View Full Version : Another poop question...

Dec. 29, 2008, 12:17 PM
It's been very cold here with hard freezes. Normally we might get a frosty night here or there but lately it's been so cold the shady parts don't even thaw during the day. I'm very anal about cleaning the paddocks, poop gets picked at least 2x/day down to the smallest piece. ;)
Well, I'm sure all you cold climate people are laughing, but I'm not used to poop frozen in mudd and can't figure out an efficient way to clean it up. If I'm lucky and the horse pooped in a level spot then it's not so bad, but usually it's right there were the mudd is pitted from the hooves and I can't even get the pitch fork thingy underneath. I've been leaving quite a bit of poop behind and it's driving me crazy. What do all you cold climate people do in this situation?

Dec. 29, 2008, 12:35 PM
I just leave it until we get a thaw.
Sometimes that means until Spring.
Doesn't make for a sparkly-clean pasture but I won't kill myself over poopsicles :winkgrin:

Right now we are just coming out of a period where the ground was not only frozen solid, but coated with ice!
My 2 horses have free access to their stalls 24/7 and I was scraping the used shavings out the back doors of the stalls to give them some traction on the ice.
Let's just say it ain't real tidy back there now that we got a thaw this weekend... :rolleyes:

Dec. 29, 2008, 12:42 PM
Kick it out.

Dec. 29, 2008, 01:08 PM
Kick it out.

:eek: Rienzi - I don't know where you are, but here in the Midwest that's a good way to break a toe!
I guess a steel-toe boot might do it, but some of my piles now require blasting powder!!

Dec. 29, 2008, 01:09 PM
I go in armed with a metal rake. Works awesome in snow too. Reality is you will have to leave some behind, but I dig it out with the rake, get it on a level surface then scoop with my pitchfork.

Dec. 29, 2008, 01:17 PM
I don't clean any out in the winter -25 and 3 feet of snow see to that. In the spring after its all thawed I take the loader tractor and push it into piles about 6 feet high, load it in the spreader and spread it on corn feilds that will be tilled. Same as the cattle yards time I'm done I cover about 30 acres with manure.

Dec. 29, 2008, 01:49 PM
I chip away at it with a metal tool of some kind on a long handle (there are several of these oddities here, including shingle rippers, crowbars, etc.). Then I rake it up with a little plastic rake and a big plastic snowshovel, or my manure fork. I can get it all if it's snow, but if it's iced over I can't always get it all. Since I'm home most of the time (and also persnickity about poopy paddocks), I pick several times a day, and that also helps.

Dec. 29, 2008, 04:22 PM
I'm in northern Vermont.
Toes, who has toes? :winkgrin:

Yes, only attempt this with strong boots. And good aim.

Dec. 29, 2008, 06:19 PM
I'm in northern Vermont.
Toes, who has toes? :winkgrin:

Yes, only attempt this with strong boots. And good aim.

:lol: Ah yes...There is no pleasure quite like having a ricocheting frozen poopball come back & smack you in the face

Dec. 29, 2008, 06:46 PM
Go on a poop hunt as soon as it lands?

Dec. 29, 2008, 07:22 PM
heh, heh, heh, I just sweep it under the snow. :D :cool:

I have a horse that cribs. He has 2 special spots where he stands. He makes great big piles of poop that freeze solid and mix with ice and snow. In the spring, I shovel it all into a wheelbarrow or cart and move it elsewhere. : )

The other 2 horses just poop where ever... they are my "natural" manure spreaders. In the spring, they go into a different field.

Loves to ride
Dec. 30, 2008, 12:13 AM
I use the kick method already mentioned and finally invested in a metal pitchfork (after abusing my plastic one for 3 years which surprisingly still have some tines remaining).

As someone said, frozen poop piles can really hurt the toes without steel toe boots but it works in a pinch. I was never good at soccer but I haven't met a poop pile (less than 24 hours) that I couldn't kick out. :D

But, the metal pitchfork, although much heavier, does work very well!

Sing Mia Song
Dec. 30, 2008, 04:47 PM
Kick with heel instead of toe. Much easier.

There is nothing quite like preparing to get your shovel under a poop pile, throwing all you weight into it, and having it reverberate up your shoulder once you hit the Titanic-killing iceberg. :eek:

Dec. 31, 2008, 07:37 PM
Doesn't kicking it scatter poop balls everywhere, that you then have to hunt down?
I get frustrated enough when I try to get the pitch fork underneath and hit a frozen hoofprint with one of the tines which then results in launching poop all over the place. Grrrrr, everything takes 3x as long and I still can't get it all.
Catching the poop as soon as is falls seems to work well only if the ground is level. If it falls into frozen pits, then the result is the same...poop being launched everywhere by twanged tines! :eek:

Altamont Sport Horses
Dec. 31, 2008, 08:16 PM
Get yourself one of the orange colored long outdoor extension cords and a hairdryer. Set hairdryer on high and thaw each poop pile where it is stuck to the dirt, diligently pick up pile and discard appropriately. :cool:

Or just do the best you can to get the majority of the manure for now and make a commitment to yourself that when the weather warms up you will clean twice as thoroughly as usual to asuage your guilt.

Jan. 2, 2009, 05:15 PM
Get yourself one of the orange colored long outdoor extension cords and a hairdryer. Set hairdryer on high and thaw each poop pile where it is stuck to the dirt, diligently pick up pile and discard appropriately. :cool:


My neighbors already wonder about me.
Seeing me blowdrying poophills would convince them I have gone right over the edge... ;)

Jan. 2, 2009, 06:56 PM
The neighbors know I'm crazy, so I can't make that any worse. I think! :D
But, I don't have an extension cord long enough. Do they make batterie operated hairdryers?

Jan. 2, 2009, 07:05 PM
Leave it there. Life's too short to worry about frozen turds. :) When things soften up a little, run the harrow over the paddock--no more poop! ;)

Jan. 3, 2009, 08:31 AM
luckily...i have four dogs. Their favorite tasty treat is poopsicles. They get anything i can't get at with a pitchfork.

Uhm....does anyone know if that's bad for dogs?? :D:D:confused::o:o

Jan. 3, 2009, 11:20 AM
I lost my big dog last year and I try not to let the little one eat too much poop. She loves it but keeps barfing it back out, usually just about the time we're back in the house! :(
I've already resigned myself to leaving a lot behind, it's not frozen right now, but the mudd is no better. I don't think I have the right attachment for the tractor to harrow. That is something similar to an arena drag, isn't it? I'm new to all the tractor stuff and still learning how to drive it etc.

Jan. 3, 2009, 08:17 PM
I'm in northern Vermont.
Toes, who has toes? :winkgrin:

Yes, only attempt this with strong boots. And good aim.

Yep, frozen poo kicking is a special talent. When you find one you can't kick out, you leave it. But I totally get the issue of pooplets falling into crevices. I believe raking pooplets effectively is an art form. But quite satisfying.

What I really do:
Scoop the warm ones.
Kick the lukewarm ones and scoop.
If you kick one and it doesn't move on first try....try to get under it a little with a manure fork and kick again.
Any that don't move after two good kicks are left until the next thaw. Toes are important!
When you get a thaw....get busy! I have a sturdy metal "hay fork" that I will use to loosen frozen poops from time to time. The tines are too far apart to effectively scoop but helps loosen them in a pinch.

Good luck! I am diligent about poop scooping in the paddock area because we often have freezing temps w/o snow and frozen poop balls are hard. Last winter my mare had a bad "stone bruise", but I always wonder if she didn't step on a frozen pooplet.