Use of a nitrification inhibitor to improve crop recovery of manure nutrients
Intensive hog operations generate large amounts of manure that must be dealt with in a manner that is both economically and environmentally sound. The objective of the research described is to evaluate the effect of adding a nitrification inhibitor as means of enhancing crop recovery of manure nitrogen. A long - term swine manure field trial located on a Black Chernozem (Cudworth Association) near Dixon, SK was used in the study. A nitrification inhibitor (DCD) was added to liquid swine manure that was applied using low disturbance injection in the spring of 2005. The application rate of nitrogen in this treatment was ~ 75 kg N . ha-1 per year. This was compared to the same rate of liquid swine manure applied without the inhibitor. The efficacy of the nitrification inhibitor was evaluated by measurement of plant nitrogen recovery. As well, PRS™-probes (anion and cation exchange membranes) were used to assess ammonium and nitrate supply rates in the soil during the growing season as affected by treatment. Plant samples were also taken biweekly during the growing season to quantify biomass production and measure plant nitrogen uptake in the selected treatments. Data obtained in the 2005 season indicates that the nitrification inhibitor was effective in keeping more of the manure nitrogen in the ammonium form during the 2005 season at the Dixon site. However, significant increases in crop nitrogen recovery, and yield responses were not observed from the use of the nitrification inhibitor at the Dixon site. This may be explained by conditions during the growing season that were not conducive to high potential losses of nitrate by leaching or denitrification.
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