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Comparison of aerated marsh-pond-marsh and continuous marsh constructed wetlands for treating swine wastewater

Forbes, Dean A., Reddy, G.B., Hunt, Patrick G., Poach, M.E., Ro, Kyoung S., Cyrus, Johnsely S.
Journal of environmental science and health 2010 v.45 no.7 pp. 803
constructed wetlands, pig manure, marshes, ponds, animal manure management, wastewater treatment, cost effectiveness, nitrogen, pollution load, aeration, floods, anaerobic conditions, waste lagoons, summer, autumn, phosphorus, chemical oxygen demand, total solids, wetland plants, uptake mechanisms, North Carolina
Increased swine production in North Carolina has resulted in greater waste generation and is demanding some emerging new innovative technologies to effectively treat swine wastewater. One of the cost-effective and passive methods to treat swine wastewater is using constructed wetlands. The objective of this study was to evaluate the N removal under two N loads in 3 different wetland systems: aerated marsh-pond-marsh (M-P-M), aerated marsh-covered pond-marsh (M-FB-M), and continuous marsh (CM) with two days drain and five days flood cycle. Swine wastewater from an anaerobic lagoon was applied to the constructed wetland cells (11 m wide x 40 m length) at two N loading rates of 7 and 12 kg N ha-1 day-1from June to July and August to September 2005, respectively. Weekly inflow and outflow samples were collected for N, P, TS, and COD analysis. Total N reductions (%) at low and high N loading rates were 85.8 and 51.8; 86.3 and 63.3; and 86.2 and 61.8 for M-P-M, M-FB-M, and CM, respectively. Aeration had no significant (P > 0.05) impact on N removal. However, significant (P < 0.05) differences were observed for wetland systems between low and high N loading rates. No difference (P > 0.05) in N reduction was found among wetland systems. Vegetation uptake of N was negligible, ranging from 1.2 to 1.8 %. No significant (P > 0.05) differences in TS and COD removal were observed between the wetland systems.