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Can anyone help me find a topic for an essay?

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  • Can anyone help me find a topic for an essay?

    .
    Last edited by Chenalie; Apr. 30, 2016, 12:40 AM.

  • #2
    How about Healthy Horse Keeping? Managing manure for watershed health?

    It ranges from putting it a dumpster and having it hauled away, (to where?) to composting and spreading back on the pastures, to burning in a special on-farm incinerator that heats the indoor arena.
    www.juniperridgeranch.us
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    • #3
      I think investigating the actual environmental impact of a small horse farm could be very interesting - but there are so many issues at play!

      The farm lifestyle seems so "clean" but think about how grains are grown and produced - requiring vast amounts of energy, fertilizer (creating runoff problems, etc), shipping - just producing the feed for horses has a significant environmental impact. Then there's waste management, methane, runoff/land management issues that occur when you clear large amounts of pasture land, the shipping/movement of horses which requires the use of not-so-envirofriendly vehicles, the effect horses have on land maintenance (how heavy equestrian use can wear trails, etc).

      Lots of stuff there, I'd guess you have to pick one for your essay. If I was doing it, I'd probably look at all the issues around grain/feed production.
      "smile a lot can let us ride happy,it is good thing"

      My CANTER blog.

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      • #4
        I agree, impact of manure runnoff to the water supply is a hot topic in my horse heaven area of the country.
        There are friends and faces that may be forgotten, but there are horses that never will be. - Andy Adams

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        • #5
          Something else you could look into is trail conservation and environmental impact by equestrian activities in parks.

          I know there are a lot of equestrian trail groups (and, come to think of it, foxhunters too, most likely) who work to preserve spaces where we can ride our horses off farms. And there's a lot of back and forth about the possible impact on these natural areas by hooves (erosion, etc) and manure and that sort of thing.

          Plus the whole issue of spreading urban areas encroaching on these green spaces, too.
          The Trials and Jubilations of a Twenty-Something Re-rider
          Happy owner of Kieran the mostly-white-very-large-not-pony.

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          • #6
            Suburban development encroaching on farmland? Like when people move into houses next to a horse farm, then complain about the smell...
            "Remain relentlessly cheerful."

            Graphite/Pastel Portraits

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            • #7
              And there's always Mustangs! Loads of aspects on impact to the environment from the herds in the wild, to those gathered, to those adopted out or a comparison of all them. So many angles there, you could write a Obamacare size essay!

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              • #8
                A bit morbid, but there is also the issue of large animal carcass disposal and environmental impacts, particulary if chemical euthanasia is performed.
                There are friends and faces that may be forgotten, but there are horses that never will be. - Andy Adams

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                • #9
                  Restricting horse/cattle access to banks of rivers/creeks/streams and shores of lakes to decrease erosion and contamination of the watershed?

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                  • #10
                    What about the composting of an equine carcass? There's lots of environmental factors there...from the types of product used to compost (and how much), to the length of time it takes to break down each component, to the final end result. I think the process is fascinating, as long as I can detach myself from the emotional aspect.
                    Cindy

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by analise View Post
                      Something else you could look into is trail conservation and environmental impact by equestrian activities in parks.

                      I know there are a lot of equestrian trail groups (and, come to think of it, foxhunters too, most likely) who work to preserve spaces where we can ride our horses off farms. And there's a lot of back and forth about the possible impact on these natural areas by hooves (erosion, etc) and manure and that sort of thing.

                      Plus the whole issue of spreading urban areas encroaching on these green spaces, too.
                      I was going to suggest the same thing. ELCR might be a good resource if you go that route!

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                      • Original Poster

                        #12
                        Thank you guys so much! I've decided to write about proper disposal and storage of manure and its impact on the environment. Can you guys tell me a little bit about personal experiences and things like that about the subject? Thanks in advance.

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                        • #13
                          On the manure issue, you could also touch on manure composting for use in home/hobby gardens. Not as easy for large farms where a lot of horses are stabled, but it's a possible solution for those with smaller facilities.
                          Please copy and paste this to your signature if you know someone, or have been affected by someone who needs a smack upside the head. Lets raise awareness.

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                          • #14
                            I am in a suburban area with my small farm ( I was here first) I have 16 horses. I found a local farmer who will take the manure on a weekly basis to use to grow vegetables. I bought a dump truck and load it up weekly to be dropped there.

                            I make sure the manure pile is "clean" We use shavings and don't allow anything in the pile except what is taken from the stalls. No hair, hoof clippings etc. That we dump in to the trash.
                            I also use Fly Predators to help with the flies.
                            Some towns do take manure and compost it but mine is not one of them.
                            One larger farm put's the pile in an accessible area so people can take it for their gardens.
                            Humans don’t mind duress, in fact they thrive on it. What they mind is not feeling necessary. –Sebastian Junger

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