Runoff Water Quality and Crop Response to Variable Manure Application Rate

Project Staff: 

Principal Investigators: Neil Hansen, Assistant Professor, Department of Soil, Water, and Climate; and Sagar Goyal, Professor, Department of Veterinary Diagnostic Medicine

Funding: 

USGS-WRRI 104B/ CAIWQ Competitive Grants Program

Project Duration: 

March 2000 - February 2001

Summary: 

Incorrectly applied manure can lead to water quality problems such as reduced oxygen levels and high levels of fecal coliform bacteria. Studies have shown that applying manure at rates based on the crop requirements for nitrogen can improve infiltration and reduce runoff. Applying manure at phosphorus-based rates, which are lower than nitrogen-based rates, may improve water quality, but has yet to be investigated. Neil Hanson and Sagal Goyal were awarded a grant to evaluate the effects of applying manure at various phosphorus-based rates on soil hydraulic properties, the loss of nutrients in surface runoff, the presence of pathogens in runoff water, and crop production.