Effects on Ground-dwelling Arthropods on WICST 1995-1997

Arthropods were collected from pitfall traps (1995-96), soil cores (1995-96-97) in CS1 (continuous corn), CS3 (organic corn-soy-wheat/red clover), CS5 (organic corn- oats/alfalfa-alfalfa + manure), and CS6 (pasture) at the Lakeland and Arlignton sites.  In soil cornes from Arlington 1997, there were a greater abundance of insects in CS1 and CS5, although in Lakeland, there was […] More »

Reintegrating a former dairy farm as a new agricultural enterprise: The Quinney Farm

The majority of the farmland in Southern Wisconsin is still owned in relatively smallholdings of 160 to 250 acres. Much of this land however, is no longer farmed as integrated landscapes but rented to neighbors, put in government conservation reserve programs, or left unmanaged. However, the recent and rapidly growing demand for differentiated agricultural products […] More »

Preliminary Report on Developing Sampling Proceedures and Biodiversity Indices Soil Biodiversity Project, 1996

Do cropping systems that vary in complexity have different degrees of biodiversity? Our multidisciplinary team has been working to address this question as it applies to cropping systems common in Wisconsin. Previous studies addressing this issue are of limited value because they focused on a single taxon, had inadequate sampling procedures (i.e., a single date, […] More »

Residue Decomposition: A Review of the First Four Years of Results

The litter bag study was initiated in 1993 on the Wisconsin Integrated Cropping Systems Trial (WICST). The objectives of this study were to characterize the influence of crop rotation on residue decomposition. In collaboration with the team entomologists, the role of macro- and meso- invertebrates in the decomposition process were also monitored. This latter objective […] More »

Relevance of Biodiversity to the Sustainability of Agricultural Systems

Biodiversity is widely considered to be an important measure of ecosystem health, underpinning ecosystem structure, function, and sustainability. Agricultural systems comprise the majority of all terrestrial ecosystems; thus, agriculture may be especially important to maintaining biodiversity. Past research has produced conflicting evidence on whether biodiversity is key to agricultural sustainability, and which agricultural practices promote […] More »

Pitfall Trap Analysis of Soil Macroarthropods Associated with the Wisconsin Integrated Cropping Systems Trial, 1993

The Wisconsin Integrated Cropping Systems Trial has become a forum for examining the ecological ramifications, both short and long term, of different approaches to farming and philosophies of land stewardship. Like several other research groups, we have focused on the soil biota as one measure of environmental impacts of agriculture. Our operational hypothesis for our […] More »