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LIVING WITH THE LAND

SOIL

Soil Erosion

Erosion is the loss of soil from the land. It is a process that is always occuring but it can happen faster if we misuse the land.

The rate of erosion can be increased by

  • removing plant cover by burning pasture or felling trees, shelter belts or forests and by having too many animals on the land
  • bad cultivation practices
  • wind
  • frost
  • rain and water runoff and
  • extreme climatic effects e.g. Cyclone Bola.

Erosion can be like this.

Erosion can damage roads, bridges and fences. It can cause pollution of waterways and destroy stock when it occurs rapidly.

  • Find examples of erosion occuring in your local area.
  • Take photographs of these areas.
  • Explain why the erosion is occuring.
  • Find out what people are doing to:
    • prevent erosion occuring
    • reduce the effects of the erosion that has occured.
 
Erosion Experiment

Equipment: 2 square troughs or cut down
boxes lined with plastic, a watering can and
a litre milk container.

  • Cut a square of grass to fit into trough 1.
  • Fill trough 2 with loose loam or soil.
  • Set up each trough on an angle to
    simulate a hill.
  • Pour 2L of water from a watering can
    onto each trough just like heavy rain.
  • Observe what happens to each trough.

Did erosion occur? Why?

  • Do the same experiment with a fan
    blowing on the troughs.
  • What happens to the exposed soil?
  • Work out other experiments to show
    erosi
    on.