Methodologies for In-situ Characterization of the Impact of Equine Manure Management Practices on Water Quality

Nutrient loading of nitrogen and phosphorus in runoff and water leachate threatens Florida’s environmental and water resources. Of those nutrients, nitrate (NO3) nitrogen is highly soluble and not strongly bound to soils. Consequently, nitrate is highly mobile and subject to leaching losses when both nitrate content and water movement are high.

Horse Manure Management

With proper planning, manure management can be beneficial to both the farm and the environment. This article provides information on environmental and health impacts of manure as well as proper manure storage and management.

J.G. Davis, A. M. Swinker, and Crystal Smith

Introduction

Manure management is a vital part of modern day horse ownership.…

Fencing To Limit Horses Access to Riparian Areas

Why Limit Horse Access to Water Bodies?

Fencing along stream banks, lakes, and wetlands (riparian areas) is important in order to limit the access horses have to the waterways. When horses area allowed free access to riparian zones, they can deposit manure on the bank or directly in the water. Horse manure may cause elevated levels of nutrients and/or microbes in water.…

Managing Manure on Horse Farms

Why Is It Important to Manage Horse Manure?

When managed properly, nutrients from manure should be seen as part of a larger cycle occurring on the farm. Nutrients enter the farm as feed or fertilizer, are excreted as manure, and are subsequently spread on the soil, taken up by plants, or transported off the farm as waste.…

Equine Barnyard Management

Why Is Barnyard Management Important for Horse Manure?

Horse paddocks (and pastures) may contain large quantities of mud due to excessive traffic. Mud is more than a “mess” or “nuisance.” Winter and spring rains can cause mud and manure to runoff into nearby waterways. Nutrients and sediment in runoff are considered non-point source pollution, which can degrade water quality.…

Off-Farm Manure Disposal

When a farm has more manure than can be properly applied to acreage that they own or rent, other options need to be considered.

Hire a Certified Manure Hauler

Some producers may contract with a hauler to remove the manure. The hauler may take the manure to a centralized composting facility or spread the manure on farmland.…

Pasture Management on Horse Farms

Proper pasture management is important to holistic farm management. Grazing animals deposit manure on pastures and exercise areas. This manure ultimately will either be incorporated into the pasture soil or if the pasture is poorly vegetated it may be a runoff risk. So, the first principle of managing manure with grazing animals is to ensure productive pastures.…

USDA Small Farm Definitions

Farm Classification System

The USDA Economic Research Service (USDA-ERS) has developed a farm classification system to divide U.S. farms into eight mutually exclusive and more homogeneous groups. The farm typology focuses on “family farms,” or farms organized as proprietorships, partnerships, and family corporations that are not operated by a hired manager.…