Nutrient management strategies and regulations provide for the optimal management of waste materials containing nutrients that may be applied to the land. They are enacted to protect water sources while maximizing the economic and biological value of the nutrients. The Province of Ontario has enacted a new Nutrient Management Act (2002), the purpose of which is to enable the province to enact regulations that establish standards for the management of nutrients. Livestock waste contains not only nutrients, but also many pathogenic microorganisms such as viruses, bacteria and protozoa. Although these contaminants are abundant in livestock waste, no legislation has been specifically designed for their control; instead, nutrient management policies are assumed to be proxies for pathogen management. Therefore, the question is, will nutrient management policies that have been designed specifically to control nutrients also ensure a safe drinking water supply through the control of pathogens?...[This research suggests that]... the ability of pathogens to survive and be transported in numerous environments leaves an uncertainty in the effectiveness of the land application regulations at reducing the risk of pathogen contamination.