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Poultry litter
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In agriculture, poultry litter or broiler litter is a mixture of poultry excreta, spilled feed, feathers, and material used as bedding in poultry operations. This term is also used to refer to unused bedding materials. Poultry litter is used in confinement buildings used for raising broilers, turkeys and other birds. Common bedding materials include wood shavings, sawdust, peanut hulls, shredded sugar cane, straw, and other dry, absorbent, low-cost organic materials. Sand is also occasionally used as bedding. The bedding materials help absorb moisture, limiting the production of ammonia and harmful pathogens. The materials used for bedding can also have a significant impact on carcass quality and bird performance.[1] There are specific practices that must be followed to properly maintain the litter and maximize the health and productivity of the flocks raised on it. Many factors must be considered in successful litter management including time of the year, depth of the litter, floor space per bird, feeding practices, disease, the kind of floor, ventilation, watering devices, litter amendments, and even the potential fertilizer value of the litter after it is removed from the house. Most poultry are grown on dirt floors with some type of bedding material. Concrete floors and some specialized raised flooring are used at some facilities. In many areas of the country, shavings from pine or other soft woods have historically been the bedding of choice for poultry production. Regionally, other materials have been the bedding material of choice due to regional cost and availability, such as rice hulls in the lower Mississippi River poultry production areas of Arkansas and Mississippi.[1] Contents * 1 Bedding Materials * 2 Management Practices * 2.1 Moisture * 2.2 Litter Re-Utilization * 2.3 Litter Amendments * 2.3.1 Acidifiers * 2.3.2 Other Amendments * 2.4 Windrowing * 3 Disposal and Re-use * 3.1 Use as Fertilizer * 3.2 Use as Cattle Feed * 3.3 Use as Fuel * 4 See also * 5 References * 6 External links| Bedding Materials

Growers consider a number of factors when determining which material to use as bedding in their facilities, with cost and availability being a major consideration. Bedding materials generally needs to be very absorbent, and must have a reasonable drying time. Many paper products, for instance, absorb moisture well but do not dry out appropriately. The material should also have a useful purpose once it has been used as a bedding material. Without a useful purpose for the used litter, poultry growers would need to dispose of unmanageable quantities of old litter. Large accumulations of litter stored unused for long periods of time are not ecologically acceptable even on a small scale, and would be non-sustainable from an industrial perspective. Poultry bedding materials also...
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