Managing Manure

Every year, a horse owner will haul away about 12 tons of soiled bedding and manure per horse. Developing a system to move, store, and discard the excrement ensures that the facility manages odour, pests, and environmental hazards.

How is so much waste produced? A horse drinks 10 gallons of water and eats an average of 20 pounds of food every day When the waste comes out, it’s chock full of nutrients, such as phosphorus, nitrogen, and potassium, making rain run-off an environmental hazard for streams and other water reservoirs.


You’ve got to pick up manure every day. Whether someone manually shovels the waste in each horse stall, or you use a heavy-duty manure scooper, removing the offending accumulation protects from pest infestations and diseases. More extensive facilities use automated systems to remove waste mechanically. These systems are expensive, but they efficiently remove materials from the stable area. Owners often decide how to proceed based upon the resources that he or she has available. Owners with minimal land will likely discard or sell the manure. Still, it’s necessary to set aside a place to stockpile the waste for long- or short-term storage. Even manure in the field can accumulate around parts of the land where horses gather. You can add field waste with stored barn waste.


Short-term storage for commercial use requires a container, temporary stockpiling site, or dump truck. Keep waste at temporary locations for no longer than a year. Groundwater is a consideration in choosing a site, to avoid contamination of water used for human consumption. A long-term storage area will need tight doors which keep out flies and to prevent breeding during the warmer months. Permanent storage facilities or sites should also stop water run-off. Tons of manure require large doors in the stockpiling area to allow for cleaning. Study the laws in your area to ensure that the storage facility that you build or use for manure meets legal requirements. Locating the storage area on a site that has firm ground, and is accessible for trucks and dumpsters, will make it easier to discard of the waste.


There are several ways to discard horse manure, including composting, contracting, and field distribution. Farmers use tractors to spread manure across fields to fertilise the soil. Thinning out the waste during the distribution process helps to eliminate fly egg fertilisation, reducing the number of pests. Facilities use composting as a way to manage how the manure breaks down, keeping the waste nutrient-rich and pest-free. By spreading or selling composting, a facility contributes to the environment by reusing the horse waste.

An effective manure management system follows legal guidelines to implement an efficient way to remove horse waste. If done correctly, the process will keep a facility pest-free and support environmentally friendly manure disposal.