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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: IMPROVED WATER RESOURCES MANAGEMENT FOR IRRIGATED AGRICULTURE IN THE PACIFIC NORTHWEST

Location: Northwest Irrigation and Soils Research

Title: Phosphorus losses in runoff after application of litter from broilers fed high-available phosphorus corn feed

Authors
item Tarkalson, David
item Mikkelsen, Robert - N. CAROLINA STATE UNIV.

Submitted to: Communications in Soil Science and Plant Analysis
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: August 15, 2007
Publication Date: July 1, 2007
Citation: Tarkalson, D.D., Mikkelsen, R.L. 2007. Phosphorus losses in runoff after application of litter from broilers fed high-available phosphorus corn feed. Communications in Soil Science and Plant Analysis. 38:1805-1814.

Interpretive Summary: Recent efforts to reduce phosphorus content of corn grain fed to poultry have led to the development of low phytic acid corn. Research is needed to evaluate the environmental impact of the application to crop land of manure from animals fed low phytic acid corn. The purpose of this research was to determine phosphorus losses in runoff from soil in the southeastern U.S. receiving surface applications of broiler litter from birds fed a low phytic acid corn. Phosphorus losses in runoff and volume of runoff increased as the application rate of litter increased.

Technical Abstract: Recent efforts to reduce phosphorus (P) content of corn grain fed to poultry have led to the development of low phytic acid corn. Research is needed to evaluate the environmental impact of the application to crop land of manure from animals fed low phytic acid corn. The purpose of this research was to determine P losses in runoff from a bare Piedmont soil (Cecil clay loam; clayey, kaolinitic, thermic, Typic Kanhapludult) in the southeastern U.S. receiving surface applications of broiler litter from birds fed a low phytic acid corn (HAP broiler litter). The HAP litter was applied at rates of 0, 8, 16, 33, 49, 66, and 82 kg P/ha. Simulated rainfall was applied at a rate of 7.6 cm/hr on the same day the litter sources were applied to the plots. Runoff volumes were measured and samples were collected at 5-min intervals for 30 min and analyzed for reactive P (RP), algal-available P (AAP), and total P (TP). Flow-weighted concentrations and mass losses of P increased linearly with litter application rate (R2 values = 0.99). Flow-weighted concentrations of RP in runoff increased from 2.2 to 15.4 mg RP/L, and mass loss of TP in runoff ranged from 1.3 to 7.3 kg P/ha over all application rates based on linear regression. Runoff volume losses were 47% greater after litter applications compare to the 0 application rate treatment. Reduced infiltration due to litter particles blocking pores in the soil surface is likely the reason for the increased runoff volumes.

Last Modified: 9/10/2014
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