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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Sex Hormones from Poultry Litter-Their Fate and Transport in Runoff and Drainage from Cropped Till and No-Till Plots

item Jenkins, Michael
item Endale, Dinku
item Schomberg, Harry
item Steiner, Jean

Submitted to: Soil Science Society of America Annual Meeting
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: March 28, 2002
Publication Date: November 10, 2002
Citation: Jenkins, M., Endale, D.M., Schomberg, H.H., Steiner, J.L., Cabrera, M.L., Hartel, P.G. 2002. Sex hormones from poultry litter-their fate and transport in runoff and drainage from cropped till- and no-till plots. Soil Science Society of America Annual Meeting.

Technical Abstract: The millions of tons of poultry litter that are applied to agricultural fields annually are a source of the sex hormones estradiol and testosterone. Our objective was to determine if the concentrations of these two sex hormones in runoff and drainage from till and no-till soils receiving broiler litter were greater than in runoff and drainage from control plots receiving mineral fertilizer. The experiment consisted of six no-till and six tilled 10 X 30 m plots; three plots of each received either broiler litter, or mineral N, P, and K. After applying 7,500 kg/ha of litter, and planting rye, the plots were irrigated. Preliminary data indicated that volumes of drainage ranged from 9,200 to 17,000 l; no differences existed between till and no-till plots. Volumes of runoff ranged from 31 to 1750 l; runoff from tilled plots was greater (P = 0.05) than from no-till plots. Flow-weighted concentrations of estradiol ranged from six to 36 ng/l in drainage, and from 16 to 38 ng/l in runoff. For testosterone the range was from six to 11 ng/l in drainage, and from four to nine ng/l in runoff. No differences between plots receiving litter and mineral fertilizer existed. This finding may change as data are generated from more irrigation and natural rain events.

Last Modified: 4/22/2015
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