Baymule

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That is awesome. Deep litter provides good bedding for sheep. In turn, the deep litter provides rich compost for the garden. Bee you are doing a great job for your sheep.
 

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Thank you, Bay! But....it's likely due to only having a few sheep, you think? When I get an actual herd, things like that won't be so easy to manage. Not at all. Hopefully, by then, it won't be an issue, as they will never be in pens for any length of time, but out on stockpiled pasture for winter time.
 

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Haha, you will just rake up some more leaves! My sheep barn is deep with reject hay, almost hate to disturb it, but I need compost for the garden. LOL
 

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Spent a little time today shuffling around things in the sheep pen, tightening down panels against depleted bales and moving DL around to cover high traffic areas and take some thickness off areas that need it less.

Only took a couple of minutes of fork work to even things out, which I love. The DL is performing very well, with no strong smells or areas of mud or excess poop. Just a nice, spongy floor of leaves, hay and other woody matter underneath.

Also raised a gate that's been needing raised to clear the thickening layer of DL, so that I could build the DL thicker by that gate, which gets the most traffic of all. Got a couple of weeks of rain every day coming up and want to be ready for it. I'm pretty satisfied with the results and now have plenty of room to build that thickness I so need there.

Wish I could send some of that rain to the land down under, where they need it most.

Let two sheep out on the land to browse in the nearby thicket, left two behind to insure they don't wander too far from the flock. Will switch those pairs out tomorrow or the next day to let them all get some fresh soil under foot and some good browse to their diet.

Fences can't be built too soon around here.
 

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Yesterday we raked out 2 huge loads of loose dead hay from the sheep barn and piled it in the Kawasaki mule. We raked up a couple of swales of wood chips from having the forestry mulcher in the horse pasture. There being bare dirt between them, we scattered the sheep hay over the bare dirt. That took most of the day. Then we dug out another piled high mule load of manure from the sheep barn/lot. What we dug out yesterday was outside the barn, where it got rained on, it was HARD packed! The mule is parked in the garden, ready to unload. It started drizzling, we were pooped out on shoveling poop, so we quit for the day. LOL

We are going to shovel and scrape out the sheep barn and spread it on the garden. Then we have 2 other pens that have a small piece of the barn to pitchfork the loose hay out of, then dig out the poop and start over. I have tossed hay out in the pens also, so may pitchfork that into the mule too. The dead hay piles up really fast. I take their reject hay and put it in tubs where they riffle though it and find more to eat, then I dump it on the floor of the barn.

After we get the barn cleaned out, we'll be raking up leaves, piling in the mule and pushing them out in the barn/lot.
 

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Yesterday we raked out 2 huge loads of loose dead hay from the sheep barn and piled it in the Kawasaki mule. We raked up a couple of swales of wood chips from having the forestry mulcher in the horse pasture. There being bare dirt between them, we scattered the sheep hay over the bare dirt. That took most of the day. Then we dug out another piled high mule load of manure from the sheep barn/lot. What we dug out yesterday was outside the barn, where it got rained on, it was HARD packed! The mule is parked in the garden, ready to unload. It started drizzling, we were pooped out on shoveling poop, so we quit for the day. LOL

We are going to shovel and scrape out the sheep barn and spread it on the garden. Then we have 2 other pens that have a small piece of the barn to pitchfork the loose hay out of, then dig out the poop and start over. I have tossed hay out in the pens also, so may pitchfork that into the mule too. The dead hay piles up really fast. I take their reject hay and put it in tubs where they riffle though it and find more to eat, then I dump it on the floor of the barn.

After we get the barn cleaned out, we'll be raking up leaves, piling in the mule and pushing them out in the barn/lot.
That is going to be one worm laden garden! Just think of all the nutrients soaking into the soils in all those places you've covered....should be worth all the work to see the green growth in the spring.

Maybe you should take some before and after pics of those places, just to keep a record of what happened? I'm doing the same here, as well as vids of changes in the paddocks where hay is rolled out, before and afters on the silvopasture, etc.

Always good to see where you started and how far you've come.
 

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We unloaded the mule in the garden this morning.

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I took a picture of the lot that we shoveled out yesterday and didn’t realize it, but got a 3 generation picture! From right to left is Ewenique, due this month with twins, Domino, her daughter and Checkers, her two week old granddaughter.

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We cleaned out the sheep barn today. I have deep littered it since last fall. The top layer stays loose and dry with no smell. We started digging. The bottom layers were hard packed. I could see the layers of litter. I used pine shavings, hay, pine needles and leaves and more hay. We used pitchforks to loosen the hard pack and load it on the mule. I raked the loose composted manure and BJ used a wide scoop shovel to load the mule. We dug out 6 loads today, the last one is still on the mule. We are tired!

We spread this treasured stuff on the garden, it went quite a ways.

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We spread it in the tomato trellis.

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We spread it in the short tomato trellis too.

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Then we started on another part of the garden. What is on the mule now and what is left to do in the barn should finish this section.

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We. Are. Whupped.
We came in, took showers and collapsed. LOL
 

Beekissed

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Just look at all that garden gold!!!!! :drool I know y'all will understand when I say if I were going to covet anything another woman had, it would be a manure pile like that one! :lol: Serious poop envy over here.....

How cool is that mule? Handy piece of equipment, as well as a tractor with a bucket. I've always wanted one of those mini Cats....imagine how fun they would be to use to clean out barns and stalls?

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:loveI love the generational pic, Bay. I also notice your black sheep are black~instead of carpet brown~ and I have a theory about that....do you have copper in your mineral mix or good copper levels in your hay/grass?
 

Baymule

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I have deep littered since we got sheep. It works for me and we always work it into the garden. The top layer stays loose and dry with no smell, the bottom layers compress and come up in flat chunks as you can see in the back of the mule. Since putting the hay bale under the barn, there is always plenty of waste hay to deep litter with.

Sharp eye, Bee. I changed feed. I had been buying All Purpose pellets at TSC. I have fed my horses Martindale All Purpose 14% pellets for 20 years. I drove to a feed store an hour away when we lived in Livingston and now we drive to Sulphur Springs, an hour away. LOL I looked at Martindale Sheep and Goat feed and the copper level in it was the same as the horse feed. So I started giving it to the sheep. My black sheep always had brown hair. If you will look close at Ewenique, there are still a few tufts of brown hair. She looks the best I have ever seen her. In fact, the chickens always ran to eat the sheep feed, so I started feeding the Martindale All Purpose 14% to the chickens too. I recently gave them 16% layer pellets and the chickens didn't want it! LOL When we raise feeder pigs, I give it to them, it is $3 to $4 a bag cheaper. It doesn't have lysine in it, an essential pig nutrient, so I toss them boiled eggs.

 

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Tells you something, doesn't it? That just that small amount of trace copper can yield such a difference in coat color is astounding to me....imagine what is also effected by being just a little copper deficient?

It irritates me when they take copper out of sheep mineral mixes.
 
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