Agricultural Science

Causes of soil erosion

len Alfred Ajibola - Fri, 21st February, 2020 @ 6:36 PM

Topics in Agricultural Science

Soil formation in agricuture Economic empowerment through agricuture Management as a factor of production in agriculture Labor as a factor of production in agriculture Finance as a factor of production in agriculture Water as a factor of production in agriculture Land as a factor of production in agriculture Len Academy Agricultural Science midterm questions for JSS1, 2nd term Len Academy Agricultural Science midterm questions for jss2, 2nd term Clay soil explained with its types and characteristics Loamy soil explained with its characteristics Sandy soil: Characteristics of sandy soil and ways to make it fertile Soil explained with its composition Types of agricultural practices Crop rotation explained Benefits of crop rotation Differences between subsistence and commercial farming Subsistence farming explained with its characteristics What is commercial farming? Types of commercial farming Characteristics of commercial farming

Academic Questions in Agricultural Science

Please click here to see all Questions and Answers

The ideal pH for the optimum growth of most agricultural crop is between _____.

  • A. 1 – 3.5

  • B. 4 – 5.5

  • C. 6 – 7.5

  • D. 8 – 9.5

  • E. 10 – 11.5

  • F. 12 – 13.5

People who go about their lives by raising and herding livestock such as cattle, sheep and goats are said to practice _____.

  • A. Pastoralism

  • B. Pasturalism

  • C. Herding

  • D. Herdsmen

  • E. Animalism

  • F. Anime Farming

The act of giving birth in pigs is called _____.

  • A. Calving

  • B. Piggery

  • C. Kidding

  • D. Farrowing

  • E. Calfing

  • F. Pigging

Which of the following is not a vegetable?

  • A. Cashew

  • B. Cocumber

  • C. Tomatoes

  • D. Carrot

  • E. Squash

  • F. Eggplant

All plants are crops.

  • A. True

  • B. False

In agriculture, macronutrients are essential nutrients required by plants. Which of the following is not a macronutrient?

  • A. Zinc

  • B. Sulphur

  • C. Calcium

  • D. Phosphorus

  • E. Potassium

  • F. Magnesium

Which of the following is false concerning micronutrients?

  • A. They are non-essential nutrients

  • B. They are required by plants in minute quantities

  • C. Iron is a micronutrient

  • D. Chlorine is a micronutrient

  • E. Copper is a micronutrient

  • F. Boron is a micronutrient

_____ is a term that describes the biological, chemical and cultural control tactics employed to make pest management economical, environmentally friendly and socially acceptable.

  • A. Integrated Pest Management

  • B. Integral Pest Management

  • C. International Pest Management

  • D. Inclusive Pest Management

  • E. Imbibed Pest Management

  • F. Inclusion Pest Management

Causes of Soil Erosion:

Soil erosion is defined as a process that removes the topsoil through agents like water, wind, man and animals.

The causes of soil erosion can be natural or man-made. For instance, wind as a cause of soil erosion is natural while a lack of crop rotation practices (which also leads to soil erosion) is man-made.

Please read on ways to prevent soil erosion here.

Below are some explanations on the various causes of soil erosion:

1. Water

Rainfall is a natural cause of soil erosion. During the course of a heavy downpour, the force at which water droplets hit the soil may cause the breaking of the top soil and a resultant penetration of water into it. This can result in the exposure of the soil’s contents.

On a hilly land, a gully may be formed when water runs downhill. Subsequently, the runoff water creates a deep channel into the soil, giving rise to gully erosion. This is shown in the image below:

Gully Erosion - Len Academy

Please read on types of soil erosion here.

The runoff water also flushes the topmost nutrients of the soil down its path, depositing them into the riverbed.

2. Wind

A strong wind will bring about the loss of the topsoil, especially on soils whose structure had already been loosened up by erosion.

The chances of wind erosion are further enhanced when the land is bare; that is, not covered with plants or vegetation. For this reason, wind erosion is common in the desert (arid land) and lands with sandy soil.

Desert - Len Academy
Photo of a desert biome

Please read on deserts here.

It is worthy of note to state that of all soil types, sandy soil is most susceptible to wind erosion. This is as a result of its porous soil structure.

3. Lack of vegetation cover

The presence of a vegetation cover on a land aids in protecting it from soil erosion.

Vegetation cover on a land may be achieved by planting grasses, legumes or small green plants (generally called cover crops) on the land.

Understand that a cover crop is grown prior to the planting season. In short, they protect and prepare the soil for a new planting season.

Below is an image of two lands. In this image, the land (left) is not protected by cover crops while the land (right) had been been protected through the planting cover crops.

Cover Crops - Len Academy

The soil in forests have also got vegetation cover in the form of tall trees. These tall trees act as wind breaks, thus protecting the soil from water and wind erosion.

Please read on the tropical rainforest biome here.

4. Constant ploughing of land

When a land is constantly ploughed, its soil becomes susceptible to erosion. This is true because the particulate nature of the soil becomes exposed to water and wind erosions.

To plough a land means to loosen its soil in preparation for sowing or planting.

Please read on agricutural tools and their uses here.

5. Sloppiness of the land

The degree of sloppiness of a land will determine the level of soil erosion. For instance, a hilly slopped land is more likely to be eroded from runoff water as it moves down the slope.

The image below shows a sloped land:

Slopy Land - Len Academy

You can read on agricultural land and its uses here.

6. Lack of crop rotation

Crop rotation is a system of farming whereby different type of crops are grown on the same piece of land from one planting season to another.

You can read on agricultural terms and meanings here.

The continuous planting of one type of crop (termed mono cropping) on a piece of farmland will result in the loss of nutrients on the soil of such farmlands. Soils whose nutrients are lost are unable to support the growth of cover crops, thus making them exposed to water and wind erosion.

7. Overgrazing

Overgrazing is said to occur when cattle, sheep and goats excessively feed on plants present on a piece of land.

Overgrazing removes the vegetation cover from the top soil, subsequently exposing it to water and wind erosion.

You can read on asexual propagation in plants here.

8. Deforestation

Deforestation is a process whereby forest trees are cut down in a large scale.

You can attempt Len Academy agric science questions here.

Recall that the presence of forest trees on a farmland serves as protection from wind (wind breaks). In addition, the roots of these trees firmly hold the soil together, thus preventing it from been lost to wind erosion.

Eventually, the topsoil in a forest whose trees had been cut down become exposed to water and wind erosion.

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Amazing facts in Agricultural Science

Cows technically have one stomach, not four. However, a cow's stomach has four compartments. These are: rumen, reticulum, omasum and abomasum

Peanuts are legumes and not nuts

Although plants neither see nor hear, they can recognize their siblings and even give them preferential treatments

Squirrels do plant more trees (through their actions) than an average human in their lifetime. They often hide their acorns and nuts underground and forget about them

Cows have got the ability to walk up stairs, but not down stairs

A group of cows is called a team, drove or herd.

People just prefer to call them herd

Notable points in Agricultural Science

Below are characteristics of gymnosperms:

  1. Their seeds have cones that protect them.

  2. Sepals and petals aren't present in their cones.

  3. Stigma and style are absent.

  4. They do not produce fruits. Only seeds are formed.

  5. Companion cells are absent.

  6. Sporophyll form the cones.

  7. Anther and filament are absent.

  8. The ovules are not present in the ovary.

  9. Gymnosperms do not possess flowers.

  10. Please read on the anatomical differences between gymnosperms and angiosperms here

The flower is the reproductive organ in plants' sexual reproduction. In order to achieve a successful sexual propagation or reproduction in plants, the floral parts of the flower are utilized.

The floral parts of a flower consists of the followings:

  1. Sepals

  2. Petals

  3. Stamen

  4. Carpel

The stamen is male portion of a plant. It consists of the anther and filament.

The carpel (or pistil) is the female portion of the plant. It consists of the stigma, style and ovary.

Please read more on plants' sexual reproduction here

An organism will be considered a pest if it does one of the followings:

  • Attack crops and eat its seeds, roots, stem, leaves and flowers. Examples are locust and grasshoppers.

  • Cause damage to stored food, fruits or other agricultural produce. Some may even urinate or deaficate on these products. Examples are rodents, cockroaches and mice.

  • Attack and kill farm animals like goats, sheep and cattle. Examples are foxes, wild cats and snakes.

  • Act as disease vectors. A vector is an organism that carries parasite and other disease causing organisms, without being affected; but when they introduce the parasites into their host, such host becomes infected with disease. Examples of vectors are rodents and mosquitoes.

    Please read more on vectors of diseases here.

Below are the classification of crops based on their uses:

  • Oil crops

  • Vegetable crops

  • Latex crops

  • Drug and Medicinal crops

  • Beverage crops

  • Fibre crops

  • Fruit crops

  • Root and Tubers

  • Legumes

  • Spices

  • Cereals

All crops are plants but not all plants are crops. Below are some instances:

  • Weeds are considered as plants, not crops.

  • Parasitic plants are not necessarily crops. Examples of parasitic plants include mistletoe, corpse flower and striga.

  • Carnivorous or insectivorous plants are not necessarily crops. Examples are sundew, venus flytrap and pitcher plant. The image below shows a carnivorous plant (venus flytrap).

Venus flytrap - Len Academy


Meanwhile, always understand that all crops are plants, and they are grown for food, money or something beneficial.

Please read on plants versus crops here