A comparison of the quality of farm and forest soils in the Emo-Rainy River District of Northwestern Ontario
Honours Bachelor of Environmental Management
DisciplineNatural Resources Management
Hayfield and forest soil comparison
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This thesis explores different aspects of the qualities of soils found in a farmer’s hayfield and nearby forested areas on the West side of Emo, Ontario. Soil qualities of a forest and hayfield sites with multiple plots will be examined, with a focus on pH, carbon, nitrogen and sulphur content (CNS), and soil compaction (bulk density). The main purpose of this study is to discover whether soil found in each area differ from each other due to changes in land use. In order to determine significant differences between the hayfield and forested area, a one-way ANOVA was completed so to determine any significant differences (a = 0.05) found within any of the measured factors between the forest and hayfield site. All the factors except pH appear to have a overall significant difference between the sites. The results found are further discussed and analyzed as to why there was such a difference between the two sites. The briefness of the length of this study, would not allow for a complete representation of the total effects of current and future changes in land use due to farming practices. In conclusion from the data collected and analysed farming practices such have caused significant differences in the quality of the soils. The importance of the study has been the continuation of a baseline dataset for the soils of forested and farmland areas in Northwestern Ontario, which can be used as a foundation for further studies with research into soil qualities.