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Acta Agronómica

Print version ISSN 0120-2812


FARFAN, María-Alejandra; FORERO, Sandra-Milena  and  AVELLANEDA-TORRES, Lizeth-Manuela. Evaluation of impacts of potato crops and livestock farming in Neotropical high Andean Páramo soils, Colombia. Acta Agron. [online]. 2020, vol.69, n.2, pp.106-116.  Epub Aug 09, 2021. ISSN 0120-2812.

Páramos are Neotropical ecosystems that result from insular formations dominated by tufted hair grasses and shrubs, and are located above the continuous forest track and below the perpetual snowline of the highest peaks in the Northern Andes. The aim of this research was to check the reliability of the hypothesis that the potato cultivation and livestock farming activities modify the quality of Páramo soils. For this, soil samples were taken from soil used with three different purposes at two different heights: Páramo with the least possible intervention, and Páramo where the activities of potato cropping and livestock farming were carried out; from these, and that have been determined to have physicochemical properties, abundance of functional groups of microorganisms (nitrogen-fixing, phosphate solubilizers, cellulolytic microorganisms), and enzymatic activities (urease, protease, p-glucosidase, acid, and alkaline phosphatase). The gravimetric humidity, apparent density, organic carbon, cation exchange capacity, urease, acid phosphatase, and p-glucosidase showed statistically significant differences (P < 0.05), indicating that there is a change in the quality of the soil that is exposed to agricultural activities. As for microorganisms the hypothesis was not confirmed; there are warning signs for the future in the case of continuing with these practices, but there are no significant differences.

Keywords : Cellulolytic microorganisms; Enzymatic activities; Nitrogen-fixing bacteria; Phosphate solubilizing bacteria; Soil physicochemical properties.

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