Accurate application of nitrogen fertiliser and responsible spreading of livestock manures assist in reducing the amount of N entering groundwater, but by far the majority of N leaching comes from the urine patch.
Up to 90% of the N leached to groundwater originates from the urine patch.
To date, controlling the N in the urine patch has been difficult and reducing the N fertiliser application rate has been seen as the most practical solution. Managing N losses from livestock systems better is a major issue going forward, and Ecotain® provides a simple and sustainable forage solution for farmers. Ecotain® stacks up in all environmental and agronomic aspects. Ecotain® is an excellent example of a high quality, productive forage plantain.
|Suitable as a 2-3 year crop option
|Positive impact on milk production when grass quality drops in summer
|Also ideal for undersowing or broadcasting on to damaged pasture
|Can be grazed to deliver 100% of the diet
|Dry Matter Performace
|Very similar DM quantity and quality to ryegrass pasture
|Can add value in terms of both drymatter and quality to any farming system
|Contributes invaluable DM production, typically at times of the year when ryegrass and other species, e.g. white clover, are not performing
Reducing N leaching naturally
The benefits are:
- HUGE REDUCTION in N leaching from the urine patch - up to 89% depending on sward blend*
- A natural, environmentally friendly forage solution to mitigate N leaching
- Increases feed quality and/or supply during summer and autumn
- Improves speed of sward recovery after summer dry
- Improves cool season activity of pasture base
- An ideal source of minerals for animal health and performance
* Seen using 42% Ecotian, 20% IRG, 28% W.C.
Nitrogen Management with the Power of 4
How it works
Ecotain® combines not one, but four modes of action that work together to significantly reduce N leaching from the urine patch.
- DILUTE: Ecotain® environmental plantain has diuretic properties which increases urine volume and therefore decreases urinary N concentration. Animals urinate more frequently which spreads the urine patch across a greater area. In addition Ecotain® generally has a higher water content than ryegrass – which also increases the volume of urine the animals produce and further dilutes the N content.
- REDUCE: Typically, the more N contained in the feed, the more N is present in the urine and is recycled back into the soil via urine. However, Ecotain® is different in that it reduces the total amount of dietary N being excreted in the urine, compared to ryegrass diets. Studies show that at equal N intake, Ecotain® diets will result in less total N released in urine compared to ryegrass diets.
- DELAY: Urine patches from animals represent up to 90% of the N lost through leaching in the grazing system. The amount of N in a typical urine patch far exceeds what plants are able to uptake. Using Ecotain®, the N excreted in urine becomes slow release – its conversion from ammonium to nitrate is delayed, allowing plants a longer period to uptake N which therefore reduces the risk of N leaching.
- RESTRICT: When planted as a mono-culture, or in combination with ryegrass, the presence of Ecotain® growing in the soil reduces nitrification, likely through the effect of a biological nitrification inhibitor. Trials have shown that when combined with Italian ryegrass which is excellent for taking up soil N, reductions in N leaching of up to 89% from the urine patch have been recorded.