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Sprinkler and surface irrigation effects on return flow water quality and quantity

Bjorneberg, D.L. and Westermann, D.T. and Nelson, N.O. (2007) Sprinkler and surface irrigation effects on return flow water quality and quantity. pp. 89-95. In: McFarland, A. and Saleh, A. (eds.) Proceedings of the Fourth Conference on Watershed Management to Meet Water Quality and TMDLs (Total Maximum Daily Load) Issues: Solutions and Impediments to Watershed Management and TMDLs. USA-TX-San Antonio, 2007/03/10-14.

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A major conservation practice in the Upper Snake-Rock (USR) watershed is the conversion
from furrow irrigation to sprinkler irrigation. We compared the effect of irrigation system type on water
quality and quantity at the watershed scale. Six small watersheds (150-700 ha) were identified with 5 to
70% of the cropland sprinkler irrigated and the remaining fields surface or furrow irrigated. Other
agricultural land uses, cropping practices and soils were similar among watersheds. Water quality and
quantity entering and exiting each watershed were measured with automated samplers during the irrigation
season. Irrigation inflow to watersheds and outflow from watersheds did not decrease as sprinkler irrigated
area increased. This probably results from the flow rate allocation system used on the Twin Falls irrigation
tract. Annual sediment loss (r=-0.19, P=0.40) and concentration (r=-0.38, P=0.30) also did not correlate
with the relative amount of sprinkler irrigated area. Annual sediment loss (r-0.87, P=0.03) and
concentration (r-0.84, P=0.05) correlated with irrigation inflow—the more irrigation water delivered to a
watershed the greater the outflow sediment concentration and loss. These preliminary results indicate that
irrigation water delivery should be managed in addition to converting to sprinkler irrigation to improve
water quality in this irrigated watershed.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
NWISRL Publication Number: 1203
Subjects: Irrigation > Furrow irrigation > Erosion
Irrigation > Sprinkler irrigation
Water > Water quality
Mass Import - autoclassified (may be erroneous)
Depositing User: Users 6 not found.
Date Deposited: 20 Nov 2010 21:56
Last Modified: 01 Nov 2016 15:12
Item ID: 962