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This article in JEQ

  1. Vol. 10 No. 1, p. 72-76
    Received: Feb 21, 1980
    Published: Jan, 1981



Nitrogen Contents of Streams Draining an Agricultural and a Forested Watershed in Central Italy1

  1. F. Caporali,
  2. P. Nannipieri and
  3. F. Pedrazzini2



Water samples from an agricultural and a forested watershed (33,180, and 4,090 ha, respectively) were analyzed during the 1979 water year to determine the concentration of NO3-N, NH4-N, NO2-N, and organic-N. Monthly fluctuations in the concentration of NO3-N from the agricultural watershed may represent an interaction of organic matter mineralization and N fertilization at the time of seeding. From both watersheds NO3-N and NH4-N concentrations do not exceed the upper limits recommended for drinking water.

From both watersheds practically all monthly N losses, calculated as the product of the average flow and the respective average N concentration, occur during late autumn and winter and are more dependent upon total flow than upon concentration and land use. From the forested watershed yearly organic-N and NO3-N losses account for the same proportion of total N losses. From the agricultural watershed yearly NO3-N losses, owing to higher concentrations, are nearly double the organic-N losses.

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