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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: MINIMIZING THE ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT OF LIVESTOCK MANURES USING INTEGRATED MANAGEMENT REGIMENS

Location: Renewable Energy and Manure Management Research

Title: Use of fat and zeolite to reduce ammonia emissions from beef cattle feedyards.

Authors
item Cole, Noel
item Todd, Richard
item Parker, David - WEST TEXAS A&M UNIV.

Submitted to: ASABE Annual International Meeting
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: February 21, 2007
Publication Date: September 16, 2007
Citation: Cole, N.A., Todd, R.W., Parker, D.B. 2007. Use of fat and zeolite to reduce ammonia emissions from beef cattle feedyards. In: Proceedings of the ASABE International Symposium on Air Quality and Waste Management for Agriculture, September 16-19, 2007, Broomfield, Colorado. 2007 CD-ROM.

Interpretive Summary: Ammonia emissions from beef cattle feedyards may comprise 40% or more of nitrogen intakes. Decreasing ammonia emissions would improve the fertilizer value of feedyard manure and decrease potential adverse effects on the environment. We conducted two experiments to evaluate the effects of fat and the natural mineral zeolite (clinoptilotile) on potential ammonia emissions from a feedlot surface. In the first trial, possible soil amendments (corn oil, alum, a urease inhibitor, or zeolite) were added to lab-scale system to measure ammonia losses from a mixture of beef cattle feces and urine. In the second experiment, beef steers were fed one of five high-concentrate finishing diets that contained varying concentrations of fat and zeolite. Nutrient digestion and retention were determined and potential ammonia losses were measured. In experiment 1, zeolite and fat additions decreased ammonia losses by 51 to 86%; however the effects of fat and zeolite were not additive or synergistic. In the second experiment, protein and phosphorus metabolism were not affected by diets. However, potential ammonia losses were lower in steers fed 3% fat than in control steers fed no supplemental fat in their diet. These results suggest that fat and zeolites can potentially decrease ammonia emissions from beef cattle feedyards.

Technical Abstract: Ammonia emissions from beef cattle feedyards may comprise 40% or more of nitrogen intakes. Decreasing ammonia emissions would improve the fertilizer value of feedyard manure and decrease potential adverse effects on the environment. Two trials were conducted to evaluate the effects of fat and zeolite on potential ammonia emissions from a feedlot surface. In the first trial, corn oil, alum, a urease inhibitor, or potassium zeolite (clinoptilotile) were added to lab-scale flow through chambers that contained simulated feedlot surfaces comprised of a mixture of soil, beef cattle feces and beef cattle urine. Ammonia losses were captured using 0.9 M sulfuric acid solutions. In trial two, five beef steers were fed one of five high-concentrate finishing diets (0% added fat, 3% added fat, 6% added fat, 3% fat+1% zeolite, or 3% fat+2% zeolite) in a 5 x 5 Latin square design. Each period of the Latin square was 21 days in length. During the last 5 days of each period total feces and urine output were collected in tie stalls to determine nutrient digestion and retention. Feces and urine collected from each steer (1% of daily output) were then used in the in vitro system to estimate potential ammonia losses. In trial 1, zeolite and fat additions decreased ammonia losses by 51 to 86%; however the effects of fat and zeolite were not additive or synergistic. In the nutrient metabolism trial, apparent protein digestion, nitrogen retention, and nitrogen excretion were not affected by dietary fat or zeolite. In vitro ammonia losses were not significantly affected by dietary zeolite; however in vitro ammonia losses were greater (P < 0.05) when steers were fed diets containing no added fat. These results suggest that fat and zeolites can potentially decrease ammonia emissions from beef cattle feedyards.

Last Modified: 7/24/2014
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