Animal producers are faced with no good choices for fall manure application.
Manure storage structures are full or nearly full. Harvest is delayed by saturated soils and wet weather. That leaves few crop fields available for manure application. Producers who land apply to saturated soils risk losing valuable crop-producing nutrients and degrading water quality.
Despite these dire circumstances, DNR has some specific options http://www.iowadnr.gov/About-DNR/DNR-News-Releases/ArticleID/2117/Stumped-by-Wet-Weather-Some-Tips-for-Confinement-Manure-Application for confinement site producers and commercial applicators to consider as they work to protect water quality and keep storage from overflowing.
Producers with totally roofed facilities (confinements) must retain all manure between periods of application. First, and the most important: call the DNR field office to discuss site-specific alternatives.
Such options might include partially emptying basins, hand-picking application fields, adjusting manure management plans for surface application or reducing rates until fields dry out. Discuss possibilities with the manure applicator. Overall, watch the weather and avoid applying before it rains or snows.
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