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Evaluation of water movement and water losses in a direct-seeded-rice field experiment using Hydrus-1D

  • Author(s): Li, Y;
  • Šimůnek, J;
  • Jing, L;
  • Zhang, Z;
  • Ni, L
  • et al.

In the recent decade, increasing costs of labor, water, and fertilizers around the world led to a change in the method of crop establishment from traditional transplanted rice (TPR) to direct-seeded rice (DSR) and to a substantial rise in the DSR-managed area. Since water management in areas with DSR is quite different from those with TPR, vertical water movement and water and nutrient losses during the crop season may be different as well. Water flow and water losses in a DSR field in the Taihu Lake Basin of east China were monitored and evaluated using Hydrus-1D during two seasons with different rainfalls and irrigation managements. While during the 2008 season, irrigation accounted for 57% of the total water input (TWI), during the 2009 season, it accounted for only 32%. Due to large rainfall during the wet, 2009 rice season, surface runoff accounted for about 17.0% of TWI. During the much drier 2008 rice season with higher irrigation inputs, surface runoff (4.6% of TWI) could be controlled much better. Modeled evapotranspiration during the 2008 and 2009 seasons accounted for 54.6% and 44.6% of TWIs, respectively. Measured and simulated results indicate that water leaching (approximately 42.7% and 34.9% of TWIs in the 2008 and 2009 seasons, respectively) was the main path of water loss from the DSR fields, which implies that frequent irrigation increases water leaching. The plough sole layer played a major buffering role for water flow during both dry and wet seasons. Water productivities evaluated from TWIs during the 2008 and 2009 seasons were 0.71 and 0.59kg/m3, respectively; they were 1.30 and 1.33kg/m3 when evaluated from modeled evapotranspiration fluxes. Pressure heads and vertical fluxes simulated using Hydrus-1D matched measured data well. The Hydrus-1D can be used to simulate water flow and water balance in the DSR fields. © 2014 Elsevier B.V.

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