Kansas Forest Service to study windbreak impact on yields
The first step, the forester said, is to find conservation-minded landowners who understand the intent of the study and are willing to share their yield monitor data. Ideally, the data would be from both windbreak-protected and unprotected fields. The field(s) will be identified on aerial photography and when windbreaks are involved, their effectiveness will be determined. Then the landowner can either upload the monitor data to a site for analysis or save it to a storage device for uploading later.
“The eventual outcome from the study will be an updating of our knowledge of the windbreak/crop yield interaction,” Atchison said. The information will be shared among farmers and conservationists through technical reports, journals, agriculture-related publications and conferences.
“By the way the study has been designed, it will not be possible to report comparison yield results for a specific location,” he said. “However, if the study can include several years of data, we may in time, be able to answer other questions, such as, do windbreaks have greater, lesser, or no effect during times of drought? Are they more effective with some crops and less with others?”
A database that spans several years and a wide region may potentially add value to agriculture production beyond the original purpose of the study, he added.
Farmers, scientists, and other stakeholders interested in participating in the study should contact Atchison at 785-532-3310 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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