So when I went to get my hay the other day, my hay guy gave me a bale of haylage. I've never used it, but have heard of it, but don't know much about it. I understand that it is good for fibre and that it doesn't contain dust, but that's about all I know. I would be feeding it to my 3 year old and my 25 year old. What are the benefits and what is the downside?
I've fed it. Horses love it. It's basically somewhere between hay and grass, moisture content wise, and it's fermented.
Good haylage is pretty tricky to make, has to be stored right. Any damage to the plastic wrap leads to mold and bad bacteria in the bale. It can cause botulism if an animal carcass happens to be in the bale. My hay guy used to make round bale silage, stored it in a sand bed with protective netting over it to prevent animals from damaging the plastic wrapping.
It is very nutritious, dustfree, ideal for dust- and mold allergic horses.
But a bale should be fed as fast as possible, shouldn't sit open for more than a week in winter, 2-3 days in summer.
If you try it, switch over slowly, just like with new sweetfeed or pasture in spring, otherwise you'll have horses with diarrhea.
Watch closely what you feed, white spots mean fungus, discard. Dangerous. If it's warm, discard.
It's tricky. I was too chicken, but im a worry wart. People I know have been feeding it for years without any problem
We have a herd of 7 and feed them big round bales of Hay (Haylage) and it lasts about 3.5 - 4 days for all 7, which is great and makes it easy for us :0) Our horses love it, it is very rich and as said before good for allergic horses. It is heavier and a bit harder to deal with (we have a tractor so no problem for us). We have young horses, older horses and mid aged horses, easy keepers, a warmblood that is not so easy to keep but they all love it, have not problems with weight or anything, BUT my horses have access to it 24/7. I like it but if you switch over to Haylage do it slowly, it is much richer and might give them some runny poop :0)
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