How to Compost Fish Guts


Although fish guts have been used for centuries to fertilize crops, most composting advice will tell you not to compost any meat products. The drawback for the backyard gardener and composter is that the smell of the fish guts can attract vermin to your compost bin. However, by carefully composting fish guts directly into the soil, you can benefit your garden without bringing every cat in the neighborhood to your yard.

Step 1

Chop the fish guts into small pieces. As with any material you are composting, the smaller the mass, the faster it will compost.

Step 2

Dig an area in your garden or yard where you plan to plant. Dig 2 feet down, spread the fish guts and bury them well. Do this at least six weeks before you plant.

Step 3

After six weeks, till the soil or work it with a pitchfork where you planted the fish guts.

Things You'll Need

  • Knife or cleaver
  • Shovel
  • Tiller or pitchfork


  • Garden Wise: Boost Garden Soil with Additives from the Sea
  • Agri Engineers: Composting Made Easy
  • University of Illinois: History of Composting
Keywords: composting fish guts, benefits of fish guts in compost, adding fish guts to compost bin

About this Author

Em Connell McCarty has been writing for 27 years. She studied writing at the University of Iowa and at Hollins University in Virginia. She writes fiction, creative non-fiction and essays. McCarty's work has been published in Hip Mama magazine.