Managing mono-slope barns to improve air quality and cattle performance will be featured at an open house on June 22 in northwest Iowa. The open house will be at the Ron and Clayton Christensen barn near Royal, Iowa, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Iowa State University Extension beef program specialist Beth Doran says the barn is one of four involved in the Tri-State Air Quality project.
"This project is being conducted cooperatively by ISU Extension, the Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering Department at South Dakota State University and the USDA Meat Animal Research Center at Clay Center, Neb.," says Doran. "It involves monitoring air emissions over a two-year period to determine baseline data for gases and dust produced in the facility. The study also will evaluate two manure-handling systems to determine which emits lower levels of gases."
In addition to beef producers, Doran says agribusiness staff and policy makers also will be interested in the project open house.
"Although water quality regulations have been quite visible recently, attention to results from studies and projects like this is increasing," she says.
To provide topic-specific information, the open house will consist of seven 15-minute stations focusing on different aspects of managing the mono-slope barn. Stations will operate from 10 a.m. to noon and again from 1 to 3 p.m. The stations topics are:
- How the barn is managed
- The air quality project and air quality regulations
- Cost-sharing opportunities
- Managing the pack for animal comfort and reduced emissions
- Stockpiling manure
- Value and nutrient management of mono-slope manure
- Analyzing the gases and particulate matter (dust)
From noon to 1 p.m. lunch will be provided and the following open house sponsors will be recognized: Animal Medical Centers at Spencer, Clay County Cattlemen's Association, Clay County Farm Bureau, Coalition to Support Iowa's Farmers, Farm Credit Services at Emmetsburg, Spencer Ag Center and the Spencer Chamber of Commerce Ag Committee.
There is no charge to attend, but preregistration is required by June 15 to have an accurate count for lunch and materials. To preregister, contact Doran by phone at 712-737-4230 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can view and download a flyer describing the event, its location and preregistration requirements.