PRESENTER NOTES Key Discussion Topics 1. Manure contains most elements required for plant growth including nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, and micronutrients . 2. It is manure’s unique combination of these nutrients with organic carbon that provides its value to crop production and the environment. 3. Soil organic matter is considered nature’s signature of a productive soil. Manure’s organic carbon provides the energy source for an active, healthy soil microbial environment critical to both stabilizing nutrient sources and making those nutrients available to crops. Discussion Question : References LPES Lesson 1: pages 9-10
Pile of horse manure, straw, and feed. This pile is destined for mushroom farms.
Aerobic composting is the most rapid way to produce high quality compost. Aerobic composting simply means composting with plenty of air in the pile. Aerobic composting produces no foul odors and also produces a lot of heat. Macroscopic Invertebrates-do most of initial mechanical bread-down of organic materials into smaller particles Snails, slugs, mites, sow bugs, worms, ants, centipedes, millipedes, beetles Microorganisms-digest and “transform” organic matter into stable humus-like particles Bacteria, fungi, actinomycetes, and protozoa
It is essentially the same process as natural decomposition except that it is enhanced and accelerated by mixing organic waste with other ingredients in a manner that optimizes microbial growth.
Windrow composting of horse manure.
An aerobic compost pile will normally go through several heating cycles. To get the most active and rapid composting the pile should be turned when temperature begins to drop, or if temperature rises above 140 o F.
Explain what micro-organisms use Carbon and Nitrogen for in their metabolic process.
Mesophilic phase -Moderate temperatures (50-110oF) lasts for a few days Thermophilic phase -High temperatures (110-160o F) lasts for 4-6 weeks Curing and Maturation phase -Temperature moderate down to ambient lasts for 3-6 months
Free moisture is needed on particle surfaces as a medium for bacteria Free moisture is needed for nutrients to be in solution so they can be absorbed Low moisture inhibits microbial growth and activity High moisture content may result in anaerobic conditions due to saturation of pore spaces.
pH is based on a log scale (“small” changes have “big” effects!) Bacteria prefer 6.0-7.5 Fungi prefer 5.5-8.0 If pH exceeds 8.5, Nitrogen may be lost through ammonia gas production
have a greater surface area to volume than larger particles and are more accessible to microbes, but may collapse pore space Fines
PRESENTER NOTES Discussion Topic(s): Roofing a solid manure storage facility may eliminate the need to collect and manage runoff. Also, rainfall does not add moisture to the manure, which keeps the manure more solid and less “soupy.” Handling solids in inclement weather may be easier with a roofed facility. Tarp covers for manure stockpiles such as poultry litter can be effective and less expensive, but require more labor.
For smaller horse farms, the use of on-site composting bins reduces the volume of manure considerably and leads to a recyclable parasite free amendment for spreading on the soil. Note – I will try to insert both photos and videos on this slide that more clearly illustrate actual operation in the field as well as show larger composter types.
Odor Release and Dispersion Many factors affect the dispersion of odors. Those factors over which we have some degree of control include: -Temperature. As air warms, it rises. This encourages mixing of odors with additional fresh air. Is it better to spread manure at 10 am or 10 pm? At 10 am, air is warming, greater dispersion of odors occurs, and less chance of odors affecting neighbors would exist. -Surface Area. High speed winds encourage dispersion. Note that low wind speeds are desirable at the source of odor. However, high wind speeds are desirable downwind for odor. -Topography. Hills and trees can encourage mixing of odors near the ground with fresh air at higher altitudes.
A Renewable Resource
My Horse University and eXtension’s HorseQuest welcome you to this live Webcast. The presentation will begin promptly at 7:00 p.m. EST. Dr. Ann Swinker
My Horse University and eXtension’s HorseQuest welcome you to this live Webcast. Horse Manure: A Renewable Resource Dr. Ann Swinker Robb Meinen Penn State University
Absorption of Bedding Types Material (lbs water absorbed/lbs bedding)
3.0 2.5 2.0 1.5 Shredded newspaper 1.6
2.5 2.2 Hay (mature) 3.0
Composting Natural aerobic process for stabilizing organic matter Well composted manure has humus smell, 25-50% volume reduction, and destruction of pathogens and weed seeds due to heat of composting.
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