Benefits of using round bales? - Page 3 - The Horse Forum

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post #21 of 31 Old 12-18-2013, 06:30 PM
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How big are these bales??? Mine are @ 1500 lbs and last 2 weeks for 2 horses! I peel off the layers and hand feed 2x a day too.
That was my thought too!
My horse and 2 donkeys go through an 800lb round bale every 9 to 13 days, depending if it's an orchard/blue grass/timothy mix or brome/orchard/timothy mix. It keeps everyone more content and my sinuses happy because I'm allergic to the hay dust too.
My tractor does all the work and I slip a slow feeder net on it so they can't scatter it around and make a mess.
Life is much easier and cheaper with round bales.

Last edited by Lockwood; 12-18-2013 at 06:38 PM.
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post #22 of 31 Old 12-19-2013, 01:43 AM
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So you can paint them to make giant smiley faces
In all seriousness, we use round bales because we go through so much hay in the winter and like others have said, it's less work and less expensive (about 40% less). With weather like this (20Fs at night) and little grass in the winter, an 800 lb round bales will only last 5-6 days for our 5 horses. In the summer with good pasture, a bale will last 6-7 weeks.

We have always provided free choice hay to turn little butts into big butts


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post #23 of 31 Old 12-19-2013, 01:46 AM Thread Starter
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At the place where my horse is boarded, the horses are separated in different pastures by temperament level, and I kind of doubt many of them would share a big round bale like that without trying to beat each other to pieces
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post #24 of 31 Old 12-19-2013, 01:46 AM Thread Starter
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And what different kinds of hay do they come in?
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post #25 of 31 Old 12-19-2013, 03:58 AM
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At the place where my horse is boarded, the horses are separated in different pastures by temperament level, and I kind of doubt many of them would share a big round bale like that without trying to beat each other to pieces
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As you would expect, there will always be some fussing around the bale. When the top/boss horses want to move, everyone else rearranges themselves to the open spots, but they can and do manage and can all normally eat together in peace.


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post #26 of 31 Old 12-19-2013, 04:04 AM
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And what different kinds of hay do they come in?
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In our area of NC, 99% of the hay is fescue with some orchard mixed in it both for square and round bales.

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post #27 of 31 Old 12-19-2013, 08:27 AM
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And what different kinds of hay do they come in?
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Any kind of hay can be round baled. You'd have to ask what the mix is. Here it's mostly timothy and orchard, generally other grasses and clovers are mixed in as well.

I only have 3 horses but I keep two round bales going in the winter. My alpha horse is a little stinker and she will attempt to claim one for herself. She does eventually relent but the bottom horse is so afraid of rocking the status quo I often see her standing with nothing and can't stand it. Even with 2 going I often peel of a bunch and make separate piles.
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post #28 of 31 Old 12-19-2013, 10:02 AM Thread Starter
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Oh okay, I see. And what happens during rainy season? Where I live our rainy season lasts for ever.
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post #29 of 31 Old 12-19-2013, 10:15 AM
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Kind of like a thatched roof the hay protects itself to a point. Usually the horses eat it before it goes bad.
I do loose quite a bit at the beginning and end of the winter season. The horses just quit eating it. Most times I can see nothing wrong with it.

I try to put only one out time and time again until the snow flies but the horses generally have other ideas.

I have one old round bale out there that was from the end of winter/early spring. I was going to burn it when I had snow cover. Wanted some mulch hay for something and started pulling it apart this fall and got down about 8 inches and found still green, sweet grassy smelling hay. Kind of dumfounded me. I wasn't expecting that at all. The water never made it all the way in.
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post #30 of 31 Old 12-19-2013, 10:30 AM
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Oh okay, I see. And what happens during rainy season? Where I live our rainy season lasts for ever.
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There are round bale feeders that cover the top of the bale (an example is pictured here, just google "covered round bale feeder"). Some netting around the bale helps it shed some water while being stored for use. Bales need to be stored on their round/rolling side, not sitting on their flat side, as that helps them shed water as well.

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