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The University of Tennessee University of Tennessee UT Institute of Agriculture

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Disposing of Animal Mortalities

Poultry Mortality Incinerators

Commercial poultry producers are faced with mortality management on a daily basis. There are a several options available for handling poultry mortalities. In Tennessee composting, rendering, incineration, disposal in a Class I landfill and on-site burial are accepted by the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation as dead animal disposal methods. The mortality management method that best suits a given broiler farm will depend on the available labor, land area, farm location and management level available on the farm.

The majority of broiler mortalities in Tennessee are managed using dead-bird composters or burial. While on-site burial is currently legal in Tennessee, it is the least desirable mortality management option due to the increased potential for ground-water contamination compared to the other available options. On-site composting of poultry mortalities has become a very successful option for producers and is highly encouraged. Incineration is also a viable option, and has several advantages over other disposal methods. University of Tennessee Extension Biosystems Engineering & Soil Science publication AWM-01-00, Using Incinerators for Poultry Mortality Management, gives more details.