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Providing evidence to improve practice

Action: Add manure to soil Shrubland and Heathland Conservation

Key messages

  • One replicated, randomized, controlled study in South Africa found that adding manure to the soil increased plant cover and the number of plant species.

Supporting evidence from individual studies

1 

A replicated, randomized, controlled study between 2007 and 2011 in a karoo shrubland in Richtersveld, South Africa (Hanke et al. 2015) found that adding manure to increase colonisation increased plant cover and the number of plant species. After three years, plant cover of areas where manure was added (7%) was higher than that in areas where manure was not added (4%). Similarly, the number of plant species in areas where manure was added (11 species) was higher than in areas where manure was not added (7 species). Five 1 ha blocks were divided using a fence to exclude cattle. In each block goat and sheep manure was spread in one 10 m x 10 m plot while another plot was left without manure addition. Vegetation in each 10 m x 10 m plot was assessed annually between 2008 and 2011.

Referenced papers

Please cite as:

Martin P.A., Rocha R., Smith R.K. & Sutherland W.J. (2018) Shrubland and Heathland Conservation. Pages 447-494 in: W.J. Sutherland, L.V. Dicks, N. Ockendon, S.O. Petrovan & R.K. Smith (eds) What Works in Conservation 2018. Open Book Publishers, Cambridge, UK.