Pedotransfer Functions for the Prediction of Soil Hydraulic Properties in Ekiti State, Southwestern Nigeria.



The knowledge of Soil hydraulic properties and processes leads to better predictions of both agricultural and environment impact. This research concentrates on hydraulic conductivity (K) as a function of soil water content and soil water sorptivity (Sw). The objective of this research is to determine, characterize and compare the relationship between measured and estimated (obtained by PTF) soil hydraulic properties in Ekiti State, forest vegetative zone of Nigeria. Measured Hydraulic conductivity and sorptivity were determined by a steady-state flow using an infiltration device (mini-disk infiltrometer). Pedotransfer models (PTF) for point and parametric (van Genuchten’s parameters) estimation of hydraulic conductivity and soil sorptivity from basic soil properties such as bulk density (BD), water holding capacity (WHC), soil moisture content (MW), cation exchange capacity (CEC), organic matter content (OMC) and were developed and validated using multiple-linear regression method. K and Sw predicted by the PTF models was highly significant using only BD, MW and WHC (r=0.774** and 0.803**) while models developed using BD, MW, WHC, OMC and CEC increased significance level of the relation between predicted and measured values of Sw (r=0.808**). Equation (3) was the best model for predicting K with R = 0.774, RMSE = 0.55, MAE = 0.42 and RE = 21.67 respectively. These models are adequate enough to predict hydraulic conductivity and soil water sorptivity in areas of similar climate and soil types. Keywords: pedotransfer, soil hydraulic properties, hydraulic conductivity, soil sorptivity, Ekiti State.

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