WRAT has played a role in modeling projects for both the cropland and
rangeland portions of the
CEAP Watershed Studies.
The Conservation Effects Assessment Project (CEAP) began in 2003 as a
multi-agency effort to quantify the environmental benefits of conservation
practices used by private landowners participating in selected U.S. Department
of Agriculture (USDA) conservation programs. One component of this project
focused on assessment studies that include ARS Benchmark, Special Emphasis, and
Competitive Grants watersheds. The watershed studies provide a framework for
evaluating and improving performance of national assessment models.
The Leon River watershed was selected to address the specific resource concern
for manure management for dairy operations. WRAT completed a modeling study of
this watershed to examine the effects of conservation practices related to the
application of dairy manure to agricultural areas in the watershed.
The purpose of the Cowhouse Creek rangeland study is to understand how specific
conservation practices and suites of those practices affect overall watershed
health at the watershed scale. WRAT is part of an interdisciplinary project team
with Texas A&M and Texas AgriLife tasked with the study of this watershed.