January 2017 Newsletter Livestock and Poultry Environmental Learning Center

Animal Manure Management February 08, 2017 Print Friendly and PDF

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Webcast Series

Looking Ahead to January: Planning for Resiliency

Welcome to 2017! The webinar series is nearly filled for the year and the first one of the year focuses on resiliency. Resiliency to weather risk is, on one hand, a topic that farmers and ranchers are already familiar with, but now climate change is adding new uncertainties that make it difficult to know the best practices for the future. Scenario planning is a method of risk assessment. More... January 20, 2017 at 1:30 p.m. (central); 2:30 (eastern); 12:30 (mountain);11:30 am (pacific). The team has developed an adaptation planning guide.  Preview or download the guide... (PDF, 24 pp)

Add to Calendar: iCal (Outlook) | Google calendar

Featured Video:

Manure-borne pathogens that make people sick

More on Webcasts...

What's Going On In the LPELC?

Waste to Worth. Registration is open!! The 2017 Waste to Worth conference is being held in Raleigh, North Carolina April 18-21, 2017. Day One will include a mortality workshop and tours and the rest of the conference will include keynotes, posters, and oral presentations. Plan to be there! Visit the conference website... | Proceedings from 2013 (Denver) and 2015 (Seattle)

Soil Health. The LPELC is co-sponsoring (with the North Central Region Water Network being the primary sponsor) a series of roundtable discussions on manure and soil health. The first of these weekly webinars will be held February 9, 2017 and will focus on soil health testing. Learn more about this series...

Around the Horns

Soil Health. The Soil Health Institute released a landscape research tool that catalogs over 1000 public resources on soil health. The tool is searchable by keyword and a variety of other parameters. Go to the tool...

Farmer Stewardship

  • Pennsylvania State University surveyed farmers on their voluntary conservation practices. Nearly 7,000 farmers responded with around 700 receiving follow-up visits to verify the accuracy of their responses. Among their findings were that farmers implemented nutrient or manure management on nearly a half-million acres. Read more results...
  • As part of the Discovery Farms Conference in Wisconsin, several farmers shared improvements they have made in their manure handling systems. The systems included sand separation, segregating wash water from feed pads to reduce volume of manure slurry, and a bedded pack barn. Learn more...
  • The Professional Dairy Farmers of Wisconsin hosted a tour of innovative dairies. The Wisconsin State Farmer magazine posted feature articles on each of the six tour stops. The first two were posted in December's newsletter but repeated here to have a complete list. Brickstead Dairy (cover crops) | Robinway Dairy (water recycling) | Majestic Crossing (manure separation to reclaim water) | Pagel's Ponderosa Dairy (digested solids as bedding) | Kinnard Dairy (water and sand recycling) | Holsum Dairy (anaerobic digester).

Grazing Management. Research in Iowa showed benefits of rotational grazing systems in terms of bird habitat. Learn more about the bird species and research methods...

Policy & Regulations

  • The state of Wisconsin is proposing changes to state soil and water conversation rules. The proposal updates many aspects of nutrient and manure management, especially application on saturated soils. Winter manure application is also receiving significant attention in the proposed rules. Read more... | w2w proceedings/webcasts?
  • The US EPA has released a map showing over 12,000 jurisdictional determinations as to whether a particular water body is considered "Waters of the US" or not. The map is searchable and can be zoomed in and out. Go to the map...

Farm Systems. (Jill's note: I included this because it is a great example of making research information "real" to people who visited this exhibit). Research has shown that manure has benefits for soil health, especially in infiltration rates, soil aggregation, and water holding capacity. A University of Nebraska exhibit is showing "weather-ready soils" and the benefits of manure and mulch.  More...

Nutrient Management

  • USDA Agricultural Research Service and Penn State researchers have developed a manure phosphorus extraction system (MAPHEX) that is reported to remove 99% of the phosphorus from 250 gallons of manure in 10 minutes. The system is mobile and can be moved from farm to farm. Read more...
  • Michigan State University Extension offers suggestions for winter feeding management (beef cattle) in order to distribute nutrients around the feeding area instead of concentrating them. Read more... | MSU also reminds us that testing manure instead of using book values can help farmers best use their nutrient input dollars in tight economic times. Read more...
  • Iowa State University has developed a video on the topic of "Utilizing Manure Value on Iowa Livestock Farms". Watch the 3 minute video...

Water Quality

  • A recent report from the University of Wisconsin examined the number of animal units compared to manure storage capacity in a watershed in the state. The researchers also calculated manure phosphorus production compared to crop phosphorus uptake. The goal was to determine how much additional storage capacity was needed to avoid winter manure applications and prioritize environmentally sensitive areas where additional storage would be especially beneficial. News release... | Download PDF (38 pages)
  • Virginia researchers have discovered ways to predict a harmful algal bloom before it occurs by monitoring several characteristics of a water body. They also discovered that they could prevent the bloom by stopping nutrient enrichment when the indicators pointed toward a bloom. News release... | Journal article (Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences)
  • The Chesapeake Bay Foundation has released preliminary results from a look at indicators of Bay health. They found that nine of 13 indicators showed small improvements, three showed no change, and one declined. The full report will be posted later this month. More...

Organic Livestock. The USDA National Ag Statistics Service conducted a survey of organic production, including livestock in 2014 and 2015. They found that in 2015, there were around 2,000 organic livestock operations in the U.S., an increase from ~1,400 in 2014. More... | Download the report (PDF; 7 pp)

Energy Audits. USDA NRCS is hosting a webinar on "Understanding and Implementing Energy Audits" and will feature poultry ventilation case studies. The presenter is Dr. John Chastain, Clemson University. The webinar will be January 26, 2017 at 2 p.m. EST.

Events & Announcements

Poultry Expo. The International Production and Processing Expo will be held in Atlanta, GA on January 31-February 2, 2017. More...

Soil Health. Iowa State University is hosting the 2017 Soil Health Conference, "Building Soil Health for Healthy Environment and Farm Profitability". February 16-17, 2017 in Ames, Iowa. More...

Midwest Manure. The biannual Midwest Manure Summit is being held February 22-23, 2017 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. More...

Waste to Worth. The 3rd Waste to Worth conference will be held on April 18-21, 2017 in Raleigh, NC. The focus is on animal agriculture and stewardship topics from nutrient management, climate change, small farms, treatment technologies, and much more. Conference Website

Manure Expo. The next Manure Expo will be held in Arlington, WI on August 22-23, 2017. More...

Manure Tweet of the Week

 

News Droppings

A look at animal agriculture, stewardship, and manure in the news: serious, funny or controversial. We don't endorse this stuff, we just think you should know about it.

"Granger dairy trying to keep manure out of groundwater", is about one of the Washington dairies that reached a settlement requiring double-lined lagoons. More...

"Farmers face new challenges" describes farms that are working to get along with neighbors and farms that are protecting the land base from development. More... Another story on the same farm can be found here.

A farmer recalls some "learning" moments on his farm that he is able to laugh about now, including a few related to manure. More...

In Russia, an artist created a sculpture of a rooster out of manure. The sculpture was made because 2017 is the year of the rooster in the Chinese Zodiac calendar. More...

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If you have any questions about this newsletter, please contact Jill Heemstra jheemstra@unl.edu

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This work is supported by the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture, New Technologies for Ag Extension project.