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600 dogs a-pooping  RSS feed

 
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No, not some twisted version of the 12 Days of Christmas, but a harsh reality at an impoverished dog shelter in Romania. Two brave souls care for over 600 dogs which would otherwise be let to die of stavation at the pound, run over by cars on the highway, or freeze to death in winter. Romania, a country of 20 million people, has a stray dog population of 6 million. Via internet, I have befriended some of the volunteers at this shelter. Conditions for the workers who live onsite are very difficult. One of the problems I've been thinking about is the question of the waste. I learned that the dog waste accumulates and forms large mounds of poop. It's hauled off if/when they have extra money to pay for it. So, my thought is, what is a simple, effiicient permaculture solution for this waste using only easily found materials?
I thank you in advance for any and all suggestions. I just ask you to remember this one word before replying...impoverished.
 
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I don't have any direct experience of composting dog poop, but someone from Taiwan, a permaculture teacher there, told us that he made a simple worm tower for disposing of his dog's poop. He submerged a perforated bucket into the ground, with a lid, and scoops the dog poop into it. I forget if he added compost worms or if local compost worms moved in. He said the worms just decompose the poop and the nutrients migrate out into the surrounding soil, and it never fills up.

Of course for 600 dogs, it would be a much bigger scale! And more complicated. And require quite a lot of space. But composting and compost worms would probably be ideal, if you could figure out the method where it wouldn't stink too much. Maybe a base and a covering layer of high-carbon materials like autumn leaves, sawdust, or wood shavings? I dunno, I hope they have a lot of space!
 
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What about using black soldier flies to consume all that poop?  A black soldier fly bin would then convert that poop to fish food or chicken food.  The problem becomes a solution.

In China, they've build massive black soldier fly processing facilities to deal with all the pig crap they generate at their huge pig farms.  Thus, they convert pig crap to chicken food. 



Here's another video about using BSF for biowaste processing, this one in Indonesia.



It's not a tremendously complex system, and if you had big enough BSV vats, you wouldn't have to go through all the steps of producing new larva like they do in that second video above --- just let a handful of full-grown worms get loose and they would come back and propagate new larva.

I read recently about a highway department on the East Coast of the United States (New Jersey?  Pennsylvania?) who are composting all their road-kill deer using BSF.  With a large bin and an active colony of several thousand BSF, they can take a full-grown deer down the bones in just a couple of days.  If you've got 600 dogs, you'd have a steady supply of poop, and thus a stable system to keep a continuous BSF colony alive.

Best of luck.
 
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Marco Banks wrote:What about using black soldier flies to consume all that poop?  A black soldier fly bin would then convert that poop to fish food or chicken food.  The problem becomes a solution.

In China, they've build massive black soldier fly processing facilities to deal with all the pig crap they generate at their huge pig farms.  Thus, they convert pig crap to chicken food. 



Here's another video about using BSF for biowaste processing, this one in Indonesia.



It's not a tremendously complex system, and if you had big enough BSV vats, you wouldn't have to go through all the steps of producing new larva like they do in that second video above --- just let a handful of full-grown worms get loose and they would come back and propagate new larva.

I read recently about a highway department on the East Coast of the United States (New Jersey?  Pennsylvania?) who are composting all their road-kill deer using BSF.  With a large bin and an active colony of several thousand BSF, they can take a full-grown deer down the bones in just a couple of days.  If you've got 600 dogs, you'd have a steady supply of poop, and thus a stable system to keep a continuous BSF colony alive.

Best of luck.



This is SUCH an amazing idea!! BEAUTIFUL and NATURAL! We learn something new everyday! Thanks for sharing, Marco!!!
 
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Yes BSFs! Then, to bring it totally full circle.... wait for it.... wait for it.... take the larvae and instead of feeding them to chickens, turn them into supplemental dog food! Since they are high in protein and fat, they would be perfect for dogs! A big win all around! Permaculture at its finest!
 
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Not only supplying a solution, but empowering them to be able to create an income producing profit is a fabulous approach!  I was gonna suggest red worms.  I’ve seen them in action with rabbit poop and have a friend that used to have a worm business fueled by 30 working does.  She used simple styrofoam boxes and filled with nothing but worms and poop.  Of course she had a root cellar where they were kept at the right temp, and also it wasn’t 600 dogs.  But.  Some kind of bug based decomp to create a usable or marketable byproduct may just be a godsend for them!

Another idea that might not be good, but just a thought, is; I once watched a video about a guy who had a compost business.  He turned dual chicken farmer.  By letting the chickens turn massive compost heaps, he saved labor, the chickens fed themselves year round (the heaps burned too hot to freeze in winter) and he made cash selling eggs.  If such a thing were possible, it could also provide a food supp,y for the dogs.
 
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