How Well Do You Know Your Water?

Water enables life, allows our families to safely perform simple, everyday tasks, maintains animals’ health, keeps crops flourishing and is an essential role in any agricultural operation. No matter where you live or what you use it for – water is an invaluable resource. But the quality matters as much as this precious resource’s availability.

Here are four areas where water quality matters:


If you live in a rural area, when was the last time you tested your well water? If it’s been more than a year, your family and animals may be at risk for consuming harmful bacteria leading to illness. AgSource recommends testing your water on an annual basis to ensure it is safe for consumption, especially if young children are in the household. Depending on the area in which you live, screening for lead, copper, arsenic, fluoride and/or pesticides might also be beneficial.

And even if you access water through a municipal water well, testing should not be overlooked. If your water has off odor, color or taste, make sure to test!


A recent study done by DAIReXNET on Northwestern and Northeastern Iowa dairy herds found an interesting overlap between herds with drinking water high in nitrate concentrations and their length of calving interval. Herds whose drinking water had the highest nitrate concentrations experienced the longest calving intervals.

Because Nitrate-N concentrations in well water can fluctuate through time depending upon the proximity to cropland being fertilized and to the amount of precipitation in the area, it is best practice is sample well water for livestock use four times per year. This ensures high nitrate concentrations are not a potential risk factor to affect reproductive performance.

​AgSource offers a Livestock Suitability test that analyzes 14 components in the water. Reach out to our team to order yours today.

Plants And Environment

Plants require quality water, too! In unison with soil, water plays a key role in the delivery of nutrients to the plant throughout the growing cycle. Many factors affect how successful plants and crops will be. Think about how your plants or crops gain access to the water they use. Is it through natural precipitation and water cycle condensation in the fields? An irrigation system? Hydroponics? No matter your operation setup, AgSource offers testing options to ensure your water resources are helping deliver the most ROI for your operation.

Want to learn more about the water sources available to you and hear what Discovery Farms is doing in Wisconsin to monitor water quality? Tune into our “Water IQ – How well do you know your farm’s water?” webinar

For more information about AgSource’s water testing options and to find out how we can help you achieve your water quality goals, fill out our inquiry form below. Our team will be in touch!

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