Anyway, I've just 'finalized' agistment for my new lease who will be arriving next weekend. Obviously I've been doing a heckload of reading recently, but I still want some advice on this matter.
I have the option of two pastures whenever I want them. One is a 5-10 acre lucerne block with a creek running through as well as a trough. It's currently ridiculously green and 'yummy looking', but will die off come winter, in which case I will be getting bales of lucerne hay free of charge (included in the agistment price). The other pasture is only a couple of acres right beside the lucerne one. It's rather... dead looking, but it still has plenty of feed in it.
My issue is that I've read recently that putting a horse on such rich feed as a lucerne pasture can cause colic, which is the last thing anyone would want. The horse in question is an approx. 20 year old Quarter Horse, currently in need of a diet who is fed oaten chaff and pellets. I'll be keeping up this diet, minus the chaff for a while, in order to get some of the chubbiness gone.
What I'm thinking so far is to put him in pasture #2 for the first week or so, which would have the added benefit of making sure he isn't going to be too hard to catch. I'd give him some tethered/hand grazing time in the other pasture to start getting him used to the richness. Any time that I noticed any ill effects, I could put him straight back into the other pasture.
Oh, and in case it has any effect, he and I will be trail riding, aka exploring the few hundred acres that his agistment is on and later venturing out onto roads. I'd say he'll be getting at least 5 hours work a week.