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How many horses on how many acres

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  • How many acres of hay are needed for one horse?
  • How many horses on an acre in MD

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    09-11-2009, 10:44 AM
It all depends on how much your land can sustain. Here on 40 acres you cannot keep 9 horses. Its steep and rocky, good for building QH butts but not for maintaining a larger herd. So it all depends on the land.
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    09-11-2009, 12:25 PM
We have five horses on 15 acres, and they have grazed it down to the ground. We used to have that many horses and still had to mow - but since we sold the horses and my hubby had his stroke, we kinda let the place go. Now we have horses again and are clearing the pasture. We will be reseeding and fertilizing in the next couple of months because we can keep the horses in a smaller lot because we will be haying them. Once the pasture has come back, we should be good to go, but I wouldn't want any more horses than we already have!
    09-12-2009, 10:16 AM
We have about 75 acres of land (most of which is forest) and 5 horses (had up to 8). But I have worked for farms that kept their horses in 15 meter round pens giving them 2 large flakes (from those giant bails) of hay. All the horses were healthy and worked regularily. Personally I feel if you have horses you should have a confinment large enough that they can get a good run by themselves.

If your having grass issues (as we did during one ridiculously hot summer) fence off a section of your field (in half usually). And alternate from side to side. But by the sounds of it you have two large horses and plan on getting 2 more large horses. I recomemmed saving up for lots of hay to keep up an adequate diet. If you can do that you should be perfectly fine.
    09-12-2009, 12:47 PM
General rule in my moms opinion and I believe the gov't in Strathcona County is 1 horse per 1 1/2 acres.

I have 3 horses on about 7-8 acres. We own 15 but we have a house, barn and not all fenced.
    09-14-2009, 12:57 AM
Where I ride there are four horses on seven acres. They pretty much mow it down by themselves...but if you can feed extra hay when it is needed I say go for it!
    09-14-2009, 10:32 PM
I know someone who keeps six racing standardbreds on ~1/2 acre (possibly less) and gives them hay and grain because their paddock is dirt/mud. They don't have much room to run and they don't race very often now that the local track is shut down.

I would say do a rotation program, keep two in small seprate enclosures (something like a large outdoor stall) and let the other two graze and switch them on a regular basis. Supplementing with hay and possibly a little grain would help quite a bit, especially with drafts.
    09-29-2009, 10:53 PM
We have eleven horses, 28 acres. Not all is fenced. And some of our pasture isn't on our property. During winter they are in a dry lot with free choice hay. In bad weather (all year) they are kept in our "barn" Also they are in our dry lot at night. And we rotate them through eight different pastures. Two days per pasture at most.
    10-30-2009, 02:32 PM
Originally Posted by Sunny06    
In GA the rule is one per acre. I think that is acceptable.
I believe that's on a county by county basis if I'm not mistaken. Fulton county (where we live) is 1 horse per acre. However, you can get a variance to have more. Many barns around Atlanta do, keeping 2 horses to an acre or more. You just go through a bit more hay.
    10-31-2009, 01:45 PM
Here in MD you need 2 acres to have horses, but after that it's 1 horse per acre. So, 2 acres = 2 horses.

We have 3 on 5 acres - but it's not all cleared, so it's more like 3 horses on 2 acres. We have 2 fields that we rotate - one is more of a dry lot, but there is some grass in it. The other field has verrrrrrry nice grass. And they're stalled when it's raining and they go out when the ground has dried out a bit.

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