Submitted to: American Society of Agronomy Branch Meeting
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 1/15/1999
Publication Date: N/A
Technical Abstract: Ammonia volatilization and phosphorus (P) runoff are two of the biggest environmental problems with animal manures. Research has shown that aluminum sulfate (alum) and phosphoric acid greatly reduce ammonia volatilization and affect P availability in fresh poultry litter; however, no studies have yet reported the effects of these amendments on composting litter. The objectives of this study were to measure ammonia volatilization from composting poultry litter and P runoff from fescue plots fertilized with composted and fresh poultry litter. The treatments applied to poultry litter before composting were: 1) control (no amendment); 2) phosphoric acid (1.5% by weight); 3) alum (7% by weight); and 4) a microbial treatment. Ammonia volatilization was monitored daily throughout the composting process. After composting, each of the above treatments, as well as fresh poultry litter and an unfertilized control, were used for the runoff study. Litter was applied at 8.98 Mg ha**-1 and rainfall simulators were used to produce a 5 cm hr**-1 rainfall event. Ammonia volatilization was significantly lower from alum and phosphoric acid-treated compost. Phosphorus concentrations in the runoff water were lower from alum-treated compost than all other fertilizer treatments.