Skip to main content
ARS Home » Midwest Area » Ames, Iowa » National Laboratory for Agriculture and The Environment » Agroecosystems Management Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #338842

Research Project: MANAGING AGRICULTURAL WATER QUALITY IN FIELDS AND WATERSHEDS: NEW PRACTICES AND TECHNOLOGIES

Location: Agroecosystems Management Research

Title: Salmonella and fecal indicator bacteria survival in soils amended with poultry manure

Author
item Hruby, Claire - Iowa State University
item Soupir, Michelle - Iowa State University
item Moorman, Thomas - Tom
item Pederson, Carl - Iowa State University
item Kanwar, Ramesh - Iowa State University

Submitted to: Water, Air, and Soil Pollution
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 12/13/2017
Publication Date: 1/18/2018
Citation: Hruby, C.E., Soupir, M.L., Moorman, T.B., Pederson, C., Kanwar, R.S. 2018. Salmonella and fecal indicator bacteria survival in soils amended with poultry manure. Water, Air, and Soil Pollution. 229:32. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11270-017-3667-z.

Interpretive Summary: Minimizing the risks associated with manure-borne pathogenic microorganisms requires an understanding of microbial survival under field conditions. This 3-year study (2010-2012) assessed the persistence of Salmonella and fecal indicator bacteria: E. coli and Enterococcus in soils and in drainage water after fall application of poultry manure (PM) to cornfields under chisel-plowed (CP) or no-till (NT) management. Detection of all three bacteria in spring soil samples demonstrated that over-wintering of bacteria was possible. Despite dry conditions, all three bacteria were detected 158 days after fall manure application in 2012. The highest concentration of Salmonella (790 cells per gram soil) and detection frequency (25% of all soil samples) was found in plots receiving the highest manure application. Salmonella detection was higher in CP plots (20%) compared to NT plots (5%). In contrast, tillage practices had no apparent effect on E. coli or Enterococcus survival. Salmonella was detected less frequently than E. coli or Enterococcus in drainage water. The study shows that Salmonella from fall-applied poultry manure persists overwinter, and are transported at a very low frequency in drainage water in the spring. The results can specifically inform scientists, poultry producers and manure applicators about the Salmonella and E. coli presence and duration in soil and water following poultry manure application under Midwestern conditions.

Technical Abstract: Minimizing the risks associated with manure-borne pathogenic microorganisms requires an understanding of microbial survival under realistic field conditions. The objective of this 3-year study was to assess the fate of Salmonella (SALM) and fecal indicator bacteria (FIB), E. coli (EC) and enterococci (ENT), in glacial till-derived soils, after application of poultry manure (PM) to cornfields under chisel-plowed (CP) or no-till (NT) management. From 2010-2012, soil samples were obtained each spring at 0-15 cm and 15-30 cm depths, to determine whether over-wintering of bacteria had occurred. Sampling was followed by application of PM at low (PM1) and high (PM2) rates, based on nitrogen application goals. In 2012, soil samples were collected 21, 42, and 158 days after manure application (DAM), to assess the effects of time, manure application rates, and tillage on frequency of detection and concentrations of bacteria. Detection of all three bacteria in spring soil samples demonstrated that over-wintering of bacteria was possible. Despite dry conditions, all three bacteria species were detected 158 DAM in 2012. The highest SALM concentration (790 cfu/g dry weight) and detection rate (25%) was found in PM2 plots. SALM detection was higher in CP plots (20%) compared to NT plots (5%). In contrast, tillage practices had no apparent effect on EC or ENT survival, as indicated by both soil, and decay rates estimated from tile-water bacteria concentrations. Decay rate constants (µ) ranged from 0.044 to 0.065 1/d for EC, and 0.010 to 0.054 1/d for ENT.