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Natural Resources

Title Summary Date ID Author(s)
A Glossary of Water-Related Terms

The definitions and associated explanations of water-related terms presented here are intended to provide the reader with a working knowledge of terms that apply to Virginia's water resources. The list is designed to assist the user in understanding and interpreting water related information that may come from sources as varied as governmental agencies, environmental groups, or the news media. While terms and definitions are fairly consistent, some terminology presented here could be defined differently to describe water resources issues in other locations.

May 1, 2009 442-758
A Landowner's Guide To Working With Sportsmen In Virginia May 1, 2009 420-035
Consider Logging Residue Needs for BMP Implementation When Harvesting Biomass for Energy

Utilization of woody biomass for energy has increased
substantially in Virginia. While there are a number of
definitions for biomass, woody biomass from forest harvesting
operations typically refers to logging residues
such as limbs, tops, and other unmerchantable material
that would otherwise be left behind on-site after the logging
operation is complete. Logging residues are typically
chipped and then transported to facilities where
they are used for fuel. Biomass harvesting in Virginia
most commonly occurs on integrated harvesting operations
where roundwood and biomass are harvested and
utilized at the same time in a single operation.

Aug 7, 2014 ANR-108NP
Decentralized Small Community Wastewater Collection Systems Jul 10, 2014 BSE-77P
Greywater Reuse Apr 30, 2014 BSE-114NP
Growing American Ginseng (Panax quinquefolius) in Forestlands Jan 13, 2011 354-313
Guide to Threatened and Endangered Species on Private Lands In Virginia Oct 5, 2010 420-039
Household Water Quality in Caroline County, Virginia

 In October 2013, residents from Caroline County participated in a drinking water testing clinic sponsored by the local Virginia Cooperative Extension (VCE) office and the Virginia Household Water Quality Program. Clinic participants received a confidential water sample analysis and attended educational meetings where they learned how to interpret their water test results and how to address potential issues. According to survey data, 41 samples were tested, serving 94 individuals. The most common household water quality issues identified were high levels of lead and sodium, as well as the presence of acidic water and total coliform bacteria. Figure 1, found at the end of this report shows these common water quality issues along with basic information on standards, causes, and treatment options. 

Aug 19, 2014 BSE-152NP
Hydrology Basics and the Hydrologic Cycle

 This fact sheet presents and explains some common concepts in hydrology and the hydrologic cycle. The science or study of hydrology focuses on the distribution, occurrence, circulation, and properties of water in the environment. At its most basic level, hydrology is often defined as the study of water; however, basic concepts in hydrology quickly become complex as they are applied to real-world systems to understand and predict what is occurring. This fact sheet summarizes these complex relationships and highlights important applications of hydrologic concepts in agroecosystems, including conservation of soil water in the vadose zone1 to support crop production and water quality

Nov 9, 2015 BSE-191P
Implementation: What Happens after the TMDL (Total Maximum Daily Load) is Developed?

A TMDL, or total maximum daily load defines the total pollutant loading a water body can receive and still meet applicable water quality standards. (Italicized terms are defined in the boxes at the bottom of each page.) A TMDL equation is developed from a study that identifies the sources of a particular pollutant in a watershed, the pollutant contribution from each source, and the pollutant reduction required to attain and maintain water quality standards. In TMDL calculations, all identified sources of the particular pollutant are quantified, including both point and nonpoint sources of pollution. Because some TMDL calculations involve assumptions and professional judgment, TMDLs also include a margin of safety to account for uncertainty. (See TMDLs [Total Maximum Daily Loads]: Terms and Definitions, Virginia Cooperative Extension publication 442-550, http://pubs.ext.vt.edu/442-550/.)

May 1, 2009 442-559
Invasive Exotic Plant Species Identification and Management Mar 18, 2015 420-320(AREC-106P)
Invasive Plants -- A Horticultural Perspective

Invasive nonnative (nonindigenous) plants are the subject of a considerable amount of attention and debate. Stories about invasive plants are now common in the popular media. As purchasers of nonindigenous plants that have the potential to invade natural areas, consumers are links in the distribution chain of invasive plants. Other links are those who import, propagate, transport, and sell nonindigenous plants. Ultimately, the result is a potential impact on our natural environment.

Apr 28, 2009 426-080
Landowner's Guide to Managing Streams in the Eastern United States May 1, 2009 420-141
Lean Inventory Management in the Wood Products Industry: Examples and Applications Sep 28, 2010 420-148
Mitigation of Greenhouse Gas Emissions in Agriculture Apr 2, 2014 BSE-105P
Nitrogen and Sulfur Leaching Potential in Virginia Jun 19, 2015 CSES-125NP
Planting and Managing Switchgrass for Forage, Wildlife, and Conservation

Switchgrass is a tall-growing, warm-season, perennial grass that is native to much of the United States including Virginia. Switchgrass (SG) was widespread in open areas before settlers populated an area and remained in one place year after year. Their livestock were free roaming and would graze the new switchgrass growth in the spring before the new plants were tall enough to withstand defoliation. This mismanagement weakened the stands and eventually led to their demise. They were replaced by cool-season grasses introduced from other countries such as bluegrass, tall fescue, and orchardgrass. These cool-season grasses began growth much earlier in the spring so they could tolerate the early season grazing by cattle. As a result, the native warm-season grasses such as SG were destroyed and can now only be found growing wild in abandoned sites such as old cemeteries or roadways.

May 1, 2009 418-013
Poison Ivy: Leaves of three? Let it be!

Those who experience the blisters, swelling, and extreme itching that result from contact with poison ivy (Toxicodendron radicans), poison oak (Toxicodendron pubescens), or poison sumac (Toxicodendron vernix) learn to avoid these pesky plants. Although poison oak and poison sumac do grow in Virginia, poison ivy is by far the most common. This publication will help you identify poison ivy, recognize the symptoms of a poison ivy encounter, and control poison ivy around your home.

May 1, 2009 426-109
Rainwater Harvesting Systems May 9, 2014 BSE-116NP
Streamside Livestock Exclusion: A tool for increasing farm income and improving water quality

Did you know that livestock, like humans, prefer a clean water source and are healthier and more productive when they drink clean water? Virginia producers who have restricted or eliminated livestock access to streams and farm ponds and converted to a clean, alternative water source have observed increased livestock productivity, improved water quality, and restored stream banks on their farms. As a consequence, livestock stream exclusion practices are gaining popularity across Virginia. This publication, produced through the cooperation of Virginia Cooperative Extension and the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation, describes the findings, experiences, and successes of individual producers who are limiting livestock stream access.

Dec 13, 2012 442-766
TMDLs (Total Maximum Daily Loads) - Terms and Definitions

The definitions of TMDL-related terms presented here are intended to provide the reader with a working knowledge of terms that apply to Virginia's TMDL program. This is the first in a series of Virginia Cooperative Extension publications that deal specifically with TMDLs. The federal Clean Water Act requires States to develop TMDLs for streams, rivers, lakes and estuaries that do not or are not expected to meet applicable water quality standards. This glossary is designed to assist the reader in understanding and interpreting TMDL related information that may come from sources as varied as governmental agencies, environmental groups, consulting firms, or the news media.

May 1, 2009 442-550
TMDLs (Total Maximum Daily Loads) for Bacteria Impairments

A water-quality "impairment" exists if a body of water is unable to support its designated uses. (Italicized terms are defined in the boxes at the bottom of each page.) Virginia's water-quality standards specify that surface waters are either designated for "recreational use" (e.g., swimming, fishing, and boating) or "aquatic life use" (e.g., viable fishing populations). To support the "recreational use," the state sets numeric waterquality criteria for the maximum amount of bacteria in surface waters (Escherichia coli (E. coli)) for fresh water and enterococci for marine waters). When the concentration of bacteria exceeds the state-specified water-quality criteria, the water does not support the designated recreational use and is deemed to have a bacteria or pathogen impairment. E. coli and enterococci bacteria are found in the intestinal tracts and feces of warm-blooded animals, including humans. High counts of these bacteria indicate the presence of fecal contamination in water.

May 1, 2009 442-555
TMDLs (Total Maximum Daily Loads) for Benthic Impairments
"Benthic" refers to the aquatic organisms living in or on the bottom of a body of water. Benthic organisms include crayfish, aquatic snails, clams, leeches, aquatic worms, certain insect larvae and nymphs (e.g., mayflies, dragonflies), and adult aquatic insects (e.g., riffle beetles). Changes in water quality generally result in changes in the types, numbers, or diversity of the benthic community.

In general, a water quality "impairment" exists if a body of water does not support its designated uses. Italicized terms are defined in the boxes at the bottom of each page.

May 1, 2009 442-556
The Nutrient Value of Straw Jun 19, 2015 CSES-126NP
Urban Water-Quality Management - What Is a Watershed?

A watershed is an area of land that drains to a lake, river, wetland, or other waterway. When precipitation occurs, water travels over forest, agricultural, or urban/suburban land areas before entering a waterway. Water can also travel into underground aquifers on its way to larger bodies of water. Together, land and water make up a watershed system.

May 1, 2009 426-041
Using Reclaimed Water Apr 30, 2014 BSE-115NP
Virginia Citizen’s Guide to Environmental Credit Trading Programs: An Overview

Virginia has implemented several regulatory programs
to improve environmental quality and protect
Virginia’s diverse ecosystems. One approach to help
achieve Virginia’s environmental goals is through
the development of environmental credit trading
programs. These programs can complement pollution
control and environmental protection programs by
providing citizens, businesses, and local governments
with incentives and additional flexibility in achieving
how these requirements are met.

May 4, 2016 ANR-173P
Virginia Geospatial Extension Program -- GPS Utility: A User Guide for Natural Resource Professionals and Educators

GPS Utility is an easy-to-use software application that allows you to manage, manipulate, and map your GPS information. This is a “point-and-click” software package that is fairly user-friendly

May 1, 2009 303-202
Virginia Geospatial Extension Program -- Navigator: A User Guide for Natural Resource Professionals May 1, 2009 303-201
Virginia Master Naturalist, American Naturalists Jun 19, 2015 465-312(ANR-20NP)
Virginia Tech – U.S. Forest Service August 2015 Housing Commentary Part A: Current Data

Welcome to the inaugural Virginia Tech-U.S. Forest Service housing commentary. The goal of this commentary is to provide users with relevant data, straightforward analysis, and information about the United Sates housing market. 

August's housing data was truly mixed on a monthly basis. Permits, new sales, and construction spending all improved. Starts, existing sales, and completions decreased. From a regional perspective the data were similar. All data were positive on a year-over-year basis. 

Nov 10, 2015 ANR-166NP
Virginia Tech – U.S. Forest Service August 2015 Housing Commentary Part B: Current Markets

The Current Market segment contains information on status of the housing market as of August 2105’s end. Also included is a slide on lending; and private and government indicators. 

The Current market August 2105 section includes analysis by Dr. Jed Kolko, formerly chief economist with Trulia and who is now a consultant. He also is Senior Fellow with the Terner Center for Housing Innovation at the University of California-Berkley. In these slides he provides information on the composition of house sales; single-family rentals; household formation, and vacancies. 

Nov 10, 2015 ANR-167NP
Virginia Tech – U.S. Forest Service August 2015 Housing Commentary Part C: Demographics/Economics

The Demographic & Economics section includes information on incomes; employment; gross domestic product; United States and global economies; and demographics. 

Nov 11, 2015 ANR-168NP
Virginia Tech – U.S. Forest Service August 2015 Housing Commentary Part D: Forecasts

The US economy is relatively sheltered from the storms of the global economy. Exports accounted for just 14 percent of GDP in 2014, which is substantially less than most developed countries. But continued weakness abroad may have an impact on the United States. 

Nov 12, 2015 ANR-169NP
Water Reuse: Using Reclaimed Water for Irrigation

Water reuse can be defined as the use of reclaimed water for a direct beneficial purpose. The use of reclaimed water for irrigation and other purposes has been employed as a water conservation practice in Florida, California, Texas, Arizona, and other states for many years.

May 1, 2009 452-014