Journal of
Soil Science and Environmental Management

  • Abbreviation: J. Soil Sci. Environ. Manage.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 2141-2391
  • DOI: 10.5897/JSSEM
  • Start Year: 2010
  • Published Articles: 311

Full Length Research Paper

Effects of integrating different soil and water conservation measures into hillside area closure on selected soil properties in Hawassa Zuria District, Ethiopia

Lemma Tiki
  • Lemma Tiki
  • School of Biodiversity and Natural Resources, Mada Walabu University, P. O. Box 132, Bale-Robe, Ethiopia
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Menfes Tadesse
  • Menfes Tadesse
  • School of Natural Resources and Environmental Studies, Wondo Genet College of Forestry and Natural Resources, Hawassa University, P. O. Box 82, Shashemanne, Ethiopia
  • Google Scholar
Fantaw Yimer
  • Fantaw Yimer
  • School of Natural Resources and Environmental Studies, Wondo Genet College of Forestry and Natural Resources, Hawassa University, P. O. Box 82, Shashemanne, Ethiopia
  • Google Scholar


  •  Received: 11 July 2015
  •  Accepted: 01 September 2015
  •  Published: 01 October 2015

Abstract

Land degradation is a serious global problem. Pursuant to the alarming environmental degradation, the government and non-governmental organizations have implemented various land rehabilitation programs. Among this the predominant one is area closures, through tree-planting and physical conservation measures such as terracing. This study was designed to investigate the impact of integrating soil and water conservation (SWC) measures into the area closure on the selected soil properties based on comparative analysis between closed area with SWC, closed area without SWC and open grazing land. A total of 30 composite soil samples from 0 to 15 cm depth were collected with 10 replications from each land uses. Soil parameters such as bulk density (BD), soil moisture content (MC), soil organic matter (SOM), total nitrogen (TN), pH, electrical conductivity (EC) and texture were analyzed. Data was analyzed statistically by using SPSS software packages. Mean comparison were made by using Tukey HSD test at P = 0.05. Results showed that higher mean MC, SOM and TN were recorded under closed area with SWC than closed area without SWC and open grazing while mean EC and pH were comparatively lower under closed area with SWC. Texture, BD and C/N ratio shows no significant variation with land uses. These results indicated that integrating SWC measures into area closure have a potential to improve soil properties. The findings generally suggest that integrating SWC measures into area closure was found to be the better option to improve physico-chemical conditions of degraded lands. Additional research was also recommended for practical generalization considering other variables like vegetation parameters that were not addressed in this study. 
 
Key words: Area closure, soil and water conservation, grazing land, soil, degradation.