Lrg newsletter may 2013 fa lr


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Lrg newsletter may 2013 fa lr

  1. 1. newsletterLIVESTOCK RESEARCH GROUPThe year has started at a quick-fire pace for theLRG with the launch of the first multi-countryjoint research call hosted by the EU FACCE-JPIon agricultural greenhouse gases. Many LRGmember countries spent the opening monthsof the year forging global collaborations anddeveloping project proposals; the call closedat the end of March with the submissionof Letters of Intent. 30 projects have beendeemed eligible to proceed through to the fullproposal stage.Looking ahead, June will be a particularly busymonth with a number of key meetings plannedfor the Group.The first is a meeting of the Alliance Councilin Uruguay (June 17-19), which will see theannual gathering of senior representatives ofthe 33 member countries. The LRG will show-case its work at this meeting and promotethe collaborations and science outputs beinggenerated by member countries of the LRG.The Council meeting will be preceded by ameeting of all the Alliance Research Group co-chairs. Both Martin and Harry will representthe LRG at this meeting.Update from the Co-ChairsGGAA 2013 will be held in Dublin, Ireland from Sunday 23rd to Wednesday 26th June 2013. GGAA 2013 will attract speakers and delegatesfrom throughout the globe and will build on previous successful meetings in the series. The meeting will focus on advancements in theareas of animal derived GHG mitigation since the last meeting in Banff, 2010.For more information and registrations please visit on the heels of the Council meeting comesthe Greenhouse Gases and Animal Agriculture(GGAA) conference being held in Dublin (June22-26). The GGAA is the largest gatheringof scientists in the field and more than 400scientists are expected to attend. Manyprojects currently conducted through the LRGwill be presented at the conference. The Co-Chairs of the LRG have been invited to delivera key note address at GGAA on Wednesday 26June in the session that focuses on developingcountry issues.Next comes the annual meeting of the LRG.The agenda focuses on five of the key workareas of the Alliance; Research Networks,Capability Development, CollaborativeProjects, International Partners, andKnowledge Transfer. In addition to the LRGmeeting, many of the research networks of theLRG are also taking advantage of the presenceof so many scientists to hold their annualmeetings in Dublin. The Rumen MicrobialGenomics network will join the RuminomicsGroup to meet on the 22 June; the AnimalSelection Genetics and Genomics, ManureManagement and Feed Nutrition networks willall meet on 27 June. And an expert workshopwill consider key areas and activities, potentialbenefits and modus operandi of a potentialnew research network on grasslands, as wellas its alignment with existing initiatives andpriorities.The LRG is also jointly hosting an expertmeeting with the Sustainable AgricultureInitiative (SAI) in Dublin on June 21. This is agreat opportunity to inform each other of thework being undertaken and share ideas forfuture collaborations.To register for the GGAA and find out moredetail about the research network meetings goto reading the newsletter which hasarticles from Spain, Vietnam, Indonesia, andNew Zealand in addition to the usual updatefrom the Research Networks.Harry and Martin
  2. 2. One of the objectives of the GlobalResearch Alliance on AgriculturalGreenhouse Gases is to find waysto globally reduce methane fromenteric fermentation, one ofthe major greenhouse gases inagriculture.As part of achieving this objective, the NewZealand Government funded a trainingcourse to increase the global researchcapacity in methane measurements. Eightinternational visitors arrived at AgResearch-Grasslands, Palmerston North, New Zealandin January to begin a three week intensivetraining course on the ‘Methods for themeasurement of methane emissions fromforage-fed ruminants’.Nominated by their organisations to attendthe course, the participants came fromIndonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam,Argentina, Chile, Colombia, and Uruguay.These countries already have a long standingrelationship with New Zealand scientiststhrough various research projects (click herefor details). Participants received ‘hands-on’training during the three weeks to developskills that will improve the measurementand understanding of greenhouse gasemissions from agriculture in their homecountry. This will facilitate their participationin further research, development andextension activities or programmes on themitigation of livestock greenhouse gasemissions. The training course stronglysupports and promotes the priorities andgoals of the Global Research Alliance;developing a collaborative approach toreduce greenhouse gas emissions attributedto pastoral farming.The course was organised by the NewZealand Agricultural Greenhouse GasResearch Centre (NZAGRC) and taught by acollaboration of New Zealand and UK expertsin the field. Dr Cesar Pinares-Patiño fromthe Animal Nutrition team at AgResearch,New Zealand led the course with supportfrom a team of AgResearch staff (GermanMolano, Chris Hunt, Reuben Harland, SarahMaclean and Edgar Sandoval), Dr GarryInternational visitors participate in a GlobalResearch Alliance technicians training courseFrom L-R Aziz Amin (Malaysia), Cesar Pinares (New Zealand), Sara Hube (Chile), Yoana Dini (Uruguay), Kalaya Boonyanuwat (Thailand),Ricardo Bualo (Argentina), Thanh Nguyen (Vietnam), Francis Lively (UK), Yeni Widiawati (Indonesia), Juan Vargas Martinez (Columbia)Waghorn (DairyNZ), Dr Keith Lassey andRoss Martin (National Institute of Water andAtmosphere). Dr Francis Lively (Agri-foodand biosciences Institute, Belfast, UK) wasfunded by the UK Government in support ofthe Livestock Research Group of the GlobalResearch Alliance to be at AgResearch forthree weeks to assist Dr Pinares.New Zealand has world-class facilitiesfor measuring methane emissions fromruminant livestock and a global reputationin this area of science. For AgResearch,it provided important links with researchinstitutions in important emergingeconomies in Southern Asia and SouthAmerica.The course was the first of its kind, reflectinga growing desire amongst scientists andother practitioners from institutions indeveloping countries to develop the capabilityto better quantify agricultural greenhousegas emissions.
  3. 3. Feeding and Nitrogen ExcretionA number of research groups (NEIKER, IES-La Granja, Valencia (UPV), Lleida (Udl)and Madrid (UPM)) are looking at the effect of diet on animal excretion and manurecomposition and their associated GHG emissions (housing, storage and application).Optimising protein in diets of grazing animals has been tested1 as an effective way todecrease manure NH3and N2O emissions. In pigs, researchers from UPV have alsoinvestigated the effect of slurry composition (e.g. due to management) on its potential CH4yield for biogas production (GasPorc: AGL2011-30023-C03) and their soil fertilizer value.This project is currently carrying out a system-based study, whereby links are exploredamong the different diet profile of pigs, their slurries’ composition and the associatedemissions during housing (NH3, CH4) and after slurry application to soils (N2O).Manure ManagementAs part of the REMEDIA initiative a new group (10 institutions) is collaborating to providea novel and holistic synthesis of the potential effect on the GHG emissions of differentmanagement options along the “manure continuum” systems of a range of typicalSpanish livestock production systems. Their first study involves a literature review of theSpanish scientific evidence and some scenario testing through farm modelling and LCAapproach. This will be presented at the next RAMIRAN meeting.A new scientific network calledREMEDIA was established inSpain in 2012 ( to encourage scientificdiscussion and collaboration inall aspects of agricultural GHGemissions mitigation.The network was started to coordinateresearch and development efforts underthe Spanish Government’s Low CarbonDevelopment Strategy. This strategyincludes a goal to reduce emissions fromagriculture, which contributes to about 5.3%of Spain’s total GHG emissions (3% and 2.3%from enteric fermentation and manure,respectively).The first REMEDIA workshop was held lastMarch in Bilbao and a second one will beheld in April in Zaragoza, which hopefully willstrengthen the collaboration and capacitybuilding in Spain. REMEDIA will become auseful network to help establish links amongresearchers from Ibero-American countries.A blog ( been active since 2012 aiming to becomethe main instrument for diffusion in Spanishof science around this area. The Spanishrepresentatives will report on REMEDIAactivities at the next LRG meeting in Dublin(GGAA 2013).Research and development across Spain intoagricultural GHG emissions mitigation hasbeen multifaceted, at different productionsystems (e.g. monogastrics, small or largeruminants),levels(e.g.animal,herd,manure,housing, farm, landscape, regional…) usingdifferent methodologies (e.g. experimentalmeasurements, modelling…) or approaches(e.g.reductionist,holistic…)andwithdifferentobjectives (e.g. quantification, processunderstanding, application of mitigationmeasures…). This article highlights some ofthe activities of the research groups.Figure 1. Delegates from the first REMEDIA workshop held in Bilbao 2012 (Spain).A country focus:Spain
  4. 4. Best Available Techniques(BAT)Within the BATFARM EU-Interregproject ( are assessing the effectof different BAT on GHG losses usinga mobile environmental monitoringunit to assess in situ GHG emissions,a dynamic chamber system for slurrystorage, open and closed staticchambers for manure composting andpassive samplers (Leuning shuttles)for gas sampling from coveredlagoons. Among these BATS thefollowing measures are being tested:1. Additives application during cattleand pig slurry storage2. Stored pig slurry aeration.3. Flushing of cattle slurry liquidfraction.4. Composting of cattle manure byturning.5. Composting of cattle slurry solidfraction by turning.6. Covered lagoon.7. Diet adjustment in laying hens.Rumen and methaneIn the ruminants’ nutrition area, research institutions (UPV, CSIC-EEZ, UPM, NEIKER,ULE) are working on the effect of using different feeding strategies as well as nutritionaladditives on CH4emissions by ruminants. This covers the inclusion of lipids, different typesof carbohydrates (RTA2011-00107-C02-02) and antimicrobial additives in the diet as effectivestrategies for reducing enteric CH4emissions (SMEthane FP7-project Asignificant research effort is also underway in the microbial ecosystem area within the rumenand the response of such an environment to the different treatments (METANORUMEN FP7–Marie Curie; AGL2008-04707-C02). Respiration chambers and modelling are routinely usedin these projects.As part of the Feeding and Nutrition Network (FNN) within LRG, the Spanish partners arecontributing by providing experimental data and expertise to develop Standard OperatingProcedures (SOP) for conducting and assessing in vitro and in vivo experiments for evaluatingnutrition-related enteric methane and nitrogen losses mitigation practices.Figure2. The mobile environmental monitoring unitFigure 3. Set of 4 chambers to measureCH4and CO2production at EEZ, CSIC,Granada.Nitrous oxide emissions from grazing and manureapplication to soilResearch groups (CIAM, UPM) have been measuring N2O emissionsfrom both grazed grasslands and from application of manure tograsslands (e.g. SUM2006-00017-C03-03) and croplands. The workincludes looking at treatments of digested manure, the additionof nitrification inhibitors or using different irrigation strategies. Arecent meta-analysis by UPM revealed that among the potentialmeasures to mitigate N2O emissions in Spanish Mediterraneancropping systems, replacing synthetic with organic fertilizers (e.g.animal manures) was very effective in reducing emissions. Figure 4. N2O measurements in grasslands using the closedchamber technique.
  5. 5. Modelling approachesA model to mechanistically predictCH4emissions from small ruminants(goats) has been recently developedby UPV researchers under the INIAProject (RTA2011-00107-C02-02). Themodel has been set up to simulateindoor facilities in which goats canbe fed mixed rations. The modelwas evaluated using informationfrom different experiments andliterature. This model is underfurther development with the aim ofintroducing more inputs related to dietcharacteristics and their mechanismof action in the rumen along withpotentially faeces emissions. Thison-going work needs collaborativeintegration with other institutionsand we would welcome contact frominterested researchers.For the housing stages, software toestimate CH4and N2O emissions fromcattle, swine and poultry facilitiesare currently being developed aspart of the BATFARM project (Fig 6).A preliminary version of the modelwill be presented in the next GGAAconference in Dublin.A new modelling framework(LANDGHG) is currently beingdeveloped by the BC3 (projectCGL2009-10176) simulating novelsystem-based mitigation strategiesto reduce GHGs within and betweenmultifunctional land-use elementsof a landscape. This includes theintegration of N and C flows andlosses through farm sub-models fordairy, pigs, poultry, arable crops (forfood, feed or bioenergy) or grasslandssystems. Also, sub-models tosimulate treatment of resulting farmmanure with other by-products (e.g.plant residues), such as composting oranaerobic co-digestion, are integratedwithin the LANDGHG framework (Fig7). So far, different sub-models havealready been created and used: (i) toassess the carbon footprint of milkproduced in confinement systems(from cradle to the farm gate) and (ii) toexplore potential strategies, includinganaerobic co-digestion of manure,which can help to decrease GHGemissions without producing pollutionswapping (e.g. NH3o NO3- leaching). Avery novel addition is currently beingconstructed in order to incorporatea qualitative-based scoring system,similar to that from the SIMSDAIRYmodel, to assess other ecosystemservices delivered or jeopardised bythe different farming systems studied.Figure 5. Panel of the LabVIEW program for monitoring gas analyser and the flow meter (appearing inComputers and Electronics in Agriculture).Figure 6. Model validation for CH4production (appearing in Computers and Electronics in Agriculture).Figure 7. Diagram showing an example of LANDGHG sub-models for different farming activitiesinteracting with each other.
  6. 6. Manure Management NetworkThe first meeting of the MM Network tookplace during early September 2012 in Romeand was attended by representatives from 12countries.Initial areas of focus for the MM Networkwere agreed to be:• Develop a best practice guide to measureemissions from manure in all stages ofthe manure chain• Make a position paper and leaflet to beused for external communication dealingwith goals, role, position/boundaries etc.• Make a shopping list on practicalmitigation options for farmers and policyOne of the themes in the Global Agenda ofAction of the Livestock Dialogue of FAO is‘reduced discharge of animal manure’. Thegoal of this theme is: Reducing nutrientoverload and greenhouse gas emissionsthrough cost effective recycling andrecovery of nutrients and energy containedin animal manure. The MM network agreedto cooperate with the Livestock Dialogueon this theme and to develop and executea new joint working program: the ManureManagement Improvement Program.For more information about the ManureManagement Network, please contactthe co-coordinator Theun Vellinga ( The meeting report isavailable on the global research alliancewebsite ( Feed and Nutrition Network (FNN)The Network on ‘Feed and Nutrition inRelation to Greenhouse Gas Emissions’is currently led by Switzerland and theNetherlands. At the start-up workshop,September 2012 in Zurich, 17 delegates of 14from 23 countries discussed the network’sscope, aims and activities. The FNN focusesprimarily on summarizing and utilizingwork on mitigating methane emissionsfrom ruminants by nutritional means todevelop sound recommendations for stake-holders and to identify future researchpriorities. Summarizing and utilizing workon manure characteristics and nitrogenexcretion as influenced by nutrition is a goalUpdates from the Networksas well. A dialogue concerning a potentialcollaboration with FAO and with the manuremanagement network, especially on using,extending and updating existing databaseswill be started at the 2nd FNN meetingon June 27, 2013 aligned with the GGAA2013 conference in Dublin. Ideas on how toelaborate the planned best practice lists tobe used for conducting and assessing in vitroand in vivo experiments will be presentedin Dublin. Goals and medium- to long-termactivities of the FNN will also be discussed.We encourage interested countries to jointhe network. For more information contactthe network co-coordinator Michael Kreuzer( or visitthe new network website ( Microbial Genomics (RMG)NetworkRecentactivitieshavefocussedonbroadeningthe links to overseas collaborative RumenMicrobial Genomics programmes. TheRMG Network website ( now links directly through to the
  7. 7. RuminOmics and SMEthane websites. TheRuminOmics programme (, co-ordinated by Professor John Wallace(University of Aberdeen, Scotland) aims toconnect the animal genome, gastrointestinalmicrobiomes and nutrition to improvedigestion efficiency and the environmentalimpacts of ruminant livestock production.The SMEthane programme (, co-ordinated by Dr David Yáñez-Ruiz(CSIC, Spain), aims to provide a technologyplatform for Small and Medium Enterprises(SMEs) to develop the successful use ofnutritional additives to reduce methaneemissions from ruminants.Other work over the past months focusedon the development of the agenda andorganisational requirements for the jointRuminOmics and RMG Network Workshopto be held in Dublin, Ireland on 22nd June2013 immediately before the GGAA 2013conference. This joint workshop has beenentitled ‘Harmonisation of techniquesassociated with ruminal genome,microbiome and metagenome analysis’ –the outcome of the analysis often dependson the details of the techniques used: Howshould samples of ruminal digesta be taken?And when? How should they be stored?How should DNA be extracted? Followingextraction, several methods are availablefor analysing the community, but are they allvalid? How best can we use NGS to achieveour objectives in this respect? And how doesmetagenomic sequence data from massivelyparallel sequencing help us to analyse thestructure and activity of the community?Further information on pre-conferenceworkshops is available at first RMG Network newsletter wassent to network members (,listing,8,rmg-network-newsletter.html). It included areport from Dr Christina Moon (AgResearchLimited) who attended the RuminOmicsworkshop in France and a report from DrGemma Henderson (AgResearch Limited)who was an invited speaker at the inauguralInternational Symposium on Microbiologyand Biotechnology held in Brazil. Otherarticles covered the internship of VincenzoLopreiato to AgResearch from the CatholicUniversity of Piacenza, Italy, during which hefocussed on methodologies for measuringgreenhouse gas emissions from ruminantsand potential methane mitigation researchareas.Animal Health NetworkThe UK-led proposal on establishing a globalresearch network to explore the synergiesbetween efforts to reduce animal diseaseand reducing GHG emissions intensitywas presented and approved at the LRGmeeting in Uruguay in November 2012.The proposal was based on outcomes froma UK-funded scoping workshop held inBangkok in June 2012 where participantsconcluded that a well-connected networkwould be of considerable value as this is anemerging concept with significant scope fordevelopment.UK researchers are currently conducting aliterature review to collect evidence of linksbetween animal health measures and GHGabatement opportunities across differentregions of the world and to assess wherethere is greatest scope to reduce GHGemissions intensity. This work will form apaper for submission to a relevant academicjournal and provide useful scientificbackground to inform the developmentof the Animal Health Network. A start-upmeeting for the network will be held in thecoming months providing an opportunity toshare information on research and discussthe exciting possibilities for this new LRGwork area. Anyone interested in attendingthe meeting or becoming a member of thenetwork should contact Selection, Genetics and GenomicsNetworkASGGN membership now comprises morethan 200 researchers, advisers and policymakers from 40 countries. Members areaffiliated to more than 70 organisationsincluding Universities, National Researchorganisations, and Private Researchorganisations, Consultancies andGovernment Departments and Agencies.Several collaborative initiatives are beingdeveloped:1) A Working Group of members fromAustralia, Brazil, Canada, Denmark,Netherlands, New Zealand and USA ispreparing a position paper on methanephenotyping in ruminants.2) Projects aligned with the RumenMicrobial Genomics Network are beingprogressed in New Zealand.3) An Australian project will includealignment with New Zealand high and lowmethane sheep selection lines.4) An animal genomics project between NewZealand and The Irish Agriculture andFood Development Authority (TEAGSC) isin place.5) Formal collaboration has beenestablished between Canada and NewZealand.6) A group of European researchers isprogressingalargemulti-nationalgeneticevaluation of methane measurements ondairy cattle.The next Network meeting is scheduledfor June 2013, in Dublin, following theGreenhouse Gases in Animal AgricultureConference. The agenda will cover acombination of science and business.For further information about the Networksee the website or contactGrant Shackell Grasslands Research NetworkThe last LRG meeting in Uruguay agreedto explore the potential scope and benefitsof a Research Network on Grasslands,led by Uruguay. To further progress thesediscussions, an expert workshop will beheld on 27 June in Dublin to further discussthe potential scope, benefits, priorities,alignment with other existing initiatives,and operation of such a network, with theaim of making a formal proposal to the LRG.Experts interested in participating in thisworkshop should contact the convenors ofthe workshop, Veronica Ciganda and GonzaloBecoña, or the organisational supportperson
  8. 8. JIRCAS (Japan InternationalResearch Centre for AgriculturalSciences) is the national instituteof Japan that undertakes researchon agriculture, forestry andfisheries technology in Japan aswell as developing countries intropical and subtropical regions.JIRCAS aims to:1. provide solutions for global foodsecurity/supply and environmentalproblems through innovative technologydevelopment; and2. through international collaboration andcooperation publishes information toillustrate global trends in agriculture,forestry, fisheries and farming systems.JIRCAS currently funds projects in Paraguay,Ethiopia, Vietnam, Ghana, Uzbekistan,Indonesia and Thailand. JIRCAS’s mainactivities are:1. International Collaborative Research2. Dispatch and Invitation of Researchers3. Research Planning and Evaluation4. Cooperation with Developing RegionsOne project funded by JIRCAS that is justbeing completed is called ‘GreenhouseGases and Sustainable Agriculture inSoutheast Asia’ and has involved Thailand,Indonesia and Vietnam. In recent months,project symposiums have taken place ineach country to report key project findings.Highlights of meetings in Vietnam andIndonesia are included here.International Symposium on GreenhouseGases and Sustainable Agriculture inSoutheast Asia – 20 November 2012, CanTho University of Vietnam.Nguyen Van Thu and Nguyen Huu Chiem,Can Tho UniversityThe International Symposium on GreenhouseGases and Sustainable Agriculture inSoutheast Asia was organized by JIRCAS atCan Tho University of Vietnam in November20, 2012. The objectives of the Symposiumwere to share research outcomes relatingto monitoring and mitigation technologiesof GHGs from paddy rice and livestockproduction in Southeast Asia and exchangeideas for future technological developmentrequired among researchers in the region.The workshop was supported by the CanTho University. Twenty eight scientists,researchers and lecturers from Institutionsacross Japan, Thailand, Indonesia andVietnam participated.The JIRCAS Program Director Dr. TomoyukiKawashima gave the opening remarks forthe Symposium which had four sessions:1) monitoring and mitigation of GHGsin livestock sector; 2) monitoring andmitigation of GHGs from paddy field; 3)cross-cutting session; 4) general discussionon future research collaborations andsolutions to mitigate the GHGs in agriculturalproduction. Fifteen papers were presentedat the Symposium relating to paddy rice andlivestock, which are the major agriculturalgreenhouse gas sources in the region.Fig 1; delegates at the workshop in VietnamJIRCASJapan International Research Centre for Agricultural Sciences
  9. 9. The Indonesian Government has commited to reduce GHGemisions by at least 26% below business as usual by 2020,and more with international help. One of the key steps in GHGemissions mitigation is data inventory. The aim of this JIRCASfunded project was to identify and then quantify the biggestcontributors to agricultural GHG emisions in order to understandthe options available to mitigate GHG emissions from livestock;methane emissions from ruminants and manure managementhave been the projects main focus.Research to reduce CH4has been undertaken in different animaland feed types, producing data that could be used to predict CH4production from local ruminants (beef cattle, buffalo and sheep)fedlocalfeedbasedondrymatterintake(DMI).Dietmanipulationhas also been studied with consideration of the feed processing,additivesandfeedsupplementsandactivesecondarycompoundsin locally available plants (tannin, saponnin) to determine theeffect on CH4emissions. Measurements of CH4emissions weretaken using the face-mask technique; findings indicate a largevariance between systems relative to the IPCC default emissionfactors. The next steps identified are to improve the accuracy ofemission factors (for local breed and feed resources), suitable forIndonesian conditions.Manure is a large source of GHG emissions (N2O and CH4) inIndonesia, and mitigation research is well advanced in the areaof biogas capture to generate energy from faeces. The by-productfrom biogas can be used as an effective fertilizer. However,research has found that uptake and adoption of this technologyto mitigate emissions is still low (67%) due to undurable materialused or inapropriate construction/technology (size/capacity).The next step for this research is to integrate research findingsto develop a model that considers emissions along the manurecontinuum.International workshop on datainventory and mitigation oncarbon emissions and nitrogencycling from livestock in IndonesiaApril 24, 2013, Jakarta, IndonesiaFig 2; delegates at the workshop in Indonesia
  10. 10. The New Zealand Government has announced funding forsenior scientists to participate in an exchange programme toenhance collaboration and the building of mutually beneficialresearch partnerships between New Zealand and other GlobalResearch Alliance countries.Focus areas• Methane emissions from livestock and livestock wastes• Nitrous oxide emissions from livestock wastes• Enhancement of pastoral soil carbon sinks• Integrated whole farming systems impacts at all scales asthey relate to livestock emissions.• National inventory development as it relates to livestockemissionsEligibilityTo be eligible, you must:• Have a PhD or be a scientist with at least 5 years experienceparticipating in/leading major projects that align to thepriorities of LEARN, the Alliance or other relevant nationalstrategies.• Demonstrate impact and leadership in your professionalfield.• Be able to contribute to scientific research and its applicationin your home region and the larger Alliance network, basedon your networking record.• Work in collaboration with a New Zealand researchorganisation.• Be resident and normally employed on a permanent contractby a research organisation in an Alliance member country.• Be fluent in English.FundingThe exchange must be between 6 weeks and 6 monthsduration.• Up to $30,000 for 6 months (pro rata for less than 6 months)will be provided to recipients to cover actual and reasonableliving expenses.• Up to $5,000 will be provided for economy airfares andtravel/medical insurance.• Up to $5,000 will be awarded for associated research costs.For more details refer to the LEARN Website:www.livestockemissions.netOr Email the New Zealand Agricultural Greenhouse GasResearch Centre: ResearchAlliance SeniorScientist (GRASS)AwardSupporting research inAgricultural Greenhouse GasesThe Norman E. Borlaug International Agricultural Science andTechnology Fellowship Program aims to promote food securityand economic growth by increasing scientific knowledge andcollaborative research to improve agricultural productivity. Itaccomplishes this by:• Providing training opportunities for early and mid-careerresearchers and policymakers from developing and middle-income countries;• Fostering collaborative research to improve agriculturalproductivity;• Facilitating the transfer of new science and agriculturaltechnologies to strengthen agricultural practices• Addressing obstacles to the adoption of technology, such asineffectual policies and regulations.The program is administered by USDA’s Foreign AgriculturalService.Priority Research AreasAreas of training and research can be in any agriculture-related field including plant pathology, entomology, veterinarysciences, microbiology, agricultural economics, foodsafety, sanitary and phytosanitary topics, natural resourcesmanagement, agricultural biotechnology, global climatechange, and agricultural policy. Allowable training topics varyby country and year and can be found in the country-specificapplication announcements posted on the website.Eligibility for the Borlaug Fellowship Program• Citizens of country in which the Borlaug FellowshipProgram is offered• Early to middle stage of their professional career• Good working knowledge of the English language• Minimum of a Master’s degree• Two or more years of practical work experience andcurrently employed in an university, government, non-profit, or private agricultural research entity in the recipientcountry.• Demonstrate intention to continue working in the homecountry after completing their Borlaug fellowship in the U.SFor more details refer to the Borlaug Website: email: Susan.Sadocha@fas.usda.govUSDA BorlaugFellowship Program
  11. 11. Fig 2; Dr Rod Venterea at Lincoln UniversityProfessor Peter Buurman has unique expertisein soil organic matter studies and pyrolysis-GC/MS analysis, which he shared with scientists fromacross New Zealand during his 6-week fellowship inFebruary/March this year.Massey University recently invested in a pyrolysis GC/MS spectrometerwhich is without doubt the most effective way to measure soil organicchemistry, and Peter came to New Zealand to provide intense trainingto users of the machine. While based at Massey University, Peter alsoinvited scientists from Landcare Research and Waikato University tolearn about soil organic carbon; his lectures brought over 30 specialiststogether and facilitated closer collaboration across New Zealand inthis area of science.Dr. Rodney Venterea is on a 3-month stay at Lincoln University withThe benefits of a GRASS Award seen through the eyes of tworecent recipients, Professor Peter Buurman from WageningenUniversity and Dr Rod Venterea from the USDAProfessor Tim Clough. Rod is a soil scientist with the U.S. Departmentof Agriculture’s Research Service and Professor at the University ofMinnesota with expertise in soil nitrogen transport and transformationand greenhouse gas measurement and modeling. The objective of thefellowship is to examine the role of the nitrite molecule in regulatingsoil nitrous oxide (N2O) production. Nitrite is a central substratemediating several different N2O producing mechanisms includingboth biological and abiotic pathways. In many circumstances, nitrite ispresent at low concentrations, and is often overlooked in experimentalstudies examining soil transformation and N2O production. However,because of its high reactivity and central role, nitrite can be quiteimportant as a regulator of N2O production; its occurrence has beenfound to be important in intensively fertilized cropped soils. With theassistance of Dr. Shabana Shah, experiments have been set up to studythese processes in concentrated urine patches using two New Zealandsoils with contrasting properties.Fig 1; Prof Peter Buurman delivering his lecture on SOCFig 3; Both scientists brought their families with them to New Zealandto enjoy the extended summertime
  12. 12. • 20th Association for the Advancementof Animal Breeding and Genetics(AAABG) Conference 2013 to be held inNapier, New Zealand, 20 - 23 October• 64th meeting of the EuropeanFederation of Animal Science, to beheld in Nantes, France, 26th-30thAugust 2013.• 2nd Asian-Australasian Dairy GoatConference 2014 (AADGC), will be heldBogor, Indonesia, 3-6 April, 2014.• 5th International Symposium onAnimal Functional Genomics will beheld in Brazil, 8th -11th Sept 2013• 22nd International GrasslandsCongress, 15-19 September 2013,Sydney, http://www.igc2013.comFunding Opportunity:The Research Fellowships and ConferenceSponsorship. It is offered by the OECD. Itis open to Austria, Australia, Belgium,Canada, Chile, Czech Republic, Denmark,Finland, Germany, Hungary, Ireland,Italy, Japan, Korea, Netherlands,New Zealand, Norway, Poland, SlovakRepublic, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland,United Kingdom, United States.Focus areas• Methane emissions from livestock and livestock wastes• Nitrous oxide emissions from livestock wastes• Enhancement of pastoral soil carbon sinks• Integrated whole farming systems impacts at all scales as they relate to livestockemissions.• National inventory development as it relates to livestock emissionsEligibilityTo be eligible, you must:• Have gained a PhD in the last 5 years.• Be a high achieving researcher (supported by academic transcripts, letters ofrecommendation and publishing record).• At the time of application be employed in an area of research aligned with livestockGHG emissions mitigation in your home country.• Have the support of your employer to apply for the Fellowship.FundingThe Scholarship is awarded for up to two years with an expected minimum duration of12 months.• NZ$50,000 per year for a maximum of two years.• Up to $5,000 will be provided for economy airfares and travel/medical insurance.For more details refer to the LEARN Website: or email theNew Zealand Agricultural Greenhouse Gas Research Centre: New Zealand Government in support of the goals of theGlobal Research Alliance is funding postdoctoral fellowshipsfor emerging scientists from developing countries to benefitfrom working on a research project mentored by a New Zealandresearcher while being based at a New Zealand institution. TheFellow must be employed in a research post in their home countryto receive the award.LEARN PostdoctoralFellowshipUpcomingconferences