Avoid Overflow This Winter

The warm and dry month of December gave farmers time to empty their manure storage for the winter. However, that doesn’t mean you’re in the clear through spring.

Kevin Erb joins us, a conservation and nutrient management specialist with the Division of Extension. He recommends checking over your storage facility at least once a week to stay ahead of any maintenance issues and check the maximum operating level marker.

He says you don’t want to have to spread manure onto a thick bed of snow and lose those nutrients when it melts off the field.

“We’ll get a plugged pipe, we will get a water break, or something may happen in the barn, and that storage can fill up sooner than it really should,” he explains. “At least once a week, walk out by that manure storage, take a look, make sure it’s not getting fuller than you expect.”

Erb notes your nutrient management plan and your farm’s profitability go hand-in-hand. He says common sense practices (like not spreading manure on a thick bed of snow) are meant to protect the environment and keep valuable nutrients in your field.