Theme 1: Rangeland/Grassland Ecology--Oral Sessions

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Grazing intensity can affect soil carbon (C) sequestration in semiarid grassland, but less is known about the effects of grazing component (defoliation, trampling, excreta return and their combinations) on the C and Nitrogen (N) in soil aggregates. In this study, a simulated grazing experiment was established in a typical steppe of Inner Mongolia, and we investigated the impacts of different grazing component treatments on the different size of aggregates distribution and their C and N content from dry and wet physical separations. Different soil C fractions were showed in different sieving method. The C content of different aggregate size showed microaggregates (250-53μm, 7-17%)>macroaggregates (>250μm, 4-12%) >fine fraction (<53μm, 0.4-3%) when dry sieving method was performed, but wet sieving resulted in the higher C content in microaggregates (6-14%) and fine fraction (5-11%) than macroaggregates (1-5%). N content of different size of aggregates showed similar trend with C content. The results revealed that grazing component had a marked impact on soil fraction and C and N content with the significant decreasing percentage of macroaggregates and their C and N storage under defoliation. Our result indicated that both dry-sieved aggregates and water-stable aggregates should be concerned to evaluate the short-term grazing disturbance on C and N distribution in soil aggregates. Furthermore, we suggest that trampling is critical for the soil compaction, but defoliation may play a more important role in soil aggregation and C storage in grazing grassland.

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Carbon and Nitrogen Pools in Soil Aggregates Were Affected by Grazing Component ---- Results from Dry and Wet Sieving Methods

Grazing intensity can affect soil carbon (C) sequestration in semiarid grassland, but less is known about the effects of grazing component (defoliation, trampling, excreta return and their combinations) on the C and Nitrogen (N) in soil aggregates. In this study, a simulated grazing experiment was established in a typical steppe of Inner Mongolia, and we investigated the impacts of different grazing component treatments on the different size of aggregates distribution and their C and N content from dry and wet physical separations. Different soil C fractions were showed in different sieving method. The C content of different aggregate size showed microaggregates (250-53μm, 7-17%)>macroaggregates (>250μm, 4-12%) >fine fraction (<53μm, 0.4-3%) when dry sieving method was performed, but wet sieving resulted in the higher C content in microaggregates (6-14%) and fine fraction (5-11%) than macroaggregates (1-5%). N content of different size of aggregates showed similar trend with C content. The results revealed that grazing component had a marked impact on soil fraction and C and N content with the significant decreasing percentage of macroaggregates and their C and N storage under defoliation. Our result indicated that both dry-sieved aggregates and water-stable aggregates should be concerned to evaluate the short-term grazing disturbance on C and N distribution in soil aggregates. Furthermore, we suggest that trampling is critical for the soil compaction, but defoliation may play a more important role in soil aggregation and C storage in grazing grassland.