It’s finally Spring, which means most of us are getting back outdoors and looking forward to spending more time in nature and with our horses. April is also Earth Month, and in recognizing the importance of taking care of the planet, we rounded up a few compelling tips to keep in mind while caring for your horse and Mother Nature.
Make the most of manure
Did you know the average healthy horse produces 50 pounds of manure per day? That’s eight tons per year! That’s a lot of shoveling. So, why not make the most of it? Composting manure is an eco-friendly way to prevent runoff from manure piles that can potentially contaminate soil, nearby water sources, and drinking water. If you board your horse(s), don’t be afraid to ask the manager of the boarding barn about composting. Better manure management also means better fly control and clearing parasites and pathogens.
As droughts become more prevalent, water conservation becomes increasingly important. Have you ever considered collecting rainwater in barrels? Rainwater can be used to help with dirty barn jobs that require cleaning. Clean rainwater can also be used to water plants. However…
DON’T water horses with rainwater collected off a composite or shake roof because it may contain chemicals from roofing material.
If you install rain gutters and roof runoff systems, be sure to divert rainwater away from high-traffic areas to reduce mud and keep the rainwater clean.
Use biodegradable shampoos, and avoid using chemical products. Keep wash water from running directly into the ground by planting a biofiltration strip composed of native grass or plants and soil around it.
Grow native trees and plants
By nurturing horse properties with native trees and plants, it not only supports native animals and insects, it helps to create shade, control erosion, provide a windscreen, improve mud management, and filter out chemicals before they pollute ground and surface water. And here’s some more good news: if you plant a garden, no matter the size, the plants will do their part to sequester carbon from the atmosphere.
Thanks for reading our eco-friendly tips.