Red Top is an example of a crop farm in the watershed. Agriculture is the primary land use due to the prime farmland (map). Approximately 86 percent of the watershed is under corn and soybean cultivation while 6 percent is deciduous forest, and the remaining is wetlands, grassland, and farmsteads (land use map). A unique water quality demonstration project is under way in the watershed at Red Top Farm.

"If there is something coming out of my tile lines I want to be the first to know about it" says Rob Meyer, a Oshawa Township landowner. His Red Top Farm fields are being continuously monitored for water quality as part of an agricultural research project. This ninety-acre research field provides a unique opportunity to study the quality and quantity of water and agricultural chemicals moving through the subsurface tile drainage system.

Using simple conservation practices to reduce nitrogen leaching into groundwater and surface water resulted in a significant reduction in fertilizer inputs, maintained yields, and appears to have decreased nitrogen losses by 40 to 50 percent. Additionally, the results have been extremely positive for the majority of pesticide products that have been studied since 1996. The overall concept of Red Top Farm has proven to be a highly effective educational approach for farmers, agricultural professionals, and the non-agricultural community. The site has hosted many educational field days and has been featured in numerous agricultural magazines and newspaper articles. Next

red top farm
Red Top Farm Research Fields
monitoring equipment
Monitoring equipment at Red Top
field day      
Watershed Field Day at Red Top Farm
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