Tolerence of Festuca ovina to different severities of simulated grazing effects in semi-arid Rangelands, Kurdistan, Iran

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Research Paper 01/02/2014
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Tolerence of Festuca ovina to different severities of simulated grazing effects in semi-arid Rangelands, Kurdistan, Iran

Salahudin Zahedi, Farhang Ghasriani
J. Bio. Env. Sci.4( 2), 369-377, February 2014.
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For assessing simulated grazing effects on Festuca ovina as an important species, two exclosure field established before 2007 growing season in Majidabad rangelands as representative for semi-arid rangelands in major parts of west of Iran. Inside the exclosure areas, 40 plants selected of which 10 replications allocated to each specific treatment of ocular-estimated hand clipping of the 25, 50 and 75 percent of annual growth. 10 replications were assigned as control plants. Clippings were done monthly during the months of current grazing season. Monthly-clipped plant materials were dried in shadow free air to calculate the accurate clipping intensity. Then the residues of all plants (also controls) clipped and dried simultaneously at the end of growth season for four years. Split plot in time was used as the statistical design and analysis. The results showed that the main effect of year and different clipping intensities and interactions effect of different clipping intensity and years are significant on forage production and also indicated significant difference on final height and number of generation culm. Most and least amount of production is related to 2007 and 2008 years with 508 and 169 mm of rainfall respectively and 75% treatment (heavey clipping). As the overall conclusion, regarding the environmental and management variations of this species, it is adapted with light clipping and maximum grazing allowance is about 30% of the annual yield growth.


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