I wanted to buy a nice round bale net too, but didn't want to spend that much money on something that was going to get holes eaten into it, or have it destroyed after just a few uses.
After looking around and checking into buying netting and making one, I came up with something fairly cheap, about $30 and after the 8th bale, it is holding up really well and saving quite a bit of hay!
(My critters are horrible about tunneling into the bale and tossing it everywhere.)
I will eventually buy one when this wears out since now I know how well a bale net works, but so far, the one I made is showing no signs or wearing out any time soon and stretches the bale an extra 5 days or so with very little wasted.
Here are a few pics and if you are interested I will let you know how I made it.
The first gives you an idea how I stitched it together with small slow feeder hay bags, and the second pic is how a bale looks after five days.... when normally it is destroyed by then.
None of my horses have shoes, and (knocks on wood) hopefully it'll stay that way. (Nothing against shoes... but if they don't need them, I'd prefer to stay barefoot)
We DO have a tractor with a bale spear, so that part should work ok. Though we've always removed the twine from the bales before letting the horses eat... when we just plop the bales on the ground, that's not an issue, but if we take off the twine while trying to hold the bale in the air that might not work so well. :P Though I'm wondering maybe we don't need to? I just have these horrific visions of a horse swallowing a piece of plastic twine and choking/colicking/DEATH...
$50, eh? That sounds a LOT more attractive than the $450 for the 'Ultimate Haysaver' or the $230 for the pre-made 'NAG bag'... what kind of a net did you use and where did you get it?
I got my net off ebay, though the next one I will get thicker netting, though this one is doing wonderful. I also snip the strings once it's on the ground and the net is on it, not while still on the spear as it would unwind in the net.