Manure Spreading Advisory
The following Manure Spreading Advisory (MSA) should be used in conjunction with your Nutrient Management Plan and application guidence to help you determine when applying manure is advisable.
Want to Apply Manure? Ask These Four Simple Questions:
- Do I need manure on my crop? - Determine agronomic rate
- Is it safe to apply manure at this time? - Manure Spreading Advisory (see map below)
- Is my field is good condition to apply to? - Application Risk Management Worksheet
- What do I need to do to minimize risk? - Manure Application Setback Guidance
Remember: If the risk is high, dont apply! Use the ARM Worksheet along with the MSA to determine if appication is okay on your field.
Click on your farm location on the map below to get the three day runoff risk rating for applying manure in your area.
(This map is updated daily by 6:00 am. If the advisory date is not current on your map, press the "F5" button on your keyboard to refresh the page.)
Note: This advisory is still in the development stage and will get more accurate as we collect more data. Refer to the "Guidance" in the advisory for ways to adapt the advisory for your farm. We appreciate your patience and would welcome your feedback on how it is working for you.
The risk value on the map is based on the 72 hour precipitation forecast for a given area. This value best predicts the potential risk associated with movement of manure applied to a field.
Manure Speading Advisory (MSA) Map
This advisory is the first step in assessing if your field conditions are suitable for manure application and should be followed up with observation of your field characteristics to determine if manure application is appropriate at any time of the year. In some cases, even when the advisory is med-high, you may have individual fields that can be applied to becuase they are low risk. The ARM worksheet will help you take the next step to assess the risk associated with application to individual fields.
Field Risk Type
A high risk field is one that is likely to have a runoff event and/or impact an adjacent waterbody. High risk fields are saturated (over 90% moisture = you could not drive a tractor on it, water appears under your footprint, a handful of soil would produce moisture on your hand), has a water table within 24 inches of the surface and/or flowing tiles, is frozen more than one inch down, has thin vegetation (<70% density), and/or has high risk areas. High risk areas are swales, trenches, ditches, ponded areas, or other conduits that would channel water from the field to adjacent water way. Do not apply to high risk fields! Wait for them to become more suitable before applying.
A low risk field is one that has a low chance for a runoff event. Characteristics include, well drained, sandy soil; low soil moisture; no adjacent waterways or a upslope or burm that prevents water from entering waterway; no swales that lead to a critical area; adequate vegetation cover if surface applying; and no ponding or water table within two feet of the surface. If you can drive a tractor on your field without causing mud or ruts, it is likely at a low risk state.
This map is most useful when used in conjuction with the Application Risk Management system. If the risk rating for your location allows manure application, follow up by filling out the ARM worksheet to see if application for a specific field is okay. For more information, talk to your Whatcom CD nutrient management planner.
Think your doing a good job protecting your watershed? Check out the Watershed Health Assessment Map to find out.
For more forecast and weather information, CLICK HERE.
Please note, even if this map says your risk is low, it cannot account for every variable or condition present on your field. It is your responsibility to use your best judgment and adhere to all application guidelines outlined in your plan. Always err on the side of caution to prevent unwanted discharges. Manure application practices that cause a discharge can lead to fines and/or necessitate a CAFO permit for your facility. The Whatcom Conservation District and the NRCS assume no responsibility for inappropriate manure application. Proper application is ultimately your responsibility.