IMMAG Updates

October 2017

Welcome to the monthly update for the Iowa Manure Management Action Group (IMMAG) Web site. This update is provided as a service to inform you about changes made to the IMMAG Web Page or items of interest dealing with manure management and air quality from animal feeding operations. If you wish to subscribe to this mailing please click here. You may also view this update with direct links on the CURRENT NEWS site on IMMAG.

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Iowa NRCS Assistance for Agricultural Waste and Mortality Composting

Mark Garrison, NRCS Environmental Engineer (515) 323-2226,
Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) provides technical and financial assistance to eligible livestock producers to assist with manure and nutrient management from their operations.  This article provides information to producers who are interested in composting for disposing of mortalities or for processing and treatment of animal manures or other agricultural waste materials into stable byproducts.

  • Composting is an effective way to provide an environmentally safe way to dispose of animal mortalities without some of the costs and risks associated with other methods such as rendering, burial, incineration, etc.  Also, composting of animal manures or other agricultural wastes allows for the creation of stable byproducts for use as soil amendments.  IA NRCS staff and programs can provide planning, technical, and financial assistance for the design, construction, and implementation of composting facilities.
  • IA NRCS staff can provide planning and technical assistance through the following composting technical standards.  If for some reason IA NRCS cannot provide direct technical assistance, IA NRCS can assist the producer in finding a technical service provider with the appropriate qualifications.
    • 316 – Animal Mortality Facility
    • 317 – Composting Facility
    • Animal Waste Management Field Handbook (AWMFH)

Find the previously mentioned documents at the Field Office Technical Guide (eFOTG):
Field Office Technical Guide Locator or at:
Iowa Natural Resources Conservation Service.

  • Depending on the results of the planning process and the producer’s objectives the following are examples of projects IA NRCS could potentially fund. 
    • A 12-bin mortality composter for a 2,400 head grow-finish operation.
    • Static four-bin mortality composter for a 100,000 broiler chicken operation.
    • Concrete slabs of various sizes to accommodate static pile composting of agricultural wastes (manure, etc.) or mortalities from livestock or organic operations.

For more information regarding NRCS technical and financial assistance visit your local NRCS field office or visit the NRCS website.

Figure 1. A four bin animal mortality composter with concrete bin dividers.

The Manure Scoop

Manure application economics are always a popular topic. In this month’s Manure Scoop we take a look at how different application rates impact the cost per gallon of application and what this means for the fertilizer value of manure. Read more at The Manure Scoop.

Road Safety

Figure 2. Slow moving vehicle signs and flashing amber lights ensures equipment is visible at all times.

Stay safe during manure application season and take precautions this fall when driving on public roads. During October through December, nearly half of all collisions involving farm vehicles take place. Majority of these accidents are either a rear end collision, when the approaching vehicle hits the farm vehicle from behind, or when a passing motorist attempts to pass a farm vehicle that is making a wide left turn. Additionally, accidents involving farm equipment are more likely to produce a fatality.

Below are a few tips to help keep you and others safe this application season:

  • Determine where additional reflectors, lights, and mirrors are needed for wide loads
  • Replace cracked lenses and burned out bulbs
  • Clean manure or other debris from reflectors, light lenses, and mirrors before entering public roads
  • Avoid busy routes and busy times of the day
  • Don’t text and haul


November 17, 2017, 1:30 pm – Long-term study of manure on root crops webinar


Dan Andersen
(515) 294-4210
Twitter: @DrManure

Rachel Kennedy
(515) 294-6685

Melissa McEnany
(515) 294-9075


Iowa Manure Management Action Group
Twitter: @iowamanure

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