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Managing Water Shortage for Livestock Operations Shawn Shouse ISU Extension Ag Engineer.

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Presentation on theme: "Managing Water Shortage for Livestock Operations Shawn Shouse ISU Extension Ag Engineer."— Presentation transcript:

1 Managing Water Shortage for Livestock Operations Shawn Shouse ISU Extension Ag Engineer

2 Is your water supply at risk? Purchased water: Ask your supplier Monitor your use Plan for alternatives if your supply could be limited

3 Is your water supply at risk? Pond water: Each acre of surface by one inch deep = 27,152 gallons Surface area may reduce quickly as ponds recede Is your intake located to access lower water levels?

4 Is your water supply at risk? Pond water: Floating intakes adjust with water level and provide higher quality water Ponds will lose 5,500 gallons per surface acre to evaporation on an average July day

5 Is your water supply at risk? Well water: Do you have a history of water shortage? Is your aquifer shallow (less than 50 feet to water level)? Can your measure the water depth and do you have prior records?

6 Measuring your pond water Acres = length x width / 43,560 Gallons per inch = Acres x 27,152 = L x W x 0.62 Approximate volume (cu. ft. of cone) = length x width x max. depth / 3 Approximate volume (gallons) = cu. ft. x 7.5 = length x width x depth x 2.5

7 Measuring your well water level Easy for large diameter wells were you can see the water Can be complicated by wiring, plumbing, depth Turn off power and keep sanitation in mind Hire a professional if needed

8 Measuring your well water level Static water level only has meaning if you have previous records and know the level of your pump intake Pumping water level is more meaningful, but more difficult and dangerous to measure

9 Measuring your well water level Bottom line is water level is interesting, but you may need professional help to figure out if your well is at risk and if you have opportunity to lower your pump intake for more capacity

10 Estimating your water needs Use water meter records if you have them Use book values as estimates (MWPS-14 Private Water Systems is one source) Don’t forget non-drinking uses like cleaning, cooling, etc.

11 Managing with a slow supply If you have enough gallons per day, but not enough gallons per minute Pump slowly from the well to a surge tank Pump at demand rate from the surge tank to the animals

12 Managing with a slow supply Requires a large surge tank (preferably one day supply) Requires a second pump plumbed to the water system Requires control changes to connect the new pump to the pressure switch and well pump to the supply tank

13 Supplementing an inadequate supply If you don’t have enough gallons per day Draw from alternate sources New well Rural water Pond/river water Hauled water

14 Supplementing an inadequate supply New wells may be an option on some sites Local driller experience or water-well forecast from Iowa Geological & Water Survey Cost and time are site specific

15 Supplementing an inadequate supply In rare cases, you may be able to lower the pump in the existing well to access more water – talk to your driller or plumber about this possibility

16 Supplementing an inadequate supply Rural water may be available to some sites Check availability, connection costs, rates, contract terms

17 Supplementing an inadequate supply River water use requires a water use permit from DNR if drawing more than 25,000 gallons per day maximum DNR may restrict lower priority uses during drought Contact your DNR field office

18 Supplementing an inadequate supply River or pond water may require filtration Disinfection may be needed Proper intake design and placement can influence water quality See MWPS Private Water Systems Handbook

19 Supplementing an inadequate supply Hauling water is labor intensive Make sure the source of water is safe Tanks must be clean enough for the intended use (never used for herbicide, fertilizer or fuel) Certified potable water tanks only for household water

20 Supplementing an inadequate supply Don’t dump hauled water down the well (you’ll lose a lot) For human drinking water, use a closed tank certified to NSF/ANSI 61 sanitary standards For livestock only, tank size may be a bigger issue than sanitation

21 Supplementing an inadequate supply Multiple sources can feed one collector Consider a steel ring or lined pond for larger collector tanks

22 Conserving water Find and repair any leaks or overflows Proper pressure for nipples Water cups or bowls or wet/dry feeders instead of nipples

23 Conserving water Minimize wash water and sprinkling/soaking water Provide shade/airflow to reduce drinking/cooling water needs

24 Summary: Determine your supply risk Estimate your water needs Surge tanks to manage slow supply Alternate sources if available Collector tank & pump for multiple supplies or hauled water Conserve water

25 Contacts: Shawn Shouse, Extension Ag Engineer , Chris Clark, Extension Beef Specialist ,


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