Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Deer poop and compost

Last night, and the night before, I was out raking the leaves in the backyard, in that brief interval between the time I get home and the time it gets dark out. Said interval is about to get drastically briefer this weekend, but I'm not thinking about that right now.

There really aren't all that many leaves out back, at least not compared to where I used to live, and I wasn't going to bother raking at all, but then I got a brilliant idea: Compost! The lazy assholes people up the street load up their grass clippings in a wheelbarrow, wheel them down the street, and dump them on the town land adjacent to my property, so I figured, Bingo! I'll rake the leaves, layer them with the grass clippings, add in the coffee grounds from work, and I'll have nice earthy compost ready for use next spring!

Yeah, I'll let you know how that turns out. Like all my brilliant ideas, I'm sure it'll turn into a clusterf*ck of massive proportions. I'm good like that.

ANYHOW, I was raking, raking, raking, and noticing that holy cow, there's a lot of friggin' deer poop out here. We're talking piles and piles of poop. And I was all, like, yeah well, more organic material for me! I just raked up the poop with the leaves as I happily made my compost piles.

But then I got to thinking, what's that disease? You know, that wasting-away ....... Crutzfield-Jacob, is that it? Because I know I read something in the paper a couple of years back about how deer could be affected, and hunters should wear latex gloves when field-dressing their kill, and I wondered ........ is the disease in the poop? The poop that I'm raking into my compost piles?

Hmmmm .......... if the CDC comes for my compost in the spring, I guess I'll have my answer.


~~Silk said...

Nah. Handling deer poop, even of CWD-infected animals, does not transmit the disease. But just in case, don't eat it.

3carnations said...

My husband made his own compost this spring and summer. He just used some of it for the first time this past weekend - It looks like mulch from the store. So awesome that our old canteloupe rind (among other things) is now feeding our soil and plants. :-)

inflammatory writ said...

I am such a city girl that I always read these posts in a blend of horror and fascination!

rockygrace said...

So Silk, as long as I don't eat the poop, I'm okay, hmmmmm?
Good to know!

3, I'm glad your husband successfully made compost - at least now I know it's feasible.

And Inflammatory, sorry for making you queasy. Things do tend to get a little "Wild Kingdom" around here.

Polly said...

Al and I do that here, but without the deer poop. We don't have deer tootling through the back garden - I am quite, quite jealous!

rockygrace said...

Don't be jealous, Polly - deer eat everything in sight, including gardens. Come spring, I'm sure I'll be busting out the deer fencing to keep them away from my flowers.

That said, they ARE awfully pretty creatures.

Kit said...

I don't know about the deer poop disease thing, but I always figured that with composting, it was always better to give it back to nature than to throw it away even if you can't get a good pile going. I never got anything usable from mine, but I felt better about my waste :-)

Speaking of deer poo, though, I remember the first time I visited that big cemetery on the hill in Owego. I started walking up all those tiers, and it was during a fluke warm spell in January, and there was poop as far as the eye could see! I guess that's where the deer hang out in the winter.

rockygrace said...

Oh, I love the views from that cemetery! I never noticed the deer poop, though. Maybe I shoulda looked down?