Designing Dairies for Nutrient Management
Most existing dairies were designed to handle manure as a waste product instead of a nutrient source for crops. For a nutrient management plan to be successful, the dairy infrastructure for handling manure--collection systems, storage ponds, solids separation facilities, pipelines, pumps and irrigation structures--all need to function together to create and deliver a fertilizer product that will meet crop nutrients requirements in the right amount, form, and at the right time.
These resources will help you think through how to set up a manure handling system that will allow you to easily move, measure and apply manure nutrients. Be sure to do your homework thoroughly when setting up or making changes to a system, since mistakes can be costly.
Does your current liquid manure delivery system have what it takes to apply the amount of nitrogen called for in you nutrient management plan? This checklist provides an excellent and thorough overview of the what it takes to successfully manage liquid manure nutrients:
The laws of physics set hard and fast constraints on the nutrients that can be applied through an irrigation system. This publication contains detailed practical instructions on how to set up pumps and pipelines so that they can apply what you expect...and can potentially save you a lot of grief.
Here are more resources for designing dairies to facilitate nutrient management: