Farm dugout inspection equals assured supply
The many farms depending on dugouts to water livestock should do regular inspections to make sure the water supply remains viable.
Before winter sets in is a good time for inspection, according to water specialist Dan Benson of Alberta Agriculture and Forestry.
Inspection needs to consider the land/area filling the dugout with water and the intake area with culvert gates.
He suggests the area around the dugout be cleared of debris that can flow into the water and this area should be mowed to free it of weeds.
Graded, grassed and mowed areas can cut down the turbidity and nutrients from going into water and improve quality for livestock. Doing this deters muskrats from lurking around the dugout.
Trees should be removed from the runway to reduce leaves from polluting water. Recommended distance for leaf-bearing trees is 165 feet, or 50 metres away. Water inlet gates require inspection to ensure adequate control of water flow. He said an aeration system introducing water to the stagnant dugout needs inspection, especially water lines. Year-round aeration with a diffuser at the bottom offers the best quality water. Make sure pumps are working
Farmers wanting more information should call their local agrologist.
Ron Walter can be reached at ron[email protected] sasktel.net