Submitted to: Encyclopedia of Water Science
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: January 5, 2003
Publication Date: July 15, 2003
Citation: Smith, D.R., Moore Jr, P.A. 2003. Surface water quality protection for concentrated animal feeding operations. Encyclopedia of Water Science. Marcel Dekker, Inc., New York. pp 965-968. Technical Abstract: Over the last thirty years, animal production has increased, while the numbers of animal rearing facilities has declined. These trends have caused more manure to be applied to less land, increasing the risk of pollution potential from animal manure. Loss of phosphorus from animal manure applied to pasture has been implicated as a major contributor to eutrophication of U.S. surface waters. Many methods to reduce the risk of phosphorus losses are currently under investigation, including reducing phosphorus levels in animal diets, applying chemicals to manure to precipitate phosphorus, or risk assessment tools, such as the phosphorus index, that allow the producer to make informed decisions about when and where to apply manure. Phytase enzymes and high available phosphorus corn are two methods producers can use to reduce the amount of total phosphorus in the feed rations. Results from some studies indicate that these practices may increase the risk of phosphorus loss. Treatment of manure with aluminum amendments precipitate phosphorus into forms that are not readily bioavailable. Risk assessment tools are rapidly becoming one of the major practices to help producers identify sites where the risk of phosphorus losses may be high. When the areas of high risk are determined, producers can apply manure to areas of lower risk, thereby reducing the potentially negative impacts of fertilization with animal manure.