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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

2007 Annual Report

1a.Objectives (from AD-416)
1. Define the critical environmental and biological factors such as temperature, moisture content, organic matter content/composition, and nutrient content affecting emissions of odor compounds, greenhouse gases, and ammonia from beef cattle feedlot surfaces. 2. Measure the effects of critical environmental and biological factors identified in Objective 1 on nutrient transport of N, P, and indicator microorganisms from beef cattle feedlot surfaces. 3. Determine the potential for emissions of pathogenic, fecal indicator microorganisms, nutrient and odor compounds in wastewater, soil and air during and after spray wastewater application. 4. Evaluate alternative treatment technologies such as constructed wetlands, cattle feedlot runoff systems, and water treatment technologies to reduce or eliminate the occurrence, transmission, or persistence of manure-borne pathogens and excessive nutrients (N and P) and other constituents (biological oxygen demand, pH, and total suspended solids).

1b.Approach (from AD-416)
Experiments will be conducted in the field and in the laboratory to evaluate gas emissions, nutrient transport, and microbial transport and fate associated with specific types of confined animal feeding operations and wastewater treatment processes. Specific areas within beef cattle feedlot pens will be identified that disproportionately emit gases (odor compounds, ammonia, and greenhouse gases) or have a large potential for nutrient runoff through the use of flux chambers and gas chromatography and by the use of artificial rainfall simulators. Flux chambers, mass losses from soil, and bioaerosol sampling will be used to determine the loss of nutrients, odor compounds, and the potential to disseminate manure-borne microorganisms in multi-year studies at field sites where swine wastewater is center pivot applied to agricultural fields. Standard microbiological techniques will be used to determine the prevalence of manure-borne microorganisms after alternative treatments have been used to treat wastewater.

3.Progress Report
This project is aligned with research objectives in three subordinate projects, “Understanding Health-Related Microbial, Odor, and Ammonia Fate Following Swine Lagoon Wastewater Application by Center Pivot Irrigation” (Project number: 5440-12000-060-03); “Study of Innovative Treatments for Reclaimed Water (Wrf-02-009)” (Project number: 5440-12000-060-02); and “Odor Compound Production, Accumulation, and Volatilization from Swine Manure Storage” (Project number: 5440-12000-060-04).

Pathogen Detection Method Developed: The occurrence of human pathogenic microsporidia in livestock environments is relatively unknown. The only method available for detection of these zoonotic (infects animals and humans) pathogens is for calf manure. This method was not developed or assessed for other environmental matrices such as manure-impacted water, adult cattle feces, or soil. A more sensitive method for the detection and identification of pathogenic microsporidia in manure-impacted samples was developed, tested and published in the scientific literature. This method may lead to understanding the occurrence and dissemination of these pathogens in the environment, which will ultimately lead to the development of pathogen reduction strategies.

This accomplishment fits under the “Pathogens” National Program component of the Manure and Byproduct Utilization Nation Program (NP 206) and contributes to Problem Area 1 “Methods Assessment and Development”.

5.Significant Activities that Support Special Target Populations

6.Technology Transfer

Number of non-peer reviewed presentations and proceedings10
Number of newspaper articles and other presentations for non-science audiences1

Review Publications
Archibeque, S.L., Miller, D.N., Freetly, H.C., Berry, E.D., Ferrell, C.L. 2007. The influence of oscillating dietary protein concentrations on finishing cattle. I. Feedlot performance and odorous compound production. Journal of Animal Science. 85(6):1487-1495.

Kahler, A., Thurston Enriquez, J.A. 2006. Human pathogenic microsporidia detection: method development and assessment of agricultural samples. Journal of Parasitology 100:529-538.

Varel, V.H., Wells, J., Miller, D.N. 2007. Combination of a urease inhibitor and a plant essential oil to control coliform bacteria, odour production, and ammonia loss from cattle waste. Journal of Applied Microbiology 102:472-477. doi:10.1111/j.1365-2672.2006.03120.x

Woodbury, B.L., Miller, D.N., Eigenberg, R.A., Nienaber, J.A. 2006. An inexpensive laboratory and field chamber for manure volatile gas analysis. Transactions of the ASABE 49(3):767-772.

Gilley, J.E., Eghball, B., Marx, D.B. 2007. Nutrient concentrations of runoff during the year following manure application. Transactions of the ASABE. 50:1987-1999.

Dowd, S.E., Ishizaki, H., Thurston Enriquez, J.A. 2007. Microarrays: Design and use for agricultural and environmental applications. In: Crawford, R.L., Garland, J.L., Lipson, D.A., Mills, A.L., Stetzenbach, L.D., editors. Manual of Environmental Microbiology. 3rd Edition. Washington, DC: ASM Press. p. 663-675.

Last Modified: 10/4/2015
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