Follow Winter Manure Application Tips

The Iowa Manure Management Action Group has issued the following best management practices for applying all sources of manure. Those rules include:  

  • Do not apply manure in the winter.
  • If you have to apply manure in the winter, apply on the flattest slopes as far from water sources as possible.
  • Be sure to follow all separation distances. Even if you follow separation distances, a water quality violation may still occur.
  • Avoid application on areas that drain to surface tile intakes.
  • Do not apply manure in a grassed waterway
  • Store or stockpile manure in a manner that does not cause runoff
  • Do not apply manure immediately prior to a precipitation event, especially if the ground is frozen. This can cause the manure nutrients and pathogens to quickly move off-site and likely cause a water quality violation.
  • Do not apply manure on deep snow cover when warmer temperatures are forecasted. Rapid snow melt can also cause manure nutrients to move off-site quickly.

For more information on manure application procedures and other manure-related issues, visit the Iowa Manure Management Action Group website at

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