DNR investigates manure leak in Butler County

ALLISON — The Iowa Department of Natural Resources says they investigated a leaking pit from a hog confinement in Butler County over the weekend.

The DNR says the confinement is about five miles southeast of Allison and owned by Jeff Kramer. Kramer discovered the leak and a faulty pipe seal late Friday at the Jefferson Finisher Farm. The manure flowed into a grass waterway, into an underground tile line and into a tributary of the West Fork of the Cedar River.

Kramer’s crew worked overnight to remove manure from the pit and land apply it. Kramer worked with Iowa Select Farms to dam the tributary and pump up contaminated water in the creek. When the DNR arrived on Saturday morning, pumping and land application continued with most of the contaminated water being contained, but field tests showed elevated ammonia levels below the dam, with staff seeing one small dead fish on Saturday but no other fish.

Kramer continued the pumping operation over the weekend. On Monday, DNR staff found contaminated water contained to a one-mile stretch of the tributary, with fisheries staff finding a few more dead fish, but also live fish in the stream.

The DNR says they’ll continue to monitor cleanup and will consider appropriate enforcement action.

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