Learn how stockpiling shredded manure keeps your farm clean and reduces odor and pests.

Horse and livestock owners know manure comes with the job. Whether you’re picking stalls daily, weekly, or even cleaning up pastures. After collection, you need a plan that includes how you will store the manure, whether that storage will be short or long term, and then how you will dispose of it when the time comes. On average, around twelve tons of manure and dirty bedding will be removed yearly from a horse’s stall1. If you have multiple horses or other animals, the amount of waste removed from your stalls is a great deal. This is why an efficient stockpiling manure management plan is imperative to your farm.

The Basics of Stockpiling

A manure management plan that many livestock and horse owners practice is manure stockpiling. They find a location far enough away from their farm, so neither the smell nor the sight will be a nuisance. Ideally, this location will be on high enough ground, where tractors and manure spreaders can access it at any time of the year. It’s also essential to keep this pile away from areas where flood water could carry the water runoff to nearby waterways as this could easily pollute the water and cause harm to the environment. Before choosing a stockpile location, horse and livestock owners should consult their region’s stockpiling guidelines. 

Keeping the stockpile of manure away from the farm and out of the pastures reduces pesky pests, nasty odor, and the unappealing aesthetics of a crap pile. When stockpiled manure gets wet, it becomes the perfect environment for flies and parasites. Which is why it’s important to keep horses, livestock, and pets away from the stockpile as much as possible.

After an appropriate manure stockpile location has been chosen, the next step is to determine how to begin adding manure to the pile. An easy way to do this is to have a short term storage pile near the barn where it can be stored weekly. Then, each week the pile can be moved from short term storage to the stockpile. 

The best way to accomplish this task is to transfer your manure with a PTO spreader that has high quality shredding capabilities. This will allow you to take fewer trips to and from the pile, and once you reach your pile, you’ll want a manure spreader that can shred the manure and soiled bedding efficiently into the stockpile. The benefit of shredding the manure before adding it to your pile is that by breaking the clumps down it allows the manure to dry out and decompose much quicker. Future you will thank you for doing that initial shred because it will save you time later and make for a healthier pasture when you eventually spread your stockpile.

What To Do With Your Manure Stockpile

Once your stockpile is grown in size and warm spring weather comes around, it’s a great time to begin spreading your pile on your empty fields. The consistency of your stockpile can change depending on manure type, bedding material, stage of decomposition, and weather. The ideal weather to spread in is a hot sunny day because the sun and heat allow for the finely shredded manure to decompose much quicker, allowing the nutrients into the ground more quickly. With the extra nutrients added to your fields, whatever crop is intended to be planted there will flourish. Choosing a spreader with variable speed controls is extremely beneficial if your preferred manure management plan is stockpiling. Variable flow control allows the spreader to handle a broader range of manure. With an efficient manure management plan and the right manure spreading equipment, you get increased cleanliness, less pests, and more enjoyable spaces to spend time in. 

Ready to upgrade your manure management? View our top-of-the-line manure spreaders or call us at 888-930-7394.


1 From “Horse Stable Manure Management,” by Agriculture Engineering Dept at Penn State.