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Cattle feedlot soil moisture and manure content. I. Impacts on greenhouse gases, odor compounds, nitrogen losses, and dust

Permanent URL:
http://handle.nal.usda.gov/10113/7181
Abstract:
Beef cattle feedlots face serious environmental challenges associated with manure management, including greenhouse gas, odor, NH3, and dust emissions. Conditions affecting emissions are poorly characterized, but likely relate to the variability of feedlot surface moisture and manure contents, which affect microbial processes. Odor compounds, greenhouse gases, nitrogen losses, and dust potential were monitored at six moisture contents (0.11, 0.25, 0.43, 0.67, 1.00, and 1.50 g H2O g(-1) dry matter [DM]) in three artificial feedlot soil mixtures containing 50, 250, and 750 g manure kg(-1) total (manure + soil) DM over a two-week period. Moisture addition produced three microbial metabolisms: inactive, aerobic, and fermentative at low, moderate, and high moisture, respectively. Manure content acted to modulate the effect of moisture and enhanced some microbial processes. Greenhouse gas (CO2, N2O, and CH4) emissions were dynamic at moderate to high moisture. Malodorous volatile fatty acid (VFA) compounds did not accumulate in any treatments, but their persistence and volatility varied depending on pH and aerobic metabolism. Starch was the dominant substrate fueling both aerobic and fermentative metabolism. Nitrogen losses were observed in all metabolically active treatments; however, there was evidence for limited microbial nitrogen uptake. Finally, potential dust production was observed below defined moisture thresholds, which were related to manure content of the soil. Managing feedlot surface moisture within a narrow moisture range (0.2-0.4 g H2O g(-1) DM) and minimizing the accumulation of manure produced the optimum conditions that minimized the environmental impact from cattle feedlot production.
Author(s):
Miller, D.N. , Berry, E.D.
Subject(s):
air pollution , pollution control , beef cattle , feedlots , silt loam soils , soil water content , cattle manure , chemical composition , greenhouse gases , gas emissions , microbial activity , volatile fatty acids , odor compounds , odor emissions , dust emissions , nitrogen , losses from soil , Nebraska
Format:
p. 644-655.
Note:
Includes references
Source:
Journal of environmental quality 2005 Mar-Apr, v. 34, no. 2
Language:
English
Year:
2005
Collection:
Journal Articles, USDA Authors, Peer-Reviewed
File:
Download [PDF File]
Rights:
Works produced by employees of the U.S. Government as part of their official duties are not copyrighted within the U.S. The content of this document is not copyrighted.