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Manure

See what farms are using for nutrient management, from anaerobic digesters and storage to field application and emissions.

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A first-of-its-kind field study was recently completed to estimate the risk of acute gastrointestinal illness from airborne pathogens during manure irrigation and to identify the other variables, such as distance and weather conditions that affect airborne pathogen transport. It coincided with a larger effort, known as the Manure Irrigation Workgroup, to explore benefits, concerns and remaining questions associated with manure irrigation.

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For the most part, manure has been an underused resource by dairy farmers. Some never realize its full value and potential while others simply don’t know where to go for assistance.

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As more and more is learned about nutrient application and soil conservation, three innovative Wisconsin farmers have changed how they apply manure.

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Court interpretations of environmental laws, combined with increased financial risks related to the environment, are converging to create a new reality: Manure is manure until it pollutes, and environmental insurance protects dairy farms against liability until it doesn’t.

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Farmers need to assume climate change will cause changes in weather patterns and that it will require them to make changes.

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Dairy farmers are often advised by researchers that doing things in a given manner causes a specific result. Whether it’s tilling the soil, feeding the cattle or managing the manure, the way in which things are done can have positive or negative impacts on the surrounding environment.

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