This harmonized set of soil parameter estimates for the Upper Tana river catchment, Kenya. The data set was derived from the 1:250 000 scale Soil and Terrain Database for the Upper Tana (SOTER_UT, ver. 1.1; Dijkshoorn et al. 2011) and the ISRIC-WISE soil profile database, using standardized taxonomy-based pedotransfer (taxotransfer) procedures. The land surface of the Upper Tana, Kenya, covering some 18,900 km2, has been mapped in SOTER using 191 unique SOTER units. Each map unit may comprise of up to three different soil components. In so far as possible, each soil component has been characterized by a regionally representative profile, selected and classified by national soil experts. Conversely, in the absence of any measured legacy data, soil components were characterized using synthetic profiles for which only the FAO-Unesco (1988) classification is known. Soil components in SOTER_UT have been characterized using 146 profiles consisting of 109 real and 37 so-called synthetic profiles. The latter were used to represent some 18% per cent of the study area. Comprehensive sets of measured attribute data are seldom available for most profiles (109) collated in SOTER_UT, as these were not considered in the source materials. Consequently, to permit modelling, gaps in the soil analytical data have been filled using consistent taxotransfer procedures. Modal soil property estimates necessary to populate the taxotransfer procedure were derived from statistical analyses of soil profiles held in the ISRIC-WISE database. The current taxotransfer procedure only considers profiles in WISE that: (a) have FAO soil unit names (43) identical to those mapped for the Upper Tana in SOTER, and (b) originate from regions having similar Köppen climate zones (n= 5745). Property estimates are presented for 18 soil variables by soil unit for fixed depth intervals of 0.2 m to 1 m depth: organic carbon, total nitrogen, pH(H2O), CECsoil, CECclay, base saturation, effective CEC, aluminium saturation, CaCO3 content, gypsum content, exchangeable sodium percentage (ESP), electrical conductivity (ECe), bulk density, content of sand, silt and clay, content of coarse fragments (less than 2 mm), and volumetric water content (-33 kPa to -1.5 MPa). These attributes have been identified as being useful for agro-ecological zoning, land evaluation, crop growth simulation, modelling of soil carbon stocks and change, and studies of global environmental change. The soil property estimates can be linked to the spatial data (map), using GIS, through the unique SOTER-unit code; database applications should consider the full map unit composition and depth range.
Limited availability of P in soils to crops may be due to deficiency and/or severe P retention. Earlier studies that drew on large soil profile databases have indicated that it is not (yet) feasible to present meaningful values for “plant-available” soil P, obtained according to comparable analytical methods, that may be linked to soil geographical databases derived from 1:5 million scale FAO Digital Soil Map of the World, such as the 5 x 5 arc-minute version of the ISRIC-WISE database. Therefore, an alternative solution for studying possible crop responses to fertilizer-P applied to soils, at a broad scale, was sought. The approach described in this report considers the inherent capacity of soils to retain phosphorus (P retention), in various forms. Main controlling factors of P retention processes, at the broad scale under consideration, are considered to be pH, soil mineralogy, and clay content. First, derived values for these properties were used to rate the inferred capacity for P retention of the component soil units of each map unit (or grid cell) using four classes (i.e., Low, Moderate, High, and Very High). Subsequently, the overall soil phosphorus retention potential was assessed for each mapping unit, taking into account the P-ratings and relative proportion of each component soil unit. Each P retention class has been assigned to a likely fertilizer P recovery fraction, derived from the literature, thereby permitting spatially more detailed, integrated model-based studies of environmental sustainability and agricultural production at the global and continental level (< 1:5 million). Nonetheless, uncertainties remain high; the present analysis provides an approximation of world soil phosphorus retention potential.
The Soil and Terrain database for the Upper Tana River Catchment (version 1.1) (SOTER_UT_v1.1) at scale 1:250,000 was compiled to support the Green Water Credits (GWC) programme by creating a primary SOTER dataset for a hydrology assessment of the basin. The Kenya Soil Survey of the Kenya Agriculture Research Institute(KARI-KSS) and ISRIC-World Soil Information compiled the SOTER_UT dataset ... according to the standard SOTER methodology. The dataset includes both data of the original KENSOTER database (1:1M) for the Upper Tana Catchment and, new SOTER units and soil profile data taken from other, existing soil surveys mainly at scale 100,000 and from more detailed studies. The SOTER database was used for the hydrology assessment of Upper Tana basin using the model Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT)to quantify the impact of land management practices change in the basin's waterbalance.