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multiple rabbit poo uses?

 
Nathan Paris
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Location: http://projectecogrid.com/
tiny house transportation woodworking
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Okay so I found a way to get some free rabbit poo, this includes the straw from the bedding. I now have maybe a 1,000lbs of it piled up. My issue is that there is no way I can make a compost pile out of all of this, Ive only been collecting for maybe a month and I already have this much. I know its good for a fertilizer but what else could I use it for? I have about an acre of pasture that I will be making my gardens in, I plan on putting in hugelkultur beds but this will be spread out over the course of a few years so I dont know how much good that will do me right now lol. I really dont want to turn away this stuff but I just want to make sure I can manage it responsibly ya know!

Thanks for all your help!
 
Ben Plummer
gardener
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Location: Midcoast Maine, Zone 5b
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I don't have rabbits but I'm pretty sure I read that you can use it directly on plants and trees without composting it first. I think unlike most poop, it will not "burn" the plants or cause illness when the resulting veggies are eaten. High in phosphorus too I think.
 
Nathan Paris
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Location: http://projectecogrid.com/
tiny house transportation woodworking
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Thanks for the info!

Does anyone know for sure if it can be applied directly to plants without causing burn? And can you use this uncomposted on food in the garden that I plan on eating? I just see red flags in when I think of using uncomposted poo on food that I would consume.

Thanks for your help!
 
Saybian Morgan
gardener
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It for sure can be applied without burn, I make whole instant gardens by shredding the hay and poo into a mix and planting straight into them. You can't grow lettuce in year one but you can knock out allot of potatoe while it's decomposing into softer soil. We sheet mulch with it six inches deep all over and I feed the same shredded mix to my worms. Rabbit poo is safe but think of them as a clay soil amendment if you put it on by the bucket's like I do. If the hay isn't blended well the balls can glue up and then dry out making great drainage but to much air for plant roots. It's certainly not to much to compost, if the beddings already in it all you really need is water. But you really need 1000 lbs's to get her to cook up nice. Our's is fresh so it's got allot of urine so if we gather it up it tends to start cooking and attracting it's own goo. Rabbit poo makes great 18 day compost because your just enhancing it into soil so you can't really go wrong.
 
Chris Kott
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Location: Toronto, Ontario
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I know that they need to eat their own poo at least once to get sufficient food value from it, but apparently chickens will eat it. I would imagine that Black Soldier Fly Larvae might enjoy it, and chickens would enjoy the larvae. I wonder if equal parts ramial woodchips and rabbit poo would cook well, or would they make good soil amendment right off?

I brought up the wood chips because they are a waste product where I am, and if I agree to take enough of them, they deliver for free. I would get an equal amount of ramial wood chips and layer compost over as large an area as I had available. Potatoes, squash (pumpkins, melons, summer/winter squash, zucchini, whatever), and buckwheat, maybe even corn and beans, and you've just turned your rabbit poo into food. I like the idea of layer composting a large area with rabbit poo because it should retain its pelletized structure until its decomposed, so it should spread easier than manure from a larger source, right?

-CK
 
Renate Howard
pollinator
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I'd lay it down 6 inches or more thick then plant either potatoes or pumpkins/melons/cucurbits in there in all the places you want gardens, etc. in the coming years. It's a great way to kill off the grass and at the same time create light, rich soil. I've done potatoes in thick hay before and that was the best part of the garden the next year, from all the decomposing matter protecting the soil and feeding all the worms/fungi, etc.
 
David Williams
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hmmm , this may not be the reply you were looking for , but what about a small biogas digester ? make your own energy from it, and it's waste product is fertilizer, offset bills and still have a wonderful garden win-win
 
Chris Kott
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I have liked biogas digesters since I read about them in a Mother Earth News publication from the 70s. Not much has changed, as there is only so far you can push biological processes. Unless you are on a farm that crams too many animals in too little space, I have a hard time believing you could generate any meaningful amount of biogas, and the conversion losses and material costs would make it a moot point.

Just mulch with it. Next year you will have soil.

Or just take a bucketful and pour it out on your future garden. Take a dirt rake and drag it through the pile in an x shape. Once or twice, no more. Now ask yourself "where did that bucket of rabbit poo go?"

-CK
 
David Williams
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i think lots changed since the 1970's ,we can now produce the same lumens from a 9w led light bulb as was a 100w incandescent light .... the input and output hasn't changed, just the efficiency in the middle ...same as our "inverter" equipment these days ....the innovation of another can allow us to apply our own innovation ..... in Kevin's case 1000 lb's of rabbit poo feeding per month into a 2m3 digester would be what 200lt's of gas per day year round (150kw)? enuff to raise the temp of a small greenhouse 5-10 deg C? all the difference of having vegies over winter for some !! enough to run a small refrigeration off grid, all the difference in summer... that's "meaningful" amounts of gas , and setup costs ? do it in 2-3 days for $300 in materials? that would last a decade of continuous "free" energy ?... due to the nature of the beast , i think there are more prospects of doing it now, new technology, higher energy prices, the only time bio-gas will let you down (if well maintained) is A) too higher expectation of results/production or B)not utilizing it's production fully/being wasteful.... anyways i digress.....was just throwing another option out there, with options we have choice !!! and each circumstance will require a different solution !!
 
Chris Kott
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Location: Toronto, Ontario
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Biological processes haven't changed. Considering you still need the electric infrastructure (inverter, batteries, charge controller, I think), doubt the feasibility of this idea. Also, from what I've read, and what everybody knows stepping in a cow pat versus being shat on by a pigeon, not all shit is created equal. I'd be interested to know where your numbers came from, and what their feedstock was.

I think more could be gained from its use as direct application fertilizer. It's already pelletized. It takes less effort to spread it over a field or under your plants. Perhaps if I needed a replacement for cooking gas, or there was no wood around, I would think more of biogas. I'd personally prefer not to handle large amounts of animal manure. One of the great things about paddock pasturage is that they shit on the pasture, which then turns it into animal forage. I don't need to see it, smell it, or touch it.

I'm sure you could use rabbit poo to fuel a biogas reactor, but I think that there are both better ways to use rabbit poo, and better feedstock for biogas.

-CK
 
David Williams
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"Biological processes haven't changed" are you in reference to thinking ?. "Considering you still need the electric infrastructure (inverter, batteries, charge controller, I think)" a single gas flame requires none of these processes as they are wasteful , "i doubt the feasibility of this idea." yes i concur going down that path would lead to failure.... inverter = loss , batteries more losses , and loss in the controller , wont leave you much left or anything useful 100% agree ..... however i am talking about a gas burner in a greenhouse creating carbon dioxide , heat , moisture / humidity with a small flame ...... or likewise using an ammonia absorption fridge ... like the 3 way caravan/trailer type....
Your 100% correct not all manure is the same, but all herbivores are in a similar band , as are carnivores, as are insectivores , omnivores ect . and including the dry matter bedding we'd say 30% dry matter included (assumption) and grass based feeds + grains would give a rough conversion of 70% if you have the C/N ratio right
Plenty of forums on the subject , including the math scale and types
http://dspace.dial.pipex.com/town/terrace/ae198/Digestergoldsizeperformanc.html is one of the first i found on a quick search..... haven't checked it as most of my numbers come from written texts
but should give you some approximate numbers ...
As far as waste handling i don't suggest anyone has a play in it lol, i'd expect common sence and simple, usable design... if loading with a shovel, design your feed tube to suit, if with a front end loader , will be completely different
As for the application, if a digester is well run an maintained , the slurry can be pumped out diluted, and then sprayed directly on plants from say an irrigation system , included into your watering scheme rather than doing more work spreading it as a solid....
"Okay so I found a way to get some free rabbit poo, this includes the straw from the bedding. I now have maybe a 1,000lbs of it piled up" quote from Kevin's first post what i have gleaned from his description is a) they aren't his rabbits and not on a pasture... b) poo is already in a pile ready for use , so would require spreading/handling anyways
 
Chris Kott
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Location: Toronto, Ontario
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You can understand any misinterpretation on my part, as before the offhand comment about greenhouse temperature you quantified the energy value in kilowats, and made mention of some electric infrastructure.

The type of biological process I was referring to is the variety responsible for anaerobic decomposition. Thanks for the digester information. I don't see anything radically new and different, though.

As to the manure of herbivores being similar enough to make sweeping generalizations, I disagree. I am not saying that rabbit poo is unsuitable, cause that's just silly. I am saying that unlike cows with multiple chambered stomachs, rabbits are not efficient at deriving nourishment from what they eat; they often eat their own poo at least one time through for that reason. I think that rabbit poo is likely, for that reason, to contain a lot of broken down but unabsorbed nutrients that are superior plant food that would be degraded in the digester, and so mulching with it directly would be my move.

But if you really want biogas, feel right free. But I see it as of much more use in dealing with human waste and pathogen issues.

I think we have identified a few uses. And you could compost in long raised beds on the inside/outside perimeter of a greenhouse for heat and soil without fuss or moving parts, for another.

-CK
 
David Williams
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In my experience people can quantify electrical measures more easily than that of kilo or mega joules....my "inverter"comment was in reference to the amount of change over a time period, i see what your saying
The type of biological bacterial decomposition has not changed at all , but our need to utilise smaller amounts of power have increased dramatically over the last 40 years
it's true that different gut bacteria and stages of digestion will change the outgoing levels of nutrient , and used as feed stock to a digester will change retention times , continual or batch type process, temperature range and maybe the need for alternate feed as well more straw for example.....but the "generality" comes from the fact as far as gas production goes theres only like a 6% swing between any herbivore on gas production in lab conditions, also to the best of my knowledge the methanogenic bacteria dont "consume" any of the "goodness" of the mix , they only catalize a reaction to make a byproduct we extract, but all nutritional value remains intact...
Composting for heat is an awesome idea and works a treat, though does require regular turning to keep the heat up and can harbor a lot of plant diseases / fungi ,pest eggs ect so not great in your prime growing area...but against an outside wall built up high would do wonders....

i use rabbit bedding and wastes as an accelerant in my compost as it is high in nitrogen.. covered for 24 hours turns white with azobacter
 
Chris Kott
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Location: Toronto, Ontario
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Cool. I would be interested to know if there is a chart or something that shows the changes in nutrient/content levels after a pass through the digester. What do the methanogenic bacteria consume, exactly?

Also, nobody has mentioned the use of Black Soldier Fly Larvae to make live food for chickens/fish. But knowing exactly what the BSFL are looking for in the poo and what the bacteria need from it could tell us if the larvae come before or after the digester. In the same way, red worms in a standard vermiculture setup could be used, likely right after the BSFL.

So if all these were compatible, you could make chicken food from BSFL and worms, biogas for heat and utility, and soil. If the BSFL and worms were let at it in composting windrows heaped around the outside perimeter of a greenhouse, you could still work the heat angle, too.

-CK
 
David Williams
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Anaerobic sludge digestion consists of a series of bacterial events that convert organic compounds to methane, carbon dioxide, and new bacterial cells.
These events are commonly considered as a three-stage process.
The first stage of the process involves the hydrolysis of solids (particulate and colloidal wastes). The hydrolysis of these wastes results in the production of
simplistic, soluble organic compounds (volatile acids and alcohols).
The second stage of the process, acetogenesis, involves the conversion of the volatile acids and alcohols to substrates such as acetic acid or acetate (CH3COOH)
and hydrogen gas that can be used by methane-forming bacteria.
The third and final stage of the process, methanogenesis, involves the production of methane and carbon dioxide.
Hydrolysis is the solubilization of particulate organic compounds such as cellulose (Equation 1.1) and colloidal organic compounds such as proteins (Equation 1.2)
into simple soluble compounds that can be absorbed by bacterial cells. Once absorbed, these compounds undergo bacterial degradation that results in the production
of volatile acids and alcohols such as ethanol (CH3CH2OH) and propionate (CH3CH2COOH). The volatile acids are converted to acetate and hydrogen gas.
Methane production occurs from the degradation of acetate (Equation 1.3) and the reduction of carbon dioxide by hydrogen gas (Equation 1.4).
cellulose + H2O — hydrolysis → soluble sugars (1.1)
proteins + H2O — hydrolysis → soluble amino acids (1.2)
CH3COOH → CH4 + CO2 (1.3)
CO2 + 4H2 → CH4 + 2H2O (1.4)
^^ extract from "The micro-biology of Anaerobic Digesters" by Michael H. Gerardi , All credit and rights due to the Author
This is in reference to municipal waste water processing

"Cool. I would be interested to know if there is a chart or something that shows the changes in nutrient/content levels after a pass through the digester. What do the methanogenic bacteria consume, exactly? "
^^ while they DO consume some of the matter for cell growth ,but they remain in solution until they decay releasing what was taken ,as they aren't removed as an end product...
Also great idea with BSFL, could also use "Darkling Beetle" (meal worms) aswell , could sell for fish/bird food or used as a food in your own biogas heated aquaponics system for growout...
 
Michelle Whipple
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Location: Black Hills of South Dakota
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Kevin Sanders wrote:I know its good for a fertilizer but what else could I use it for?


My dog thinks it's the best snack ever made.

 
Kdan Horton
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Location: North West Georgia
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I've always thought of dipping it in resin, making little brown beads threading them into necklaces and selling them to the rich people in town as "organic Jewelry".

I think different like that.

 
Peri Ledo
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Location: southern Spain
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What about using that rabbit manure plus bedding for growing mushrooms?
Another idea is to use it as building material, as in cement for your cob or plaster.
 
Peter Ellis
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Location: Central New Jersey
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On the biogas front, I'm under the impression that the digesters have some fairly stringent heat requirements and that they're not a very good option for temperate climates. Work great in tropical and subtropical areas, with ambient temps commonly in the 80F neighborhood, but not so much further north where temperatures are likely to get below the operating range of the appropriate bacteria.

Would love to be enlightened as to how they can be run productively in temperate climates, if it is possible

And there have definitely been some developments in terms of the structure of the digesters themselves that make for pretty productive, simple and low cost systems in places where the bacteria thrive.

 
David Williams
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Pm'ed you Pete, didn't want to hijack this thread
 
Al Senner
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Location: southeast SD (zone 4b/5a)
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a word of warning. i got enough rabbit waste from a neighbor to cover my garden about 2in during the winter. spring came and i planted and my plants were burned.
 
John Alabarr
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I put the bedding hay from my rabbit cage in the chicken pen and the rabbit doo-doo disappears from it. I assume the chickens are using it as a snack.
 
C. Letellier
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My parents rule of thumb was that manure being used on the garden in quantity should be at least 5 years old and up to 10 years old or so. Also manure piles should be watered once or twice a year. If those rules were followed I never saw a anything burned. The only times I ever saw things burned was using newer manure. I can also tell you the weed patch that grew where one of these old manure piles was removed was nearly always spectacular that first year. The requirement is that you have to have the room to have the piles sitting there that long though. In our extremely dry climate and heavy clay soils I am sure the water contamination from this was minimal. In wetter climates that might not be true.

 
A Philipsen
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Location: OR - Willamette Valley
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rabbits are not efficient at deriving nourishment from what they eat; they often eat their own poo at least one time through for that reason. I think that rabbit poo is likely, for that reason, to contain a lot of broken down but unabsorbed nutrients that are superior plant food.
No, not exactly. They make two different kinds of pellets. The one they eat after their food goes through the first time is soft and green - like a goat's cud, not like poop. Their poo pellets are just poo and they do not re-eat them. I find it to be pretty equivalent to goat poo as far as the effect it has on my plants, no better, no worse.
 
Amanda Wheaton
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Al Senner wrote:a word of warning. i got enough rabbit waste from a neighbor to cover my garden about 2in during the winter. spring came and i planted and my plants were burned.

was it over clay?
 
Darren Collins
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Location: Jamberoo, NSW, Australia
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Rabbit poop is pretty good food for worm farms, if you're looking for another use.
 
Ryan Tollmann
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Bag it. Sell it, make money, buy more crapt (pun intended)
 
William Neaves
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You could dry some of it to powder and use some to make methane get a shop vac and make a flame thrower just kidding btw but seriously did see this done once on doomsday preppers
 
Lindsey Jane
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Location: Kitsap Penninsula, WA
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Rabbit Poo!! Lucky lucky lucky...

Rabbits are caprophagic, which means they eat their poo the first time it comes out (looks glossy and a little too much like chocolate drops for my comfort), and then the finished little nugget is perfectly round. It is COOL poop, so it won't burn plants - but use sparingly on plantings - because too much of any good thing is a disaster. I've lost plants from using too much poo. Plus, if there is any extra urine in your mix with the bedding and such, it could scald plants a little.

The neat part about rabbit poop is that it breaks down slowly - like using osmocote. It will sit and break down for a long time on top of the soil.

I have used it to make:
1) Compost tea - Fill a 5lb bucket up about 2 inches with poo, add water, let sit, stir occasionally, use on beds as needed.
2) WORM BINS!! My worms love the rabbit poo. I've had amazing results with our outside bins adding worm poo, wood shavings, time and water. Killer awesome compost, for sure.
3) Hugelkulture beds - can't miss with a little poo added...
4) Of course regular compost piles - in all shapes and forms.

I have always wanted to till my entire garden (50X50 feet) one fall and just put down a layer of rabbit poo, till again, add clover and rye, and wait for the magic to happen. As of yet, I haven't gotten around to it... *sigh*
 
I agree. Here's the link: https://richsoil.com/wood-heat.jsp
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