Goat Mortality Composting

Roger Merkel and Terry Gipson

Unit Objective

After completion of this module of instruction the producer should know how to compost mortality and identify and solve mortality compost pile problems. The producer should be able to score a minimum of 85% on the module test.

Specific Objectives

After completion of this instructional module the producer should be able to:

  1. State why producers should compost mortality.
  2. List the 5 lawful means of carcass disposal.
  3. State the proper carbon:nitrogen ratio for composting.
  4. State the proper moisture content for mortality composting.
  5. State the minimum temperature and length of time needed to inactivate pathogens in the compost pile.
  6. List the recommendations for proper site selection for mortality compost piles.
  7. List three or more carbon sources appropriate for use when composting mortality.
  8. Properly describe the process of compost pile formation.
  9. List examples of permanent and alternative compost pile bin structures.
  10. Properly describe what occurs during the 1st and 2nd heat cycles in a mortality compost pile.
  11. List 4 or more problems that can occur in mortality compost piles and methods to solve such problems.

Module Contents

  • Why Compost Goat Mortality?
  • Mortality Composting Basics
    • Carbon:Nitrogen ratio
    • Moisture content
    • Available oxygen
    • Temperature
  • Site Selection
  • Mortality Composting Bins
    • Permanent bins
    • Low-cost alternatives
    • Windrow systems
  • Mortality Composting Process
    • Building the pile
    • Heat cycles and aereation
    • First heat cycle
    • Turning compost piles (aereation)
    • Second heat cycle
    • Bones
  • Cold Weather Composting)
  • Troubleshooting Mortality Compost