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What Works in Conservation 2018

 | 
William J. Sutherland
, 
Lynn V. Dicks
, 
Nancy Ockendon
, 
et al.

12. Enhancing soil fertility

12.1. Reducing agricultural pollution

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Unknown effectiveness (limited evidence)

● Change the timing of manure application

1• One controlled, randomized, replicated, site comparison study from the UK found less nitrate was lost from the soil when manure application was delayed from autumn until December or January.

2 Soil types covered: sandy loam.

3 Assessment: unknown effectiveness (effectiveness 50%; certainty 33%; harms 24%).

4http://www.conservationevidence.com/​actions/​893

Likely to be ineffective or harmful

● Reduce fertilizer, pesticide or herbicide use generally

5 Biodiversity: Two site comparison studies from Italy and Pakistan (one also replicated) found a higher diversity of soil invertebrates and microorganisms in low chemical-input systems.

6 Nutrient loss: One study from Canada found lower nutrient levels and yields in low-input systems.

7 Soil types covered: course sandy, loam, sandy loam, and silt.

8 Assessment: likely to be ineffective or harmful (effectiveness 26%; certainty 40%; harms 48%).

9http://www.conservationevidence.com/​actions/​904

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