llama poo--thoughts?

deanna_in_nh(5a/4b)August 16, 2010

I'm about to have access to lots of llama poo. I searched the archives here and found an alpaca post about llamas/alpacas having a lower organic content in their poo, but they are still great. Now I'm confused. I thought organic content was what we were looking for in compost. Isn't the organic content that provides nutrients for the soil? If it's low(er) in organic content, then why is it still such a great manure?

Then I am also a little confused about composting manure. I know I can mix it in a pile with browns. What about pure composted manure? As I understand it, people just compost pure manure. Without any browns how does that happen, and how long does it take? Is there any benefit to composting pure manure vs. mixing it with other stuff? FYI, I am hot composting now because I need results soon. Once things are "established" I'll probably go to cold composting.

This brings up a thrid question I have. I'm using cardboard (of which I have plenty) as my main brown source. In the fall I'll be able to use leaves, but for now it's cardboard. What nutrients does cardboard add? Is it just a source of carbon? Are there any carbon sources that also provide good nutrients?

Thank you in advance!

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david52 Zone 6

Llama poo is considered, amongst the droppings-cognizanti, primo stuff because your typical Llama's digestive system takes care of weed seeds, unlike, say, a horse's digestive system. Plus, they deposit it in the same place, so like if you're out gathering manure, you don't have to follow the animal all over the pasture.

You can heap it up all by itself and it will compost, or you can mix it up with browns and greens and compost it that way.

Cardboard seems to work rather well in compost, I believe because of the built in air pockets. I find it helps if its torn up, which isn't that easy to do. It doesn't add much in the way of nutrients. I usually start of a new pile by layering down a couple of inches of cardboard on the bottom, and then I'll fill up empty cardboard boxes with weeds, lawn clippings, garbage, etc, and throw them in as the pile progresses.

    Bookmark   August 16, 2010 at 10:14AM
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sandhill_farms(10 NV)

You might check with the people who have the Llama's and see if they have any old/spoiled hay or straw around. Perhaps there's other people in the area who have animals that might be wanting to get rid of compostables.

Southern Nevada

    Bookmark   August 16, 2010 at 10:53AM
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motria(z6 Chicago)

.. and if you still have extra llama dung, you might want to create a variation on the below-linked product. I gave these as stocking-stuffers last X-mas, along with cow-poo, panda-poo, and elephant-poo note paper. :-)

Here is a link that might be useful: Horse Poo Paper

    Bookmark   August 16, 2010 at 11:52PM
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People do pile animal manures , leave them sit around for some time and maybe even turn them over on occassion, and call the results composted manure but it is not the same thing as manure mixed with vegetative waste. If animal manures are not mixed with vegetative waste much of the soluble nutrients in that manure is lost through leaching and evaporation, that ammonia smell many manures produce is Nitrogen floating away.
The best way of handling manure from any animal is to compost it with 3 parts vegetative waste to 1 part manure.

    Bookmark   August 17, 2010 at 6:27AM
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nygardener(z6 New York)

Sawdust seems to do a good job with manures, since it has plenty of surface area and is already the right texture for compost. If you use it, be sure it's not from treated lumber or black walnut.

    Bookmark   August 17, 2010 at 9:25AM
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David52, I'm glad to be a member of the elite! I got about 40+ gallons of llama poo today. I was very pleased. It's almost like the llamas are making processed compost products! There they were, nice little pellets all piled up in one spot. No squishiness, no smell, no mess. Just scoop up the pellets and put them in the bag. A factory couldn't have produced a nicer good! She said I can get them all fall. Starting three weeks from now we'll be going there every week, so for Sept and Oct I'm going to be rolling in the llama poo. YEA!

No sawdust access here. Cardboard will have to do. I mixed it in with the pile--thanks kimmsr. Thank you for all of your responses! More responses are welcome and will be read.

As for llama poo paper. I just don't think I'm that desperate for gifts...yet!

    Bookmark   August 17, 2010 at 8:29PM
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david52 Zone 6

Well, ^5's!!

    Bookmark   August 17, 2010 at 9:29PM
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It's terrible stuff. It's potentially dangerous and only a few people in the world know how to deal with it.

Fortunately, I'm one of those people.

Pack it all up and send it to me for proper disposal.

    Bookmark   August 18, 2010 at 12:51AM
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You saw right through me, didn't you?

    Bookmark   August 18, 2010 at 12:59AM
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Don't worry, bpgreen. I took a very damanding test and paid the state lots of money, and now I have a piece of paper that says I'm a Licensed Llama Sanitizer. I'm official! I'm free from danger, and am Certified. Don't worry about potenetial hazards with me. In fact, next time you get some stuff that's just too much to handle, ship it on my way. I'm a professional now!

Am I as transparent as you?!

    Bookmark   August 18, 2010 at 7:48AM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

I dreamed of llama poo.
Oh, such round, brown, warm goodness.
Please let me sleep on.

;-) (sorry....I thought this was the haiku thread....)

    Bookmark   August 18, 2010 at 12:29PM
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I have been selling and giving away llama manure for over 9 years. Yes, the fresh manure does have a smell, but not as bad as other manures. It does NOT have to be composted, as there is no decaying matter in it to rot and make it a "hot" manure. I have the fresh from the farm only, and recommend that it be tilled into the soil. I also have dried whole "beans" which are used for deer deterrent, and the processed. I sell to greenhouses and at local markets in the my area. I have never gotten a complaint about either the smell nor the weeds coming from it, and have many people calling in early spring, as they will not plant new plants without it. I hope this helps.

    Bookmark   December 13, 2011 at 2:11PM
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