Sunday morning the Bear Creek Dairy Farm reported a manure overflow on their farm near Brooklyn in Poweshiek County.
The dairy farm discovered a concrete manure storage tank was overflowing about 6 a.m. Sunday. A plugged pipe between the storage tank and a lagoon caused the tank to fill and then overflow.
By 9 a.m., Johannes Boehlen, the dairy owner and Joe Lacaeyce, a local farmer, had unplugged the line, stopped the flow and blocked inlets to underground tile lines.
However, Boehlen reported some manure had flowed down a grassed waterway and through an underground tile line about one-half mile to Big Bear Creek.
The city of Brooklyn’s wastewater operator checked the creek Sunday and reported the creek appeared clean, there was no manure flow into the creek and no stressed aquatic insects or fish. He collected water samples for analysis.
Bill Gross, the DNR inspector, checked the farm and the creek on Monday, finding no signs of contamination in the creek, although he did find manure in the flow path and in a shallow basin above the creek.
“It’s not possible to determine the amount of manure released or how much reached Big Bear Creek overnight, but the quick action of Boehlen and Lacaeyce likely prevented a more significant environmental impact,” said Bill Gross, DNR environmental specialist.
The DNR will continue to monitor the cleanup and will consider appropriate enforcement action.
For more information contact Bill Gross at 515-725-0271 or Bill.Gross@dnr.iowa.gov.