MANAGEMENT OF NUTRIENTS FROM BEEF FEEDLOTS TO PROTECT THE ENVIRONMENT
Environmental Management Research
Project Number: 5438-63000-011-00
Start Date: May 25, 2005
End Date: May 09, 2010
Research objectives developed in this CRIS are focused on the engineering aspects of managing nutrients in beef cattle manure while minimizing environmental degradation. Our objectives are: 1) improve and evaluate alternative feedlot runoff control systems using vegetative treatment areas (VTA): 2) refine EMI techniques for management of cover crop on cropland and movement of nutrients on the feedlot surface: 3) develop techniques to determine emission flux and area contributing to gaseous emissions from cattle feedlots. Data collected could be used by computer models for predicting gaseous concentrations down wind: 4) evaluate the occurrence, transmission, and persistence of zoonotic pathogens and fecal indicators in a beef feedlot runoff control with a VTA and identify characteristics that are particularly effective in limiting the movement of zoonotic pathogens and fecal indicators through different vegetative treatment areas, to support development of recommendations that can be implemented by feedlot operators.
The MARC beef cattle feedlot provides a site for testing various manure management issues. Odor generation and control at the feedlot surface will be investigated with gas emission chambers developed in-house. The feedlot surface will be scanned with an electromagnetic induction meter to precisely locate manure concentrations. Manure from the feedlot will be applied to cropland for utilization where nitrogen management practices, such as winter cover crop, will be evaluated. Precipitation runoff from the feedlot will be controlled with alternative technology that eliminates the need for long-term liquid storage and distribution of liquid on grassed fields. Transport and survival of pathogens contained in manure will be monitored as the runoff passes through the control system and deposited on the vegetation treatment area.