Ok, I am trying a new hay regime. I usually feed my 3 horses square bales of Timothy hay that is grown and baled just 2 miles down the road. The farmer that I buy from decided to keep his cattle that he was going to sell, so he cut me off. I can not afford to have hay delivered and could not find anymore square bales within reasonable distance for me to go get them that were of good quality. My truck is bad on gas to say the least and I can not afford to drive too far too haul hay.
So, I looked into feeding round bales again. I have feed them in the past, but I did not like how much hay was wasted. Also, my two piggy girls got too fat even with only daytime access and one started coughing after feeding the round bales. She stopped after she was back on the square bales; a direct result of her habit of sticking her whole head into the bale I am sure. Also, we do not have the equipment for moving them around.
My stress was rising as my store of square bales was getting smaller, so naturally my husband and I started arguing about the cost of hay. He came up with a pretty clever idea. We can fit a couple round bales in our little hay barn and grab the hay for each individual's feeding, put it into a wheelbarrow to put into the stalls etc.
We found someone selling net-wrapped bales of orchard grass/Timothy/clover hay stored in a barn just a few miles from us. We just bought one bale to see how it would workout. So far so good. It is a bit more work on my part, but I have found that if I spend a little time one day pulling of a good pile then the next few feedings go just as quick as before. The savings per ton is about $40 which is pretty good.
Just wondering if anyone has done this before? How did it work out for you?