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Permie way of managing sheep poop

 
iulian Dutu
Posts: 7
Location: Romania
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Hi, although I occasionally read around here, this is my first post...I have 2 sheep and a ram and it came to the day when I had to scoop their winter poop from their barn...I found it kind of difficult cause during winter it compacted and it's hard to remove it...for the future, are there any other clever permie ways to manage their droppings so this operation won't be necessary ?

Thanks a lot,
iulian
 
John Wolfram
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Location: Lafayette, Indiana
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Are you already using a deep bedding type of system to reduce the frequency of poop-scooping needed?
 
iulian Dutu
Posts: 7
Location: Romania
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I'm not sure what you mean by this system...during winter I add layers of straw every now and then, when I think is need it...is this what you mean ? Today I had to remove about 30 cm thick or so of poop and straw mixture...which I find it rather difficult
 
R Ranson
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I've spent the last week mucking out my friends barn, 14 inch thick (so roughly the same as OP) layer of compacted hay and muck. It was intense, but also kind of satisfying. Hay fork was my favourite tool, just stand on top of the hay and pry up the layers, like pulling up a carpet.

I read, I think it was polyfacefarm that some people sprinkle dry corn kernels before adding each layer of bedding, then in the spring, turn the chickens and/or pigs into the barn. The chickens/pigs/whichever it was, dig up the manure looking for the corn. I've never tried it and I have doubts as to how well it would work.

Other people use different bedding material, or add it more often, but again, it seems to get compacted down.

If I had my druthers, I would design the barn stall to be the same width as the front end loader, with the door at each end the same width, so I could just drive the tractor through and scrape out all the muck - but life seldom gives us the chance to have our druthers.

Or you can do like my friend did and offer free manure on UsedAnywhere - you muck out, must take all. If your fellow farmer friends see you offering free muck, they will come around in droves and steal it for themselves.

That's my brainstorming done for this morning. Can't wait to read what tips and ideas other people have.

Edit: Did I mention that my manure pile is now 6 foot wide, 7 foot tall, 25 foot long, and I still have at least two more pickup truck full to bring home. That's all from one barn and does not include contributions from my own farm animals.
 
iulian Dutu
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Location: Romania
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Pretty much the same kind of work here...I thought that when I'll increase my herd, therefore their winter barn, probably a small tractor or walk behind loader will do it...or maybe a muck shredder ?
In my village, everybody has at least a cow or goats or sheep or horse or combination of those so there is always a lot of manure around

How do you manage your manure pile ? What you plan to do with it ?
 
R Ranson
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Mmmm, manure.

My plans are to cover it and let it sit for a few weeks while we wait for the rains to slow down.

When the ground is firmed up, I hope to move the manure to a spot above a steep slope. I'm tired of having to manage the weeds on the steep slope, so I'm making a long, foot wide bed, or series of beds at the top of the slope, cover with an inch of soil, then plant squash... lots of squash. In theory, the squash will trail down and smother the weeds. At the end of the season I'll rake the squash beds so that the nicely composted soil will mulch the lawn over winter.

We did something like this when I was a little kid, and it worked beautifully... at least in my memory. Can't wait to see if it still works. I may even plant my corn there too, do a three sisters thing if the soil isn't too rich.
 
iulian Dutu
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Location: Romania
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Why do you need to cover it ?

If I'll let it sit uncovered till fall, it will decompose enough to be easier to spread it in the garden ?
 
R Ranson
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We have a manure warning in effect right now. Some government people put out this advisory every winter (rainy season) to cover the manure to prevent something wrong from leaching into the groundwater and making people sick. I think it's mostly for people with wells, but the advisory is for the whole province.

Is it terrible that I giggle inside every time I tell people that we have a manure warning?
 
Kris schulenburg
Posts: 112
Location: Henry County Ky Zone 6
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Not total Permie cause we buy hay for the winter.
Keep 8-10 sheep.
They only like their shelter when it very windy, rains or snows.
They waist the courser stems. I love the ruth stout method of gardening.
So we feed hay inside when it rains and outside in an annual garden when it's dry.
*The danger is you could import persistent herbicide with your hay.
They do a great job of cleaning up the garden, it gets mulched and fertilized over the winter. They have a safe place to spend nights.
Move sheep out in spring and move ducks in for a week or 2 to eat slugs.
Fluff the soil with a fork (broad fork one of these days) and plant.
Last year was the first year and it worked pretty well.
Don't have the quantity of inside muck to deal with.
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Last summer
 
iulian Dutu
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Location: Romania
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Although most of people in our area have wells...nobody use them anymore...I guess because of bad manure management

Pretty much the same here...but, we had snow for quite long time so they stayed inside their shelter most of winter days...therefore enough muck for me to scoop out.

I do the garden with a broad fork, too...

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William Bronson
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Location: Cincinnati, Ohio,Price Hill 45205
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I have no animals, so thus is straight from the armchair :
How about giving them a separate warm weather shelter, very basic, just to keep the rain off, and vermicomposting the muck till it gets cold again? By then, the volume should be greatly reduced and it coukd be perfect for applying to fields or even to sell.
 
Kris schulenburg
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Location: Henry County Ky Zone 6
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Beautiful sheep!
 
iulian Dutu
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Location: Romania
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William Bronson wrote: I have no animals, so thus is straight from the armchair :
How about giving them a separate warm weather shelter, very basic, just to keep the rain off, and vermicomposting the muck till it gets cold again? By then, the volume should be greatly reduced and it coukd be perfect for applying to fields or even to sell.


That's what I'm planning to do

Kris schulenburg wrote:Beautiful sheep!


Thanks...
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