Animal Manure Management

Agricultural Production Animal Manure Management

Animal Manure Management

Recycling local manure nutrients before purchasing fertilizer is key to protecting the environment. Manure can be an economic “Win”, due to its fertility value, and a soil quality “Win”, due to its organic matter.  But it can also be a community risk, due to odors and pathogens. Our live educational programs, online courses, and resources provide science-based information on economically viable, environmentally sound manure handling systems that also comply with all regulations.

Effects of liquid manure injection into a winter rye cover crop: on-farm trials

Winter cereal rye planted as a cover crop has been shown effective in capturing nitrate before it leaches from the root zone. We conducted on-farm trials in central and southern Minnesota to determine if a rye cover crop would capture significant root-zone nitrate in the fall and spring but release it in time to maintain yield in the subsequent corn crop.

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Does Manure Benefit Crop Productivity? Environment?

Manure is often viewed by many as an environmental liability. However, if manure is applied at rates equal to or less than the nitrogen (N) requirement of a crop, can manure produce environmental benefits over commercial fertilizer? This was the focus of an Asian research group which summarized the results of 141 published studies from Asia, Europe, and the U.S. comparing manure substitution for fertilizer. This article summarizes the “Take Home Messages” from this research paper.

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Nebraska NRCS Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) Conservation Activity Plan (CAP)

Something new for  fiscal year 2018, Conservation Activity Plans (CAPs) have continuous signups with automatic threshold score preapprovals until June 15, 2018, if threshold score is met or exceeded. Eligible producers may apply at their local USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) office. Applications are taken on a continuous basis with cut-off dates established to rank eligible applications.

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Improved Use Efficiency of Applied Organic Nitrogen

Land application of organic materials for soil management in Nebraska is important. The availability of applied organic N and the fertilizer N substitution values of applied organic materials is not well predicted. The uncertainty of applied organic N availability leads to over-application of fertilizer N resulting in low efficiency of applied N use. Research has been done to validate or adapt canopy sensor guided in-season N application practices for fields with manure or other organic material applied, and to improve the prediction of the fertilizer N substitution values for organic materials.

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Ammonia Loss and Emission Reporting: Considerations for Cattle Operations

A resource reality of cattle production is that only 10-30% of the nitrogen (N) that is consumed (i.e. fed protein) is utilized by animals for growth, reproduction, milk production, and maintenance needs. Unused N is excreted, primarily in urine. While livestock production is not the only source of N, producers should recognize that agriculture is clearly the dominant contributor of N to the environment on regional and national scales, and animal manure is a key source along with commercial fertilizer. In April of 2017, the DC Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that EPA would have to require animal feeding operations to report ammonia emissions. EPA expects to receive a court mandate on January 22, 2018, enforcing its ruling and opening livestock and poultry operations to consideration under CERCLA/EPCRA.

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