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Soil Compaction on Forest Plantations following Cattle Use

Author(s) or contact(s): R.F. Newman, K. Broersma, M. Krzic, and A.A. Bomke
Source: Research Branch
Subject: Range Management
Series: Extension Note
Other details:  Published 1999. Hardcopy is available.


Introduction Grazing cattle on forest plantations in the interior of British Columbia is a common practice. Soil compaction can occur following cattle use, although this may vary with stocking rate, vegetation type and age, soil type, soil water content, and climate. Several studies have shown that increased soil compaction can have a negative impact on growth of young tree seedlings and on productivity in older plantations. These negative impacts result from restricted root development, reduced water and nutrient availability, and reduced soil aeration.

This study evaluated the effects of cattle grazing and domestic forage seeding on soil bulk density and soil penetration resistance (pr) in lodgepole pine plantations in the Montane Spruce very dry cool biogeoclimatic subzone. The study was replicated on three sites near Kamloops, B.C.

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Updated April 19, 2007