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Members of SCIANS reviewed—and renewed—top research priorities for the upcoming year. Seven primary areas of research interest were identified. Crop and pasture quality along with nutrient management continue to be top research concerns of SCIANS.
Issues in crop and pasture quality include (in order of priority):
New issues identified included developing varieties that can face the challenges of climate change, crops for bio-energy, and cover crops.
Nutrient management issues SCIANS members identified as important research concerns in the province include:
· effective and safe manure rates
· nutrient research on forages in fall
· Better understanding of nitrogen carry over from fall-applied manure
· Nitrogen testing for corn and grasses in season
· Nutrient losses from high discharge manure spreaders versus injection spreading of manure
· Phosphorus index
Soil conservation and tillage practices, research to alleviate compaction in soils, soil erosion and nutrient run off were also declared important research.
Management and decision-making tools such as studies on rotation management, improved nutrient management plans, balancing nutrient demand and supply, economic-based research, practical crop record systems for producers and nutrient record-keeping and calculators were deemed relevant issues.
Water quality and the environment including how nutrients are applied, cover crops, the effect of farm practice such as foot bathes on water quality, and wet lands and drainage are also priorities.
Members of SCIANS also earmarked pesticide effectiveness and pest management including testing new pesticides, evaluating pesticides from specific tillage practices and learning more about pesticide rates and additives, including Roundup education as areas for more research.
Finally, members of SCIANS noted the investigation of economical new crops and crops that make money as areas for more research.
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