Temporary manure stacks should not cross the line

Selecting the correct location for a temporary manure stack takes forethought. Consider where runoff may move, who will be impacted by odor and what pest may hatch from the pile before the stack is placed.

There are many reasons for creating a temporary manure stack on a livestock farm. It may be too wet to take manure to the field. It may be the only storage available on a small livestock farm. Whatever the reason, consider the location carefully. 

Stacks should ideally be placed on impermeable surface (such as concrete) with sides and covered with a tarp, woodchips or straw to reduce odor and pest. Don’t locate the pile near property lines or near neighbors’ houses. Flies, odor and even runoff can cross the property line and cause problems. If a solid surface is not an option, stockpiles can be placed directly on the ground. Rotating the location of the pile and seeding the area once the manure has been removed will keep nutrients from building in the soil. To maintain conformance with the Michigan Right-to-Farm Act, stockpiles should be at least 50 foot from the property lines, 150 foot from non-farm homes or covered.

So, what is temporary? Ideally the stack would be removed in 90 days, with complete removal annually.

A little planning and management goes a long way in keeping manure stacks within the lines of right to farm and neighborly relations.

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