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ARTICLE

Soil, farming and science – introduction

What do soil, farming and science have to do with each other? Actually, they are inextricably related. For centuries, humans have used science to improve soil productivity and crop yields. The ...

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The phosphorus cycle

Phosphorus is a chemical element found on Earth in numerous compound forms, such as the phosphate ion (PO43-), located in water, soil and sediments. The quantities of phosphorus in soil are ...

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Transgenic cows – introduction

Scientists at AgResearch in New Zealand have successfully produced healthy transgenic cows that make modified milk or human therapeutic proteins in their milk. What is a transgenic cow ...

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ARTICLE

What is silage?

Silage is preserved pasture. Making silage is an important way for farmers to feed cows and sheep during times when pasture isn't good, such as the dry season. Find out how silage is made below ...

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Using isotopes as tracers

Radioactive isotopes have many useful applications in a wide variety of situations, for example, they can be used within a plant or animal to follow the movement of certain chemicals. In ...

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Soil formation

New Zealand has a wide variety of landscapes. A day’s sightseeing journey might include volcanic plateaus, rolling hills, river basins and coastal lands. It is easy to notice how the scenery ...

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Future uses of transgenic cows

AgResearch scientists have generated transgenic cows with biomedical and agricultural applications. Here, we list potential applications of transgenic cows and describe how a transgenic farm ...

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Economic impacts of GM crops

Can farmers make a profit from growing genetically modified (GM) food crops? Economic modelling can be used to weigh up different factors that influence the profits that can be gained from ...

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Farming development and changing landscapes

Farming is a way of life in New Zealand. Farms cover about half of the country’s land and are important to our economy. Agriculture has shaped who we are as a nation, but it has also had a big ...

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New Zealand’s National Science Challenges

As New Zealanders looking to the future, we are faced with many opportunities – and challenges. These include improving the health of all our people, advancing our economic growth, protecting our ...

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Farm management practices

Farming is an economic venture – farmers work the land to gain an income. Many New Zealand farmers have an interest in preserving and enhancing the land for future generations. In order to ...

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ARTICLE

Make your own silage

Find out how students can make silage at school. You will need (per student group) A large plastic drain pipe, approximately 40-50 cm in length and 15 cm in diameter Plastic sheeting and duct ...

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Measuring greenhouse gas emissions

The three most important greenhouse gases in the atmosphere are carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4) and nitrous oxide (N2O). While carbon dioxide is the greenhouse gas we hear the most about ...

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History of New Zealand dairy farming

Dairy farming has changed significantly over the centuries, from hand milking to machine milking. The size of farms and the expectations on farmers have also changed with time. Could fully ...

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ACTIVITY

Farming and environmental issues

In this activity, students explore ethical issues related to farming and environmental pollution. They learn about the science involved and the range of perspectives among stakeholders. By the ...

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Farming and environmental pollution

New Zealand has had a reputation for being ‘clean and green’ – a country of environmental beauty. Compared to many countries in the world, this is true. However, it’s becoming apparent that New ...

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1080 – an overview

1080, or sodium fluoroacetate, is a poison used to control pest species. It is the salt form of a naturally occurring toxin found in poisonous plants in South America, Africa and Australia. New ...

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Robotic milking

Dairy farming is New Zealand's biggest industry. However, the labour-intensive nature of dairy farming could limit productivity gains. Will automatic milking provide a solution? The importance of ...

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Farming and the environment – timeline

Use this timeline to to find out about some key dates relating to discoveries about farming and the environment in New Zealand. 800–1200 - People occupy New Zealand New Zealand is covered in ...

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Biogeochemistry

Biogeochemistry is a big word. Biogeochemistry also covers an enormous field of study. It is a systems science – a way of looking at how the Earth’s systems (water, atmosphere, land and living ...

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