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Does a Mesh head manure fork exist?

Reporting back on weight: The amazon one arrived and it is HEAVY. I am not sure I will even unwrap it, and instead try to return it and go for other options.

It is one thing for a shovel to be heavy if you are digging, but this will be shaken a lot, so being heavy matters.

Is it weird that I want to ask my wealthier sister for one for Xmas?


Years ago I learned that those ground up bits of manure and slightly dirty shavings dramatically increase the loft of bedding, so they are actually your friend. My horses spend much more time lying down in their free-choice stalls when the shavings are a little dirty. I recommend you try top dressing and mixing fresh shavings with those tiny pieces of manure and slight wet spots. Once you adjust to the idea that a spotless stall is not the ideal, your horse may be happier. I am not advocating keeping horses in filth, but there is a sweet spot between filthy and spotless.

I decided to keep it – we have use for it at home, so it will get a trial run at the barn today!

I think I will keep on using my section of screen, bent at the bottom, to scoop up and sift the bits. It does beautifully aerate the bedding.

Okay, the nice one I bought from Amazon that is heavy: doesn’t work.

My horses don’t poop in their shavings, but instead in the decomposed granite area. That area has a fine coat of mini-flakes on it from their stalls. Even though the flakes are miniscule, almost sawdust, they don’t sift well on this shovel – perhaps they are are too light? They sure don’t look too big. And the decomposed granite is a hard base, not something to dig up and sift. I struck out.

The reviews all said this shovel works well for chicken coops, and I can see that it would. And although it is heavy, it is well-made and well-balanced and surprisingly, I didn’t find it too heavy to use. I can see where sand would drop right through. I wish mini-flakes and sawdust would, lol.

@starsandsun do you use hardware cloth as your “screen.”

BlueDrifter, I do think that is what it is called. Honestly, the stalls for my other horse and two donkeys are very easy to clean. Rather than spend a small fortune, I think I’ll just keep replacing this screen when it bends or gets a tear in it. I only use it for 5-7 minutes and it does make a world of difference. It also gives me the opportunity to get some stretching for my back in. :slight_smile:

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In the mansplaining department, I drew out a concept for a friend of mine to build, since he said he was interested in doing so.

It was basically an A-frame, and the front was a piece of that hardware cloth with a fold up at the bottom. There was a round wooden bar at the top, and the hardware cloth was on that via rings so it could move up and down and a little side to side. I would toss pitchforks of bedding/manure, and then lift up the hardware cloth, shake it, and flip the remains over the top into a waiting bucket.

So the guy says “I’m not going to make that - it will never work” even though I had rigged something very like this and it worked pretty well tbh. Instead, he makes this heavy, cumbersome A-frame, with a screen a mounted mini-bucket at the bottom that was too small/narrow to ‘shake’. You would have to lift it up and toss it up and down to get it to sift. He refused to listen to the message that bedding stacks on itself and you can lift it up with a pitchfork.

Needless to say he was quite mad his idea didn’t work, and for sure didn’t like being reminded that I told him it wouldn’t. He’s currently so pissed we haven’t spoken in 2 weeks - he hung up on me after some choice words about me lecturing him, and when I said it was hurtful and asked for an apology he doubled down and refused. So … .there’s that. LOL

ETA: Hmmm. Maybe the shit shifter did in fact sift some shit out of my life.


just buy a commercial grade shifter

Linear Model Vibrating Sorting Sieve Machine Grain Sifter Screen Grain Linear Vibrating Equipment


Haha… I am not THAT ocd on it. I just thought it would be super easy. Lesson learned!

Your description of A-frame and a dowel has me confused, do you just bend the mesh into a scoop shape and go from there?

Yes. Imagine a freestanding a frame, and it’s wide enough so on the ‘back side’ you can snuggle up a muck bucket. The front has a piece of mesh that is bent up about 8 inches - kind of like creating a little catch-all at the bottom. In a more perfect world it would be wider at the bottom so when it folds up you can zip tie it and still have a useable size retainer area. My beta used a broom handle across the top of the A-frame, and I used some baling twine to make loops to afix the screen to the broom handle.

Does that make sense?

Right now I’m literally using the mesh only, folded over and I hold on to the sides and scoop up bedding and shake away.

I might have to chalk this up to me being dense, but I still cannot picture this. I think I would need a drawing – but don’t do that on my behalf, I think I will use your current plan and just fashion the mesh into a handheld scoop.

I think it will take me trying it out to figure it out, lol!

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Just an update –

I tried the Exact Sand Flea Rake. Extremely well made, did exactly what I hoped it would do – I could drag it… BUT, the problem is the poop bits are mixed with mini flake shavings that get kicked out of stall, and just like the shovel I tried, the flakes are TOO LIGHT to fall through the holes, so no real sifting happens. Or, it is just as hard as using a fine-tined fork.

Argh. I am going to do hardware cloth ziptied to the fine-tined fork next. Haha… obsessed!

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Looks useful for pellet users;


I bought that one, too. Once the pellets decompose into mini-flakes/sawdust – they were again too light. Did it work for you?

I don’t have one. I use a a regular Dura Fork. (My horses are on pellets /sawdust and poo in neat piles!)
With any fork you have to encourage the bedding to fall by tossing the manure about 1-2" to shake the bedding through it. Does wonders for floppy upper arms.

Here’s my latest thought: https://www.google.com/search?sca_esv=584265682&rlz=1C5CHFA_enUS940US940&sxsrf=AM9HkKksMAwN8Mk9rY6AM7X3kflui6sxIg:1700567548934&q=archaeology+sifting+screens+rockin&tbm=vid&source=lnms&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwjQt67lg9WCAxWfF1kFHR8LBJEQ0pQJegQIDhAB&biw=1282&bih=954&dpr=2#fpstate=ive&vld=cid:b96f6ab0,vid:-VBsFp6mjqE,st:0

I think this a whole lot easier than what I’m doing now - using a screen like this without anything else, scooping up a pile and shaking it, and dumping bits into muck bucket.

Did you ever try lining a fork with mesh?

Yes - it worked for a while. The problem was the wire tended to crumple up and then caught manure bits that didn’t sift out, so it got heavier and heavier and the surface area was smaller and smaller unless I kept stopping to whack it out.