Enter the Lone Dungslinger

Shloop, shloop, blurp… hurgh! Squelch, squelch, plop, squelch, squelch, squelch, hurgh! SHPLOOMPH!

Yes, it’s one of those days where the Lone Dungslinger spends hours extracting, carrying and hurling **** in an attempt to set a personal best in Synchronised Dung Flinging .

The Dungslinger is out early, fully waterproofed against both rain and muck, fork and shovel at the ready, determined to extract a winter’s worth of muck from one of the poultry breeding pens.

At the beginning of winter, the bottom of the pens are filled with three inches of bark and, usually, left until early March. By then, there’s a good covering of poultry manure, spilled food, leaves and snow.

When the first thaw sets in and there are a few dry days in a row, the Dungslinger removes the bark and manure mix to a muck box to rot down for a couple of years.

The plan is awry apart this year thanks to a combination of the Dungslinger carrying an injury and Mother Nature delivering erratic weather, culminating in more than a week of heavy rain to date. As a result, instead of four inches of loose, dry-ish muck in the bottom of the pens the Dungslinger faces closer to six inches of wet, soggy muck, even after the top of the crud is skimmed twice a week.

It’s not good for the chickens but it makes for excellent dung flinging so, with a wrist approaching reasonable condition, the Dungslinger strides out to take on the first breeding pen.

The Lone Dungslinger adopts a loose, bent-legged stance, shuffles into the pen and thrusts the fork into the  wet, oozing muck, sliding it deep before levering up and loosening in one smooth motion. Shloop, shlopp.

A fast change sees the fork set aside and the shovel brought out, the Dungslinger slides it under the loosened muck, forcing bubbles of scum to the surface.  Blurp!

He pauses for a second to get his stance right, rolls his shoulders, flicks his left hand upwards, balances the load with his right, and straightens. Hurgh!

Taking two steps backwards through gloop and sludge, the Dungslinger exits the pen. Squelch, squelch.

With a smooth swivel at the hips, he turns for the track to the muck boxes… but loses some of the muck. Plop.

Undaunted, the Dungslinger carries the loaded shovel to the muck box, wading through  more goop, scunge and gunk. Squelch, squelch, squelch.

Taking his position at 45 degrees to the muck box, the Dungslinger dips his knees, thrusts his left arm up and his right arm down, catapulting the shovel-load of crud through the air and into the box. Hurgh!

Even as the crud flies, he’s stepping back and averting his face to avoid the dreaded splashback. SHPLOOMPH!

The Dungslinger is jubilant and rightly so.  He’s delivering his muck with style: right stance, right speed, good movements, superb sound effects and awesome stenches. Ripped waterproofs and boots that split halfway through take the performance to…

The judges cluck and bark as they confer. They hold their cards up.

Average 9.1.

A superb start from the Lone Dungslinger.

As the morning wears on, the Dungslinger works on his action, but never quite hitting  the perfect 10. A wrist flare-up sees him drop back to 8.9.

Is it game over for the Dungslinger?


Mother Nature takes pity after hours of heroics and delivered a deluge of rain at just the right moment

The judges confer. They note the action, the sound effects, the smell, the moves. They shake their heads.

One crows and indicates the Dungslinger, making particular points: crud in his boots, crud inside his overtrousers, rain cascading into his jacket. The other judges nod.

Another barks and recalls the Dungslinger’s long, well-greased slide along the freshly lubricated track, his stylish halt with a boot against a stone and the momentum enhanced loft shot into the muck box to create a truly awesome shower of ****.

Clucking, growling, shaking.

The result…


“Thank you, thank you. I couldn’t have done it without the contributions of Jock, Bessie, Betsie and Bootsie, superb coaching from Harvey, and a final assist from Mother Nature.”

Truly, this man is the slinger of dung.

It doesn’t get much better than that. Does it?

4 Responses to “Enter the Lone Dungslinger”

  1. Father dear father Reply 27 April, 2012 at 01:25

    That is my boy; the real bull**** artist at work. Am i proud or simply bemused?

  2. You really are priceless!!! Well done on the 10

  3. And ’10′ for great blog post. I always wondered what it was like to clean the chicken coop – it’s what keeping from having laying hens. Thanks!

    • Cleaning inside the chicken houses is easier and done weekly. It’s just shovelling out a small amount of dung and old bedding. Clearing out the pens is more involved. In the warmer, drier months a similar approach can be taken to the houses but in winter it’s a lot more sensible to deep bed the pens with bark and accept a major clear out in spring.

      The laying flock free range in the drier months and on dry winter days when I’m around to protect them from hungry predators. The problem with free ranging them in very wet weather, as we have now, is that 40-plus hens make a massive mess very quickly. However, keeping them in a very large pen isn’t really feasible either as they turn it into a mud bath within a couple of days. I try to confine them to an area sheltered by conifers, which would be a good solution, but they prefer to wreck the fields or mope in the muddy pen (even trying to fly over the fence into it when the gate is closed). They are daft.

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