Nitrate problems in livestock feed and water (2014)
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Nitrogen (N) is an essential element for plant growth and thus a necessary part of global food systems. But when nitrogen concentrations are excessive or out of place, problems occur. The principle sources of nitrogen in our environment --plants, water and air--are interrelated. Even though farmers may make proper fertility and crop management decisions, they cannot control the environment (rainfall, temperature, sunlight, shifting seasons, etc.), which alters nitrogen concentration in crops and in water supplies. When out of balance, nitrate/nitrogen -- and its more toxic form, nitrite-nitrogen -- concentrations may be great enough in either plants or water to harm or even kill animals.
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