Theses and Dissertations

Issuing Body

Mississippi State University

Advisor

Mark D. McConnell

Committee Member

Xiaofei Li

Committee Member

Kristine O. Evans

Committee Member

Mark Rey

Date of Degree

8-6-2021

Original embargo terms

Visible to MSU only for 2 years

Document Type

Graduate Thesis - Campus Access Only

Major

Wildlife, Fisheries and Aquaculture

Degree Name

Master of Science

College

College of Forest Resources

Department

Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Aquaculture

Abstract

Intense agriculture is detrimental to the environment and leads to nutrient runoff, decreased water quality, soil erosion, greenhouse gas emissions, and decreased wildlife habitat. In addition to negative environmental impacts, intense agriculture increases the financial strain on farmers. Farmers also face inconsistent yields from environmentally vulnerable lands. Due to these financial constraints and inconsistent yields, conservation goals are not always economically attractive to farmers and agricultural producers. One possible solution to this issue is the use of precision agriculture (PA) to inform strategic conservation efforts. We used PA technology to identify low-revenue field areas in the Mississippi Delta and Black Prairie regions. We created spatially explicit revenue maps and overlaid it with the Biologist Ranking Index (BRI) to illustrate where economic and conservation opportunities overlap. Our results indicate that, on average, upwards of 20.1% of the Black Prairie and 18.0% of the Mississippi Delta generate less revenue than conservation enrollment.

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