I know I'm not the only one who, in all honestly, cannot wait for the day after Halloween to get rid of the carved pumpkins that are sitting on my porch. I've had squirrels, birds, and some other animals eating away at them since they've been carved and now they're looking a little sad.

The good news is: pumpkins aren't something you have to put to the side of the road for your neighborhood garbage truck to pick up. There's actually several things you can do with your pumpkin to give it a second chance purpose.

Compost Your Pumpkin

According to Happy Sprout, pumpkins are a great source of nitrogen and moisture for your compost bin. Pumpkins are also chock full of vitamins, which are great for people and plants.

Pumpkins break down more quickly and easily in smaller pieces. You can break your pumpkin apart in any way you’d like. If you want to be sure every piece ends up in your compost, you can smash it while it’s in a bag or already in your compost bin. This is a fun part of the process to involve any kids you may have in, or, if you’d rather, you can round up a few friends and have a pumpkin smashing contest.

Once you’ve got your pumpkin in the bin, be sure to mix it in well or cover it over with leaves. If you don’t have a compost bin, you can still compost your pumpkin! Simply spread the pumpkin chunks over your garden instead of in the bin and add a layer of leaves or soil over them. You can also add the pumpkin to a worm bin if you have one of those.

Donate To The Animals - One Way

Consider that pumpkin as a meal for a host of animals at a local farm, zoo or sanctuary.

...or Another

According to CNY Central, homeowners also may consider feeding the wildlife that hang out in their neighborhoods, especially when those old pumpkins are offered with other fruit.

Salvaged pumpkin seeds are a tasty treat for a wide variety of birds such as cardinals, sparrows, finches and chickadees, including when mixed with other seeds such as sunflowers.

How to Make a Pumpkin Bird Feeder

I can't take credit for inventing this clever fall-themed bird feeder. I actually saw it first posted by the Farmer's Almanac. This is the Pumpkin BIrdfeeder I made this weekend with a Hudson Valley pumpkin and some birdseed grown in the USA. Nature arts and crafts at my house this weekend turned out to be really easy and fun to watch once the squirrels and chipmunks found it.

Oh My Gourd! NY Pumpkin Farm Named Best in Country

Kelder's Farm in Kerhonkson, New York offers fall fun for the whole family.

15 Ways To Use Pumpkins

Some of these are very creative and would sure to be a hit at your Halloween party. Others are just festive ways to amp up your decorating. A few are even really healthy options for eating, and even for your skin.

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