Heppner gazette-times. (Heppner, Or.) 1925-current, February 28, 1980, ANNUAL REPORT 1979, Page Page Three, Image 19

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To provide the actual volume of water coming from a watershed, a flume is placed in a terrace
channel. A stage recorder is used in conjunction with the flume to provide a self-recording document
of the flow.
A sediment trap located immediately below the flume provides information on the amount of soil loss
which is occurring in the same watershed. In addition samples are taken with a special meter to
measure how much sediment is carried out with the water.
Sediment pollution
site evaluated
In October 1979 Gerald 0. George, agricultural engineer,
erosion specialist, Columbia Basin Agricultural Research
Center, Pendleton, established a terrace evaluation and
demonstration monitoring site on Don Peterson's ranch at
Valby. The site consisted of a recording thermometer, a
measuring flume and depth recorder. The rain and snow
gauge was to determine hourly rainfall and snowfall
intensity. The volume rain gauge was to determine total
weekly precipitation and backup for the recording gauge.
The thermometer was to determine the zero, three- and
six-inch soil temperatures. The flume and depth recorder
were to determine the amount of runoff out of the terrace.
The site provided evaluation of the conditions that
influence soil movement. Major erosion occurred last
February after the snow had essentially melted. Erosion was
caused by thawing of the ice in the frozen soil. As the ice
melted downward in the soil, the soil became a quagmire,
then fluid, and would start to flow. As the flow progressed
downhill, it accumulated more fluid soil and water until it
amassed to create visible erosion. The soil and water
mixture would continue to move until there was a change in
field slope, a terrace, waterway, stubble mulched field or
oilier physical barrier.
The average soil movement between terraces was
measured to 12.5 tons per acre last year on this site.
Approximately 20 percent of the soil movement was
transported out through the flume and terrace outlet.
From observations of stubble mulched fields in 1978-79, it
appears that stubble mulch will greatly reduce erosion, and
with terraces, will substantially improve water quality.
Farmers save water
What a sight it would be:
42.7 million gallons of water
stored behind a dam only 18
inches high and 200.000 feet
long.
The equivalent of such a
dam is the accomplishment of
Morrow County farmers in
1979. by constructing level,
basin-type terraces. What this
means is storing an amount of
water equal to a rainfall of
about one-half inch spread
over 3,300 acres of cropland.
What is the value of saved
moisture? It can be converted
into increased production,
equal to two bushels per acre.
The primary and perhaps
most important function of a
terrace system is the gully
and rill erosion control. The
terraces are designed and
laved out according to each
individual field needs. These
needs are based on the type of
soils present, slopes of the
land and the owners' method
of tillage. Minimum tillage
and proper use of the crop
residues are directly related
to terrace spacing. As resi-
( Continued on Page 4)
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Spring into action
. . . weatherize your home!
Check the insulation in the
attic and under the floors. If
more is needed, add it. Check
for proper ventilation, too.
Caulk tightly around windows
and doors.
In short, do everything
possible to get your home into
energy-savings shape. When
you reduce energy waste, you
reduce energy cost!
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Columbia Basin Electric Co-op
Serving Morrow, Gilliam and Wheeler Counties
HEPPNER 676-9146
A public service advertisement by your friends at Columbia Basin