Swine waste is commonly treated in the USA by flushing into an anaerobic lagoon and subsequently applying to land. This natural system type of application has been part of agricultural practice for many years. However, it is currently under scrutiny by regulators. An alternate natural system technology to treat swine wastewater may be constructed wetland. For this study we used four wetland cells (11 m width × 40 m length) with a marsh-pond-marsh design. The marsh sections were planted to cattail (Typha latifolia, L.) and bulrushes (Scirpus americanus). Two cells were loaded with 16 kg N ha-1 day-1 with a detention of 21 days. They removed 51% of the added N. Two additional cells were loaded with 32 kg ha-1 day-1 with 10.5 days detention. These cells removed only 37% of the added N. However, treatment operations included cold months in which treatment was much less efficient. Removal of N was moderately correlated with the temperature. During the warmer periods removal efficiencies were more consistent with the high removal rates reported for continuous marsh systems - often > than 70%. Phosphorus removal ranged from 30 to 45%. Aquatic macrophytes (plants and floating) assimilated about 320 and 35 kg ha-1, respectively of N and P.

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