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Paper Information

Journal:   IRANIAN JOURNAL OF RANGE AND DESERT RESEARCH   2016 , Volume 22 , Number 4 ; Page(s) 673 To 682.

Effects of different grazing intensities on soil quality indices (Case study: semi-arid rangelands of Cheshmeh-Anjir, Fars Province)

* Faculty of Range and Watershed Management, Gorgan University of Agricultural Sciences & Natural Resources, Iran
Different grazing intensities will cause substantial changes in ecosystem function. In order to evaluate the effectiveness of existing management, monitoring of ecosystem structure and function is essential. This research was aimed to investigate the effects of different grazing intensities on surface indices and soil quality properties in the semiarid rangelands of Cheshmeh-Anjir, Fars Province. For this purpose, three sites including under exclosure, light and heavy grazing were studied. Landscape Function Analysis (LFA) method was used to investigate the changes among the study sites. Oneway ANOVA and Duncan's multiple range test were used for data analysis in SPSS statistical software. According to the results, soil surface indices showed significant differences among the study sites at p<0. 05, so that the values of indices were decreased by increasing grazing intensity. Moreover, ecosystem function properties, including stability, infiltration, and nutrient cycling varied by applying different grazing intensities, so that the exclosure site and heavy grazing site showed the best and worst conditions, respectively. Overall, our results clearly showed that the values of functional indices were decreased in the study area by increasing grazing intensity.
Keyword(s): Landscape function analysis,grazing intensity,soil quality indices,semiarid rangelands,Cheshme-Anjir
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