[Market-farming] horse stable shavings as compost

Liz Pike liz at laughingbrookfarm.com
Mon Jan 13 17:52:49 EST 2003

>is this the same Strongid used as a goat wormer by some?


>reasons why horse manure / shavings are a poor feedstock:

These "reasons" are so broadly generalized as to be useless.  The only
surefire way to be certain is to ask--something the writer of these
"reasons" did not do.

As to the content of shavings, this is a local
thing, so the issues involved will vary.  In my area, most of the shavings
available are from raw milled hardwood lumber (not kiln dried, not
pressurized, not pine).  Like us, many horse people are switching to run-in
sheds which are healthier for the horse than stalls, requires lower labor to
maintain, and doesn't require shavings.  Also, locally, shavings contain a
high percentage of black walnut which can be toxic to horses.

Some stables do use daily Strongid C, but not most.  Again, the only sure
way to know is to ask.  Increasingly, horse people are reducing their
worming programs and turning to alternative methods such as pumpkin seeds,
pasture rotation and herbal remedies.   (Herb growers take note!!! The horse
market is a demographic with the $$ & willingness to spend--they treat their
horses better than themselves!!)

As for pelleted feeds--most are NOT pesticide laced (something the poster
could have known by simply calling the local feed store).  The sales figures
for the mills in our area show sweet feed as the number one seller,
outselling all other feeds 6:1.  (Again, this is my local area, your mileage
may vary.)
Pelleted feed, the next 6 big sellers, are nothing more than variations of
mashed grains, supplements, vitamins and minerals.  The pesticide-laced
account for a very small part of the market as they are alot more expensive,
and usually only used by large stables or breeding operations.
Increasingly, horse people are dropping grains and feeding straight 24/7
hay/grass/forage (which we also do).

Most horse people prefer in-hand wormers which are administered by
weight & season, not appetite.  Feed-thru control is prohibitively expensive
for many operations.  Fly control is also being handled more responsibly
through cleaner pasture management and fly predators.

As in other areas of agriculture, horse farmers are becoming more aware of
the environmental impact of their operations and to their livestock.  As
with everything, never assume, always ask.

Liz Pike
Laughingbrook Farm
Westfield NC

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