Manure Manager

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Manitoba manure application season starts early


April 7, 2015, Winnipeg, Man – Livestock manure applicators in Manitoba are getting an early start to this year’s application season.

Although Manitoba’s fertilizer application season typically runs from April 10 to November 10, Manitoba Conservation and Water Stewardship advised last week that soil temperatures have risen to the point that the restriction for the application of nutrients to agricultural land has been lifted effective April 1.

Doug Redekop, the president of La Broquerie based Precision Pumping, says the first default is to put manure down in the spring just prior to planting however the bulk of the manure is applied in the fall.

“If I go back to my hog development days and we were looking at cost recovery for manure, we were able to charge in the neighborhood of about 60 percent of the nitrogen value, with the balance of the nutrients coming along for the ride so to speak, including the application,” he said. “The biggest bang for the buck for manure is definitely where the livestock owner owns the land that the manure is applied onto and therefore reaps all of the benefits of the manures going onto his property.”

“I can’t really comment on the efficiency or the cost comparison between commercial fertilizer and manure,” said Redekop. “However, what I will say is when you take a look at the benefits of the commercial fertilizer would definitely be the balance of nutrients, that you basically get what you pay for.”

“You know exactly what the speck is that you’ve ordered and is being applied so there’s a little more precision when it comes to the balance of nutrients going onto the land in comparison to manure.”

Redekop said his company has typically seen anywhere from 15 to 20 percent of its work being completed in the spring prior to seeding, about 40 percent post seeding onto grassland and alfalfa and the balance completed after the crops start to come off in early to mid-August.