Mud and horses go hand in hand but mud is something that we all hate, amongst other things it's unhealthy for our horses harboring bacteria and fungi, creating slippery footing and it makes our horse keeping chores difficult and unpleasant.
Here are a few tips to help minimize mud:
1. A high organic content in soil will create mud so make sure you poo pick at least every two to three days, if you leave that manure in the field it will turn to mud.
2. For the same reason pick up and dispose of any uneaten hay don't leave it in the field.
3. Check rainwater run-off from buidings, ideally you'll have guttering and downpipes directing rainwater into water butts. Make sure the gutters aren't clogged with a build up of dirt and leaves.
4. Avoid over grazing and re-seed bare patches, and keep horses off them until the grass has re-established.
5. Whenever possible keep horses off sodden pasture.
6. Consider removing your horse's shoes during the winter months to reduce the impact hooves make on pasture.
7. Move your watering and feeding areas around to reduce the horse traffic in one area or install firm footing.
8. Install firm footing in high traffic areas such as gateways it will need to be 3" - 6" deep to be effective.
9. Create a "sacrifice" paddock for winter turnout.
10. Limit turnout time.
11. Rotate pastures.