Can one cow contaminate my well water?


One cow can certainly impact the groundwater—but less likely since it will move around and spread its manure naturally.

Grazing during the rainy season

Despite the low chance that a single animal will contaminate your well water, we always recommend that all livestock are not on a pasture during the rainy season as they cause soil compaction and damage the grass root system, and pasture in the winter months can have significantly less nutritional value. A sacrifice area is ideal.

Manure management

Unless you have a much higher stocking rate, the nitrogen from the manure is being reused by the plant roots for growth (during the growing season). If you are planning to gather and compost manure, just keep the pile or area covered during the rainy season to stop the leeching of excess nitrate and coliform bacteria into the soil profile and moving downward
into the groundwater.

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