The Iowa Department of Natural Resources is investigating a major manure spill in northwest Iowa’s Lyon County. Ken Hessenius of the D.N.R.’s Spencer field office says it’s estimated some 100,000 gallons of manure came from the Rock Bottom Dairy.
He says the spill was about three miles northwest of Lester in Lyon County, where a manure transfer line coupling came loose as manure was being pumped. Hessenius says the manure flowed into a road ditch, to an undground tile, and into a stream that’s a tributary of Mud Creek which flows into the Rock River. He says there were some fish killed in the stream.
Hessenius says an actual fish count has not been done, but initial reports were that hundreds of minnows and chubs were dead. Hessenius says the dairy owner, Bernie Baker, will face some costs for the spill. Hessenius says they will typically look at the amount of fish killed and each fish has a value depending on the species, and there may be additional costs based on the circumstances and response to the spill.
Hessenius says Baker did take steps to plug the tile line and dammed up the dairy yard and creek to stop the manure flow downstream.