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Posted on June 25, 2018 at 5:25 PM by Ryan Hiniker
Drainage update 6/25/2018
Upcoming Drainage Hearings or Meetings:
I wrote awhile back about how we have a shrimp-farming company in southwestern Minnesota. Now the researchers from this company, Tru Shrimp, have been working to produce a corn-based feed for the shrimp.
The research started three years ago as a means to find an alternative food source. The current fishmeal source is both expensive and at times tough to get. Research teams have been testing different batches and levels of corn in the shrimp feed. They are testing to see if it will not only hold up in water, but just how palatable and nutritious it is. One of the challenges with using corn is the lack of a key amino acid: Lysine.
The initial results seem promising that corn can be used as a replacement for the wheat middlings currently used with the fishmeal. They are currently testing on small batches of shrimp a combination of corn, different plant ingredients, and amino acids. More tests will need to be conducted, especially on a larger scale, to ensure that the shrimp are properly maintaining nutrition and growth rates.
Using corn in shrimp food would be a plus for Minnesota corn farmers as it would create an additional demand for corn. It would also benefit the Tru Shrimp Company by being able to save on current feed costs. http://www.mncorn.org/2018/06/22/early-results-indicate-corn-feed-surging-shrimp-industry/
Rain Rain Go Away:
No hidden secret that we have had very large amounts of rain lately. It’s not just us in southern Minnesota that are suffering the effects of Mother Nature lately. Portions of the state have seen severe flooding and property damage. Our neighbors to the east, in Wisconsin, are in the same predicament as we are with excessive wet weather.
We in southern Minnesota have had localized issues of flooding and wet basements. Northern Minnesota is seeing areas of severe structural damage to their roadways. I’m sure many of you have seen the photos that have been on social media. Bridges and roads have literally been swept away by swift, rising flood waters.
Structural damage isn’t the only issue from the recent flood waters. Many of our lakes, rivers and streams have seen large amounts of sediment loading into them. The amounts of surface water that roar across the land after these downpours is amazing both in power and speed.
We (in the drainage world) try to mitigate the amount of impact these large storms have on our lakes, rivers, streams, and other structures, but it’s getting tougher to predict these 50 and 100-year storm events. We often get questioned on why we can’t plan better or design better when doing improvement projects. The answer to that is this; sure, the engineers could design a bigger and better system, but at what cost? Many of these current projects are very expensive on a per acre basis the way it is. Not only the monetary cost, but also the environmental cost. If we keep making these systems bigger to take more water in more quickly, what sort of impact does that have on our lakes, rivers, and streams and their delicate ecosystems. It’s not a perfect science, the world of drainage, but we are always learning and evolving different designs in the hope of preserving and making tomorrow better than today. Photo below shows damage from northern Minnesota.
Recent Drainage Inspections – week of June 18 – June 22:
Please call with issues you observe on our public drainage system, as there is a lot of open ditch and tile in our county and only two of us in the drainage department. We will do our absolute best to service your issues and concerns as we receive them.
We require that all repairs to a county drainage system (tile or open ditch) be authorized by one us in the drainage office, either Craig or myself, before any repairs are made.
Drainage Management Specialist