Modeling Agricultural Land Management to Improve Understanding of Nitrogen Leaching in an Irrigated Mediterranean Area in Southern Turkey

Creative Commons License

Karnez E., SAĞIR H., Glavan M., GÖLPINAR M. S., ÇETİN M., Akgül M. A., ...More

in: Water Quality, Hlanganani Tutu;, Editor, Intechopen, Rijeka, pp.136-158, 2017

  • Publication Type: Book Chapter / Chapter Research Book
  • Publication Date: 2017
  • Publisher: Intechopen
  • City: Rijeka
  • Page Numbers: pp.136-158
  • Editors: Hlanganani Tutu;, Editor
  • Çukurova University Affiliated: Yes


Nitrogen (N) cycle dynamics and its transport in the ecosystem were always an attracting subject for the researchers. Calculation of N budget in agricultural systems with use of different empirical statistical methods is common practice in OECD and EU countries. However, these methodologies do not include climate and water cycle as part of the process. On the other hand, big scale studies are labor and work intensive. As a solution, various computer modeling approaches have been used to predict N budget and related N parameters. One of them is internationally established Soil and Water Assessment (SWAT) model, which was developed especially for modeling agricultural catchments. The aim of this study was to improve understanding of N leaching with simulation of agricultural land management (fertilization, irrigation, and plant species) in hydrological heavily modified watershed with irrigation-depended agriculture under Mediterranean climate. The study was conducted in Lower Seyhan River Plain Irriga-tion District (Akarsu) of 9495 ha in Cukurova region of southern Turkey. Intensive and extensive water and nitrogen monitoring data (2008–2014), soil properties, cropping pattern, and crop rotation were used for the SWAT model build, calibration, and valida-tion of the model.

Keywords: crop management, irrigation, nitrogen balance, SWAT, modeling