Production of Greenhouse Gases, Ammonia, Hydrogen Sulfide, and Odorous Volatile Organic Compounds from Manure of Beef Feedlot Cattle Implanted with Anabolic Steroids

Animal production is part of a larger agricultural nutrient recycling system that includes soil, water, plants, animals and livestock excreta. When inefficient storage or utilization of nutrients occurs, parts of this cycle become overloaded. The U.S. Beef industry has made great strides in improving production efficiency with a significant emphasis on improving feed efficiency. Improved feed efficiency results in fewer excreted nutrients and volatile organic compounds (VOC) that impair environmental quality. Anabolic steroids are used to improve nutrient feed efficiency which increases nitrogen retention and reduces nitrogen excretion. This study was conducted to determine the methane (CH4), carbon dioxide (CO2), nitrous oxide (N2O), odorous VOCs, ammonia (NH3), and hydrogen sulfide (H2S) production from beef cattle manure and urine when aggressive steroid implants strategies were used instead of moderate implant strategies.

What Did We Do?

Two groups of beef steers (60 animals per group) were implanted using two levels of implants (moderate or aggressive). This was replicated three times, twice with spring-born calves and once with fall-born calves, for a total of 360 animals used during the study. Both moderate and aggressive treatment groups received the same initial implant that contain 80 mg trenbolone acetate and 16 mg estradiol. At second implant, steers in the moderate group received an implant that contained 120 mg trenbolone acetate and 24 mg estradiol, while those in the aggressive group received an implant that contained 200 mg trenbolone acetate and 20 mg estradiol. Urine and feces samples were collected individually from 60 animals that received a moderate implant and 60 animals that received an aggressive implant at each of three sampling dates (Spring and Fall 2017 and Spring 2018). Within each treatment, fresh urine and feces from five animals were mixed together to make a composite sample slurry (2:1 ratio of manure:urine) and placed in a petri dish. There were seven composite mixtures for each treatment at each sampling date. Wind tunnels were used to pull air over the petri dishes. Ammonia, carbon dioxide, and nitrous oxide concentrations were measured using an Innova 1412 Photoacoustic Gas Analyzer. Hydrogen sulfide and methane were measured using a Thermo Fisher Scientific 450i and 55i, respectively. Gas measurements were taken a minimum of six times over 24- to 27-day sampling periods.

What Have We Learned?

Flux of ammonia, hydrogen sulfide, methane, nitrous oxide, and total aromatic volatile organic compounds were significantly lower when an aggressive implant strategy was used compared to a moderate implant strategy. However, the flux of total branched-chained volatile organic compounds from the manure increased when aggressive implants were used compared to moderate implants. Overall, this study suggests that air quality may be improved when an aggressive implant is used in beef feedlot animals.

Table 1. Overall average flux of compounds from manure (urine + feces) from beef feedlot cattle implanted with a moderatea or aggressiveb anabolic steroid.
Hydrogen Sulfide Ammonia Methane Carbon Dioxide Nitrous  Oxide Total Sulfidesc Total SCFAd Total BCFAe Total Aromaticsf
µg m-2 min-1 ——–mg m-2 min-1——–
Moderate 4.0±0.1 2489.7±53.0 117.9±4.0 8795±138 8.6±0.1 0.7±0.1 65.2±6.6 5.9±0.5 2.9±0.3
Aggressive 2.7±0.2 2186.4±46.2 104.0±3.8 8055±101 7.4±0.1 0.8±0.1 63.4±5.7 7.6±0.8 2.1±0.2
P-value 0.01 0.04 0.01 0.01 0.01 0.47 0.83 0.05 0.04
aModerate treatment =  120 mg trenbolone acetate and 24 mg estradiol at second implant; bAggressive treatment = 200 mg trenbolone acetate and 20 mg estradiol at second implant; cTotal sulfides = dimethyldisulfide and dimethyltrisulfide; dTotal straight-chained fatty acids (SCFA) = acetic acid, propionic acid, butyric acid, valeric acid, hexanoic acid, and heptanoic acid;  eTotal branch-chained fatty acids (BCFA) = isobutyric acid and isovaleric acid; fTotal aromatics = phenol, 4-methylphenol, 4-ethylphenol, indole, and skatole

Future Plans
Urine and fecal samples are being evaluated to determine the concentration of steroid residues in the livestock waste and the nutrient content (nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium and sulfur) of the urine and feces.

Authors

mindy.spiehs@ars.usda.gov Mindy J. Spiehs, Research Animal Scientist, USDA ARS Meat Animal Research Center, Clay Center, NE

Bryan L. Woodbury, Agricultural Engineer, USDA ARS Meat Animal Research Center, Clay Center, NE

Kristin E. Hales, Research Animal Scientist, USDA ARS Meat Animal Research Center, Clay Center, NE

Additional Information

Will be included in Proceedings of the 2019 Annual International Meeting of the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers.

USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer. 

Acknowledgements

The authors wish to thank Alan Kruger, Todd Boman, Bobbi Stromer, Brooke Compton, John Holman, Troy Gramke and the USMARC Cattle Operations Crew for assistance with data collection.

The authors are solely responsible for the content of these proceedings. The technical information does not necessarily reflect the official position of the sponsoring agencies or institutions represented by planning committee members, and inclusion and distribution herein does not constitute an endorsement of views expressed by the same. Printed materials included herein are not refereed publications. Citations should appear as follows. EXAMPLE: Authors. 2019. Title of presentation. Waste to Worth. Minneapolis, MN. April 22-26, 2019. URL of this page. Accessed on: today’s date.

Production of Greenhouse Gases and Odorous Compounds from Manure of Beef Feedlot Cattle Fed Diets With and Without Ionophores

Ionophores are a type of antibiotics that are used in cattle production to shift ruminal fermentation patterns. They do not kill bacteria, but inhibit their ability to function and reproduce. In the cattle rumen, acetate, propionate, and butyrate are the primary volatile fatty acids produced. It is more energetically efficient for the rumen bacteria to produce acetate and use methane as a hydrogen sink rather than propionate. Ionophores inhibit archaea forcing bacteria to produce propionate and butyrate as hydrogen sinks rather than working symbiotically with methanogens to produce methane as a hydrogen sink. Numerous research studies have demonstrated performance advantages when ionophores are fed to beef cattle, but few have considered potential environmental benefits of feeding ionophores. This study was conducted to determine if concentrations of greenhouse gases, odorous volatile organic compounds (VOC), ammonia, and hydrogen sulfide from beef cattle manure could be reduced when an ionophore was fed to finishing cattle.

What Did We Do?

Four pens of feedlot cattle were fed an ionophore (monensin) and four pens received no ionophore (n=30 animals/pen). Samples were collected six times over a two-month period. A minimum of 20 fresh fecal pads were collected from each feedlot pen at each collection. Samples were mixed within pen and a sub-sample was placed in a small wind-tunnel. Duplicate samples for each pen were analyzed. Ammonia, carbon dioxide (CO2), and nitrous oxide (N2O) concentrations were measured using an Innova 1412 Photoacoustic Gas Analyzer. Hydrogen sulfide (H2S) and methane (CH4) were measured using a Thermo Fisher Scientific 450i and 55i, respectively.

What Have We Learned?

 

Table 1. Overall average concentration of compounds from feces of beef feedlot cattle fed diets with and without monensin.
Hydrogen Sulfide Ammonia Methane Carbon Dioxide Nitrous  Oxide Total Sulfidesa Total  SCFAb Total BCFAc Total Aromaticsd
µg L-1 —————-mg L-1—————-
No Monensin 87.3±2.2 1.0±0.2 4.3±0.1 562.5±2.2 0.4±0.0 233.4±18.3 421.6±81.9 16.8±3.1 83.7±6.4
Monensin 73.9±1.4 1.1±0.2 3.2±0.2 567.1±2.1 0.5±0.0 145.5±10.9 388.9±32.5 20.3±2.3 86.4±5.6
P-value 0.30 0.40 0.01 0.65 0.21 0.01 0.79 0.48 0.75
aTotal sulfides = dimethyldisulfide and dimethyltrisulfide; bTotal straight-chained fatty acids (SCFA) = acetic acid, propionic acid, butyric acid, valeric acid, hexanoic acid, and heptanoic acid;  cTotal branch-chained fatty acids (BCFA) = isobutyric acid and isovaleric acid; dTotal aromatics = phenol, 4-methylphenol, 4-ethylphenol, indole, and skatole

Total CH4 concentration decreased when monensin was fed. Of the VOCs measured, only total sulfide concentration was lower for the manure from cattle fed monensin compared to those not fed monensin. Ammonia, N2O, CO2, H2S, and all other odorous VOC were similar between the cattle fed monensin and those not fed monensin. The results only account for concentration of gases emitted from the manure and do not take into account any urinary contributions, but indicate little reduction in odors and greenhouse gases when monensin was fed to beef finishing cattle.

Future Plans

A study is planned for April – July 2019 to measure odor and gas emissions from manure (urine and feces mixture) from cattle fed with and without monensin. Measurements will also be collected from the feedlot surface of pens with cattle fed with and without monensin.  

Authors

Mindy J. Spiehs, Research Animal Scientist, USDA ARS Meat Animal Research Center, Clay Center, NE

mindy.spiehs@ars.usda.gov

Bryan L. Woodbury, Agricultural Engineer, USDA ARS Meat Animal Research Center, Clay Center, NE

Kristin E. Hales, Research Animal Scientist, USDA ARS Meat Animal Research Center, Clay Center, NE

Additional Information

Dr. Hales also looked at growth performance and E. coli shedding when ionophores were fed to finishing beef cattle. This work is published in Journal of Animal Science.

Hales, K.E., Wells, J., Berry, E.D., Kalchayanand, N., Bono, J.L., Kim, M.S. 2017. The effects of monensin in diets fed to finishing beef steers and heifers on growth performance and fecal shedding of Escherichia coli O157:H7. Journal of Animal Science. 95(8):3738-3744. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28805884/.

USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer.

Acknowledgements

The authors wish to thank Alan Kruger, Todd Boman, and the USMARC Cattle Operations Crew for assistance with data collection.

The authors are solely responsible for the content of these proceedings. The technical information does not necessarily reflect the official position of the sponsoring agencies or institutions represented by planning committee members, and inclusion and distribution herein does not constitute an endorsement of views expressed by the same. Printed materials included herein are not refereed publications. Citations should appear as follows. EXAMPLE: Authors. 2019. Title of presentation. Waste to Worth. Minneapolis, MN. April 22-26, 2019. URL of this page. Accessed on: today’s date.

Impact of Manure Incorporation on Greenhouse Gas Emissions in Semi-Arid Regions


Purpose

Gaseous emissions from animal feeding operations (AFOs) can create adverse impacts ranging from short-term local effects on air quality, to long-term effects due to greenhouse gas generation. This study evaluates gaseous emissions from manure application with differing times to incorporation. The purpose of the study is to identify ways to improve manure management and land application BMPs in semi-arid regions with a high soil pH.

What did we do?

Manure application and incorporation methods were evaluated in a field setting on a soil with high pH. Scraped dairy manure was surface applied at a rate of 50 tons/acre to a Millville silt loam. Incorporation events occurred immediately, 24hrs after application, 72 hrs after application, and no incorporation. Gaseous emissions were monitored using a closed dynamic chamber with a Fourier Transformed Infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy gas analyzer, which is capable of monitoring 15-pre-programmed gases simultaneously including ammonia, carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, oxides of nitrogen, and volatile organic compounds. Emissions were monitored for 15 days.

What have we learned?

Emissions for methane (CH4) and ammonia (NH3) stopped when the manure was incorporated. For methane, 33% of the emissions occurred within the first 24 hours, 61% within the first 72 hrs. For ammonia, 50% of the emissions occurred within the first 24 hours, 88% within the first 72 hours. Carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions were reduced, but continued at a baseline level after incorporation. Immediate incorporation reduced total CO2 emissions for the 15 days by approximately 50%. Incorporation within 24 hours and 72 hours, reduced total CO2 emissions for the 15 days by 40% and 18%, respectively. Based on this data, incorporation greatly reduces NH3, CH4, and CO2 emissions. Rapid incorporation is needed to have a meaningful impact on NH3 and CH4 emissions. Best management practices should emphasize the need for immediate incorporation.

(Click to enlarge the graphs below).

Cumulative emissions summary: ammonia, carbon dioxide, and methane

Future Plans  

Examine the impact of tannins on gaseous emissions.

Authors   

Rhonda Miller, Ph.D.; Agricultural Systems Technology and Education Dept.; Utah State University rhonda.miller@usu.edu

Pakorn Sutitarnnontr, Ph.D.; South Florida Water Management District; Naples, FL Markus Tuller, Ph.D.; Soil, Water, and Environmental Science Dept.; University of Arizona Jim Walworth, Ph.D.; Soil, Water, and Environmental Science Dept.; University of Ar

Additional Information

Sutitarnnonntr, P., E. Hu, R. Miller, M. Tuller, and S. B. Jones. 2013. Measurement Accuracy of a Multiplexed Portable FTIR- Surface Chamber System for Estimating Gas Emissions. ASABE 2013 Paper and Presentation No. 131620669. St. Joseph, MI: American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers.

Website: http://agwastemanagement.usu.edu

Acknowledgements      

The authors gratefully acknowledge support from a USDA-CSREES AFRI Air Quality Program Grant #2010-85112-50524.

The authors are solely responsible for the content of these proceedings. The technical information does not necessarily reflect the official position of the sponsoring agencies or institutions represented by planning committee members, and inclusion and distribution herein does not constitute an endorsement of views expressed by the same. Printed materials included herein are not refereed publications. Citations should appear as follows. EXAMPLE: Authors. 2015. Title of presentation. Waste to Worth: Spreading Science and Solutions. Seattle, WA. March 31-April 3, 2015. URL of this page. Accessed on: today’s date.

Greenhouse Gas Emissions From Land Applied Swine Manure: Development of Method Based on Static Flux Chambers

Waste to Worth: Spreading science and solutions logoWaste to Worth home | More proceedings….

Abstract

A new method was used at the Ag 450 Farm Iowa State University (41.98N, 93.65W) from October 24, 2012 through December 14, 2012 to assess GHG emission from land-applied swine manure on crop land. Gas samples were collected daily from four static flux chambers.  Gas method detection limits were 1.99 ppm, 170 ppb, and 20.7 ppb for CO2, CH4 and N2O, respectively.  Measured gas concentrations were used to estimate flux using four different models, i.e., (1) linear regression, (2) non-linear regression, (3) non-equilibrium, and (4) revised Hutchinson & Mosier (HMR). Sixteen days of baseline measurements (before manure application) were followed by manure application with deep injection (at 41.2 m3/ha), and thirty seven days of measurements after manure application.  

Static flux chamber (pictured) method was developed to measure greenhouse gas emissions from land-applied swine manure from a corn-on-corn system in central Iowa in the Fall of 2012.  Gas samples were collected in vials and transported to the Air Quality Laboratory at Iowa State University campus. 

Why Study Greenhouse Gases and Land Application of Swine Manure?

Assessment of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from land-applied swine manure is needed for improved process-based modeling of nitrogen and carbon cycles in animal-crop production systems.

What Did We Do?

We developed novel method for measurement and estimation of greenhouse gas (CO2, CH4, N2O) flux (mass/area/time) from land-applied swine manure. New method is based on gas emissions collection with static flux chambers (surface coverage area of 0.134 m^2 and a head space volume of 7 L) and gas analysis with a GC-FID-ECD.

Baseline (post tilling) greenhouse gas (GHGs) emissions monitoring was followed with swine manure application in the Fall of 2012 (pictured) and about 10 weeks of post-application monitoring of GHGs.

New method is also applicable to measure fluxes of GHGs from area sources involving crops and soils, agricultural waste management, municipal, and industrial waste.  New method was used at the Ag 450 Farm Iowa State Univeristy (41.98 N, 93.65 W) from October 24, 2012 through December 14, 2012 to assess GHG emission from land-applied swine manure on crop (corn on corn) land. Gas samples were collected daily from four static flux chambers. Gas method detection limits were 1.99 ppm, 170 ppb, and 20.7 ppb for CO2, CH4, and N2O, respectively.

What Have We Learned?

Measured gas concentrations were used to estimate flux using four different mathematical models, i.e., (1) linear regression, (2) non-linear regression, (3) non-equilibrium, and (4) revised Hutchinson & Mosier (HMR). Sixteen days of baseline measurements (before manure application) were followed by manure application with deep injection (at 41.2 m3/ha), and thirty seven days of measurements after manure application.   Preliminary net cumulative flux estimates ranged from 115,000 to 462,000 g/ha of CO2, -4.65 to 204 g/ha of CH4, and 860 to 2,720 g/ha N2O.  These ranges are consistent with those reported in literature for similar climatic conditions and manure application method.

Greenhouse gases (GHGs) were analyzed in the Air Quality Laboratory (ISU) using dedicated GHGs gas chromatograph.  The picture above shows an example of gas sample analysis for CO2, GH4 and N2O.  Each ‘peak’ represents one of the tagget GHGs.  Gas concentrations were used in a mathematical model to estimate GHG flux (mass emitted/area/time).

Future Plans

Spring 2013 measurements of GHG flux from land-applied swine manure are planned.  The spring study will follow the protocols developed for the Fall 2012 season.  Estimates of the Spring and Fall GHG flux will be used to develop GHG emission factors for emissions from swine manure in Midwestern corn-on-corn systems.  Emission factors will be compared with literature data.

Authors

Dr. Jacek Koziel, Associate Professor, Iowa State University Department of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering koziel@iastate.edu

Devin Maurer, Research Associate, Iowa State University Department of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering

Kelsey Bruning, Undergraduate Research Assistant, Iowa State University Department of Civil, Construction and Environmental Engineering

Tanner Lewis, Undergraduate Research Assistant, Iowa State University Department of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering

Danica Tamaye, Undergraduate Research Assistant, University of Hawaii College of Agriculture, Forestry, and Natural Resource Management

William Salas, Applied Geosolutions

Acknowledgements

We would like to thank the National Pork Board for supporting this research.

 

The authors are solely responsible for the content of these proceedings. The technical information does not necessarily reflect the official position of the sponsoring agencies or institutions represented by planning committee members, and inclusion and distribution herein does not constitute an endorsement of views expressed by the same. Printed materials included herein are not refereed publications. Citations should appear as follows. EXAMPLE: Authors. 2013. Title of presentation. Waste to Worth: Spreading Science and Solutions. Denver, CO. April 1-5, 2013. URL of this page. Accessed on: today’s date.