Keep an eye on where any runoff is going – it’s probably worth walking around the heap at least on a weekly basis to check for any problems, and making a note of the fact that you have done so. If you start to get problems, divert any run off to a sump and tanker it back to the slurry store if conditions aren’t fit to spread. If things go wrong and effluent gets to a watercourse, ring the EA or NRW immediately, block it off as soon as possible to contain any pollution and get the tanker out.
At the end of the season, the site is likely to need a bit of tidying up – cultivating out the ruts and reseeding, even if (or particularly if) you intend to re-use the location another year. Unlike field heaps of manure, field silage heaps can be made in the same place more than once, and the notification form includes provision for this. However, it is important that the topsoil/turf doesn’t get dug away with each successive use, increasing the risk of drainage from the site or pollution of groundwater.
In the long term more clamp capacity back in the yard is likely to be a more satisfactory approach, and baled silage is more flexible, but as a temporary solution whilst additional capacity is planned and financed, a field heap can make sense.
If you’d like to find out more, please contact Charles Bentley.