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African Journal of Biotechnology

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Agricultural importance of algae

N Abdel-Raouf, AA Al-Homaidan, IBM Ibraheem

Abstract


Algae are a large and diverse group of microorganisms that can carry out photosynthesis since they capture energy from sunlight. Algae play an important role in agriculture where they are used as biofertilizer and soil stabilizers. Algae, particularly the seaweeds, are used as fertilizers, resulting in less nitrogen and  phosphorous runoff than the one from the use of livestock manure. This in turn, increases the quality of water flowing into rivers and oceans. These organisms are cultivated around the world and used as human food  supplements. They can produce a clean and carbon-neutral food also and can be grown on abandoned lands and arid desert lands with minimal demands for fresh water. Seaweeds are an important source of iodine. Iodine levels in milk depend on what the cow producing the milk has been fed with. Feeding milk cattle with seaweeds can increase the quantity of iodine in milk, according to Fuzhou Wonderful Biological Technology. Egg-laying rate in hen is also increased by algae feed additives. In this article, we discussed the most important aspects of algae and its agricultural uses to those who work in this area.


Key words: Algae, seaweeds, agriculture, biofertilizer, soil stabilizers.




http://dx.doi.org/10.5897/AJB11.3983
AJOL African Journals Online