Campus Units

Natural Resource Ecology and Management

Document Type

Article

Publication Version

Published Version

Publication Date

11-21-2019

Journal or Book Title

Agricultural & Environmental Letters

Volume

4

Issue

1

First Page

190035

DOI

10.2134/ael2019.09.0035

Abstract

Nutrient export from the agricultural US Midwest influences streams and rivers and contributes to the development of hypoxia in the Gulf of Mexico. Oxbows are natural waterbodies formed when a river cuts off a meander loop as it migrates within its floodplain. Creation of multipurpose oxbows by restoration of former oxbows can potentially reduce export of nitrate-nitrogen (nitrate) from agricultural land as well as provide important habitat for many species, including the endangered Topeka shiner. Recent studies of nitrate export reduction by oxbows in Iowa are encouraging, demonstrating a 45% reduction in nitrate export of water entering oxbows from subsurface tiles compared with water discharged to the adjacent stream. Oxbow restorations are as effective as several other nutrient reduction practices, are relatively inexpensive, last for decades if not centuries, remove little or no land from agricultural production, and provide significant ecosystem services. Multipurpose oxbows are a promising new best management practice for reducing nitrate export from agricultural lands.

Comments

This article is published as Schilling, K. E., K. Wilke, C. L. Pierce, K. Kult, and A. Kenny. 2019. Multipurpose Oxbows as a Nitrate Export Reduction Practice in the Agricultural Midwest. Agric. Environ. Lett. 4:190035. doi:10.2134/ael2019.09.0035.

Rights

Works produced by employees of the U.S. Government as part of their official duties are not copyrighted within the U.S. The content of this document is not copyrighted.

Language

en

File Format

application/pdf

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