Water Quality Impacts of Poultry Litter Land Application
Smith, Matt C.
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The objective of this study was to quantify any differences in specific water quality parameters between a forested watershed, similar watersheds whose land use is dominated by poultry production and open lands that receive applications of poultry litter, Fourstreams in The Lake Lanier drainage basin were selected for sampling. The data collected during this study do not provide strong evidence that the high concentrations of poultry houses and the associated land application of litter are contributing to a degradation of the water quality in the streams that were monitored. Almost all of the significant differences were associated with Mud Creek, and these differences are likely due to the discharge of municipal waste treatment plant effluent into the stream. High levels of fecal coliform and fecal streptococci bacteria have been noted previously in the streams in the Lake Lanier watershed. This study also showed high levels of bacteria in the water. The levels were high, however, for all of the sites, including Little John which is, on the whole, undeveloped.
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