profit-out-of-disposed-beddingCategoriesDairy Farm Horse Bedding Lifestyle Manure Management

How to make profit out of disposed Bedding

An important role in making horse ownership safer for the environment and more cost effective for you is played by Manure and Bedding, both have useful “after life”. Some of the precious resources are our healthy soil and clean water which are fragile and as livestock owners we must take care of them. We can turn a waste into a resource and as there are many ways to reuse livestock manure and stall bedding.

Composted Bedding for Stalls:

Composted bedding can be reused in your horse stalls as an effective and economical alternative to wood shavings or pellets. From the Western Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (WSARE) Program, the Snohomish Conservation District received funding to test composted bedding for horses and worked with several commercial equine facilities in Snohomish County.

We found that stable bedding with wood shavings can recover up to 80 percent of stall waste through composting and re-use, while most stable bedding with wood pellets recover up to 50 percent. For reusing bedding, the compost can recover 100% of stall waste in vessel systems, which represents a significance in reducing the cost of disposal and new bedding.

As compared to shavings or pellets, composted bedding is darker in colour and is slightly moist. It is a very good absorbent and is light and fluffy with a pleasant earthy smell. Compost significantly reduces dust and allergens in the stall as compared to wood shavings or pellets and it is non-acidic. Horses with skin and respiratory allergies also respond well to the composted bedding, and have shown reduced symptoms.

Managing Used Horse Bedding Material

On a daily basis, all stalls and paddocks need to be cleaned. After removing manure and urine-soaked bedding, wet areas should be cleaned with lime or another sanitizing, odor-eliminating treatment and to ensure safe, clean, dry and odor-free conditions, fresh bedding should be added. You don’t want to reduce stall bedding at the expense of your horse’s health, but you should consider the horse’s needs.

By nature, horses are used to sleeping on hard surfaces like the ground. To sleep comfortably, horses don’t need a huge cushion of shavings or straw. For many horse owners, rubber stall mats work very well. Rubber stall mats are healthy for hooves and can be cleaned easily. A stall mat gives a firm, level surface which allows you to scoop up manure and wet bedding easily. You can minimize bedding use and the amount of stall waste that has to be disposed of by using disposable bedding such as shavings or straw only on the places where the horse urinates frequently. Composting is the most productive and environmentally sound way to dispose of used bedding.

Through composting, the total mass of manure and bedding can be reduced by about one-quarter to one-half i.e., six tons of manure can be converted to 1.5 to 3 tons of finished compost which can be used in greenhouses, gardens, and nearly anywhere fertilizer would be used. Provide temporary storage for the waste in large, covered receptacles and arrange to have it hauled off on a regular basis or choose compost used bedding.

Uses of disposed bedding

1. Improve soil health:

To improve the health of your soil and pasture you can use your compost manure with disposed bedding material. Nutrients like nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, etc., which are consumed by animals, end up in their manure. For as long as people have been farming, livestock manure of all types has been used to build soil and fertilize crops. The disposed bedding makes it at its best.  For the growth of plants, these nutrients are essential, if they end up in our streams, lakes or well water, they can cause serious problems for all of us. The best way to improve long-term soil health, and invest is by adding organic materials like compost and manure to your soil. Organic matter provides food for soil microbes and improves soil structure and workability. 

2. Best from waste:

Gardeners and landscapers’ value composted horse manure as a high-quality soil amendment. The manure must be well composted and weed seedless and contain minimal bedding material. Avoid too much bedding mixed with manure. It makes compost more mulch than soil builder. This can be unappealing for gardeners.

Proper manure management and disposal bedding material serves an important role in keeping the farm functioning at its best. It also helps to keep horses healthy, clean the surrounding area and a thriving farm. We shall be well on our way to sustainable horse keeping when we can regard manure as a valuable resource rather than a waste.

3. Environmental Benefits:

Properly managed manure can be a valuable resource on a farm. Manure helps to improve soil quality and provide nutrients to crops and can be used as fertilizer for crops. Manure contains organic matters. It improves water holding capacity of soil. The purpose of manure management is to keep a monitor on horse manure to make sure it doesn’t have any negative effects on the environment. 

CategoriesCoco Coir Bedding Dairy Farm Horse Bedding Lifestyle Tips & Tricks

3 Factors of Horse Manure Management

Compost is basically a biological process that converts organic matter into fine particle humus. It involves a series of decomposition of microorganisms, digesting of organic matters. In this case, the organic matter is Horse Manure, Feeds and Beddings.  

Composting helps minimize the waste-maximise microbial activity, thus balancing the farm ecosystem, tending hygiene and ensuring horses’ health. 

On an average, every horse produces 30 lbs of feces and 2.5 gal. of urine along with spoiled bedding of about 10-12 lb is disposed every day. All up together, this accounts almost 50-65 lbs/day. 

The crisis of waste management starts with 5 important reasons that depicts the need for proper management of manure, popularly known as Horse Manure Management.

The main aim of Horse Manure Management is to keep each and every aspect of manure in check.

Originally, Horse Manure varies from horse to horse, feeds provided and type of bedding used, and is best if sorted early when manure produced is measured on weekly routine.  

These manures are the valuable and un-utilised resource that mobilise large amount of soil amendment and plant nourishing fertilizers.

Composting is one such method deployed in Horse Manure Management, and is feasible-affordable for every barn/farm owner. 

Composting enriches gardens, pastures by improving soil texture, aeration and water retention. Also, compost mix helps increase soil fertility, control erosion and balance pH. 

However, key features need to be ensured for proper composting and a good final product.


Temperature is one of the most important indicator of how well your composting is taking place. The temperature is a fluctual result of airflow in and out of the manure pile. If the airflow is at optimal level, higher the temperature, greater the heat generated.

Try flipping your pile upside down, to distribute heat evenly throughout the massive pile. An even distribution of hot air will help suppress pathogens, fly larvae and weed seed/egg and accelerate the speed of decomposition. 

Although, a vigilant temperature needs to be maintained in order to carry out decomposition steady and swift. 

More generally, a lower temperature range of 50-110oF is required at initial stages of decomposition, later 110-160oF to break down organic matter, kill weeds, pathogens and increase microbial activity as they are hyper-thermal activists. Over a period of weeks or month, the temperature gradually drops to ambient temperature for the decomposition to settle down.

Either way, overheating immobilises many beneficial organisms or falling behind will hinder decomposition rate. 

Lower the surrounding temperature; lower will be the composting rate. At the times of Winter, it takes 3-6 month for a normal compost to happen while it only takes 1-2 months for a pile to turn compost during Summer. 

Note: Always keep piles upto 3-4 feets high and square base of 5-7 feets for building up a necessary temperature pressure within it. Get a Compost thermometer at local stores to get exact compost temperature every few days. 

Moisture content

Moisture Management is necessarily a priority task while composting. An apt moisture will bring a perfect compost mix else it leads to odor, slow decomposition, and hard to achieve high temperature. 

Either, the lack of moisture will cause composting organisms to dry out and prevent pile heat up. 

There are severe ways to make sure that your pile is having sufficient moisture or not. 

One, you can manually check by squeezing the pile of innermost layers and see through it. If it is damp enough to hold moisture or too wet that it dries out after squeezing leaving behind dry lump. Then make a precautionary moist supply. 

Two, cover your pile using a tarp sheet to prevent it from getting excessively wet in the rainy season or too dry in hot days of summer.  This will also help limit flies, weeds and sweeping nutrients off the pile.

Three, frequent watering will help balance water hold, as it evaporates due to heat and airflow. Try turning the pile either side to provide a significant amount of water to it. 

Also, you may select the right location for your pile build, making it more convenient for clean-carry out-use. A right place, which is high enough to drain excess water or pour additional water when required, thus moisture maintained. 

Pile composition

Often the compost quality depends upon Pile Composition. Pile material provides essential nutrients, and vital decomposing proportion for compost, it renders ‘Carbon for Energy and Nitrogen for Growth’. The microorganisms that are turned into compost are fueled by Carbon and Nitrogen. 

Nitrogen is mainly found in manure and Carbon is found in bedding material, their proper proportion ensures successful composting. An ideal C:N proportion is estimated between 25:1 to 30:1, where carbon is in larger numbers. 

More precisely, Carbon is primarily released by carbon-rich material like straw, wood chips, shavings, sawdust and leaves while animal-byproducts like manure and feeds are rich in Nitrogen. 

Avoid using more bedding into pile build-up, more the bedding (carbon); longer the time for compost completion. Alternatively, if you’re using Coco bedding for your horse, you can reduce carbon pile up in your compost and reduce decompose after effects. 

Note: Compost is combustible, keep the compost pile away from housing, avoid smoking near the compost pile. 

A finished compost will reduce to half its original size, smells good and be like a rich soil. 

CategoriesDairy Farm Horse Bedding Lifestyle

5 Reasons for Horse Manure Management

Composting is a best way of manure and waste management to avoid potential threats to horse lives and deformation of manure piles. 

A slight mismanagement of manure pile will affect, 

  1. Horses which are gazing over its own manure be infected by worm seeds/eggs,
  2. Flies, pests and their odor plunges all around surround neighbourhood,
  3. The pile of horse and bedding waste is insightful and decrease barn captivity,
  4. If the manure were too soggy and ran down to the water source, it causes serious water quality issues, 
  5. Higher C:N ratio of manure pile will turn out good for none.

It is estimated that around 25 cubic yards of manure and bedding is being generated every year from each barn. It gives off stingy, foul odor and is doomed to bring a health crisis if not attended in time. 

It also contains harmful disease-causing pathogens, parasites that can easily pollute water systems, so it has to be off-limited within 50feets away from the drainage point, and treated tactfully and consistently. 

Manure pile

Composting plays as a best resolute for manure-waste management, and is believed to be ecologically friendly. The worth of composting strikes as it is, 

  1. The ideal material for creating quality compost for garden or pasture,
  2. Composting breaks down microbial bacteria and fungi into nourishment source,
  3. Compost manure decomposes into nutrient rich and odorless supplement,
  4. It is time, space and cost efficient to compost your manure at stall,
  5. It helps control temperature and odor of manure pile.

Basically, manure(feces, bedding, urine) consists of fertilizer nutrients like nitrogen(N), potassium(K2O) and phosphorus(P2O5) that are essential for plant growth.

A compost horse manure makes a rich source of nutrient as a soil amendment. It infuses micro and macronutrients that works as the time passes and also provides beneficial bacteria and fungi for soil nurture. Studies show that a manure compost makes the plant healthier and disease-resistant. 

In simple terms, composting takes place in Heating Phase and Curing Phases.

Compost pile

Heating phase comprises bacterial breakdown to generate heat of temperature about 130oF that lasts for a month together to sterilize the weed seeds and form primary plant fertiliser. 

Curing phase is held in lower temperature that burns fungal, worm residue in compost bin and takes upto 3-4 months after heat phase to take down nitrogen and other organic compounds under control (stable). Gardeners’ most refer to cured compost as it contains more fermented nitrogen and provides additional fertilizing result. 

After all these, the compost you prepared can be used personally or be sold in the market. Manure compost has quite a value in the sale !!

CategoriesDairy Farm

Daily life at barn

Have you ever wondered, what are the chores that incur ultimate attention from Barn attendants? What might be the daily routines or weekly once? 

Barn, the place where livestock such as cattle, horses and many other animals inhabit is the place that requires pensive care by the barn attendant. Truth to speak, most of the barn chores are fun when spent more time with your beloved. 

Regardless of raising in your home or boarding, close monitoring relieves the mind. 

The actual chores vary from the number of horses you raise, and the place where they dwell. Some of the tasks are less explicit than others like dumping poop and scrubbing out algae filled water troughs etc.

Some of the most common barn routine are,

  • Cleaning the stall
    Clean means free of dirt and organic matter such as manure. This means the removal of all manure and feed, followed by washing, scrubbing and rinsing, or pressure washing, all surfaces with hot water and detergent. Studies have shown that over 90% of bacteria are removed from surfaces that are thoroughly cleaned.
  • Applying new bedding
    Based on the needy area, the new bedding is spread out up to the layer of 5inch, the volume of spreading of their wish, as horses like fluffy under their feet.
  • Feeding horse hay
    Feeding horses is a barn chore that needs to be done every day (multiple times a day). Roughly around 15-20lbs of hay a day. Horses need adequate pasture or hay at all times. It is suggested that for healthier horses, feeding more often or free-fed will do good.
  • Regular check for clean and fresh drinking water from time to time.
    The most vital things for horses are food and water. Horses drink about 5-10 gallons of water a day. Water is also extremely important for gut health and keeping the horses system moving.
    A regular change in water is must. In summer, water grow algae due humid temperature, and in winter water turn cold not siutable for drinking.
  • Feeding supplements (and required medication)
    Many horses do not need grain or any supplement to sustain their weight or health. If required, should be prepared ahead of time.  
  • Periodic checking for any injuries, wounds or ill symptoms
    Horses are always prone to accidents. Just like, running into fences, rubbing on their paddocks, horses cause themselves many injuries along the runway accidents.
    Depending on the severity of injuries, some basic treatment can done, or consulting veterinarian is precautious. 
  • Washing and cleaning of horse
    A thorough washing and cleaning will always keep horses fresh and in a good mood.  Also alleviate prospect disease caused by buds and worms.
    In requirement of horse’s state of being and caretakers convenience, bathing can be done 3-4 days once.
    Based on weather and season, horses must be clothed properly. In summer, fly sheet, fly boots and fly mask can be used, while in winter, horses are redeemed to cover up rain sheets or blankets.
  • Pick hooves and groom your horses
    Picking out the hooves is a necessary thing to do. As there may present rock or nail wedge in the horse hoof that will hinders the hoof health.
    As grooming means, taking care of skin. By regular check, any unknown injuries, wounds or skin problems can be readily diagnosed and treated faster.
  • Warm up riding
    Horses are the steady fast animals, they require regular muscle movements. Letting out your horses every day is the best idea.
    If raised at home, it may be hinderous, while in a stall you can ride around your barn or as much distance suitable.
    Taking horses out provides them fresh air, and a robust body.
  • Setting out feed for next meal
    After every early morning chores, it is suggested to set up a next meal schedule based on morning feeds, latter nutrition and adequate supplements.
  • Checking fencing/ interior damage for repair
    Looking for broken fencing or walls and fixing anything that needs to be repaired are laborious. Smoothening of broken or rough areas of fencing prevents cuts on horses. A little maintenance on a regular basis does a lot better.
  • Keen in hygiene maintenance to prevent potential threats
    Check out the surrounding for potential hazards and you yourself. Always clean the barn, disinfect the floor and maintain self hygiene and regularly wash hands while tending each horse.
  • Maintaining optimal feed supply and supplements (any medication)
    Always making sure of supplies in stock, and order for the supplements in need. Have a medication kit prepared for any unseen illness prospect.
  • Carrying out muck buckets for manure dump
    Basically horses produce about 50lbs of manure a day. It is very important to clean up the manure, since it attracts pests and flies so easily.  Keep the manure in a trash dumpster, or dump on the manure pile, or spread manure on pastures as it is composted.
  • Setting aside every tool to original position,
    After all work is done, keeping the respective tool in its own place, like setting clean accessories, shavel, broom, muck bucket on one rack while disinfectants, spray can in one and worn out horse cloth aside.
  • Final reassured view, latch the door- End of the day.
    Make sure to latch each and every doors, gates opened early. Seeing everything in their way, it is assured to leave for the day.

Is there any difference with your’s, rather than the above stated routine? Feel free to tell us how your barn life experience is and as always suggestions, comments are welcomed.

CategoriesCoco Coir Bedding Dairy Farm Lifestyle Reptile Bedding Tips & Tricks

Step by Step guide for Barn bedding

Here we depict a deliberate process on how to make bedding for your pretty horses step by step.

With this in mind, let us make a quick visit to a stall where bedding is made out of the owner’s preference as ground substrate cautionaries for equines.

One will always be spirited when one is making comfort for their beloved ones, if they are energetic, ever cheerful companions like Horses, then one will exhaust all his energy to get it best done. But here is the simplest, tactful and handful advice for all dedicated fellow horse lovers.  

Before we jump into the main topic let’s have a brief talk on maintaining the clean barn, the bedding laid within the clean barn will be more efficient.  Here are some right tools to make the job easier, and stall cleaning an exceptional good. 

  • Apple picker
  • Shavel
  • Broom
  • Absorbent Deodorizer
  • Sprinkle can
  • Muck Bucket or wheelbarrow

For one to be precise, stall cleaning  is much of saving time, money and  energy of caretakers’ , prioritising hygiene at most. Also lessening bedding consume.

Live threats are also resolved when maintaining stall hygiene diligently. 

Simple cleaning process

  • Toss clean, unsoiled bedding against the walls and into back corners.
  • Toss manure and dirty, wet bedding into the center of the stall or directly into a muck bucket or wheelbarrow.
  • Rake out center of the stall.
  • Sweep the center of the stall thoroughly and pick up any remaining dirty material with a shovel.
  • Sprinkle absorbent deodorizer on any wet spots.
  • Leave the empty stall to air dry with bedding pushed back as long as possible until you prepare new bedding. 

Swift and Tactful bedding process

Based on the layout of the stall, the bedding backpacks are brought into the stall. Most often one using rubber mat as rigid grounding of 3.6mm(12’) x 1.8mm(6’) bed size requires 3-5 bags per yard.

  • Put the bag packs in 2 cross lines, and fold the end hinge inboard to avoid further trouble of out flow.
  • Pouring cold water, it may take an hour to absorb for it to fluff all up. Else the warm water will do in 20mins.
  • Invert the bag upside down, break with force and crumble all.
  • Spread out up to the layer 5inches, the volume of spreading on your wish, as horses like fluffy to their feet.

It’s preferred to take inhabitants out for a walk while clean and bedding since it provides them with fresh air and sets one’s mind at peace.

CategoriesDairy Farm Lifestyle Tips & Tricks

Top 4 Tips to improve Barn Hygiene

When it comes to dealing with the health and comfort of your barn living, you’ll always want to make the best of your job possible. That’s right, regardless of what lives in your barn, it is necessary to keep up with hygienic standards to stay clean and healthy. In fact, if a barn is unkempt, bacteria and viruses can be spread, resulting in sickening your dear animals.

Barns is a shelter provided for livestock such as cattle, horses and many other animals. As a Barn handler or frequent visitors, you are well aware of after effects of detrimental unhygienic culture. Those without proper care and regular tending are more prone to get sick and eventually leading to loss of life. A clean and tidy environment is the key source for robust life. So as to say, here are some of the highly recommended tips for your barners’ well-being.

Clean barn

The first and foremost thing in controlling disease break out is cleaning. Clean means free of dirt and organic matter such as manure. This means the removal of all manure and feed, followed by washing, scrubbing and rinsing, or pressure washing, all surfaces with hot water and detergent. Studies have shown that over 90% of bacteria are removed from surfaces that are thoroughly cleaned first. Thorough cleaning will remove most of the contamination and allow disinfectants to penetrate surfaces and kill microorganisms. This is followed by the use of a disinfectant according to label directions (included in the Compendium of Veterinary Products, available in your veterinarian’s office).


A disinfectant is a chemical or substance that kills microorganisms and is applied to objects.  Follow the label directions before using, the “Active Ingredients” section on the container of disinfectant will identify the type of product. The product label will often state a dilution rate when being used either as a germicidal cleaner (killing microorganisms) or as a sanitizer (reducing the number of microorganisms). The minimum contact time (mentioned in label) is the time required to kill microorganisms. The kill time (10-15minutes) is affected by the presence of organic matter like bedding blood and pus, temperature, pH, hardness of water and concentration of disinfectant. So be sure of cleaning up before using disinfectants.

             It’s important not to simply focus on disinfecting surfaces in barns and barn areas (walls, doors, paddocks, fences, and gates) to curb disease spread; be sure to address hand tools and other farm equipment, vehicles, and trailers, too. Before you get started, relocate animals from the area you’re about to clean and disinfect. You might also need to remove all bedding. 

Make sure the area where you are working has adequate ventilation and turn off the power supply before soaking walls with water. Many disinfectants can be extremely irritating to human skin, eyes, and respiratory tracts. Always wear protective clothing, eye protection, and gloves when using any disinfectant product.

***Never mix different disinfectants together. Every approved disinfectant in the United States has a safety data sheet, available from the manufacturer and contains valuable information.

Personal Hygiene

The means of preventing the disease to spread by individual self-care is often termed as Personal Hygiene. Possibly barn handlers can be a reservoir or source of the disease agent while moving around from one barn to another; by carrying the agent on their clothing and shoes or animals themselves. The “shower in and shower out” followed in swine and poultry industries shows some pretty results.

In care, handlers should be dedicated with boots and clothing only used for the barn. If that is not possible, boots should be cleaned prior to entering the premises and freshly laundered clothing should be worn. A freshly laundered pair of coveralls would also suffice. Handlers should learn not to wear the same outfit outside anywhere, as there is the potential for them to carry the problem back.

Hand Washing

Hand washing should be facilitated around the barn/farm to encourage the frequent washing of hands. Research has shown that, as the access to a hand-washing facility increased, the hand-washing compliance increased (1). Thorough hand washing with soap is adequate in most cases. Antiseptic soaps (e.g., chlorhexidine) or iodophor shampoo/washes (e.g., Betadine scrub) or alcohol based hand gel may also be used and should be located at the sink in an easy dispensing container.

         Dispensers can be preferably attached to handlers’ belts or outside the doorway for easy access and frequent use before working for another barn, as they only require 15 seconds to dry. Hand washing is also important to prevent chemical contamination of the workplace when feeding medicines.

* Choose a product that doesn’t dry out the skin or cause skin irritation.In this stressful pandemic situation caused by Coronavirus, it’s always better to have knowledge at your tips to make the lives around much safer and healthier. It’s always that prevention is better than cure, take in interest towards a healthy living and strive through it.