhizome-root data explain Iack of differences among entries in HA, excellent persistence of Ecoturf and UF Tito, and generally greater HA and persistence for 6- vs. 3-wk regrowth intervals. © Crop Science Society of America | 5585 Guilford Rd., Madison, WI 53711 USA All rights reserved.


Inyang U.,Range Cattle Research and Education Center | Vendramini J.M.B.,Range Cattle Research and Education Center | Sollenberger L.E.,University of Florida | Sellers B.,Range Cattle Research and Education Center | And 3 more authors.
Crop Science | Year: 2010

Bahiagrass (Paspalum notatum Flügge) is the most used forage for beef cattle (Bos sp.) in Florida; however, damage to bahiagrass pastures by mole cricket (Scapteriscus spp.) stimulated a search for other adapted grasses. The objective of this study was to test the effect of different stocking rates (SRs) on animal performance and herbage characteristics of 'Mulato' (Brachiaria sp.) and bahiagrass pastures. The experiment was conducted in Ona, FL, from May to September, 2007 and 2008. Treatments were three SRs (4, 8, and 12 heifers ha-1) and two forage species (Mulato and 'Pensacola' bahiagrass). There was a linear decrease in herbage mass (from 5.9 to 3.2 Mg ha-1) and herbage allowance (from 2.8 to 0.6 kg dry matter kg-1 liveweight) with increasing SR. Mulato had greater in vitro digestible organic matter concentration than bahiagrass (675 vs. 534 g kg-1) but similar crude protein concentration (130 g kg-1). There was a linear decrease in average daily gain (from 0.49 to 0.22 kg d-1) and a quadratic response of liveweight gain ha-1 as SR increased (190, 353, and 217 kg ha-1 for SRs of 4, 8, and 12 heifers ha-1, respectively). Mulato has potential to be an alternative forage to bahiagrass for beef cattle producers in Florida. © Crop Science Society of America.


Krueger N.C.,University of Florida | Sollenberger L.E.,University of Florida | Blount A.R.,North Florida Research and Education Center | Vendramini J.M.B.,Range Cattle Research and Education Center | And 2 more authors.
Crop Science | Year: 2014

Blackberry (Rubus fruticosas L.) can be a weed in rhizoma peanut (Arachis glabrataBenth.)–grass pastures. Goats (Capra hircus) have provided effective control of Rubus spp. in other environments, but their efficacy has not been tested in legume-grass swards in this context. The objective was to evaluate rotational stocking by goats alone or with cattle (Bosspp.) for blackberry control. Treatments stocked at 2.6 animal units (AU) ha−1 included a cattle-alone control, goats alone, concurrent stocking of cattle and goats, sequential stocking of cattle followed by goats, and sequential stocking of goats followed by cattle. The final treatment was concurrent stocking at a stocking rate of 3.5 AU ha−1. Goats grazed blackberry readily, but cattle avoided it. Blackberry selection was greatest when goats followed cattle sequentially. The blackberry proportion of total biomass increased 10% when cattle grazed alone but was reduced 11% with goats alone and 13% with mixed concurrent grazing at a high stocking rate. Treatments including goats resulted in reductions or smaller increases in blackberry mass than for cattle alone. Goats alone or with cattle resulted in greater removal of blackberry leaf and in reduced height and stem density than cattle alone. Goats reduced the blackberry contribution more than cattle, but it was not eliminated from initially heavily infested pastures across 2 yr of grazing. A greater goat stocking rate or a combination of grazing and mowing may be needed for complete eradication. © Crop Science Society of America.


Liu K.,University of Florida | Sollenberger L.E.,University of Florida | Silveira M.L.,Range Cattle Research and Education Center | Newman Y.C.,University of Florida | Vendramini J.M.B.,Range Cattle Research and Education Center
Agronomy Journal | Year: 2011

Plant litter deposition and composition affect nutrient cycling and sustainability of grazed grasslands, but the effect of management practices on litter responses has not been fully investigated. The objective of this study was to determine the effects of grazing intensity (postgraze stubble height, SH) and N fertilization on existing litter mass, litter deposition rate, and litter chemical composition in rotationally stocked 'Tift on 85' bermudagrass (Cynodon spp.) pastures. Th ree levels of SH (8, 16, 24 cm) were compared at the same interval between grazing events (28 d) and amount of N fertilization (250 kg N ha-1 yr-1). Th ree levels of N fertilization (50, 150, and 250 kg N ha-1 yr-1) were compared when SH (24 cm) and regrowth interval were constant (28 d). Existing litter mass (1730-2510 kg ha-1) and litter deposition rate (10-30 kg ha-1 d-1) increased as SH increased, but N fertilization had no eff ect on litter mass or deposition rate. Increasing SH from 8 to 24 cm resulted in lower existing litter N (20.5 vs. 19.2 g kg-1) and lignin (186 vs. 148 g kg-1) concentrations and a greater C/N ratio (24 vs. 26). Increasing N fertilization increased litter N concentration from 11.5 to 19.2 g kg-1 and decreased C/N ratio from 43 to 26, but N had no eff ect on lignin and acid detergent fiber (ADF) concentrations. Bermudagrass litter quantity was affected more by grazing intensity than by N fertilization, but N fertilization had a greater impact on litter composition than did grazing intensity. © 2011 by the American Society of Agronomy.

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