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Title: Optimization of Eisenia fetida stocking density for the bioconversion of rock phosphate enriched cow dung–waste paper mixtures

Highlights: • Vermidegradation of RP-enriched waste mixtures is dependent on E. fetida stocking density. • A stocking density of 12.5 g-worms kg{sup -1} resulted in highly humified vermicomposts. • P release from RP-enriched waste vermicomposts increases with E. fetida stocking density. • RP-enriched waste vermicomposts had no inhibitory effect on seed germination. - Abstract: Vermitechnology is gaining recognition as an environmental friendly waste management strategy. Its successful implementation requires that the key operational parameters like earthworm stocking density be established for each target waste/waste mixture. One target waste mixture in South Africa is waste paper mixed with cow dung and rock phosphate (RP) for P enrichment. This study sought to establish optimal Eisenia fetida stocking density for maximum P release and rapid bioconversion of RP enriched cow dung–paper waste mixtures. E. fetida stocking densities of 0, 7.5, 12.5, 17.5 and 22.5 g-worms kg{sup −1} dry weight of cow dung–waste paper mixtures were evaluated. The stocking density of 12.5 g-worms kg{sup −1} resulted in the highest earthworm growth rate and humification of the RP enriched waste mixture as reflected by a C:N ratio of <12 and a humic acid/fulvic acid ratio of >1.9 in final vermicomposts. A germination test revealed thatmore » the resultant vermicompost had no inhibitory effect on the germination of tomato, carrot, and radish. Extractable P increased with stocking density up to 22.5 g-worm kg{sup −1} feedstock suggesting that for maximum P release from RP enriched wastes a high stocking density should be considered.« less
Authors:
;
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22439951
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Waste Management; Journal Volume: 34; Journal Issue: 11; Other Information: Copyright (c) 2014 Elsevier Science B.V., Amsterdam, The Netherlands, All rights reserved.; Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
60 APPLIED LIFE SCIENCES; 12 MANAGEMENT OF RADIOACTIVE WASTES, AND NON-RADIOACTIVE WASTES FROM NUCLEAR FACILITIES; ANNELIDS; BIOLOGICAL WASTES; CARROTS; COWS; FULVIC ACIDS; GERMINATION; HUMIC ACIDS; INHIBITION; OPTIMIZATION; PHOSPHATES; RADISHES; TOMATOES