Research conducted on behalf of the Manitoba Livestock Manure Management Initiative (MLMMI) suggests the best place to deal with PED infected manure is in the pit under the barn before it gets to the earthen manure storage.
To assess the infectivity of the virus responsible for Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea, engineers with the Prairie Agricultural Machinery Institute collected manure samples from various depths of the earthen manure storages on three PED infected Manitoba farms and researchers with the Department of Animal Science at the University of Manitoba then analyzed those samples to determine how long the virus could survive under Manitoba conditions.
MLMMI executive director John Carney says researchers found the virus could survive and be infective 5 months and beyond at cold temperatures but it doesn’t thrive under warmer conditions.
Some of the conclusions that we reached is that high temperatures are helpful in killing the virus and so, if there’s PED positive manure to be applied on farms, that applying it when temperatures are high is beneficial to expose the virus to heat and kill it faster than applying it when temperatures are low.
We also have concluded that, when a farm is PED positive, the first line of defense to kill the virus is likely in the pits under the barn rather than releasing the manure into the earthen manure storage and trying to kill it in the earthen manure storage. We think the pit is a better place to work on the virus.
Carney says the work expands our appreciation of how difficult it is to get rid of this virus.
He says the study shows, because of its cold winters, Manitoba faces a higher level of risk of spread than other regions and suggests the low number of cases is a result of producers’ excellent biosecurity.