feeding hay to heifers: Throw it on the ground or in a rack?

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CowboyBlue
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feeding hay to heifers: Throw it on the ground or in a rack?

Postby CowboyBlue » Wed Dec 05, 2018 11:42 am

My father was a throw it on the ground guy, my grandfather was a throw it on the ground guy, and I am a throw it on the ground guy.

But now my sister, who is graciously boarding some heifers for me, tells me that they are stomping around and scattering their hay, and not eating it. Well, yes, that is what cows do, sometimes ...

She is insisting that we get a hay rack. Any of y'all use a hay rack in your pens or corrals? Do they really make that much difference?
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Re: feeding hay to heifers: Throw it on the ground or in a rack?

Postby jwimberly » Wed Dec 05, 2018 11:46 am

Depends, if it's good hay I put it in a hay ring. If it's not so good hay such as over mature Johnson grass I just throw it out in pasture because the hay ring starts to get full of what they don't eat.
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Re: feeding hay to heifers: Throw it on the ground or in a rack?

Postby CowboyBlue » Wed Dec 05, 2018 11:53 am

it's good cow coastal. I reckon I ought to get one of those racks.
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Re: feeding hay to heifers: Throw it on the ground or in a rack?

Postby Jeanne - Simme Valley » Fri Dec 07, 2018 6:12 am

It has been proven over and over that hay is wasted when put on the ground. There are some instances where there would be less waste - like frozen ground, spread out where all can eat, limited fed (just enough to feed all for 1 feeding).
If you have poor quality hay, then you can feed on ground and they will utilize the waste as bedding.
I use round feeders with skirts.
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Re: feeding hay to heifers: Throw it on the ground or in a rack?

Postby Redgully » Fri Dec 07, 2018 6:24 am

I don't know, everytime i chuck hay out the first thing to happen is one will take a crap right in the middle of it so i always use rings.
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Re: feeding hay to heifers: Throw it on the ground or in a rack?

Postby Caustic Burno » Fri Dec 07, 2018 6:38 am

I use hay racks for all mine saves lots of hay.
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Re: feeding hay to heifers: Throw it on the ground or in a rack?

Postby 1982vett » Fri Dec 07, 2018 9:58 am

CowboyBlue wrote:it's good cow coastal. I reckon I ought to get one of those racks.

Might not be as good as you think. Also may be over feeding.
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Re: feeding hay to heifers: Throw it on the ground or in a rack?

Postby callmefence » Fri Dec 07, 2018 10:25 am

I'm a throw it on the ground guy...
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Re: feeding hay to heifers: Throw it on the ground or in a rack?

Postby 1982vett » Fri Dec 07, 2018 3:35 pm

Rolled out a little this morning and put the rest in a hayring. Got 1 1/4 inches of rain overnight.
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Re: feeding hay to heifers: Throw it on the ground or in a rack?

Postby Nesikep » Fri Dec 07, 2018 4:44 pm

On good frozen ground out in a pasture, and feeding the right amount, just putting it on the ground is fine.. in a corral, I try and feed along the edge so the dirty end is away from the eating end.. I feed small squares, and found that I do better when I just cut the strings and leave the bale intact rather than spread it around.. again, keep the eating end of the cows away from the crapping end.

Heifers and young stock that spend more time in the corral have a feeder
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Re: feeding hay to heifers: Throw it on the ground or in a rack?

Postby farmerjan » Fri Dec 07, 2018 10:15 pm

Rolls we mostly roll out about a quarter so the less than great outside layer goes on the ground. They eat some, lay on some. Then the better part of the bale goes in a ring.

For small square bales, for the calves and weaned stock, almost ALWAYS gets fed in a hay rack, in the manger where they put their heads in to get grain when I feed it, then the hay after they all get the grain cleaned up, or somewhere that they have to reach for it and not just pull it all out on the ground. Sure some gets wasted, but I find they waste alot less when they have to get it by the mouthful out of a feeder. And yes, we also feed along the edges of the fences so they have the eating end further away from the pooping end.

When it is frozen, and/or real cold, will roll more out than not, especially if there are alot of baby calves.
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