Manure Manager

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Feedlot with new filtering system to receive permit


April 28, 2008
By Manure Manager

The Iowa Department of Natural
Resources will be issuing a permit to the Couser Feedlot, a permit that
uses a new modeling system and vegetative filter technology to keep
manure and nutrients in place.

The Iowa Department of Natural Resources will be issuing a permit to the Couser Feedlot, a permit that uses a new modeling system and vegetative filter technology to keep manure and nutrients in place.

    “The two-year, conditional permit will allow Bill Couser to expand his existing operation from 1,300 to 2,500 head of beef cattle using nature to treat the effluent,” says Reza Khosravi, DNR permitting engineer. “With intensive management and monitoring, this is an alternative to using an earthen basin to store the manure.”

    With the vegetative or alternative technology, grassy treatment areas, sometimes combined with grassy infiltration areas, treat the feedlot runoff to remove nutrients and pathogens. With the conventional technology, manure solids are removed and liquids are held in an earthen basin to be used later as fertilizer.

    DNR engineer Khosravi warns that alternative technologies may sound appealing to people, but they are not for everyone. For DNR to issue a permit the site must meet certain criteria and the modeling must show that the alternative technology can perform as well as one of the existing basin systems.

    Producers considering alternative technology must have a site that meets the DNR’s siting criteria, available on the DNR website at www.iowadnr.com.

    New spreadsheet calculates the value of manure Higher commercial fertilizer prices have heightened interest in livestock manure for supplying crop nutrients and significantly increased the value of manure as a nutrient source.

    More producers are looking at the contribution of manure’s value to cash flow in livestock operation budgets, and seeking a market value in exchange situations between livestock producers and crop producers.

    The university has developed a spreadsheet that considers these factors and will calculate the value of manure for interested producers, consultants and others. It’s available at http://swroc.coafes.umn.edu/Bob/docs/manurwkst.htm.


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