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chicken manure fertilizer?

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  • chicken manure fertilizer?

    Has anyone used this on their grazing fields? Some farmers around here use it on their pastures...SMELLS HORRIBLE for a few days but they like it. I am curious as I would prefer to stick with something more "natural" versus the petroleum based fertilizers (which is getting more and more expensive as well). We have plenty of commercial chicken farms around here so the manure is plentiful. I worry about parasites? Antibiotic residue?

    Anyone use this? What are the pros? Cons?
    Read about my time at the Hannoveraner Verband Breeders Courses:
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  • #2
    you are talking about prepared fertilizer, not raw manure, right?

    you should not have a problem on your grazing fields.
    I think I remember chicken poop being (when fresh) is high in potassium and rather harsh, but aged and pelleted it should be no problem at all.

    If in doubt, ask he county extension office. They should have approximate content, etc on hand

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    • #3
      Production Acres historically used quite a bit on their hay fields. Anyone familiar with the quality of their product can draw their own conclusions on its efficacy.

      Smell? Yeah, it's pretty bad for a couple of days.

      G.
      Mangalarga Marchador: Uma Raça, Uma Paixão

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      • #4
        I just spread 400 pounds per acre on my hay field for the first time. I was concerned about the odor. When I finally got it... pelletized layer manure, the smell wasn't unbearable. A few stray feathers... Stuff went through the cyclone spreader easily. Price was comparable to chemical fertilizer. The expected analysis is 4.3-3.4-2.4
        Expected benefits over chem fert... soil organics and slow release. Time will tell if correct.
        Equus makus brokus but happy

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        • #5
          High nitrogen; it's hot if you're taking it straight out of the coop. If it's composted it's a good all-around fertilizer. You can buy it commercially and it's still stinky but it's organic and composted already.
          “Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply.” Stephen R. Covey

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          • #6
            I always wondered if all the anti-biotics would kill parasites. Some big turkey houses have their own trucks that will spread it on your fields for you. Farmers say it's cheaper than buying chemical fertilizer. Smells too strong for me.
            www.HistoricHousePreservation.com

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            • #7
              It's the fertilizer of choice around here for just about everything. Springtime on the Eastern Shore is well - fragrant. Fortunately, the smell dissipates pretty quickly and as long as it's well broken up, the manure itself will break down and pretty much melt in after a good rain.
              But you do need to watch the dogs for a while - they think it's like candy! :P

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              • #8
                I had the opportunity to have chicken manure spread on my pastures a few years back but after doing a little research I decided there were too many risks. If I recall, the chance of botulism was one problem as was the excessive use of antibiotics.
                "There is no fundamental difference between man and animals in their ability to feel pleasure and pain, happiness, and misery." - Charles Darwin

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                • #9
                  If you can coordinate with farm services you can get most of your money back for putting out chicken manure. That's why it used alot for large farms but I think you can only put it out like 3 years in a row before you have to rest you pastures. I know my hay man tired to put some out but could not schedule when he wanted it so he passed.

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                  • #10
                    It's cheaper than traditional fertilizer because there is no consistency to the analysis. Or any way to guarantee the plant food analysis. Many of the farmers use it because it is cheap and they can pile it onto the fields, it's cheap because it's a by-product and the chicken farmers have to get rid of it before they can get more chickens. I used to work for a dairy and poultry farm and he would spread the raw chicken manure/bedding on his pastures, I never knew of a cow getting sick from it. But I also wouldn't have turned my horses out in those pastures either... I read the feed labels on the bags of feed and know exactly what they are eating. I know where my hay comes from and what was used to fertilize those fields. So why would I use a fertilizer on my pastures that I have no clue what the analysis is?

                    IMO traditional fertilizer is always the way to go. Get a soil analysis and treat your land for what it needs rather than just dumping raw manure onto it and hoping for the best. If you are consistent with your pasture management and have decent soil it shouldn’t be too outrageous to have fertilizer put out. Not to mention if you have enough acreage and want the local co-op, or farm supply company, to spread it for you many of them have variable rate equipment and can create a ‘customized field map’ and spread the fertilizer according to the land’s needs.

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                    • #11
                      I almost lost one of my prized geldings from ingesting hay that came from pastures fertilized with raw chicken manure. Apparently it had not fully broken down.

                      Botulism. He should not have survived but he did after 2 months in the ICU. $28,000 bill to save him.

                      After much deliberation, the farmer's insurance company covered the bill. Thank goodness he had liability insurance.
                      www.littlebullrun@aol.com See Little Bull Run's stallions at:
                      "Argosy" - YouTube and "Boleem" - YouTube
                      Boleem @ 1993 National Dressage Symposium - YouTube

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by SouthernYankee View Post
                        It's cheaper than traditional fertilizer because there is no consistency to the analysis. Or any way to guarantee the plant food analysis. Many of the farmers use it because it is cheap and they can pile it onto the fields, it's cheap because it's a by-product and the chicken farmers have to get rid of it before they can get more chickens. I used to work for a dairy and poultry farm
                        ummm I think you have been gone from the business for quite some time as chicken litter is nearly the same as chemical fertilizer in cost now...also litter taken out of a chicken house is called "cake"...the upper layers of the bedding is pulled off and then sold and spread...when the cake reaches down a certain level <x> the house is stripped and rebedded

                        now the botulism in the manure is not the greater drama,that lives in the fact that some of these jackwaters do not compost the dead properly in the composters or the litter piles themselves and so semi rotted birds are slung out in a million pieces as well as the litter..

                        the corporate industry has turned down the "juice" in the last few years in the feeds.it was nothing 10 years ago to walking to a house and be flogged every step by 4 week old animals...also they are killing them much younger to save money and charging the same as an older bigger animal as well as changing the moisture/ammonia levels with the auto waterers

                        Tamara
                        Production Acres,Pro A Welsh Cobs
                        I am one of the last 210,000 remaining full time farmers in America.We feed the others.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by SouthernYankee View Post
                          It's cheaper than traditional fertilizer because there is no consistency to the analysis. Or any way to guarantee the plant food analysis. Many of the farmers use it because it is cheap and they can pile it onto the fields, it's cheap because it's a by-product and the chicken farmers have to get rid of it before they can get more chickens. I used to work for a dairy and poultry farm
                          ummm I think you have been gone from the business for quite some time as chicken litter is nearly the same as chemical fertilizer in cost now...also litter taken out of a chicken house is called "cake"...the upper layers of the bedding is pulled off and then sold and spread...when the cake reaches down a certain level <x> the house is stripped and rebedded

                          now the botulism in the manure is not the greater drama,that lives in the fact that some of these jackwaters do not compost the dead properly in the composters or the litter piles themselves and so semi rotted birds are slung out in a million pieces as well as the litter..

                          the corporate industry has turned down the "juice" in the last few years in the feeds.it was nothing 10 years ago to walking to a house and be flogged every step by 4 week old animals...also they are killing them much younger to save money and charging the same as an older bigger animal as well as changing the moisture/ammonia levels with the auto waterers

                          we had nutrient reports pulled on every third house so,yes, you can reliably know what you are spreading and no chemical fertilizer can build the organic matter needed for good soil....

                          finally, the fastest we ever dropped a supplier was the day that as we watched one of his trucks spread still living semi shredded birds along a state highway...

                          and we made him pick up all the chickens

                          Tamara
                          Production Acres,Pro A Welsh Cobs
                          I am one of the last 210,000 remaining full time farmers in America.We feed the others.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by sid View Post
                            I almost lost one of my prized geldings from ingesting hay that came from pastures fertilized with raw chicken manure. Apparently it had not fully broken down.

                            Botulism. He should not have survived but he did after 2 months in the ICU. $28,000 bill to save him.


                            After much deliberation, the farmer's insurance company covered the bill. Thank goodness he had liability insurance.
                            How were the vets (or whoever) able to pinpoint the botulism came from the hay?
                            I LOVE my Chickens!

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              We determined that it was the hay, not the vets. It became obvious.

                              It stemmed from a new shipment of 3rd cutting from a man I'd used a few years back with nary a problem. ( He stopped doing square bales for quite a while, and at the same opened up a big chicken operation.) It arrived one evening, late, and the staff started throwing it right away. I headed off to the office.

                              When I came home and went to do late hay the next day, I noticed some horses weren't cleaning it up -- then I started looking more closely at some of the bales and I could see bits of dry matter in some bales, then in others some feathers. I told the staff to stop feeding it immediately. I wasn't thinking botulism as I knew little about it back then. I just didn't want hay with poop and feathers in it.

                              The hay man came and took it back. Within 4 days "Kingsley" fell dreadfully ill - paralyzation starting setting in. While we rushed him to the EMC, I was on pins and needles whether any of my others would also succumb. Thank God they didn't. It can be just one "pocket" in a bale that can cause a problem. It could have been a decaying piece of chicken in a flake he got that the feeder didn't see.

                              In those days, I didn't vaccinate. But started to immediately, through the vaccine only covers the B strain (most prevalent). But they can also get the C strain.

                              If you've ever seen a case of botulism, it's horrible. He was a 1,500 lb. horse and the larger the horse the less likely of suvival even given the anti-toxin and supportive therapy. If they go down, they're pretty much history. Kingsley literally propped himself against the wall in the ICU stall for days, as he couldn't move, couldn't blink, couldn't swalllow -- paralyzed pretty much all over. Feeding tubes,ointment in his eyes, etc. The vets were pleased he was wise enough to stay standing, propped up or it would have been over. While he started to recover - and it's a LONG process -- he developed complications (jugular thrombosis, salmonella). He had tough road. But...IF they survive there are no residual effects. He was back in work 6 months later.

                              The hay man, investigated as well. Turns out when his men were cutting the hay field, they went too far into an area where their chicken waste had not decomposed. Thus his insurance liability company agreed to pay the bill.

                              Fertilizing with chicken waste is a common practice, but in his case they screwed up and were very honest about. If fact they hay man would call me regularly to see how Kingsley was doing.
                              www.littlebullrun@aol.com See Little Bull Run's stallions at:
                              "Argosy" - YouTube and "Boleem" - YouTube
                              Boleem @ 1993 National Dressage Symposium - YouTube

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Oh, I see, thanks for the explanation.
                                I LOVE my Chickens!

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