As any livestock farmer will attest, spring cleaning chores are not limited to just the house on most farms and ranches. This is especially true on farms that raise large livestock, such as beef or dairy cattle, and use a process call deep bedding to help keep them warm during the coldest months of the year. If you are fan of the deep bedding method, but dread the spring cleaning chores it requires, the following tips can help you save time, labor costs, and maybe even some muscle strain. 

Bedding layers provide welcome heat and comfort for large animals

Deep bedding is the process in which livestock shelters have fresh layers of dry bedding material added each day or as needed, to absorb waste and keep animals clean and dry. Bedding materials can depend on what is available in the area but the ones most commonly used include straw or hay, wood chips, or sawdust, on a base layer of hard-packed clay dirt, oversize rock, or cement. 

The weight and movement of the cattle provide continuous pressure that packs and compresses the layers of bedding materials, while a composting action creates a warming effect as it begins to break down the manure and urine that has been absorbed into each layer. 

When managed correctly, deep bedding helps to keep cattle clean and comfortable, even when temperatures dip well below freezing. 

Equipment rental makes the annual chore of bedding pack removing much more efficient  

With farmers applying a new layer of fresh bedding each day, deep bedding packs can become several feet deep by the time spring arrives and the cattle are once again bedded outdoors. Removing this deeply layered bedding pack as part of the spring cleaning chores on the farm was once done by hand, with a hay fork and wheelbarrow, a process that can take several days of back-breaking labor.

A better, more efficient method of handling this labor-intensive spring cleaning chore is to contact a local rental equipment company and have a skid steer loader delivered to use for a couple of days on the farm.

The power and low center of gravity of these machines allow them to easily scoop up the hard, compressed layers of deep bedding and move them quickly out to dedicated composting areas. Once the composting process completes, the resulting fertile material will be spread onto the farm's pastures and hay fields, as a source of important nutrients to boost plant growth and yields. 

To get more information about renting a skid steer loader to help with spring cleaning on your farm, contact your local rental equipment dealer, like Wirtz Rentals CO.