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Grant to study phosphorus supplementation

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Date: Tuesday, December 3, 2002
Contact: Dr. Michael Collier, (808) 974-7393

For Immediate Release

A faculty member of the University of Hawai`i at Hilo's College of Agriculture, Forestry and Natural Resource Management has been awarded a $5,000 grant for a project on "Phosphorus in Hawaiian Kikuyugrass Pastures and Potential Phosphorus Release to Water." The grant was awarded by the County of Hawai`i, Department of Research and Development.

Dr. Bruce Mathews, associate professor of soil science, will focus on reducing costly phosphorus supplementation of grazing cattle and environmentally sensitive phosphorus losses from grazing lands to surface waters.

"Relationships among kikuyugrass forage phosphorus concentrations, animal requirements, soil test phosphorus, and phosphorus forms released to water will be studied to identify possible areas for implementation of more sustainable management strategies," Mathews explained.

Over 50 pastures representing 12 soil types will be studied throughout the State of Hawai`i; more than half will be from Hawai`i Island. Federal funding is also being sought to assess the impact of standard and reduced phosphorus supplementation in a grazing study that will be based on the findings of the current study.

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