Productive sustainability in a silvopastoral system
Keywords:Eucalyptus sp., Agroforestry systems, Carbon fixing, Beef cattle, Animal welfare, Thermal comfort.
The objective was to analyze the productive and economic sustainability of the silvopastoral system, in the state of Mato Grosso do Sul. The system had been implanted five years earlier, using Eucalyptus sp. (GG100), arranged in stands with three rows in an East/West direction, 20 meters apart, with 1.2 meters between plants and 1.5 meters between rows. The eucalyptus trees were planted in consortium with Brachiaria brizantha cv. Marandu and Nelore heifers, in the rearing (post-weaning) phase, weighing 186.2 Kg (± 21.18) and aged approximately 12 months. Samples were collected for chemical evaluation of the soil, determination of the quantity of carbon fixed by the tree species, evaluation of the forest component, study of the animals’ grazing behavior, measurement of the physiological and behavioral indicators of stress in the heifers, meteorological monitoring, analysis of animal yield and economic viability. There were improvements in the content of soil organic matter in the surface layer of the soil (0 to 10 cm) and a tendency for the soil organic matter content to rise as distance from the rank of trees increased. The central rows of each stand showed less growth in height and diameter, when compared to the outer rows. There were significant differences for the mass of dry matter from leaves, branches, stem and roots between the different rows in the stand. In general, these values were higher in the lowest row, indicating that in arrangements with three rows, the central row tends to present lower development in relation to the side rows, reflecting negatively on the volume of wood and yield. The capacity for neutralizing greenhouse gases emitted by cattle was influenced by the position of the trees in the stands, and there were differences in the carbon content between the different compartments of the trees. Plasmatic concentrations of cortisol and progesterone were measured and associated with the interval in the day when animals grazed most, between 10.00h and 16.00h. This indicated that the thermal comfort provided in the site by the system was favorable to ingestion at the time of greatest sunshine, as well as resulting in less total time spent on ingestion compared to what is seen in other production systems for cattle in extensive pastures. The financial balance for the silvopastoral activities carried out on the property revealed, in general, greater return rate for the forestry compared to cattle in the system, so far.
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Copyright (c) 2017 Wolff Camargo Marques Filho, Giselle Feliciani Barbosa, Deisy Lucia Cardoso, André Dominghetti Ferreira, Denise Renata Pedrinho, José Antonio Maior Bono, Celso Correa de Souza, Daniel Massen Frainer
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