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Best Way To Turn Dog Poop Into Chicken Feed?

 
Emily Cressey
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Location: Lynnwood, WA. USA
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I am building a new house and want to have a front yard urban farm.

Many people with dogs walk by my house every day and some are carrying little baggies of poop with them.

I want to set up a little table/farm stand in the front yard - sort of a give-and-take permaculture neighborhood outreach program.

I am trying to decide whether I should put the chicken coop by the road or closer to my house/garage. I think it could be a fun neighborhood attraction.

I want the neighbors to:

1) Bring me Dog poop and other kitchen scraps
2) Pull weeds from neighboring empty lot and bring bread to feed my chickens


I was thinking about what the best way to utilize the dog poop and turn it into chicken food is. My first thought is a Black Soldier Fly Larva system. But I live in Seattle which is a maritime/temperate climate, USDA zone 8. We are like a low of 15 degrees in winter and 85 degrees is the summer high. I'm not sure if it's really hot enough here for the BSF to thrive... and what about winter? Average temperature is probably 50 degrees.

I also thought about a worm bin.

I also thought about just dumping dog poop in the chicken run to attract bugs, but maybe this is too yucky/stinky... It would be on a deep litter method.

For the most part the hens will be in a coop/run 10x6' and have outdoor chicken tunnel access throughout the day.

I am also wanting to turn my 70 x 6' side yard into a large compost area where I can dump grocery/restaurant scraps for them to eat a la geoff lawton video.

The big question is - What is the best way to turn the free resource of dog poop into chicken food? I'm interested in any thoughts on this - ideally with having the compost available at the end of the day be kosher for the veggie garden.

Thank you!

Emily
 
William Bronson
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I don't have chickens yet, but my understanding is the chicken s would turn scratch and peck apart any manure/compost they have access to. ...
 
Cj Sloane
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Emily Cressey wrote:
I am also wanting to turn my 70 x 6' side yard into a large compost area where I can dump grocery/restaurant scraps for them to eat a la Geoff Lawton video.

The big question is - What is the best way to turn the free resource of dog poop into chicken food? I'm interested in any thoughts on this - ideally with having the compost available at the end of the day be kosher for the veggie garden.


I think the dog poop needs to be composted first - then it becomes chicken food.
Pretty sure Geoff Lawton says you can compost dog poop but you don't want too high a percentage of it in the pile. Off the top of my head I can't remember that figure.
 
Zach Muller
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Emily I have had good luck just putting dog poop into paper grocery bags and letting it age in a corner of the yard until the chickens find it. Once they get to it, the bag is decomposing and they just scratch the stack of poop down into the ground without much of a stink or a mess.
Black folder fly are a good eater of dog poop if they will work in your climate. They go nuts here in the summer, but not through the winters months.

Here is a link to a thread about composting dog feces.

Are you going to be bringing in wood chips, or other organic material for the coop?
When I visited Portland I saw a few coops right out by the sidewalk and they seemed like pleasant neighborhood attractions. Although it sounds like your sideyard could be a great place for the chickens. One of my old setups was keeping the chickens in the side yard, and it was so nice being able to open the window in the kitchen and throw the scraps right to the chickens.
 
Frank Brentwood
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Location: Long Island, NY (Zone 7)
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First of all, I am SO JEALOUS of anyone who lives somewhere they can have both neighbors and chickens in the front yard.

Second, I think this is a GREAT idea to get others involved/interested in permie ideas. If you can get other people to pick weeds AND bring them to your chickens for food, that is pure genius!!!

Third, I would go with pre-composting or BSF to use up the dog poop. Especially if you live in a highly "productive" neighborhood. If you explain to people what is happening with their "donations", it's even more educational and gets people thinking about other ways to deal with "waste" rather than chucking it into a can and putting it out at the curb for the landfill.

Something to take into account with this plan is the novelty factor of what you are planning. If you put up a sign letting people know that they can drop of their dog's poop and feed your chickens weeds, you might get a huge influx of both weeds and poop at first. After the novelty of it wears off, one or both sources might decrease significantly, causing you to have to alter your feeding. Changes of season might also change the drop-off rate.
 
Sam Allison
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The big problem that jumps out at me is that you don't know what other people feed their dogs, or what chemicals (flea/tick treatments, wormers, vaccinations) they treat them with and how they might affect your chickens (for example I've heard of dogs becoming very ill after eating poo from recently wormed sheep or horses).

Equally you might need to do some real education to convince people that giving chickens dog poo is a hygienic and safe thing to do (especially if there is any chance that you might end up selling/trading/giving away eggs or chickens!).
 
E Skov
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Location: Central KS, Zone 6a. Summer High 91.5F (avg), Winter Low 17.5F (avg). 35.7" Annual Rain
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Another direction to go with this that might work is a doggie-doo septic system. I don't know much about these, but they do make miniature septic tanks designed for dog owners. The septic leach field could support a denser-than-usual stand of vegetation for the chickens to forage and would alleviate anyone's concerns over feeding dog poop more directly to the hens.
 
Scott Strough
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In my opinion dog poop as chicken feed is not a good idea at all. What you could do is use it in a thermal composting system to kill pathogens and then use the compost to grow awesome crops, and any rotten tomatoes or melons or peelings etc..that you have as scraps, feed the chickens that.
 
Emily Cressey
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Location: Lynnwood, WA. USA
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Hmmm- I had not thought of the non-organic dog angle, but that is a good point about wormers and pesticides in the dogs. That might be especially bad if I was using a black soldier fly set up or worm bin... don't want to kill all the good guys.

Just trying to think about how to turn the problem (too much dog poop in n-hood) into a solution.

I agree that I don't especially want the chickens eating the poop directly - more wanted to salvage the nutrients from the poop, and hopefully have an intermediary species involved, such as worms/bugs of some kind.

Bleh... feeling stumped.

Emily
 
allen lumley
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Emily Cressey : In the Forum threads page look for Black Soldier Fly Larva , they eat the dog do do and the larva
are then fed to the chickens ! Check it out this may work for you ! For the crafts Big AL
 
Druce Batstone
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John Pollard
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While I'm not against the idea, I think if you start asking people for their dog poop to feed your chickens, you might get locked up or shut down for being nuts. I think you should find more acceptable alternatives like the food scraps.
 
Jonathan Smith
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Perhaps a different approach? A methane biodigester for the dog poop perhaps? Found a youtube video for the idea.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ha8NiP6Y9lg

Another thought is that if you have your chicken coop in the front yard, some dogs may like to chase and terrorize the birds. Dogs have different temperaments, and the temptation to break through the fence to kill a few chickens may be too great for them.

 
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