What is Bull Mud? I have been contacted by a Pipeline company that wants to spread Bull Mud on my pasture. They say it is biodegradable.  From our discussion I think it is mud generated when they bore the hole to put in the pipeline.  Is it safe?

Tags: bull, mud, pipelines

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It is very common for pipeline companies to landfarm their spent mud. Many farmers will welcome such additions to their soil. Since they are not at any depth, and typically use native drilling mud, there is no danger (unless they are boring through a contaimanated soil).

Just ask for a list of ingredients to their mud, its not top secret or anything.
There could be some concern that some environmental whack jobs would stir up problems years down the road. i.e. you can't sell your land, you get sued by someone downstream for pollution, sued by someone you sold the land to, the EPA wants to charge you for cleanup, etc. Or they put something legal and considered "harmless" now that they decide later is toxic.

Even if the claims have no merit, they can be an expensive pain in the neck. Imagine what the Gasland whack jobs would say.

I can't guess how likely any such problems are, but you should give it some thought.

Plus the chance that they actually DO put something toxic on your land without you knowing about it.
Worn Out N1,

The link below may help you understand biodegradable.


They may be feeding you Bull.... and that's why they call it Bull Mud.
jack Blake said bull mud is bullshit mixed with drillin mud. jack would have no part of it......nosireebob
Thanks Jack. I needed that! LOL
FXEF, thanks for the link.
If nothing else, we've got a new term to use. For instance, "Mac Davis is full of bull mud."
I'm not familiar with the term "Bull Mud" either, but over the years I think I have been through everything.

Even if they're just wanting to spread natural heavy clay subsoil from pipeline construction at 6' this will destroy the natural percolation of the topsoil, making your pasture unproductive for quite a few years. During dry weather it turns into concrete that sheds water, during wet weather it turns into a slimy, smelly mess with only algae growing on it.

Whether toxic or not, drilling mud has finer particulate matter that exacerbates this problem.

If you can't get them to level and haul off the excess soil I think it's best to just have this piled in berms for the rains to gradually wash away.

I guess you might call this "biodegradable" since spring rains do eventually wash this away.

Maybe someone could start a brick factory..
I have the kind of heavy clay subsoil that put Marshall Pottery in business. Results from spreading may be different if you have fast draining sandy or gravel soils.

The mud from directional bores for pipelines is not like like your typical drilling mud. A few years back we allowed some of thos mud sprayed onto our pasture land, whick was rather sandy soil. After being tilled in it improved the water retention and fertilty of the soil.

I agree I wouldn't want it just left on the surface, but once mixed with the soil it is a fine addition. Again let me be clear, this is not drilling mud I am talking about, but mud from the direction boring machines for pipelines.
Thanks baron for the info. I told them to do it. I appreciate everyones help in the matter. They will pay me to spread mud on a low spot in my pasture. Plus they will buy some water from my pond. Not a bad deal.


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