Leachate discharge confirmed in Ledgeview by DNR

Local News

LEDGEVIEW, Wis. (WFRV) — The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources and Brown County Public Health are assessing the impact and potential risks related to a silage leachate discharge in Ledgeview.

Officials say silage leachate – the liquid produced in feed storage facilities from compaction and storage of harvested crops – is coming from a feed storage area at Ledgeview Farms and flowing into Bower Creek.

The property owner reportedly built berms to contain the leachate. Despite this, the liquid is moving through the ground below the feed storage area and seeping under the berms.

Bower Creek contaminated by leachate discharge | Photo courtesy of Wis. DNR

DNR officials are working with the property owner to implement interim controls for the subsurface movement.

Officials say silage leachate can contain a variety of bacteria, specifically E. coli, and toxins that can make people and animals sick.

As a result, Brown County Public Health officials recommend residents, especially children and pets, in the area of the discharge avoid coming into contact with the leachate.

Anyone who may have come in contact with the leachate, should immediately wash their hands with soap and warm water, and avoid hand-to-mouth contact.

Symptoms of infection, which can appear 3-4 days after initial contact, include fever, vomiting and/or persistent, severe diarrhea. If these symptoms are present, contact a primary care physician.

The symptoms in pets are similar if silage leachate is ingested and can result in liver damage. Consult with a veterinarian if contact is suspected.

Local 5 will continue to provide updates as they become available.

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