Dodge County feedlot upgrade aids Zumbro River, Mississippi River

Working with Dodge SWCD staff and funds available through an NRCS-BWSR partnership, Currier brothers improve water quality, increase their operation’s efficiency with a new manure pit, nutrient management plan tailored to their Mantorville dairy

By late May, the manure storage facility on the Currier brothers’ Mantorville Township dairy farm in Dodge County held seven months’ worth of manure. It’s built for 12 months of storage, with extra capacity in case of emergency. The cow yard slopes to the pit. Jay (left) and Ben Currier previously had one week’s worth of storage. The facility was installed with assistance from the Lower Mississippi River Feedlot Management in Minnesota Regional Conservation Partnership Project, which is funded jointly by the USDA’s NRCS and by BWSR. Photo Credit: Ann Wessel, BWSR
A trio of Canada geese takes off from the South Branch Middle Fork Zumbro River in Dodge County. Photo Credit: Ann Wessel, BWSR
Dodge SWCD feedlot technician Blaine Delzer, center, talked to brothers Ben Currier, left, and Jay Currier in late May about how their new manure pit fit into their Mantorville Township dairy operation. The berm around the storage facility, in foreground, was seeded last season. Photo Credit: Ann Wessel, BWSR
Ben Currier walked among the cows in the freestall barn, where fans keep the cattle cool. Ben and Jay Currier milk nearly 100 cows. A new manure pit, concrete slab and walled feedlot ensure that runoff doesn’t enter the South Branch Middle Fork Zumbro River by way of a waterway and wetland. The Zumbro is a Mississippi River tributary. Photo Credit: Ann Wessel, BWSR
Manure pit construction in fall 2020 included replacing soil in some spots and installing a liner, seen here, before installing the concrete floor. Photo Credit: Dodge SWCD
Jay Currier looked over the calves in late May. The Curriers raise replacement heifers and sell the bull calves. Photo Credit: Ann Wessel, BWSR
A concrete ramp makes it easier to remove sand from the bottom of the pit when it’s cleaned out. The Curriers use sand for bedding in the freestall barn. Photo Credit: Ann Wessel, BWSR

RCPP Details

USDA is an equal opportunity provider, employer and lender. Natural Resources Conservation Service website: www.nrcs.usda.gov.
The Minnesota Board of Water and Soil Resources’ mission is to improve and protect Minnesota’s water and soil resources by working in partnership with local organizations and private landowners. www.bwsr.state.mn.us

Our mission is to improve and protect Minnesota’s water and soil resources by working in partnership with local organizations and private landowners.