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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: FATE AND TRANSPORT OF MANURE-BORNE PATHOGENIC MICROORGANISMS
2006 Annual Report


1.What major problem or issue is being resolved and how are you resolving it (summarize project aims and objectives)? How serious is the problem? Why does it matter?
This research addresses the mission of NP 206 (Manure and Byproduct Utilization) by contributing towards the development of management practices to prevent contamination of food and water by pathogens. The project concentrates on the Specific Focus Area 2e "Modeling Fate and Transport of Manure-borne Pathogens from "Pedon" to Watershed Scale" within the “Pathogens” component of the NP 206 Action Plan. Utilization of manures containing pathogenic microorganisms is considered to be an important factor in the occurrence of water- and food-borne diseases. Currently many of the essential pathogen fate and transport processes are not understood or modeled well. This project focuses on manure-borne pathogenic coliform bacteria and has objectives of (a) determining dominant environmental parameters and processes involved in the fate and transport of manure-borne coliform bacteria at field and watershed scales as related to water redistribution in soils and landscapes, and (b) developing predictive models of the fate and transport of manure-borne coliform bacteria at field and watershed scales. An integrated approach is used including laboratory research, field research at hillslope and watershed scales, and modeling. Experiments and monitoring are carried out to elucidate and quantify survival and release of manure-borne pathogens in field conditions, interactions of pathogens and manure particulates, pathogen partitioning between runoff and infiltration and between sediment and water, suitability of manure-borne phosphorus and organic matter to serve as useful tracers of E. coli transport, and significance of background concentrations of E. coli for understanding fate and transport of manure-borne E. coli. A better understanding and ability to predict transport and fate of manure-borne coliform pathogens will increase our ability to prevent pathogens from entering water and food sources, improve surface and groundwater quality, evaluate potential risks of human exposure to pathogens, and improve sustainability of soil management systems. This project will result in a set of open-source pathogen fate and transport submodels that will encapsulate available knowledge about essential fate and transport processes and parameters and serve as add-ons in hydrologic models for best management practices (BMP) design and assessment being developed by USDA ARS and elsewhere. Data collected to validate and test submodels will comprise the database for future model testing and improvement. The submodels will constitute the science component of decision-support software tools at pedon, field and watershed scales. This software will serve as a knowledge delivery tool and will be available via the Internet, workshops, and training courses.


2.List by year the currently approved milestones (indicators of research progress)
2007 - Determine effect of manure particulates on attachment of selected E. coli serotypes in soils. 2007 - Develop a model to simulate transport of manure-borne E. coli in soils. 2008 - Quantify distributions of manure particulates and pathogenic and nonpathogenic E. coli among soil and sediment particles of different sizes. 2008 - Determine effect of manure particulates on soil hydraulic properties. 2008 - Determine coliform survival in deposited animal feces. 2008 - Develop a sub-model to simulate the surface transport of manure-borne coliforms at field scale. 2009 - Evaluate physical (laser diffractometry) and chemical (mid- and near-infrared) methods to characterize manure particulate matter. 2009 - Test the SWAT bacteria transport sub-model with data on E. coli. 2010 - Determine release rates of manure-borne E. coli from surface-applied manure. 2010 - Perform uncertainty analysis for E. coli transport models at field and watershed scales. 2010 - Make developed sub-models compatible with existing user-friendly agricultural contaminant transport models.


4a.List the single most significant research accomplishment during FY 2006.
Model of manure-borne pathogen retention in vegetation filter strips. This accomplishment aligns with the “Pathogens” component of the NP 206 Action Plan in its Specific Focus Area 2e "Modeling Fate and Transport of Manure-borne Pathogens from "Pedon" to Watershed Scale." Vegetative filter strips (VFS) are important best management practices (BMPs) to prevent contamination of waterways from agricultural sources. Efficiency of VFS is currently evaluated from the nutrient and sediment retention. Methods to evaluate the BMP efficiency with respect to manure-borne pathogen retention are currently absent. The developed model integrates the knowledge on major processes of transport and retention of manure-borne microorganisms at the pedon scale. After validation, it can be used to evaluate risks of water quality hazards due to pathogen contamination from manured croplands and pasturelands.


4b.List other significant research accomplishment(s), if any.
Diet effects the survival of E. coli in manure. This accomplishment aligns with the "Pathogens” component of the NP 206 Action Plan in its Specific Focus Area 2e "Modeling Fate and Transport of Manure-borne Pathogens from "Pedon" to Watershed Scale." Diet manipulation has been used to change the numbers of coliforms, including pathogenic strains, in cattle feces and manure. We have discovered that the diet significantly affects not only numbers but also the die-off rate of coliforms released in cattle feces. This result opens an additional opportunity to control the release of manure-borne pathogenic organisms to environment.


4c.List significant activities that support special target populations.
None.


5.Describe the major accomplishments to date and their predicted or actual impact.
Model of manure-borne pathogen retention in vegetation filter strips. This accomplishment aligns with the "Pathogens" component of the NP 206 Action Plan in its Specific Focus Area 2e "Modeling Fate and Transport of Manure-borne Pathogens from "Pedon" to Watershed Scale." The envisioned customer groups of this project are (a) regulators concerned with total maximum daily load (TMDL), BMP, risk assessment, and other pathogen-related issues, (b) action agencies, in particular, NRCS, focused on with implementation of pathogen-oriented best management practices and their cost-benefit evaluation, and NRC, focused on uncertainty of contaminant transport modeling, (c) scientists involved in contaminant transport studies, planning and conducting experiments on pathogen fate and transport. This accomplishment relates to the scale. Vegetative filter strips (VFS) are important best management practices (BMPs) to prevent contamination of waterways from agricultural sources. Efficiency of VFS is currently evaluated from the nutrient and sediment retention. Methods to evaluate the BMP efficiency with respect to manure-borne pathogen retention are currently absent. The developed model integrates the knowledge on major processes of transport and retention of manure-borne microorganisms at the pedon scale. It can be used to evaluate risks of water quality hazards due to pathogen contamination from manured croplands and pasturelands. The potential impact of this work includes (a) tool to evaluate and select VFS designs from the pathogen retention perspective, and (b) improved simulation of the VFS effects at watershed scales.


6.What science and/or technologies have been transferred and to whom? When is the science and/or technology likely to become available to the end-user (industry, farmer, other scientists)? What are the constraints, if known, to the adoption and durability of the technology products?
Results of this research are being transferred on the continuous basis to the Chesapeake Bay Program Office (CBPO) that represents the federal government in the implementation of strategies to meet the restoration goals of the Chesapeake Bay Program (CBP).

Results of the subordinate project were transferred to U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission via the technology transfer briefing and guidance materials to the Technical Advisory Group


7.List your most important publications in the popular press and presentations to organizations and articles written about your work. (NOTE: List your peer reviewed publications below).
ARS has new tool to evaluate riparian buffers. http://www.gcsaa.org/newsweekly/2005/oct/4/divmix.asp

Evaluan la eficacia de franjas amortiguadoras en areas riberenas. http://www.ochocolumnas.com.mx/INFO/Revistas/Tierra%20Fertil/archivo/Tierra32/notas/sabias.html

Tool useful to measure riparian buffers. http://www.highbeam.com/doc/1G1:139150127/Tool+useful+to+measure+riparian+buffers.html?refid=SEO

Riparian buffer evaluation. www1.kisti.re.kr/~trend/Content538/agriculture01.html

Evaluando la eficacia de franjas amortiguadoras en areas riberenas. http://www.agricultura.com.mx/cgi-bin/modules.php?name=News&file=print&sid=2490

Evaluating Riparian Buffers' Effectiveness. http://www.canalpoint.sugarcane.usda.gov/News/News.htm?modecode=12-65-06-00 Riparian buffer evaluation. archives.foodsafetynetwork.ca/agnet/2005/10-2005/agnet_oct_25.htm

Evaluating Riparian Buffers' Effectiveness. http://www.ars.usda.gov/is/pr/2005/051025.htm?pf=1

Evaluating riparian buffers' effectiveness. http://www.hpj.com/archives/2005/nov05/nov7/Evaluatingriparianbuffersef.cfm?actions=view

Evaluating riparian buffers' effectiveness. http://www.highbeam.com/doc.aspx?DOCID=1G1:140413781&print=yes&ctrlInfo=Round20%3AMode20a%3ADocG%3AResult&ao=

Riparian buffers and nitrates. www.catalpatreeseeds.com/CandyPress/forum/get_topic.asp?FID=11&TID=46&DIR=N


Review Publications
Pachepsky, Y.A., Shelton, D.R., Sadeghi, A.M., Gish, T.J., Daughtry, C.S., Guber, A.K., Coppock, C.R. 2005. Spatial and temporal variability of fecal coliform at and near a manured field [abstract]. 2005 International American Agronomy Society Meeting. 2005 CDROM.

Pachepsky, Y.A., Shelton, D.R., Sadeghi, A.M., Gish, T.J., Daughtry, C.S., Guber, A.K., Coppock, C.R. 2005. Spatial and temporal variability of fecal coliform at and near a manured field [abstract]. American Society of Agronomy Annual Meeting. 2005 CDROM.

Pachepsky, Y.A., Guber, A.K., Jacques, D., Simunek, J., Van Genuchten, M.T., Nicholson, T.J., Cady, R.E. 2006. Information content and complexity of simulated soil water fluxes. 18th World Congress of Soil Science, Philadelphia, PA., July 9-15, 2006 ,CD-ROM, Paper No. 48-12.

Pachepsky, Y.A., Guber, A.K., Van Genuchten, M.T., Nicholson, T.J., Cady, R.E., Simunek, J., Jacques, D., Gish, T.J., Daughtry, C.S. 2006. Model abstraction in hydrologic modeling. Proceedings of Federal Interagency Hydrologic Modeling Conference. Paper No. 8D. 2006 CDROM.

Guber, A.K., Pachepsky, Y.A., Shelton, D.R. 2006. Attachment of manure-borne Escherichia coli to soil. 18th World Congress of Soil Science, Philadelphia, PA. July 9-15, 2006. CD-ROM, Paper No. 139-28.

Guber, A.K., Pachepsky, Y.A., Jacques, D., Van Genuchten, M.T., Rawls, W.J., Nemes, A., Simunek, J., Nicholson, T.J., Cady, R.E. 2006. Using ensembles of pedotransfer functions for soil water retention in field-scale water flow simulations [abstract]. 18th World Congress of Soil Science. Paper No. 119-4.

Guber, A.A., Pachepsky, Y.A., Shelton, D.R., Yu, O.T. 2006. Effect of manure on Escherichia coli attachment to soil fractions. ASA-CSSA-SSSA International Meeting, November 12-16,2006, Indianapolis, Indiana. CD-ROM.

San Jose Martinez, F., Pachepsky, Y.A., Rawls, W.J. 2006. Evaluating the fractional convective-dispersive equation as a solute transport model with data from miscible displacement experiments [abstract]. ASA-CSSA-SSSA International Meeting. 2006 CDROM.

San Jose Martinez, F., Pachepsky, Y.A., Rawls, W.J., Canjego, F. 2006. Testing the fractional advective-dispersive equation for solute transport in soil with data from miscible displacement experiments [abstract]. European Geosciences Union General Assembly. Paper No. EGU-06-A-09992.

Guber, A.K., Gish, T.J., Pachepsky, Y.A., Nicholson, T.J., Cady, R.E. 2005. Using temporal persistence to upscale soil water contents and reduce uncertainty. American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, San Francisco, CA, December 5-9, 2005. Paper No. H43C-06.

Guber, A.A., Gish, T.J., Pachepsky, Y.A., Nicholson, T.J., Cady, R.E. 2006. A two-stage monitoring procedure for quantifying flow in variably-saturated heterogeneous soils. American Geophysical Union Joint Assembly, May 23-26, 2006, Baltimore, MD. CD-ROM, Paper No. H43D-04.

Guber, A.A., Karns, J.S., Pachepsky, Y.A., Sadeghi, A.M., Van Kessel, J.S., Dao, T.H. 2006. Differences in release and transport of manure-borne E. coli and Enterococci in grass buffer conditions. ASA-CSSA-SSSA International Meeting, November 12-16, 2006, Indianapolis, Indiana. CD-ROM.

Devin, B.A., Shein, E.V., Pachepsky, Y.A., Shelton, D.R. 2005. Predicting the microbial contamination of soils of river valleys. International Conference on Ecology of River Basins. September 28-30, 2005, Vladimir, Russia. pp.63-65.

Lin, H., Bouma, J., Pachepsky, Y.A., Western, A., Thompson, J., Van Genuchten, M.T., Vogel, H., Lilly, A. 2006. Hydropedology: synergistic integration of pedology and hydrology. Water Resources Research. Volume 42 No. 5 W05301.

Guber, A.A., Shelton, D.R., Sadeghi, A.M., Pachepsky, Y.A., Nemes, A., Sefton, K.A. 2006. Runoff transport of manure-borne fecal coliforms and chloride: Field plot experiment and modeling. ASA-CSSA-SSSA International Meeting, November 12-16, 2006, Indianapolis, Indiana. CD-ROM.

Stanchi, S., Bonifacio, E., Zanini, E., Pachepsky, Y.A. 2006. Fractal behaviour in particle-size distributions as influenced by soil properties and determination method. Soil Science. 171:383-292.

Guber, A.K., Shelton, D.R., Sadeghi, A.M., Sikora, L.J., Nemes, A., Pachepsky, Y.A. 2005. Transport of manure constituents in runoff [abstract]. American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting. 2005 CDROM.

Guber, A.K., Pachepsky, Y.A., Van Genuchten, M.T., Rawls, W.J., Simunek, J., Jacques, D., Nicholson, T.J., Cady, R.E. 2005. Multimodel ensemble prediction of soil hydraulic properties to simulate field-scale soil water flow [abstract]. ASA-CSSA-SSSA International Annual Meeting. Paper No. 1.

Last Modified: 7/25/2014
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