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This article in JEQ

  1. Vol. 36 No. 2, p. 440-447
    Received: June 9, 2006

    * Corresponding author(s): connk@agr.gc.ca


Factors Influencing the Concentration of Volatile Fatty Acids, Ammonia, and Other Nutrients in Stored Liquid Pig Manure

  1. Kenneth L. Conn *,
  2. Edward Topp and
  3. George Lazarovits
  1. Southern Crop Protection and Food Research Centre, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, 1391 Sandford Street, London, Ontario, Canada N5V 4T3


In order to minimize odor and manage nutrients in liquid pig manure we need to be able to predict what operational practices most influence the concentrations of volatile fatty acids (VFAs), ammonium nitrogen (NH4 +–N), and other nutrients present in the manure. To determine this, we collected manure from 15 pig operations in southwestern Ontario in the fall of 2001 and 2002 and spring of 2002 and 2003. The manure was stored in concrete tanks at all operations. Manure from finishing pigs had the highest concentration of VFAs, NH4 +–N, and other nutrients, followed by manure from mixed operations, and then manure from sow operations. The average concentration of total VFAs and NH4 +–N in finishing pig manure was 166 mM compared with 36 and 99 mM, respectively, in sow manure. Total N, P, and K were 2.3, 2.5, and 1.7 times greater, respectively, in finishing pig compared with sow manure. There was no seasonal or year to year variation in amount. The diet of the pigs, use of feed additives or antibiotics, location of tanks, and whether the tanks were covered or mixed were not significant factors contributing to the difference in manure chemistry. The main reason for the differences between the three types of manure was manure dilution. The average dry matter content of finishing pig manure was 4.5 times that of sow manure. This was due to larger density of pigs in finishing compared with sow operations, less manure storage capacity per pig for finishing compared with sow operations, and more wash water being used for sow operations.

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