C Temperature and moisture control

Vegetation can alter microclimate and create lower temperatures. By shading the areas below them and through the process of evapotranspiration, trees and shrubs produce a cooling effect. They can also regulate temperature by reducing or increasing wind velocity. The placement of vegetation can help cool buildings in summer and allow heat generating sunlight to penetrate in winter (fig. 8-11).

Dairy animals and other livestock seek streams or ponds and the shade of trees for their cooling effect. Where access to these features is removed, the animal should be provided other means of cooling.

The benefits and liabilities of sunlight, shade, and wind must be weighed in each geographic region. Bacterial activity in waste treatment lagoons is slowed by cooler temperatures, which reduces necessary treatment of odor. Too much shade in a feedlot can allow an increase in snow or ice buildup and the amount of runoff during periods of thaw. It can also promote an increase in algae growth on paved surfaces, creating unsafe footing for animals and operators. Too little ventilation can cause the temperature and humidity to soar, while too much ventilation, especially in the form of winter winds, can create life-threatening conditions for animals.

Structures can be located to influence internal temperatures (fig. 8-12). The central or long axis of new buildings can be oriented to regulate the angle and duration that sunlight strikes the roof and sides. In cool or temperate regions, for example, heat can be generated in buildings where drying of waste is needed by:

• Orienting the long axis of the building in a northeast-southwest direction

• Constructing the roof with a small overhang to allow maximum sunlight to strike the sides of the building

• Locating the windows along the south and west walls

• Using dark roofing to enhance radiation adsorption

Figure 8-11 Vegetation modifies temperature in various ways

Figure 8-11 Vegetation modifies temperature in various ways

shade and allows penetration of winter sunlight

Where minimal internal heat is desired, such as in the hot, arid Southwest or the hot, humid Southeast, different building orientation and architecture are recommended. In these regions, it is best to minimize the amount of sunlight on the sides of the building. Because the arc of the sun is higher in the sky, a minimum amount of sunlight can be expected to strike the south side of the building during midday. Therefore, the long axis of the building should be oriented in an east-west direction. The amount of wall and window area along the east and west walls should be minimized to reduce early morning and late afternoon exposure. The windows should be along the north and south walls. The roof should have wide overhangs and be finished in a light color.

If increased humidity is desirable, consider locating storage ponds or treatment lagoons upwind of livestock or poultry confinement facilities. The air flowing over the pond or lagoon will pick up moisture and carry it through the confinement facilities. Care must be exercised, however, to avoid directing undesirable odor-bearing winds through the facilities. Ventilation can also be enhanced by orienting buildings to optimize prevailing winds. Care should be exercised where prevailing winds will have an adverse effect upon the temperature or humidity within confinement facilities.

Temperature and moisture conditions greatly affect the presence of insects, rodents, and other pests; often a major concern of the decisionmaker and source of complaints from neighbors. Each type of livestock or poultry operation attracts specific species of insects that can affect not only the health and productivity of the animals, but also the quality of the food product and the cost of production.

Several species of flies commonly breed in moist animal manure. House flies, which can impact areas up to 4 miles from their breeding location, are a major carrier of more than 100 human and animal pathogenic organisms. Other species of insects can range equal or further distances.

Figure 8-12 Orientation can influence the amount of internal sun-generated heat within buildings

Dark colored roof

Dark colored roof

Small roof overhang

Orienting structure for maximum internal solar heat generation in cool or temperate regions

Light colored roof

Large roof overhang

Orienting structure for minimum internal solar heat generation in hot-arid or hot-humid regions

Because sanitation, including proper and timely manure handling procedures, has been reported to be the most important factor in reducing fly populations, the AWMS must be designed with this factor in mind. Avoid, for example, areas that have odd shapes or corners, which prevent thorough scraping or other means of removing manure. Provide adequate drainage to aid in moisture control.

Many practices used for insect control also apply to rodents. Reducing nesting sites by careful selection and placement of vegetation around buildings and waste facilities helps to lower populations of insects and rodents. Many insect traps work best in full sunlight; one of many reasons to plot the course of sunlight through the farmstead.

Renewable Energy 101

Renewable Energy 101

Renewable energy is energy that is generated from sunlight, rain, tides, geothermal heat and wind. These sources are naturally and constantly replenished, which is why they are deemed as renewable. The usage of renewable energy sources is very important when considering the sustainability of the existing energy usage of the world. While there is currently an abundance of non-renewable energy sources, such as nuclear fuels, these energy sources are depleting. In addition to being a non-renewable supply, the non-renewable energy sources release emissions into the air, which has an adverse effect on the environment.

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