References of "Gourlez de la Motte, Louis"
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See detailRestoring a worn-out pasture: what impact on N2O exchanges ?
Lognoul, Margaux ULiege; Gourlez de la Motte, Louis ULiege; Naiken, Alwin ULiege et al

Poster (2019, April 08)

A paired-flux tower experiment was set up in a 40 y-o grazed pasture managed by a local farmer. A parcel under restoration was compared to a control plot. In addition to N2O flux monitoring, soil mineral ... [more ▼]

A paired-flux tower experiment was set up in a 40 y-o grazed pasture managed by a local farmer. A parcel under restoration was compared to a control plot. In addition to N2O flux monitoring, soil mineral N content (ammonium and nitrate) was measured every 10-15 days. [less ▲]

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See detailHerd position habits can bias net CO2 ecosystem exchange estimates in free range grazed pastures.
Gourlez de la Motte, Louis ULiege; Dumortier, Pierre ULiege; Beckers, Yves ULiege et al

Conference (2019, April)

The eddy covariance (EC) technique has been widely used to quantify the net CO2 ecosystem exchange (NEE) of grasslands, which is an important component of grassland carbon and greenhouse gas budgets. In ... [more ▼]

The eddy covariance (EC) technique has been widely used to quantify the net CO2 ecosystem exchange (NEE) of grasslands, which is an important component of grassland carbon and greenhouse gas budgets. In free range grazed pastures, NEE estimations are supposed to also include cattle respiration. However, cattle respiration measurement by an EC system is challenging as animals act as moving points emitting CO2 that are more or less captured by the EC tower depending on their presence in the footprint. Often it is supposed that, over the long term, cattle distribution in the pasture is homogeneous so that fluctuations due to moving sources are averaged and NEE estimates are reasonably representative of cattle respiration. In this study, we test this hypothesis by comparing daily cow respiration rate per livestock unit (LU) estimated by postulating a homogeneous cow repartition over the whole pasture with three other estimates based on animal localization data, animal scale carbon budget and confinement experiments. We applied these methods to an intensively managed free range grassland and showed that the NEE estimate based on a homogeneous cow repartition was systematically lower than the three other estimates. Consequently, in order to allow estimating the validity of this hypothesis but also to improve inter site comparisons, we advocate to compute separately pasture NEE and grazer’s respiration. In the presentation, we will propose a method based on cattle presence detection using CH4 fluxes, elimination of data with cattle and gap filling on the basis of data without cattle. For the second we propose three independent methods (animal localization with GPS, animal scale carbon budget, confinement experiments) to estimate the cattle respiration rate and discuss their use depending on site specificities. [less ▲]

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See detailHerd position habits can bias net CO2 ecosystem exchange estimates in free range grazed pastures.
Gourlez de la Motte, Louis ULiege; Dumortier, Pierre ULiege; Beckers, Yves ULiege et al

in Agricultural and Forest Meteorology (2019), 268

The eddy covariance (EC) technique has been widely used to quantify the net CO2 ecosystem exchange (NEE) of grasslands, which is an important component of grassland carbon and greenhouse gas budgets. In ... [more ▼]

The eddy covariance (EC) technique has been widely used to quantify the net CO2 ecosystem exchange (NEE) of grasslands, which is an important component of grassland carbon and greenhouse gas budgets. In free range grazed pastures, NEE estimations are supposed to also include cattle respiration. However, cattle respiration measurement by an EC system is challenging as animals act as moving points emitting CO2 that are more or less captured by the EC tower depending on their presence in the footprint. Often it is supposed that, over the long term, cattle distribution in the pasture is homogeneous so that fluctuations due to moving sources are averaged and NEE estimates are reasonably representative of cattle respiration. In this study, we test this hypothesis by comparing daily cow respiration rate per livestock unit (LU) estimated by postulating a homogeneous cow repartition over the whole pasture with three other estimates based on animal localization data, animal scale carbon budget and confinement experiments. We applied these methods to an intensively managed free range grassland and showed that the NEE estimate based on a homogeneous cow repartition was systematically lower than the three other estimates. The bias was about 60 g C m–2 yr–1, which corresponded to around 40% of the annual NEE. The sign and the importance of this bias is site specific, as it depends on cow location habits in relation to the footprint of the EC measurements which highlight the importance of testing the hypothesis of homogeneity of cattle distribution on each site. Consequently, in order to allow estimating the validity of this hypothesis but also to improve inter site comparisons, we advocate to compute separately pasture NEE and grazer’s respiration. For the former we propose a method based on cattle presence detection using CH4 fluxes, elimination of data with cattle and gap filling on the basis of data without cattle. For the second we present and discuss three independent methods (animal localization with GPS, animal scale carbon budget, confinement experiments) to estimate the cattle respiration rate. [less ▲]

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See detailRotational and continuous grazing does not affect the total net ecosystem exchange of a pasture grazed by cattle but modifies CO2 exchange dynamics
Gourlez de la Motte, Louis ULiege; Mamadou, Ossenatou; Beckers, Yves ULiege et al

in Agriculture, Ecosystems and Environment (2018), 253

Grassland carbon budgets are known to be greatly dependent on management. In particular, grazing is known to directly affect CO2 exchange through consumption by plants, cattle respiration, natural ... [more ▼]

Grassland carbon budgets are known to be greatly dependent on management. In particular, grazing is known to directly affect CO2 exchange through consumption by plants, cattle respiration, natural fertilisation through excreta, and soil compaction. This study investigates the impact of two grazing methods on the net ecosystem exchange (NEE) dynamics and carbon balance, by measuring CO2 fluxes using eddy covariance in two adjacent pastures located in southern Belgium during a complete grazing season. Rotational (RG) grazing consists of an alternation of rest periods and short high stock density grazing periods. Continuous grazing (CG) consists of uninterrupted grazing with variable stocking rates. To our knowledge, this is the first study to assess the impact of these grazing methods on total net ecosystem exchange and CO2 exchange dynamics using eddy covariance. The results showed that NEE dynamics were greatly impacted by the grazing method. Following grazing events on the RG parcel, net CO2 uptake on the RG parcel was reduced compared to the CG parcel. During the following rest periods, this phenomenon progressively shifted towards a higher assimilation for the RG treatment. This behaviour was attributed to sharp biomass changes in the RG treatment and therefore sharp changes in plant photosynthetic capacity. We found that differences in gross primary productivity at high radiation were strongly correlated to differences in standing biomass. In terms of carbon budgets, no significant difference was observed between the two treatments, neither in cumulative NEE, or in terms of estimated biomass production. The results of our study suggest that we should not expect major benefits in terms of CO2 uptake from rotational grazing management when compared to continuous grazing management in intensively managed temperate pastures. [less ▲]

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See detailRestoring a worn-out pasture : What impact on greenhouse gas exchanges ?
Lognoul, Margaux ULiege; Gourlez de la Motte, Louis ULiege; Debacq, Alain ULiege et al

Poster (2018, September 12)

The restoration of permanent pastures is often required in order to restore a productive state and the palatability of the grass. The restoration process consists on destroying the former vegetation using ... [more ▼]

The restoration of permanent pastures is often required in order to restore a productive state and the palatability of the grass. The restoration process consists on destroying the former vegetation using herbicides followed by tillage and reseed. The short term and long term impacts of such operations on the carbon cycle and N2O emissions are not well defined for old permanent pastures. Therefore, a paired flux tower measurement campaign was started in March 2018 at the Dorinne Terrestrial Observatory in Southern Belgium, with the aim to study the impact of pasture restoration on CO2 and N2O fluxes exchanged by the ecosystem. The site is a 100-year-old intensively managed grassland which last restoration was performed more than 40 years ago. It is grazed by Belgian blue beef cattle and fertilized with around 120 kgN ha-1 per year on average, reflecting common practices in the area. A former study carried out at the same site, showed that the pasture acted as significant carbon sink before the start of experiment. Two adjacent parcels belonging to the same farm were both equipped with identical instrumentation including eddy covariance measurements of CO2 (LICOR 7000) and N2O/CH4 (Aerodyne Inc. quantum cascade laser) exchanges to allow the comparison between a control and a restored plot subject to identical pedo-climatic conditions. Preliminary results of greenhouse gas fluxes will be presented in relation to climatic conditions and management operations and the evolution of soil ammonium and nitrate. [less ▲]

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See detailRotational and continuous grazing does not affect the total net ecosystem exchange of a pasture grazed by cattle but modifies CO2 exchange dynamics
Gourlez de la Motte, Louis ULiege; Beckers, Yves ULiege; Bodson, Bernard ULiege et al

Conference (2018, April)

Grassland carbon budgets are known to be greatly dependent on management. In particular, grazing is known to directly affect CO2 exchange through consumption by plants, cattle respiration, natural ... [more ▼]

Grassland carbon budgets are known to be greatly dependent on management. In particular, grazing is known to directly affect CO2 exchange through consumption by plants, cattle respiration, natural fertilisation through excreta, and soil compaction. This study investigates the impact of two grazing methods on the net ecosystem exchange (NEE) dynamics and carbon balance, by measuring CO2 fluxes using eddy covariance in two adjacent pastures located in southern Belgium during a complete grazing season. Rotational (RG) grazing consists of an alternation of rest periods and short high stock density grazing periods. Continuous grazing (CG) consists of uninterrupted grazing with variable stocking rates. To our knowledge, this is the first study to assess the impact of these grazing methods on total net ecosystem exchange and CO2 exchange dynamics using eddy covariance. The results showed that NEE dynamics were greatly impacted by the grazing method. Following grazing events on the RG parcel, net CO2 uptake on the RG parcel was reduced compared to the CG parcel. During the following rest periods, this phenomenon progressively shifted towards a higher assimilation for the RG treatment. This behaviour was attributed to sharp biomass changes in the RG treatment and therefore sharp changes in plant photosynthetic capacity. We found that differences in gross primary productivity at high radiation were strongly correlated to differences in standing biomass. In terms of carbon budgets, no significant difference was observed between the two treatments, neither in cumulative NEE, or in terms of estimated biomass production. The results of our study suggest that we should not expect major benefits in terms of CO2 uptake from rotational grazing management when compared to continuous grazing management in intensively managed temperate pastures. [less ▲]

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See detailDecrease in the photosynthetic performance of temperate grassland species does not lead to a decline in the gross primary production of the ecosystem
Digrado, Anthony ULiege; Gourlez de la Motte, Louis ULiege; Bachy, Aurélie ULiege et al

in Frontiers in Plant Science (2018), 9

Plants, under stressful conditions, can proceed to photosynthetic adjustments in order to acclimatize and alleviate the detrimental impacts on the photosynthetic apparatus. However, it is currently ... [more ▼]

Plants, under stressful conditions, can proceed to photosynthetic adjustments in order to acclimatize and alleviate the detrimental impacts on the photosynthetic apparatus. However, it is currently unclear how adjustment of photosynthetic processes under environmental constraints by plants influences CO2 gas exchange at the ecosystem-scale. Over a two-year period, photosynthetic performance of a temperate grassland ecosystem was characterized by conducting frequent chlorophyll fluorescence (ChlF) measurements on three primary grassland species (Lolium perenne L., Taraxacum sp., and Trifolium repens L.). Ecosystem photosynthetic performance was estimated from measurements performed on the three dominant grassland species weighed based on their relative abundance. In addition, monitoring CO2 fluxes was performed by eddy covariance. The highest decrease in photosynthetic performance was detected in summer, when environmental constraints were combined. Dicot species (Taraxacum sp. and T. repens) presented the strongest capacity to up-regulate PSI and exhibited the highest electron transport efficiency under stressful environmental conditions compared with L. perenne. The decline in ecosystem photosynthetic performance did not lead to a reduction in gross primary productivity, likely because increased light energy was available under these conditions. The carbon amounts fixed at light saturation were not influenced by alterations in photosynthetic processes, suggesting photosynthesis was not impaired. Decreased photosynthetic performance was associated with high respiration flux, but both were influenced by temperature. Our study revealed variation in photosynthetic performance of a grassland ecosystem responded to environmental constraints, but alterations in photosynthetic processes appeared to exhibit a negligible influence on ecosystem CO2 fluxes. [less ▲]

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See detailMethane balance of an intensively grazed pasture and estimation of the enteric methane emissions from cattle
Dumortier, Pierre ULiege; Aubinet, Marc ULiege; Beckers, Yves ULiege et al

in Agricultural and Forest Meteorology (2017), 232

The methane turbulent fluxes of an intensively grazed pasture were measured continuously from June 2012 to December 2013 at the Dorinne Terrestrial Observatory (DTO) in Belgium. During grazing periods ... [more ▼]

The methane turbulent fluxes of an intensively grazed pasture were measured continuously from June 2012 to December 2013 at the Dorinne Terrestrial Observatory (DTO) in Belgium. During grazing periods, the fluxes were dominated by enteric fermentation and were found to be strongly related to cow stocking density. In 2013, total emission from the pasture was found between 9 and 11 g CH4 m−2, 97% of which being emitted during grazing periods. Emission per LU (livestock unit) was estimated in a non-invasive way by integrating eddy covariance fluxes over large periods and by assuming a homogeneous average cattle disposition on the pasture. This estimate was compared to the one obtained during confinement periods, where cows were confined in a small part of the pasture. The emission per LU varied between 104 and 134 g CH4 LU−1 day−1 (13 and 17 g CH4 kg DMI−1), depending on the dataset and the computation method used. Diel course was characterized by two emission peaks, one in the morning and a larger one in the afternoon. For rest periods (no cattle on the pasture), small emissions were observed (median and mean values of 0.5 and 1.5 mg CH4 m−2 day−1, respectively). [less ▲]

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See detailCarbon balance of an intensively grazed grassland in southern Belgium
Gourlez de la Motte, Louis ULiege; Jérôme, Elisabeth; Mamadou, Ossénatou et al

in Agricultural and Forest Meteorology (2016), 228-229

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See detailSensitivity of the annual net ecosystem exchange to the cospectral model used for high frequency loss corrections at a grazed grassland site
Mamadou, Ossenatou; Gourlez de la Motte, Louis ULiege; De Ligne, Anne ULiege et al

in Agricultural and Forest Meteorology (2016), 228-229

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See detailOUTDOOR MEASUREMENT OF CATTLE METHANE EMISSIONS USING THE EDDY-COVARIANCE TECHNIQUE IN COMBINATION WITH GEOLOCALIZATION DEVICES
Dumortier, Pierre ULiege; Andriamandroso, Andriamasinoro ULiege; Aubinet, Marc ULiege et al

Poster (2016, February)

Methane emissions account for 8% of the EU-15 GHG emissions and livestock generates approximately half of these emissions [1]. In order to improve emissions reporting and properly test mitigation options ... [more ▼]

Methane emissions account for 8% of the EU-15 GHG emissions and livestock generates approximately half of these emissions [1]. In order to improve emissions reporting and properly test mitigation options, techniques for measuring methane emissions from cattle must be developed and adapted to each management system. Among available micrometeorological methods, the use of eddy-covariance is still in its infancy [2] and its relevance and robustness for cattle flux estimation has still to be proved. On one hand, it is well adapted to seasonal grazing systems, is non-invasive, needs little animal handling and allows detection of daily emission patterns. On the other hand, it has the drawback of requiring cattle geo-localization and long periods of measurements (typically one month). In this study, we combined measured CH4 fluxes with a footprint model [3] and cattle positions (GPS devices) over several one-month campaigns at key periods in the grazing season in order to obtain CH4 emissions per cow at herd scale. Accelerometers were also added to the system for behaviour detection, opening the possibility of linking emissions to feeding behaviour. Measurements were performed and are still ongoing at the Dorinne Terrestrial Observatory in 2014/2015. The first campaign provided a mean emission per cow of 65±6 kg CH4.LSU-1.year-1. Cattle emission pattern was tightly linked with behaviour pattern, emissions being higher during and shortly after grazing (i.e. at dawn and dusk). Uncertainties linked to the method will be discussed and quantified (footprint model validity, geo-localization precision, eddy covariance corrections and filtering specificities linked to CH4 measurements). Compilation of data from multiple campaigns will allow quantification of the effects of forage quality, animal weight and lactating state on emissions per cow. [less ▲]

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See detailUnexpected sensitivity of the annual net ecosystem exchange to the high frequency loss corrections in a grazed grassland site in Belgium
Mamadou, Ossénatou ULiege; Gourlez de la Motte, Louis ULiege; De Ligne, Anne ULiege et al

Poster (2016)

The eddy covariance technique is widely used to measure CO2 and other gas fluxes. However, eddy covariance fluxes are affected by systematic errors that must be corrected. Among them, high frequency loss ... [more ▼]

The eddy covariance technique is widely used to measure CO2 and other gas fluxes. However, eddy covariance fluxes are affected by systematic errors that must be corrected. Among them, high frequency loss corrections are particularly important in this regard, especially when using a closed-path infrared gas analyzer. In this study, we compared three approaches to do these corrections for CO2 fluxes and evaluated their impact on the carbon balance an intensively grazed grassland site in Belgium . In the first approach, the computation of correction factors was based on the measured sensible heat cospectra (‘local’ cospectra), whereas the other two were based on theoretical models (Kaimal et al., 1972). The correction approaches were validated by comparing the nighttime eddy covariance CO2 fluxes corrected with each approach and in situ soil respiration measurements. We found that the local cospectra differed from the Kaimal theoretical shape, although the site could not be considered ‘difficult’ (i.e., fairly flat, homogeneous, low vegetation, sufficient measurement height), appearing less peaked in the inertial subrange. This difference greatly affected the correction factor, especially for night fluxes. Night fluxes measured by eddy covariance were found to be in good accord with in situ soil respiration measurements when corrected with local cospectra and to be overestimated when corrected with Kaimal cospectra. As the difference between correction factors was larger in stable than unstable conditions, this acts as a selective systematic error and has an important impact on annual fluxes. On the basis of a 4-year average, at DTO the errors reach 71-150 g C m-2 y-1 for net ecosystem exchange (NEE), 280-562 g C m-2 y-1 for total ecosystem respiration (TER) and 209-412 g C m-2 y-1 for gross primary productivity (GPP), depending on the approach used. We finally encourage site PIs to check the cospectrum shape at their sites and, if necessary, compute frequency correction factors on the basis of local cospectra rather than on Kaimal cospectra. [less ▲]

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See detailCarbon balance of an intensively grazed grassland in southern Belgium
Gourlez de la Motte, Louis ULiege; Jérôme, Elisabeth; Mamadou, Ossénatou ULiege et al

Poster (2016)

Grasslands are an important component of the global carbon balance but their carbon storage potential is still highly uncertain. Especially, the impact of weather variability and management practices on ... [more ▼]

Grasslands are an important component of the global carbon balance but their carbon storage potential is still highly uncertain. Especially, the impact of weather variability and management practices on grassland carbon budgets need to be assessed. This study investigates the carbon balance of an intensively managed permanent grassland in southern Belgium and its uncertainties by combining 5-years of eddy covariance measurements and other organic carbon exchanges estimates. The specificities of this study lie in: (i) the age of the pasture, which has probably been established since more than one century; (ii) the intensive character of the management with a mean grazing pressure larger than 2 livestock unit ha-1 and stocking cycle including stocking and rest periods, (iii) the livestock production system, typical of Wallonia, farming intensively Belgian Blue breed of cattle in order to produce meat. The results showed that, despite the high stocking rate and the old age of the pasture and the high stocking rate, the site acted as a relatively stable carbon sink from year to year with a 5-year average Net Biome Productivity of ‒173 [‒128 ‒203] g C m-2 yr-1. The carbon sink behavior of the pasture was directly increased by management practices through food complementation and organic fertilization and indirectly by mineral fertilization. The relatively low carbon budget inter-annual variability could be explained both by: (i) grazing management of the farmer that regulated Growth Primary Productivity by adapting the stocking rate to the Leaf Area Index which itself depends on weather conditions, (ii) carbon imports through food complements only when grass regrowth was not sufficient to feed the cattle. An exception occurred when low temperatures at the beginning of the year and a prolonged snow period provoked a delay in grass growth and therefore Growth Primary Productivity that could not be completely offset during the rest of the year. The results suggest that management practices that tend to optimize forage availability for meat production could contribute to maintaining a carbon sink. [less ▲]

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See detailCarbon dioxide and methane budget of a grazed grassland
Gourlez de la Motte, Louis ULiege; Dumortier, Pierre ULiege; Mamadou, Ossénatou ULiege

Scientific conference (2015, December 10)

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See detailCarbon balance of a grazed pasture and its response to grazing management
Jerome, Elisabeth ULiege; Gourlez de la Motte, Louis ULiege; Beckers, Yves et al

Poster (2014, September 24)

The C balance of a grazed pasture situated in Condroz (Wallonia) and its dependence on climatic conditions and grazing management were investigated on the basis of eddy covariance measurements and ... [more ▼]

The C balance of a grazed pasture situated in Condroz (Wallonia) and its dependence on climatic conditions and grazing management were investigated on the basis of eddy covariance measurements and horizontal C flow estimates. In average on three years, NEE was +43±24 gCm-2yr-1 and NBP was +7±26 gCm-2yr-1, suggesting that that the site is C neutral. Management by the farmer (organic fertilization), but also climate conditions influencing management (feed supplements), were the main factors impacting the C balance inter-annual variability. At a daily and seasonal scale, grazing impact on CO2 fluxes did not appear explicitly, being blurred by flux response to climate drivers. It was highlighted by specific investigations. The indirect grazing impact (photosynthesizing biomass consumption, excretions, soil compaction) was deduced from an analysis of the flux to PPFD response evolution during grazing period; the direct impact (livestock respiration) was investigated through confinement experiments. Result showed that saturation GPP changes were negatively correlated to grazing intensity (product of the stocking rate and grazing duration). On the contrary, no significant change in TER was observed. The direct impact of grazing due to cattle respiration was estimated to 2.59±0.58 kgCLU-1day-1, i.e. 8% of the TER. [less ▲]

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See detailMEASUREMENT OF CATTLE METHANE EMISSIONS USING THE EDDY-COVARIANCE TECHNIQUE
Dumortier, Pierre ULiege; Aubinet, Marc ULiege; Debacq, Alain ULiege et al

Poster (2014)

Methane emissions account for 8% of the EU-15 GHG emissions and livestock generates approximately half of these emissions [1]. Recent technological advances in spectroscopy now permit methane flux ... [more ▼]

Methane emissions account for 8% of the EU-15 GHG emissions and livestock generates approximately half of these emissions [1]. Recent technological advances in spectroscopy now permit methane flux measurement using eddy covariance. Methane fluxes exchanged by a pasture were measured continuously since June 2012 at the Dorinne Terrestrial Observatory in Belgium. During grazing periods, fluxes are dominated by enteric fermentation. Methane emissions were found strongly related to cattle stocking rate. When fluxes are integrated over large periods and assuming a random position of cows on the pasture, emission per LSU (Livestock Unit) was found to be 53±3 kg CH4 year-1 LSU-1. Recently, cattle position on the grassland was monitored continuously using GPS devices and combined with a footprint analysis [2] to derive more precisely the CH4 emission per LSU. A first experiment with a stocking rate close to 0.7 LSU ha-1 validated the approach and ended in a mean emission per head of 51±10 kg CH4 year-1 head-1. This approach also allows estimating emissions per head at the hourly scale and therefore opens the possibility of studying the circadian emission cycle and to link emissions to feeding behavior of the animal and feed quality. [less ▲]

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