The Africa Soil Profiles Database, Version 1.2, is compiled by ISRIC - World Soil Information (World Data Center for Soils) as a project activity for the Globally integrated- Africa Soil Information Service (AfSIS) project (www.africasoils.net/data/legacyprofile). It replaces version 1.1.
The compilation and publication of the Africa Soil Profiles Database is at the heart of ISRIC’s mandate, which is to serve the international community as custodian of global soil information and to increase awareness and understanding of soils in major global issues.
Total X-ray fluorescence spectroscopy (TXRF) determines concentrations of major and trace elements in multiple media. We developed and tested a method for the use of TXRF for direct quantification of total element concentrations in soils using an S2 PICOFOX™ spectrometer (Bruker AXS Microanalysis GmbH, Germany).
The Africa Soil Profiles Database is a compilation of georeferenced and standardised legacy soil profile data for Sub-Saharan Africa. Version 1.1 (March 2013) identifies 16,711 unique soil profiles inventoried from a wide variety of data sources and includes profile site and layer attribute data. Soil analytical data are available for 13,835 profiles of which 12,683 are georeferenced, including the attributes as specified by GlobalSoilMap.net.
Water retention and hydraulic conductivity characteristics of the soil are indispensable for hydrological catchment modelling and for quantifying water limited agricultural production. However, these characteristics are often not available for regions and data scarcity for tropical zones is even bigger than for temperate zones.
It is well known that the world is rich with soil data resulting from the efforts of past soil surveys. However, the majority of these data is largely unused. These legacy soil data come in the form of soil maps, soil survey reports, soil profile descriptions, and/or in the format of antiquated "card catalogue".
Africa Soil Profiles database, version. 1.0 (April 2012) identifies > 15700 unique soil profiles inventoried from a wide variety of data sources. From the > 14600 profiles that are geo-referenced, soil layer attribute data are available for > 12500 and soil analytical data for > 10000 profiles.
Heterogeneity in soil fertility in these smallholder systems is caused by both inherent soil-landscape and human-induced variability across farms differing in resources and practices. Interventions to address the problem of poor soil fertility in Africa must be designed to target such diversity and spatially heterogeneity.
Partial least squares regression (PLSR) analysis was used for the generic prediction of soil organic C (C(org)) content in Alfisols using diffuse reflectance Fourier-transform mid-infrared spectroscopy (DRIFT-MIRS).
We studied the biochemical and biophysical processes of carbon sequestration in an intensive agroforestry system on two soils (Feralsol – Luero; Arenosol – Teso) in W. Kenya to elucidate the mechanisms associated with long-term carbon storage.
We use an empirical method where model output uncertainties are expressed as a prediction interval (PI) of the underlying distribution of prediction errors. This method obviates the need to identify and determine the contribution of each source of uncertainty to the overall prediction uncertainty.
The knowledge that soil microorganisms form an important component of below ground biodiversity, providing ecosystem services, is often not incorporated in formulation of policies to conserve and manage these microorganisms.
Striga hermonthica is a major constraint to smallholder subsistence agriculture production in the sub-Saharan African region. Low soil fertility and overall environmental degradation has contributed to the build-up of the parasitic weed infestation.
One of the key challenges in establishing the Africa Soil Information Service (AfSIS) is how to measure soil functional properties on tens of thousands of georeferenced soil samples in a consistent way.
Soil biota can be used to sequester carbon in the soil. Important in this prospect are the possibilities of increasing soil macro-fauna abundance and their diversity to enhance vegetative decomposition, humufication, soil aggregation and increased biomass accumulation.
Between 1960 and 2000, Asian and Latin American food production tripled, thanks to the use of high-yielding varieties of crops. Africa can follow suit, but only if depletion of soil nutrients is addressed.
There is an increasing need to collect, collate and share soil data and information within countries, across regions and globally. Timely access to consistent and authoritative data and information is critical to issues related to food production, climate change, water management, energy production and biodiversity.
Technological interventions to address the problem of poor productivity of smallholder agricultural systems must be designed to target socially diverse and spatially heterogeneous farms and farming systems.