State Water Resources Research Institute Program


Project ID: 2012ND256B
Title: Vegetative Filter Strips: A Best Management Practice (BMP) for feedlot runoff pollution control in North Dakota
Project Type: Research
Start Date: 3/01/2012
End Date: 2/28/2013
Congressional District: 001
Focus Categories: Water Quality, Surface Water, Nutrients
Keywords: BMP, Vegetative Buffer Strip, Feedlot runoff
Principal Investigator: Rahman, Shafiqur
Federal Funds: $ 6,000
Non-Federal Matching Funds: $ 12,000
Abstract: Although manure is an excellent source of nutrients for plants and a good soil conditioner, improper manure containing runoff management, especially from feedlots, can negatively impact water quality. Because of large quantities of manures that are produced, runoff from feedlots may carry significant amount of manure borne nutrients. Runoff from feedlots is a major contributor and will continue to be a contributor to surface and groundwater impairment. According North Dakota Department of Health 2010 integrated water quality assessment report, significant portion of the state's surface water is either threatened or does not support the aquatic life use due to excessive nutrient loadings. The report also indicated that the primary sources of nutrient loadings in state's surface water are erosion and runoff from cropland, hydrologic modification, and runoff from animal feeding operations.Vegetative filter strips (VFS) are widely used and are increasingly viewed as an alternative technology for improving the quality of runoff from pollutant source areas.

The main objective of the proposed research is to recommend best management practices for minimizing feedlot runoff pollution in North Dakota. The specific objectives are:

  1. To evaluate the performance of vegetative filter strips installed at the downslope end of feedlots.
  2. To study the effect of pH within the VFS in reducing manure borne soluble nutrients runoff.
  3. To recommend practices for vegetative filter strip design and management.

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