Field level resilience and ecosystem service provision from integrated crop-livestock systems in southern Brazil
(PIs: Amelie Gaudin, Caitlin Peterson)
Agricultural resilience refers to the ability of an agricultural system to maintain its essential functions –food production and the provision of ecosystem services – when subjected to external perturbations such as climatic stress. ICLS are reported to exhibit greater resilience in terms of yield stability, production, and yield recovery after stress due to their positive impacts on soil quality and nutrient cycling at the field level. We are using a combination of remote sensing and measurements of in-field biophysical variables to characterize the relative resilience and ecosystem service provision of ICLS, continuous cropping (CC), and continuous pasture (CP) systems in southern Brazil. Historical datasets from the long term experiment station on Integrated Agricultural Systems at the Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS, Porto Alegre, Brazil) are being used to calibrate a 16-year time series of satellite images for actual crop and pasture performance and to serve as a basis of comparison for measurements taken at the experiment station. We are gathering information on indicators of ecosystem services from agriculture in these systems, namely food production, water cycling, nutrient cycling, soil quality, and biodiversity conservation.