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David A. Mays, Ph.D

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Adjunct Professor of Agronomy


Program Area Affiliation: Environmental Soil and Water Sciences


Department of Biological and Environmental Sciences

Alabama A&M University

CCS-BW Room 212

P. O. Box 1208
Normal, AL 35762

Phone: 256-372-4229

Fax: 256-372-5429



Degrees Earned

B.S., M.S., Ph.D.  Agronomy, Pennsylvania State University, 1951, 1959, 1961



NRE 475/575 - Principles of Wetlands Three semester hours.  This course will explore the topic of wetlands as important environments, including their importance to surface and groundwater quality and to aquatic and terrestrial wildlife. The concept of using constructed wetlands for various waste treatment applications will also be explored.  The general principles of wetland delineation will be discussed. 


Research Interest

·Served as supervisor of the Tennessee Valley Authority's Agricultural Research Farm from 1963 through 1988.  Served as project leader for forage crop research and demonstrations from 1963 until 1973. This work included research on crop management and fertility practices for forages grown in the Tennessee Valley.  As part of this program, coastal bermudagrass sprigs were produced and distributed to more than 1,000 farmers for 3-acre demonstration plantings. 

·Conducted several coal strip mine re-vegetation activities in Alabama, Tennessee, and Kentucky over a 15-year period. This re-vegetation work included studies with grasses, legumes, trees, and fruit crops. 

·Evaluated the potential for using the waste heat in power plant condenser water for soil warming as a crop production input. This practice was investigated for a 6-year period for the production of various vegetables in field and greenhouse situations.

·Conducted waste management research from 1968 through 1988. Compost made from municipal solid waste, dry and fluid municipal sewage sludge, and several by-products from power plant stack gas desulphurization were evaluated for their effects on crop growth and yield and soil properties. 

·Conducted research from 1973 through 1988 to develop better crop management and soil fertility practices for the production of cotton, corn, soybeans, and wheat.

·Served as the TVA representative for Cooperative Research projects funded by TVA and conducted by the Universities in Alabama, Georgia, Virginia, Arizona and Oregon.  Conducted research on a variety adaptation and cultural practices for grape production in the Tennessee Valley from 1973 through 1985.

·Served as project leader for evaluation of biomass crops for alcohol, oil and solid fuel production in 1983 and 1984. 

·Directed a program of on-farm no-till planting demonstrations in five North Alabama counties from 1985 through 1987.  Investigated the use of winter annual cover crops to reduce or prevent leaching of soil nitrate remaining at the end of the summer growing season 1989-1991.  Investigated the use of constructed wetlands in surface mine reclamation from 1991 until 1997. 

·Directed a research project on the "Use of Biotechnical Materials for Shoreline Erosion Control" from 1994 until 1998.  Served as Alabama A&M University Coordinator for a joint project with Auburn University titled "Nitrogen and Phosphorus in Land-Applied Swine Effluent: Biochemistry and Reduction Via Dietary Manipulation" 1998-2002. 

·Directed project entitled Environmental Impact of Land Applied Animal Waste:    Biogeochemistry and using Remote Sensing and Geographic Information Systems, 2000-2004.