Pelleted laying hen manure is a nitrogen source that is interesting an increasing number of growers, both organic and conventional, because of its efficiency. The first edition of the fertilization guide Guide de référence en fertilisation assigned a high (75.85%) efficiency coefficient (EC) to poultry manure. However, the second edition assigns much lower EC for crops requiring less nitrogen (EC 50–60%; C/N ratio of 8) and higher levels of nitrogen (EC: 60–70 %; C/N ratio of 8).
This is not the same performance of pelleted laying hen manure observed in commercial production. Moreover, the references used to establish the EC do not mention pelleted laying hen manure, but rather cow manure and paper mill sludge that contain much different carbon and nitrogen contents.
Due to the type of carbon and nitrogen in laying hen manure, it has a very low biological stability index (38), i.e. a high mineralization rate, nearer that of raw pig manure (ISB=36) than that of raw cow manure (ISB=47) or composted paper mill sludge (ISB=65). This lack of information leads to significant variability in the ECs used. In fact, consultants and extension agents often ask IRDA for advice on what EC to use. This uncertainty limits the use of laying hen manure and can affect yields and environmental quality if too little or too much fertilizer is applied.
From 2017 to 2019
Fertilizer management, Waste conversion
This work seeks to enhance the fertilizing potential of laying-hen droppings.
Ministère de l'Agriculture, des Pêcheries et de l'Alimentation du Québec | InnovAction - Volet 2
The project’s objective is to make available an indoor and outdoor exercise yard design that improves dairy cow and calf well-being while complying with Québec regulations.
Researcher: Stéphane Godbout
In this project, initiated by Agrinova, IRDA will analyze the profitability of techniques used to repel pasture flies in organic dairy production.
Researcher: Luc Belzile
This project will help to identify and evaluate practices, techniques, and technologies that can be used to improve overall environmental performance, animal welfare, and the quality of the animals’ living environment.