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60 Ways Farmers Can Protect  Surface Water
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34. Collect and Store Contaminated Runoff

Settling tanks and basins

In addition to preventing clean water from entering an open feedlot, you need to handle the contaminated runoff coming from the lot itself. Using curbs, terraces, channels, dikes, pipes, and culverts, direct the contaminated runoff to an outlet that leads to either a settling tank or a settling basin.

Settling tanks and basins capture runoff and allow liquids to slowly drain to a holding pond, lagoon, or infiltration area. A settling basin is different from a settling tank in that it is designed to empty completely of liquids. Solids remain in the basin, drying out for later removal with a tractor.

Concrete Settling Basin The best basin shape is relatively large and shallow—probably less than 3 feet deep if you intend to remove solids with conventional solid manure handling equipment. In some cases, you may need to clean out the basin after each large storm, but it is usually adequate to clean it out two to six times per year—as long as the basin has been sized correctly.
runoff path After passing through a settling tank or basin, contaminated runoff from a lot or a lagoon's overflow often enters a holding pond. The holding pond temporarily stores contaminated runoff water; it does not treat manure as a lagoon does. One alternative to a holding pond is an infiltration area, such as a vegetative filter.
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