Biology and Fertility of Soils

, Volume 16, Issue 1, pp 71–75 | Cite as

Effect of wax-coated calcium carbide and nitrapyrin on nitrogen loss and methane emission from dry-seeded flooded rice

  • D. G. Keerthisinghe
  • J. R. Freney
  • A. R. Mosier


The effectiveness of wax-coated calcium carbide (as a slow-release source of acetylene) and nitrapyrin in inhibiting nitrification and emission of the greenhouse gases N2O and CH4 was evaluated in a microplot study with dry-seeded flooded rice grown on a grey clay near Griffith, NSW, Australia. The treatments consisted of factorial combinations of N levels with nitrification inhibitors (control, wax-coated calcium carbide, and nitrapyrin). The rate of nitrification was slowed considerably by the addition of wax-coated calcium carbide, but it was inhibited only slightly by the addition of nitrapyrin. As a result, the emission of N2O was markedly reduced by the application of wax-coated calcium carbide, whereas there was no significant difference in rates of N2O emission between the control and nitrapyrin treatments. Both nitrification inhibitors significantly reduced CH4 emission, but the lowest emission rates were observed in the wax-coated calcium carbide treatment. At the end of the experiment 84% of the applied N was recovered from the wax-coated calcium carbide treatment compared with ∼ 43% for the nitrapyrin and control treatments.

Key words

Nitrification Denitrification Nitrification inhibitors 15N balance Nitrous oxide Greenhouse gases 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Alvey N, Galwey W, Lane P (1982) An introduction to Genstat. Academic Press, LondonGoogle Scholar
  2. Bacon PE, McGarity JW, Hoult EH, Alter D (1986) Soil mineral nitrogen concentration within cycles of flood irrigation: Effect of rice stubble and fertilization management. Soil Biol Biochem 18:173–178Google Scholar
  3. Bacon PE, Hoult EH, Lewin LG, McGarity JW (1988) Ammonia volatilization from drill sown rice bays. Fert Res 16:257–272Google Scholar
  4. Bacon PE, Lewin LG, McGarity JW, Hoult EH, Alter D (1989) The effect of stubble management and N fertilization practices on the nitrogen economy under intensive rice cropping. Aust J Soil Res 27:685–698Google Scholar
  5. Bergersen FJ (1980) Analysis of nitrogen fixation by direct means. In: Bergersen FJ (ed) Methods for evaluating biological nitrogen fixation. John Wiley and Sons, Chichester, pp 65–110Google Scholar
  6. Bouwman AF (1990) Exchange of greenhouse gases between terrestrial ecosystems and the atmosphere. In: Bouwman AF (ed) Soils and the greenhouse effect. John Wiley and Sons, Chichester, pp 60–127Google Scholar
  7. Bremner JM (1965) Total nitrogen. In: Black CA, Evans DD, White JL, Ensminger LE, Clark FE (eds) Methods of soil analysis, Part 2. Am Soc Agron, Madison, Wisconsin, pp 1149–1178Google Scholar
  8. Bremner JM, Blackmer AM (1978) Nitrous oxide: Emission from soils during nitrification of fertilizer nitrogen. Science 199:295–296Google Scholar
  9. Bremner JM, Blackmer AM,(1979) Effects of acetylene and soil water content on emissions of nitrous oxide from soils. Nature (London) 280:380–381Google Scholar
  10. Bremner JM, Blackmer AM, Bundy LG (1978) Problems in use of nitrapyrin (N-Serve) to inhibit nitrification in soils. Soil Biol Biochem 10:441–442Google Scholar
  11. Briggs GG (1975) The behaviour of the nitrification inhibitor “N-Serve” in broadcast and incorporated applications to soil. J Sci Food Agric 26:1083–1092Google Scholar
  12. Bronson KF, Mosier AR (1991) Effect of encapsulated calcium carbide on dinitrogen, nitrous oxide, methane, and carbon dioxide emissions from flooded rice. Biol Fertil Soils 11:116–120Google Scholar
  13. Bronson KF, Mosier AR, Bishnoi SR (1992) Nitrous oxide emissions in irrigated corn as affected by nitrification inhibitors. Soil Sci Soc Am J 56:161–165Google Scholar
  14. Bundy LG, Bremner JM (1973) Inhibition of nitrification in soils. Soil Sci Soc Am Proc 37:396–398Google Scholar
  15. Denmead OT (1991) Sources and sinks of greenhouse gases in the soilplant environment. Vegetatio 91:73–86Google Scholar
  16. Denmead OT, Freney JR, Simpson JR (1979) Nitrous oxide emission during denitrification in a flooded field. Soil Sci Soc Am J 43:716–718Google Scholar
  17. Freney JR, Bacon PE (1993) Nitrogen transformations in Australian rice soils. In: Clampett W (ed) Recent progress and future needs in nitrogen research in riee. NSW Agriculture and Fisheries, Griffith, NSW (in press)Google Scholar
  18. Freney JR, Denmead OT, Simpson JR (1978) Nitrous oxide emission from soils at low moisture contents. Soil Biol Biochem 11:167–173Google Scholar
  19. Freney JR, Denmead OT, Watanabe I, Craswell ET (1981) Ammonia and nitrous oxide losses following application of ammonium sulfate to flooded rice. Aust J Agric Res 32:37–45Google Scholar
  20. Freney JR, Smith CJ, Mosier AR (1992) Effect of a new nitrification inhibitor (wax coated calcium carbide) on transformations and recovery of fortilizer nitrogen by irrigated wheat. Fert Res 32:1–11Google Scholar
  21. Freney JR, Chen DL, Mosier AR, Rochester IJ, Constable GA, Chalk PM (1993) Use of nitrification inhibitors to increase fertilizer nitrogen recovery and lint yield in irrigated contton. Fert Res (in press)Google Scholar
  22. Goring CAI (1962) Control of nitrification by 2-chloro-6-(trichloromethyl) pyridine. Soil Sci 93:211–218Google Scholar
  23. Haynes RJ (1986) Mineral nitrogen in the plant-soil system. Academic Press, Orlando, FloridaGoogle Scholar
  24. Humphreys E, Muirhead WA, Melhuish FM, White RJG, Chalk PM, Douglas LA (1987a) Effects of time of urea application on combinesown Calrose rice in south-east Australia: II. Mineral nitrogen transformations in the soil-water system. Aust J Agric Res 38:113–127Google Scholar
  25. Humphreys E, Chalk PM, Muirhead WA, Melhuish FM, White RJG (1987b) Effects of time of urea application on combine-sown Calrose rice in south-east Australia: III. Fertiliser nitrogen recovery, efficiency of fertilisation and soil nitrogen supply. Aust J Agric Res 38:129–138Google Scholar
  26. Keeney DR (1983) Factors affecting the persistence and bioactivity of nitrification inhibitors. In: Meisinger JJ, Randall GW, Vitosh ML (eds) Nitrification inhibitors — potentials and limitations. Am Soc Agron spec publ 38, Madison, Wisconsin, pp 33–46Google Scholar
  27. Keeney DR, Nelson DW (1982) Nitrogen-inorganic forms. In: Page AL, Miller RH, Keeney DR (eds) Methods of soil analysis, Part 2. Chemical and microbiological properties. Am Soc Agron, Madison, Wisconsin, pp 643–698Google Scholar
  28. Knowles R (1979) Denitrification, acetylene reduction and methane metabolism in lake sediment exposed to acetylene. Appl Environ Microbiol 38:486–493Google Scholar
  29. Lewis DC, Stefanson RC (1975) Effect of “N-Serve” on nitrogen transformations and wheat yield in some Australian soils. Soil Sci 119:273–279Google Scholar
  30. Lindau CW, Patrick WH Jr, Delaune RD, Reddy KR (1990) Rate of accumulation and emission of N2, N2O and CH4 from a flooded rice soil. Plant and Soil 129:269–276Google Scholar
  31. Mikkelsen DS (1987) Nitrogen budgets in flooded soils used for rice production. Plant and Soil 100:71–97Google Scholar
  32. Minami K (1993) Effects of agricultural management on methane emission from rice paddies. Ecol Bull 42Google Scholar
  33. Mosier AR, Mack I (1980) Gas chromatographic system for preciese, rapid analysis of N2O. Soil Sci Soc Am J 44:1121–1123Google Scholar
  34. Northcote KH (1979) A factual key for the recognition of Australian soils. Rellim Tech Publ Glenside, South AustraliaGoogle Scholar
  35. Raimbault M (1975) Etude de l'influence inhibitrice de l'acetylene sur la formation biologique du methane dans un sol de rizière. Ann Microbiol (Inst Pasteur) 126A:247–258Google Scholar
  36. Rolston DE (1986) Gas flux. In: Klute A (ed) Methods of soil analysis, Part 1, Physical and mineralogical methods. Am Soc Agron, Madison, Wisconsin, pp 1103–1119Google Scholar
  37. Smith CJ, Brandon M, Patrick WH Jr (1982) Nitrous oxide emission following urea-N fertilization of wetland rice. Soil Sci Plant Nutr 28:161–171Google Scholar
  38. SMSS (1983) Keys to soil taxonomy. Soil Management Support Services, Tech Monogr no. 6, USDA, US Government Printing Office, Washington, DCGoogle Scholar
  39. Uppal KS, Banerjee NK, Goswami NN, Mosier AR (1990) Use of encapsulated calcium carbide to reduce denitrification losses in flooded rice from urea fertilizer as studied by direct N-15 measurements technique. Mitt Dtsch Bodenkd Ges 60:165–176Google Scholar
  40. Van Dijk DC (1961) Soils of the southern portion of the Murrumbidgee Irrigation Areas. CSIRO Australia, Soils and Land Use Series No. 40Google Scholar
  41. Vlek PLG, Byrnes BH (1986) The efficiency and loss of fertilizer in lowland rice. Fert Res 9:131–147Google Scholar
  42. Walter HM, Keeney DR, Fillery IR (1979) Inhibition of nitrification by acetylene. Soil Sci Soc Am J 43:195–196Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1993

Authors and Affiliations

  • D. G. Keerthisinghe
    • 1
  • J. R. Freney
    • 1
  • A. R. Mosier
    • 2
  1. 1.Division of Plant IndustryCSIROCanberraAustralia
  2. 2.Agricultural Research ServiceUnited States Department of AgricultureFort CollinsUSA

Personalised recommendations