Microbes and red earthworms are some of the living creatures that will significantly benefit your compost bin. However, rodents, raccoons, and bears can do irreparable damage to your compost bin, hence the need to keep such animals away from your facility. Compost bins are usually very appealing to animals because they provide a constant supply of leftover food.
A rule of thumb when assembling a compost pit is never to include any animal matter such as meat and bones. Such matter tends to attract wild animals to your compost bin; the animal matter is also not ideal for composting. Below is a comprehensive list of all tips you ought to know to keep your compost bin free from pests.
Getting rid of compost odor
A smelly compost bin will be a magnet for bears and raccoons; it is, therefore, essential to keep such sites odor-free. It is advisable to rotate and turn your compost materials frequently, at least once per week to prevent odor. Another handy feature to have is to include a cover for your bin. You can either purchase one from a store near you or improvise with materials available in your home.
Lime and brown food scraps are known to accelerate the decomposition of greens and kitchen scraps. The lime and brown food clippings are sprinkled on top of your composting material then rotated and turned to boost the decomposition rate.
When choosing a suitable location for your compost bin, it is advisable to place it some distance away from your property. If you reside near a forest or park, situate your compost pit at a place where wild animals won’t be able to access your property in search of a meal.
Fencing the compost area
If you live in an area where raccoons and bears are a constant menace, a community compost pit in the neighborhood would be a great idea. The area around the waste pile can be secured by using a barbed wire or electric fence to prevent encroachment by wild animals.
Active composting, also known as hot composting is one of the well-known methods that yields excellent results within a short period. Hot composting eliminates all unwanted weeds by destroying their seeds during the heating stage.
Once you have settled on a good site for your pit, you need to create a good base then add high-quality soil and leaves at the bottom. The leaves need to be trimmed to size to ensure they are within the acceptable two to three inches.
The next step is to add the nitrogen-rich green food together with the carbon-rich brown food clippings. The compost materials should be in a ratio of one green part for every two brown parts.
Closely monitor the pile each day to note whether the temperature and moisture are at the acceptable levels. Rotating and turning the pile helps to control airflow while keeping odor in check.
It is essential to allow the pile to cure once the heating phase is over. The curing period will depend on how you intend to use the compost material. Screen all the large pieces of undecomposed organic material from the compost. You can sift the unwanted contents by using a sieve. However, the process of sieving will not be necessary if you do not include materials larger than 3 inches.
The compost material should be ready in 3 to 4 weeks if you apply the hot composting method. Make sure you monitor the organic waste regularly during this period. The inactive composting process, also known as cold composting, can take up to a year before the pile is ready for use.