Research and Extension Center System
University of California
Research and Extension Center System

Posts Tagged: Drought

Drones are used for research and land management; do you want to learn how to use drones?

Jeffery Dahlberg, director of UC ANR Kearney Agricultural Research & Extension Center (KARE), specializing in plant breeding and genetics, is working with drones to collect data for one of his sorghum programs. Work will continue the development of field scale drought nurseries at both KARE and West Side Research & Extension Center (WSREC) under a DOE ARPA-e funded project that utilizes drone technology to phenotype sorghum lines on a weekly basis as they are stressed under pre- and post-flowering drought stress. Research will continue this coming summer to gather additional phenotypic data, along with heat stress measurements and soil moisture monitoring. These nurseries are part of an effort to identify genes that are expressed under different field stress conditions and relate them to sorghum's ability to withstand and recover from stress. 

If you are interested in learning how to use drones for research and land management, you may want to explore attending the UCANR Informatics and GIS Program's  Dronecamp July 25-27, 2017 at UCANR in Davis, Calif., the application period is March 1 – April 15, 2017. Dronecamp costs $500 for UC affiliates (UC employees and enrolled students), and $900 for non-UC participants. Dronecomp is designed for participants with little or no experience in drone technology, and want to learn how to use drones for mapping applications. The intensive workshop covers drone science; safety and regulations; mission planning; flight operations; data processing; data analysis; visualization; and the latest trends and technology. Read more.

A drone collecting data from a drought stressed sorghum nursery.

Posted on Thursday, March 23, 2017 at 4:36 PM
Tags: drones (1), drought (21), sorghum (8)

Research Spotlight: Foothills irrigation creates wetlands and sustains them in drought, benefitting birds

An unintentional wetland created by irrigation runoff at SFREC (left) and an intentionally created irrigated wetland on Spenceville SWA (right).

After five years, the northern Sierra Nevadas have finally been moved out of the “severe drought” category by the US Drought monitor following a promisingly rainy start to the 2017 water year. This is not only good news for our agricultural...

Posted on Tuesday, January 10, 2017 at 10:42 AM
  • Author: Nathan Van Schmidt
Tags: Birds (2), Black Rail (1), Drought (21), Irrigation (12), Wetlands (1)

Researcher Spotlight: Managing Rangelands for the Bad Times as Well as the Good

Figure 2. Total cover and biomass responses to rainfall and grazing legacy over three years (± SE). Dark squares indicate a legacy of moderate grazing – which created a diverse mix of grass and forb species - and light circles indicate a legacy of low grazing – which shifted the community to only dominant grasses.

Over the last few years Californians have grappled with how to manage lands during times of both drought and plentiful rainfall. At SFREC and on Central Valley rangelands, one question is whether management that promotes high forage in wet years alters...

Posted on Tuesday, November 8, 2016 at 8:23 AM
  • Author: Lauren Hallett
  • Author: Katharine Suding

The October 30 issue of the Sacramento Bee op-ed included an article on soil health by Jeff Mitchell and Randy Southard.

An Op-Ed article written by Jeff Mitchell,  CE Cropping Systems Specialist in vegetable cropping systems, irrigation management, soil quality, organic soil amendments, extension models, and postharvest physiology in the Department of Land, Air and Water Resources at UC Davis and at UC ANR Kearney Agricultural Research and Extension Center and Randy Southard, Professor and Soil Genesis/Morphologist in the Department of Land, Air and Water Resources at UC Davis was included in the October 30 issue of the Sacramento Bee. More information on conservation tillage practices can be found on the Conservation Agriculture Systems Innovation (CASI) website.



2015 garbanzo harvest in July at Five Points, CA.
2015 garbanzo harvest in July at Five Points, CA.

Posted on Monday, November 2, 2015 at 2:53 PM
  • Author: Laura J. Van der Staay
Tags: conservation (7), drought (21), soil health (4), water (10)

Sorghum research at the UC Agriculture and Natural Resources Research & Extension Centers available to the public.

If you are interested in getting information regarding research on the use of sorghum as a multi-purpose low-input crop for California, please go to this link. Under the research link, there are some videos showing the harvest of experimental plots as well as the use of a drone to perform rapid, robotic phenotyping of sorghum for character traits such as plant height, leaf area, and biomass area--data points used to help search for genes that control mechanisms involved in both drought tolerance and salinity tolerance in sorghum. Research is currently being performed at Kearney Agricultural Research and Extension Center, Desert Research and Extension Center, and West Side Research and Extension Center.

Photograph of sorghum plants.
Photograph of sorghum plants.

Posted on Wednesday, September 30, 2015 at 3:14 PM
  • Author: Laura J. Van der Staay
Tags: drought (21), forage (3), salinity (1), sorghum (8)

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