Submitted to: Southern Poultry Science Society Meeting Abstracts
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 12/15/1998
Publication Date: N/A
Technical Abstract: Aluminum sulfate (alum) has been shown to be very effective in reducing ammonia emissions from poultry litter and reducing non-point source phosphorus runoff. The objective of this study was to determine the long-term effects of fertilizing with normal poultry litter, alum- treated litter, and ammonium nitrate. Fifty-two small plots were established on a Captina silt loam soil at the University of Arkansas Agricultural Farm in 1995. There were 13 treatments with 4 replications per treatment in a randomized block design. The treatments included four rates of normal litter, four rates of alum-treated litter, four rates of ammonium nitrate, and an unfertilized control. Litter application rates were 2.24, 2.49, 6.73 and 8.98 Mg/ha/year (1, 2, 3, and 4 tons/acre/year). Ammonium nitrate rates were equivalent to the N applied with alum-treated litter (65, 130, 195 and 260 kg N/ha/year). After three years the soil test P levels (water soluble P) increased dramatically in plots fertilized with normal litter, particularly at the higher rates. This was not the case with alum-treated litter, which had no significant effect on soil test P. Soil pH was reduced by ammonium nitrate (via nitrification reactions), but not by normal or alum-treated litter. These reductions in soil pH with ammonium nitrate resulted in increased exchangeable aluminum in soils. These results indicate that ammoniacal fertilizers are more likely to increase aluminum availability in soils (by lowering soil pH) than the use of alum-treated or normal poultry litter.