Cooperative Research Units
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Effectiveness of Roundup© Ready Alfalfa for Nesting Habitat and Seedbed Preparation

Duration

July 2014 - December 2016

Narrative

Ring-necked pheasant and waterfowl populations provide bountiful recreational opportunities for residents and visitors of South Dakota, providing a strong economic boost for local economies. This provides strong incentives for the maintenance and sustainability of their populations. With a rapidly changing landscape to agricultural production, primarily due to the loss of CRP, management of remaining grasslands is imperative to the success of upland nesting game birds. Traditional management practices to provide nesting/brood rearing cover involve the use of agricultural crops to prepare tracts of land for grassland restoration, providing negligible benefits for wildlife during this time. New techniques to reduce the use of agriculture in restorations are being explored, including using Roundup© ready (RR) alfalfa as a means to prepare seedbeds for grassland restoration. RR alfalfa could provide nesting cover as well as an economically feasible way of controlling invasive and noxious weeds during restoration. The effectiveness of using RR alfalfa in grassland restorations and how upland nesting game birds utilize these tracts is unexplored, however, creating a knowledge gap in our understanding of the best management practices for grasslands. This study aims to close the gap in knowledge and help us manage grasslands for the benefit and sustainability of upland nesting game bird populations.

Research Products and Activities

Thesis

  • MARTORELLI, N.P. 2017. Evaluation of Gamebird Use and Thermal Characteristics of Alfalfa and Perennial Grasses in Eastern South Dakota. M.S. Thesis. South Dakota State University. 161 pp. Website  | 

Presentations

  • Martorelli, N. P. and J. D. Stafford. Evaluation of Waterfowl Production in Roundup© Ready Alfalfa Utilized for Perennial Grassland Conversion on Game Production Areas in Eastern South Dakota. South Dakota Game Fish and Parks Region 2 Annual Meeting, Project Update, Chamberlain, South Dakota. 22 July 2015
  • Martorelli, N. P. and J. D. Stafford. Evaluation of Waterfowl Use and Thermal Characteristics of Alfalfa and Perennial Grasses in Eastern South Dakota. Seventh North American Duck Symposium, Annapolis, Maryland. 5 February 2016.
  • Martorelli, N. P. and J. D. Stafford. Evaluation of Waterfowl Use and Thermal Characteristics of Alfalfa and Perennial Grasses in Eastern South Dakota. South Dakota Wildlife Society Annual Meeting, Oacoma, South Dakota. 2 March 2016.
  • See All ...
 

Current Staff

Federal Staff: 3

Masters Students: 7

Phd Students: 2

Post Docs: 0

University Staff: 3

5 Year Summary

Students graduated: 14

Scientific Publications: 50

Presentations: 138

 

Personnel

Funding Agencies

  • South Dakota Department of Game, Fish & Parks

Links

South Dakota Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit Cooperators

  1. South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks
  2. South Dakota State University
  3. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
  4. U.S. Geological Survey
  5. Wildlife Management Institute