Submitted to: Wisconsin Fertilizer Aglime and Pest Management Conference
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: December 15, 2004
Publication Date: January 8, 2005
Citation: Powell, J.M. 2005. Dairy herd management impacts on manure nitrogen cycling. In Proc. of the 2005 Wisconsin Fertilizer, Aglime & Pest Management Conference, January 18-20, 2005, Madison, WI. p. 271-273. Technical Abstract: In confinement-based dairy operations, most urine N can be lost from the barn as ammonia gas Substantial gains in overall N use efficiency may be gained by corralling dairy heifers on cropland to capture and recycle urine N through crops. The objective of this study was to compare impacts on soil compaction, crop yields and N uptake the corralling of dairy heifers directly on cropland between cropping periods to the application of barn-scrapped manure. A field trial comprised a factorial arrangement of two manure application methods: (1) corralling and (2) land-applied manure from the barn; two manure application rates: (1) manure deposited during 2 days of corralling (C2) or 2 days in the barn (B2), and (2) manure deposited during 4 days of corralling (C4) or 4 days in the barn (B4); two periods of manure application: (1) spring-summer corresponding to April to September, and (2) fall-winter corresponding to October to March; two cropping patterns: (1) wheat-sorghum-rye-corn silage-rye for plots manured during April to September; (2) corn silage-rye-corn silage-rye for plots manured during October to March. Whereas corralling during the spring caused soil compaction, corralling during the winter did not. Crop N uptake in plots where heifers were corralled was higher than where barn manure was applied. Positive effects of corralling on crop N uptake lasted for more than two years. Lack of response by wheat to corralling may have been due to high manure N application and subsequent crop lodging. The four crops after wheat each had higher crop N uptake in plots where heifers were corralled than in plots that received barn manure. Corralling livestock directly on fields between cropping periods captured and recycled more manure N through crops compared to manure scrapped from barns.