Round bale for 2 Horses - good or bad?

Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by livenwpeeps, Aug 24, 2011.

  1. livenwpeeps

    livenwpeeps Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 6, 2011
    King William
    I have two horses that are in a 5 acre pasture and are in their stalls during the hottest part of the day. The pasture was doing great until we had a long heat wave that killed the grass. I was putting out bales of hay in the pasture but I was going broke purchasing hay bales and the hay guy saw me more than I see DH. Plus the horses were starting to lose alittle weight. So...... I put a round bale in the pasture but I have never used one and have some questions. 1) the two horses have eaten the round bale down but there is a lot of waste that they are not touching. In fact, they have peed/pooped on much of the wasted hay. Is this normal to have so much waste? 2) Since they are down to being picky about the hay, is it time to get a new round bale? 3)Do I need to remove the wasted hay before I put another round bale in? With the hay bales, I had it down to where they were eating it all so not much was wasted. Any suggestions would be greatly appriciated.
    Thank you!!
    PS: Since putting in the round bale I have divided the 5 acre pasture out into 3 smaller pastures so I can rotate the horses next spring. I am going to seed/fertilize the pastures this fall.
     
  2. Peaches Lee

    Peaches Lee Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 19, 2010
    Pennsylvania
    Quote:1.) The waste could be hay that is not desirable for them to eat anyway, moldy, bleached or just lacking nutrition. If the bales were stored outside with no cover, the horses will peel off the bad stuff and go for the good stuff in the middle.

    2.) If there isn't any clean, good hay left and they are not eating what is there, then I guess it would be time to get a new bale.

    3.) I would remove the waste. [​IMG]

    They most likely ate the square bales because they were all fresh, clean and good. Do you have them on any grain rations too?
     
  3. livenwpeeps

    livenwpeeps Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 6, 2011
    King William
    Yes, they are on grain. I upped that too. They are still getting hay in their stalls too but it is from square bales and it is better quality hay than the round bale is. Since they left so much, should I find a better quality round bale? The round bale was just a mixed grass that was kept in a barn. Or do you think they are just waiting me out for the better hay? They have both put weight back on and look good. Thanks for your help!!!
     
  4. babyblue2

    babyblue2 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 14, 2011
    Round bales are fine, if they are of at least ok quality and they are off the wet ground and protected from the weather. Just dropping it on the ground means half or more is going to get wet nasty and rot. It Means losing half a bale when other wise nearly all would get eaten.
     
  5. livenwpeeps

    livenwpeeps Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 6, 2011
    King William
    So that's what has happen to the round bale I put out. I put it on the ground with no cover so that's why it looks like so much has been wasted. What is a good way to cover a round bale while the horses are eating it? Since my pastures have died out, I will be haying thru to next spring. Thanks again for all of your help!
     
  6. welsummerchicks

    welsummerchicks Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 26, 2010
    I find there is a lot of waste off of round bales. LEss so if they are in a feeder.
     
  7. carolinagirl58

    carolinagirl58 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 30, 2011
    Lugoff, SC
    When I was feeding my sheep from a round bale, I would just unwrap a bunch of it and stuff it in the hay rack. that eliminated waste almost all together. They did not have access to the entire bale. It was a little more trouble than feeding square bales, but sure saved a lot of money.
     
  8. chickenzoo

    chickenzoo Emu Hugger

    I always made a hay manger for my round bales to keep them dry and keep the horses from peeing & pooping on it or dragging it everywhere. 4 posts in the ground about shortest horse neck length from outside of the round bale's circumference(typically an 8X8 or 10X10 works well. Make knee walls around 3 sides, then make the forth one slide down into metal braces so it can be removed to add a new roll. Frame out top and add a slant roof..... It's always done well for us,....... we also add a pallet in the center to keep roll off ground.
     

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