Compost piles. Pro's and Con's????

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by featherfinder, Jul 28, 2011.

  1. featherfinder

    featherfinder Runner Lover

    Thinking about starting one with the shavings from my ducks. I have never had one and know nothing about them. Can some people please fill me in on what to do with them and how they will benifit me and my ducks? And what everyone uses them for. Thank you
  2. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

    Jan 3, 2010
    Southern New England

    Compost piles come in all sorts of shapes and sizes. You don't have to do much, especially if you have shavings and duck poop, because that's a good combination that will promote microbial growth (microbes do so much of the actual composting).

    For optimum composting, you need the pile to be moist (you can squeeze a few drops of water out of it - of course, use gloves!), have a little air in it (you can toss and turn it, but with wood shavings those will probably let enough air in anyway), have a good mix of carbon (shavings, leaves, straw) and nitrogen (duck, rabbit, or other vegetarian animal waste), a good pH (anywhere from probably 5.5 to 7.5).

    Now that you've read that, look back and see "optimum." If you set the used shavings out in the yard in a pile about 4' around and as tall as it will pile, you should do fine. If you're concerned about aroma, you may want to turn it twice a week. Just either slide it over shovelful by shovelfull, or rake it apart a little and pile it back up. Mine don't give me an aroma unless I add too much old feed. Then I just stir it up a bit.

    If it's really dry weather, you can keep the composting going by adding some water. Don't totally soak the pile, but I find that when I empty the overnight water pot, it can go on the compost.

    As I mentioned before, you can sheet compost with duck stuff. It hasn't burned my plants, and I place it around perennials.

    Benefits: less material to the landfill, source of excellent garden soil amendment, promote healthy soils, reduce greenhouse gases, feeling of accomplishment

    I'm sure I've missed something . . . . but others will chime in.
  3. featherfinder

    featherfinder Runner Lover

    Thank you Amiga.

    I hate always having to throw them out and I hear people talk about using compost piles but never knew how to keep one and anything about them. This will get me started and im sure i will learn as i go as well.

    Anyone have anything else i should know about?

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