Who Needs A Manure Management Plan? The number and density of animals on the farm determines which plan is required -Operations with one or two horses in their backyard are required to have a plan -Until recently, horse operations were not required to develop any type of manure or nutrient management plan. That all changed in 2006, when Pennsylvania’s Nutrient Management Act was revised to include horse operations. Under Act 38, all animal operations, production and non – production, are required to complete a Nutrient Management Plan if the farm is defined as a Concentrated Animal Operation (CAO) or a Confined Animal Feeding Operation (CAFO) -Additionally, in fall of 2011, revisions to the Clean Stream Act, were released by Pennsylvania’s Department of Environmental Protection (DEP). These changes mandate that all horse and livestock operations (that do not fall under Act 38 regulations) and farms that apply manure must have a written Manure Management Plan. Nutrient Management Plan vs. Manure Management Plan -Everyone keeping livestock on their property in Pennsylvania is required to have a plan to manage farm nutrients -The animal density of the farm will decide which plan is required -Farms that have over 8 Animal Equivalent Units (AEUs) and exceed an animal density of 2 Animal Equivalent Units per acre are required to have a certified nutrient management plan. (1 AEU = 1000 lbs. of live animal weight). Farms under this threshold are required to have a written manure management plan
How To Determine Which Plan Is Needed -It is necessary to calculate the animal equivalent units for the farm. Animal equivalent units take into account how many animals are on the farm, what the average weight of the animals is, and how many days a year the animals are on the farm. The number of days may vary for breeding farms that may only have mares on the farm for part of the year and some show and training barns -This formula can be used to determine AEUs. AEU = average number of animals x average animal weight (lbs.) ÷ 1000 lbs. per animal unit x number of days on the farm ÷ 365 days per year -Farm density (AEUs per acre) takes into consideration how many animals are on the farm and how many acres are suitable for manure application. Suitable land consists of pastures and field crops that receive manure applications. AEUs per acre = AEUs ÷ number of acres suitable for manure application
Who Can Write A Nutrient Management Plan? -Nutrient Management Plans need to be written by a certified nutrient management specialist, and must be submitted to the local county conservation district for review and approval -Writing a nutrient management plan has an associated fee and the price will vary depending on the intensity of the plan -Farms with an approved and implemented nutrient management plan will have limited liability for civil complaints
Who Can Write A Manure Management Plan? -Manure Management Plans, on the other hand, do not need to be written by a specialist, and can be written by the farmer -The cost of having a manure management plan may be little to none -Manure Management Plans do not need to be approved and hold no liability protection -Manure management plans must be kept on the farmstead and be available upon request
Both plans focus on regulating animal concentration areas (ACAs), pastures, manure storage and mechanical manure application.