Monday, July 28, 2008

Hay up is a good feeling

Tonight we put up 500 small square bales (60-80#) into the hay mow in the dairy barn that has been remodeled into my sheep barn. The nice thing is the upstairs (hay mow)is that it can house roughly 4000 small square bales. We do not stack the bales but let them fall. The weight of the bales if they were stacked, on the roof of the main level would cause it to collaspe! The barn is a good 80 years old and made out of strong Tamarack wood, so it will last the test of time (unless a fire or tornado decide otherwise).

I much prefer to feed the small squares for several reasons:
1. easier to lift, carry and portion out (round bales have to be peeled and then pitchforks of hay moved and it gets quite messy)
2. less mess in the aisles and outside of feeders
3. tends to be a better quality hay (round bales are typically baled after hay has been rained on or the need to get the hay up faster)(at least in this area)
4. There are hay holes to drop the hay down from above, near or in the feeders (talk about ease of feeding (or laziness!))

I have figured that if I had to feed hay every day from August 1st until April 30th I would need nearly 800 small square bales to feed the sheep, goats and mini horses. I know that there are at least 200-300 more square bales in this 20 acre feed that we can bale before we move on to the next field.

LAST year in the drought we got 80 bales off of the same field for second crop. Amazing what a little rain does huh?


Alaska Shetland Shepherd said...

Yay for hay in the barn!!! Send some up this way!!!!

Carol Bator said...

I know I always feel a great sense of relief when I have my hay supply for the year put away safely. I have to buy all of my hay, so there is a bit of a scramble to buy the good grass hay before it is all sold. I hate to get bales of stems and twigs, so I always go back to the guy with the good grass hay as soon as I think he is ready to bale it.

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