Feedlot Update - Feb. 20, 2014

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Feedlot Update

Feb. 20, 2014

Wisconsin system gives weather alerts for manure application

manure alert

With spring snowmelt not far off, Wisconsin livestock producers have a useful tool for deciding when and where to land-apply manure while reducing the risk of manure-contaminated runoff. The Wisconsin Manure Management Advisory System "is a set of maps to help farmers and others who apply nutrients to identify suitable cropland areas for spreading. The maps are in two categories: Short-term runoff risk assessment, for daily application planning, and WI 590 nutrient management, for long-term application planning."

Setting up a similar system in Minnesota is being discussed. It would link local geographical data with snow cover and current weather forecasts. It would help remove guesswork from manure management decisions, show accountability for responsible practices, and help achieve water quality goals.

According to the Nutrient Management Code 590 of the Natural Resources Conservation Service: Nutrients must not be surface-applied if nutrient losses offsite are likely. This precludes spreading on:

  • frozen and/or snow-covered soils, and
  • when the top 2 inches of soil are saturated from rainfall or snow melt.

Exceptions for the above criteria can be made for surface-applied manure when specified conditions are met and adequate conservation measures are installed to prevent the offsite delivery of nutrients.... At a minimum, the following site and management factors must be considered:

  • slope,
  • organic residue and living covers,
  • amount and form of nutrients to be applied, and
  • adequate setback distances to protect local water quality.

Wisconsin manure advisory system slide presentation. 

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County feedlot staff training events scheduled

A series of training events have been scheduled for new county feedlot program staff and refresher for others. On March 11 and 12, the program provides an introduction to and overview of the feedlot program. Topics include the delegated county program, permitting and inspection process, and resolving pollution issues. An April 15 session will focus on land application of manure, and April 22, the MPCA's Delta database system. All sessions will be held in the training room of the Kandiyohi County Rescue Building, Willmar. The county feedlot program is a cooperative arrangement between the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) and county government to administer Minnesota's feedlot rule. This cooperative program is known as "county delegation" or the "county feedlot program." County feedlot programs are responsible for the implementation of feedlot rules and regulations in 54 Minnesota counties including most of the major feedlot counties. 

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News briefs

becky alexander

Becky Alexander new feedlot tech in Cottonwood

Becky Alexander's appointment as the county feedlot program technician in Cottonwood County became official in January. She began working last year in the Cottonwood SWCD office in Windom along with the previous feedlot tech, Lloyd Kalfs. Her duties included assisting several counties as Watonwan Watershed Technician with conservation programs and practices and assisting with the feedlot program towards the end of the year in 2013. Prior to becoming the Watonwan Watershed Technician she completed an MS in natural resources-aquatic ecology emphasis from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. In January 2014, she accepted another position in the Windom office as the Farm Bill Assistant/Program Technician and her other duties at the Cottonwood SWCD include farm bill assistance such as RIM and CRP, SSTS, and other SWCD work (eg. tree planting). Contact info: becky.alexander@windomnet.com, 507-831-1153x3.

Retirement recognition Feb. 28 for Bob Finley

The Mankato MPCA office will be hosting a retirement recognition for Bob Finley at 4 p.m., Friday, Feb. 28. Finley joined the MPCA staff in July 2004 as Southwest Region and feedlot program manager. Several years later he transferred to the Mankato office as Southeast Region and south watershed section manager. Previously, Finley was director of the Water Resources Center at MSU-Mankato. Prior to that he served as Executive Director of the Redwood-Cottonwood Rivers Control Area in Redwood Falls.

bob finley

Zimmerman moves to East Otter Tail SWCD

Aimee Zimmerman is leaving as CFO in Wadena County for a position as district technician for East Otter Tail SWCD in Perham. She will be working with shoreland, delegated as the county ag inspector, and assisting with the Wetland Conservation Act. The Wadena SWCD has announced the job vacancy and will be accepting applications through Feb. 21 for district technician, delegated as the CFO, ag inspector, and the Wetland Conservation Act. The link for the announcement can be found at: http://www.macde.us/jobs.htm.

Interim county assignments for MPCA feedlot staff in southeast region

With a compliance and enforcement staff vacancy in St. Paul and temporary re-assignment of Steve Schmidt, county assignments for MPCA southeast regional feedlot staff are as follows: Metro area: Allie Remer, 651-757-2062, or the Mankato office (Sara Isebrand, 507-344-5263 or Dana Leibfried, 507-344-5265). Delegated counties: Carver, Dakota, Wright. Undelegated Counties: Anoka, Chisago, Hennepin, Isanti, Ramsey, Scott, Washington.
Rochester area: Paul Brietzke, 507-206-2616. Delegated counties: Dodge, Fillmore, Freeborn, Houston, Mower, Wabasha, Winona. Undelegated county: Olmsted. Sara Isebrand, delegated counties: Goodhue, Rice, Steele. Mankato area: Dana Leibfried, delegated counties: Blue Earth, Le Sueur, Martin. Sara Isebrand, delegated counties: Brown, Faribault, Nicollet, Sibley, Waseca, Watonwan.

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Board of Animal Health website redesign

The Board of Animal Health has a new look for its website. Visit www.mn.gov/bah to learn more about the Board's role in safeguarding domestic animal health in Minnesota. Important note: Please check your links to documents, forms and other content within our website and re-link as needed. Links to our home page should still be functional.

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U of M develops first U.S. swine virus surveillance test

Submitted by the University of Minnesota

The University of Minnesota College of Veterinary Medicine has developed a second porcine epidemic diarrhea virus (PEDV) diagnostic test to help stem the spread of the virus currently threatening North American swine populations.

The test is the first announced United States PEDV swine herd surveillance test and brings PEDV diagnostic testing up to swine industry disease monitoring standards. This past summer, the University of Minnesota’s College of Veterinary Medicine developed a PEDV diagnostic test that detected the presence of the virus. This second test can detect evidence of the virus and is a very precise tool to detect a history of exposure to the virus.

Visit the University of Minnesota's website to read the full story.

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2014 Minnkota symposium at Granite Falls March 13-14

The Minnkota Agri-Builders and Equipment Suppliers Association 2014 meeting will be Thursday and Friday, March 13 and 14, at the Prairie's Edge Casino near Granite Falls. Registration opens at 11:30 a.m. Thursday. At 12:30 p.m., a representative from Riverview Farms will give a preview of a tour of calf facilities. Friday's program topics include: Manure pit foaming, beef housing systems, SDSU swine research facility, energy projects, and guidelines for builders and suppliers working in contagious disease areas. The Minnkota Agri-Builders and Equipment Association helps agricultural builders, equipment suppliers, contractors and consultants keep up with the latest information in ag construction. Organized by Larry Jacobson, University of Minnesota professor and Extension engineer in the Department of Bioproducts and Biosystems Engineering, and Steve Pohl, South Dakota State University Ag and Biosystems Engineer, the association offers animal agriculture building updates at an annual symposium each March.

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LPE Learning Center news

LPE News logo

Livestock and Poultry Environmental Learning Center

Biomass gasification is a well-developed technology that has the potential to convert various feed stocks into value added products for on-farm heat generation and carbon sequestration. The availability of on-farm gasifiers that can handle diverse feed stocks is limited and represents a hurdle to the widespread utilization. Join us as Dr. Samy Sadaka (University of Arkansas) discusses his research and some of the prospects for this technology. Feb. 28, 2013 at 1:30 p.m. More... 

Future Topics

March 7 - Water Quality Index for Agricultural Runoff
March 21 - On-Farm Manure Research Results (applying manure to standing crops)

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Soil, water, climate spring seminar series at U of M

The spring series of soil, water, climate seminars sponsored by the U of M Dept. of Soil, Water and Climate, continues Feb. 26, 3:30-4:30 p.m. in 375 Borlaug Hall on the St. Paul campus. The speaker will be Dan Jaynes, Iowa State University, about field-edge practices to reduce nitrate losses to surface waters from tile-drained fields. List of speakers for the Spring 2014 seminar series. 

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In the news

What you need to know about late winter manure application
Wisconsin Discovery Farms
MDA seeks applicants for ag water quality committee
The Farmer, 2/7/14
U of M study finds fertilization destabilizes global grassland ecosystems 
News release, 2/16/14


Feb. 25-27: Central Minnesota Farm Show, River's Edge Convention Center, St. Cloud.
March 11-12: Willmar Ag Show, Willmar civic center.
March 13-14: MinnKota Agri-Builders, Prairie's Edge, Granite Falls.
March 18-20: Midwest Poultry Federation convention, St. Paul RiverCentre.
April 25-27: Minnesota Horse Expo, state fairgrounds coliseum.

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Share the news

The MPCA Feedlot Update welcomes news submissifrom partners about, projects, people, and upcoming events. Email submissions to forrest.peterson@state.mn.us. Please note that the MPCA has switched to a new service, called GovDelivery, to deliver the Feedlot Update. To ensure delivery of these messages, please add mpca@public.govdelivery.com to your address book or safe sender list. Past issues of Feedlot Update are available on the feedlot program publications webpage.

Forrest Peterson
Public Information Officer
MPCA-Willmar office