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2015-2017 Berry Fellows

2015-2017 Berry Fellows

The Thomas E. Berry Faculty Fellows Program in Integrated Water Research and Management recognizes Division of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources (DASNR) faculty, Extension educators, and district specialists who are making outstanding contributions in research, Extension, and/or education.

Click here for the Call for Applications, including criteria, terms, and eligibility.

Interesting read: New OSU Berry Fellows would make namesake ‘pleased’ (July 9, 2015 article by Don Stotts, Ag Communications Services)

2015-2017 Program

Youth Water Education and Water Fairs
(Cheryl Newberry, District Program Specialist-4H)

The Water Fair is a 2-3 hour educational program, usually delivered at a school. Classrooms rotate through 6-8 learning centers to experience activities related to various aspects of water conservation. Topics may include but are not limited to: aquifers, indoor water conservation, outdoor water conservation, rainfall simulation, the water cycle, bodies of water, xeriscape, water in the body, and the stream trailer, ground water model, nonpoint source pollution. This program can also be used for day camps, overnight camps, 4-H project groups, and more. County Extension Educators will involve other volunteers to help teach the sessions. Master Gardeners, 4-H teen leaders, 4-H volunteers, or other community leaders can be trained to teach these 20 minute lessons.

Additional Resources:


Field Deployable Water Filtration System with Bioinformatics and Pyrosequencing for Effective Monitoring and Survey of Water-Borne Viruses
(Francisco Ochoa-Corona, Associate Professor in Entomology and Plant Pathology)

Plant viruses serve as convenient research models for water-borne pathogens as they are non-infectious to humans and easily manipulated. Water-borne plant viruses exist in complex populations in both plants and water, and may pollute waterways and reservoirs naturally or be introduced intentionally. Detection of such viruses is complex due to water dynamics and dilution factors, therefore sensitivity and specificity are serious considerations for developing reliable detection and remediation.


On-Farm Subsurface Drip Irrigation: How does Soil Type Impact Efficiency and Management
(Jason Warren, Associate Professor of Plant and Soil Sciences)

During the past 4 years we have been using the subsurface drip irrigation (SDI) system at OPREC for our Research and Extension Program. This ongoing research is being conducted to evaluate water use of corn, sorghum, and winter wheat. We are also evaluating management practices such as the impact of driver accuracy in planting and row orientation on crop performance. These efforts have served to provide valuable information for producers in the Oklahoma Panhandle who are interested in adopting subsurface drip irrigation. It has also allowed us to build capacity in our expertise in general management of drip irrigation. However, given the novelty of this technology in the region there are a variety of other management questions that could be addressed. These include question related to fertility management, irrigation timing and application strategies as well as differences that may occur as a result of difference in soil type.


The Application of Fly Ash to Treat Storm Water around Poultry Houses
(Glenn Brown, Regents Professor of Biosystems and Agricultural Engineering)

For the last 11 years the author has explored the application of fly ash in urban stormwater bioretention cells (BRC). Class C fly ash, a byproduct of coal fueled electrical power plants, contains significant amounts of the metal oxides CaO, Al2O3, and Fe2O4. Those oxides will react with phosphorous to form relativity insoluble minerals, thus reducing the pollutant concentration in the effluent. Two USEPA 319(h) funded projects, administrated by the Oklahoma Conservation Commission and the Oklahoma Secretary of the Environment, have designed, constructed and quantified the long-term performance of 10 BRC in Oklahoma built in 2007 and amended with fly ash. Analysis has included RCRA screening, laboratory batch sorption and column experiments, 3-D flow and transport modeling, construction sampling, field hydraulic testing, and core and water sampling after seven years. Results of this work suggest that, with minor qualifications, fly ash should be given strong consideration for expanded use in urban stormwater filters to remove phosphorus.