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24, chemin de Borde Rouge -Auzeville - CS52627 31326 Castanet Tolosan cedex - France

Last update: May 2021

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Long term field trials

dispositifs long terme

UREP has been running the permanent grassland sites of the long-term Observation and Experimentation System for Environmental Research "Agroecosystems, Biogeochemical Cycles and Biodiversity" (SOERE ACBB, since 2004. This installation examines the effects of management on biodiversity and ecosystem properties in upland temperate grasslands. The Theix site consists of 30 experimental plots (from 400 to 2200m²) organized along a gradient of grazing intensity (4 replicated treatments, high cattle versus low cattle or sheep stocking rate, ungrazed controls) or fertilization regime in mown conditions (3 replicated treatments, NPK versus PK mineral inputs, unfertilized controls). The Laqueuille site is dedicated to gas flux measurements and comprises of two large plots (2.8 ha and 3.6 ha) managed with continuous cattle grazing (high versus low stocking rate) with NPK fertilization in the intensive grazing treatment. In 2012, the ‘intensive’ treatment entered the European ICOS infrastructure (soon to enter the global NEON consortium) as a Level 1 site. This site classification recognises state-of-the-art equipment and the latest technological advances in gas flow measurements. In parallel, UREP staff are responsible for a mobile gas-flux laboratory (Node 4 ANAEE-F) for the measurement of GHGs in situ (N2O 15N analyser, CO2 / CH413C).

These long-term sites have been used to support numerous national and international scientific projects: European FP6 and FP7 projects on C and N cycles ("CarboEurope IP", "NitroEurope IP", "IMECC", "Carbo-Extreme", "GHG Europe" and "Animal Change"); ECCO PNBC "BIOMOS" project on soil carbon storage mechanisms; FP7-Multisward, ANR DISCOVER and ECOGER DIVHERBE projects on the role of biodiversity for grassland ecosystem function. In line with the ANAEE-F charter, the "permanent grassland" sites are available to all interested scientific teams, subject to the agreement of the SOERE CS and the ANAEE-F steering committee.

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