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Your manure storage/disposal methods?

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  • Chenalie
    started a topic Your manure storage/disposal methods?

    Your manure storage/disposal methods?

    I'm writing a paper on the effects manure has on the environment, and how to store and dispose of it. How do you guys store/dispose of your horses' manure? any other information you could give me would be great. Thanks in advance!

  • Rabtfarm
    replied
    Monalisa
    We have 3-4 horses here too. I use our farm tractor's front end loader to turn piles of compost..that"s my "tumbler". I am fortunate in that there is an old foundation wall at the back of my piles so I can easily pick up 99% of the compost. Being a guy on a tractor I probably turn my pile too often..:-) Only additional note I would make here is the need for some water occasionally to provide a catalyst for the composting...(we had a pretty dry summer/fall). All kitchen "garbage" is added to the compost.
    I like to compost the wood shavings before spreading on the hayfields and pastures as I understand that wood shavings will initially deplete the nitrogen in the soil if spread raw from the stalls onto the fields.
    One thing that intrigues me recently is that the local concrete manufacturer of septic tanks has occasional "mistakes" which would provide an instant compost "pit" three sides and a floor..one was 6' wide..just about my compact tractor bucket width(5'). So check around your area for these cracked or otherwise defective septic tanks and see what they'll do to get rid of them..maybe they will bring it to you for free. You may need to pay them to cut the top off and one side...but you will get a great instant compost pit...and their motivation will be to get rid of a large piece of concrete without paying to break it up or landfill disposal prices.
    George

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  • Fancy That
    replied
    We just pile it and let it compost...

    We are lazy composters and just pile the small quantity of manure that we pick out of the paddock.

    It does turn into beautiful "dirt", eventually.

    Most of our manure is on our pastures (out here in CA, we don't have real grass pastures....it's a "dry lot" except for a few months in winter/spring).....and we just drag the pastures regularly.

    The only manure we pick up is in the paddock. We don't have bedding.

    This works for us on a ranchette (4 acres) with 3 horses and 1 Mini who live out 24/7.

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  • ladybugred
    replied
    My BO stores it in the spreader until full, then spreads over 1 of 6 fields in rotation. There are a max of 14 horses inside. This works well with our state's nutrient management requirements.

    monalisa- No you do not need a pit, when it is too cold or snowy for my BO to run the spreader she just piles it in an unused paddock. It just takes a lot longer to compost, yes you can add garden clippings and food waste as well. If you make a concious effort to layer the manure, grass, and food waste, it will compost faster than if you do it willy nilly.

    My dream manure set-up, yes I'm odd, would be a three bay concrete block structure with concrete base and PVC pipes for aeration.

    LBR

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  • monalisa
    replied
    For those who compost, a few questions:

    1) Is it necessary to make a "compost pit" - concrete floor, wood sides?
    If I do this I will want it to look nice, i.e., not made out of concrete block.

    Is it just as easy to make 2-3 big piles and then just turn it? I have 3 horses but also want to add my food waste and leaf waste.

    Thanks!

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  • fordtraktor
    replied
    I have a 3 sided wood thing/pile. But mine are out 24/7 with access to one of three bigger fields, so it is a pretty small pile. A landscape guy comes and gets it a couple times a year, by which time I have about a truckful.

    The most important thing is that my pile is probably 100 feet from the barn and downwind from house and barn. These are key issues when thinking about manure disposal! I would rather haul muck tubs through the snow than have my barn smell.

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  • lisann
    replied
    Stored in a pile. We burn it. (**hangs head** - I know, not as good as compost/spreading)

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  • bumblesmama
    replied
    I use a covered 3 bin system I made; for 3 horses. I turn it by hand occassionally (I would love a tractor). I use no bedding in the summer and pelleted in the winter. I layer the first two "cooking bins" with 4" diameter irrigation pipes to help circulate air so I don't have to turn as often. It composts from raw manure to 'dirt' in about 3-4 months, depending on conditions and turning frequency. I use it on the gardens, flower beds, lawn and grass paddock. Whatever I don't use is easily taken by locals with an ad on freecycle.

    I looked into having it hauled away, all quotes were in the $300-$400 ranges. Which irritated me because it is already composted and these guys were going to turn around and sell it for gardens etc.


    This is where I got the model for my system:

    http://www.umass.edu/cdl/BMPs/Compos...ed%2008-46.pdf

    My plan is to eventually pour a concrete pad to reduce any leachates even further. For now I am fastidious in keeping it covered during rainy weather and snow melt.
    Last edited by bumblesmama; Oct. 17, 2010, 08:51 AM. Reason: added link

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  • MunchkinsMom
    replied
    Manure is spread on the pastures. Wet bedding is used as mulch on the fencelines. I have 3 horses and 9 acres of pasture.

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  • LvdSprtHorse
    replied
    I have a 3 sided wood built container and twice a month we load it all up into the dump trailer and take it to the transfer station, which allows us to dump for free. We have 14 horses here and use shavings.

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  • dogponyshow
    replied
    Dumpster, dumped twice a week.

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  • camohn
    replied
    put it on the compost pile. Composts for about 6 months and spread on the hay field.

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  • Mali
    replied
    Hubby scoops it up with the loader and dumps it in the manure pit used for the cattle manure. Easy peasy! When the pit gets full, it's spread on our crop fields. One more reason I'm glad I married a farmer...

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  • BigHorseLittleHorse
    replied
    Straw bedding and manure are dumped in a cement/cinderblock 3-sided bin. When the bin is full, a mushroom farmer comes with a big truck and takes it all away. The mushroom farmers will only take straw, no shavings.

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  • Trevelyan96
    replied
    Composted in a manure pile at the back of the property and spread on the pastures, put in the flower beds, and given away to gardening friends.

    I only have 2 horses, turn it with the front end loader every month or so, and use pelleted bedding, so it compostes quickly.

    Leave a comment:


  • bits619
    replied
    the farm i lesson at is attached to an organic produce farm. They load maure straight from wheelbarrow to a small manure trailer, and truck it over once or twice a week (i may have the numbers off here-however long it takes to get a full trailer load), where it gets composted/dealt with by the farm management.
    The produce farm has some special/strict requirements the horse mgmt have to meet: no hair or garden trimmings, the horse mgmt has to record and report the dates that any hay was treated in any form (info they get from hay suppliers, etc), what feed the horses are on, etc. The manure has to remain in compost for a certain period of time, too.

    Sorry for not knowing much in the way for numbers/exact details! I *can* tell you that i had been there for a little while (well, months, but only 1x/week) before i looked around and thought, "waaaaait a minute.... where's the pile?!?"
    It's quite a nice set-up, and is rather symbiotic, really
    Horses get big bags of organic carrots delivered to them on a regular basis, too!

    Leave a comment:


  • Mudroom
    replied
    Originally posted by shakeytails View Post
    Ours is "stored" in the manure spreader until full. In the winter, we spread it directly on the hay fields. In the summer we stockpile in a corner on one of the hay fields and spread it when we're done cutting hay for the year.
    same as me except it is spread on the crop field when they are available and non-pastured grass areas when the crops are in. I don't have the equipment to pile it, turn it and then spread it.

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  • Lady Counselor
    replied
    I use a sawdust/shavings mix, and sometimes straw when I have a horse rehabbing from being gelded, things like that.
    It gets hauled around to the backside of the property, away from the river and buildings, and out of sight. A local landscaper takes it for compost, once and sometimes twice a year.

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  • baysngreys
    replied
    Manure spreader.
    The trails in my woods are nicely bedded with shavings! When I pick out paddocks and run-ins I only have manure and can spread that on the pastures. Too much shavings or straw tend to kill my grass.

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  • CelticRiverDance
    replied
    I have a 5 acre horse farm and I have a manure pile that is on the edge of the property (25' in from the boarder). I use that to store my manure and then run an ad in the newspaper in the farm & garden section advertising free feritlizer/horse manure. I never have any problem getting rid of it. I've been doing this for so long that most of the time my regular customers come out before I even have to run an ad.

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