Drought Hay Pricing ?

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Stocker Steve

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Hay prices have been going up steadily here. Semi loads of grass cow hay hit U$S 240 per ton at an auction last week. It would be cheaper to buy local shell corn...

What would be the highest price per ton you have seen loads cow hay sell for during a drought?
 

Bez

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We had a small 8 acre hay field in front of the house that has great horse hay. Last year we got 65 8 foot bales off of it. We sold each of those bales for about 100 bucks a bale to the folks down the road who have a bunch of horses.
This year despite the lack of rain we have so far got about 40 bales off the field and plan to cut it again in late August. I have been told that those same bales will go for about 120 bucks a bale.
I always hold 5 - 10 back for the old folks down the road who have two horses and no money. He makes a bit of hay but cannot afford to buy enough to get him through the winter. So we give those bales to that family.
Last of the cows leave today. The farm is sold and we are moving west early next Spring.
Best to all.
 

Rydero

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Hay $150-$175/bale is the high end, $125 for "cheap", not many ads of people selling but there's lots looking.

The last week or so I'm starting to see adds for Barley straw at $65-$70/bale.

Can't imagine paying those prices. I think others agree, there will be over 800 pairs sold at our local auction this week.
 

Dave

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Hay is running around $200 a ton at the stack so depending on how far you have to haul it is more. I heard of one guy with real premium alfalfa asking $240 a ton. But frankly nobody is selling. Teh ranchers are holding every single stem they can get and the hay growers are sitting on it figuring the price will go up.
 

farmerjan

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We had a small 8 acre hay field in front of the house that has great horse hay. Last year we got 65 8 foot bales off of it. We sold each of those bales for about 100 bucks a bale to the folks down the road who have a bunch of horses.
This year despite the lack of rain we have so far got about 40 bales off the field and plan to cut it again in late August. I have been told that those same bales will go for about 120 bucks a bale.
I always hold 5 - 10 back for the old folks down the road who have two horses and no money. He makes a bit of hay but cannot afford to buy enough to get him through the winter. So we give those bales to that family.
Last of the cows leave today. The farm is sold and we are moving west early next Spring.
Best to all.
@Bez ; Congrats on getting the farm sold and getting out of the "crazier" area... although it seems like everywhere it is getting a little crazy. Have you found a place yet?
 

sim.-ang.king

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Straw small squares go for 240-400 ton every year, while big rounds go for 60/ton. Be cheaper to buy hay in a drought to use for bedding, rather than small square straw. :rolleyes:
 

Bez

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I thought the east was wet?
How far west are you going?
We have been very dry here and incredibly hot as well. Planning to move to western Alberta - back to the old stomping grounds. Military moved us here some years ago and we bought this farm and did well here. However the politics of the region and the crap that is happening here is driving us away. Going to be good to get back to the west again.
 

Bez

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@Bez ; Congrats on getting the farm sold and getting out of the "crazier" area... although it seems like everywhere it is getting a little crazy. Have you found a place yet?
Have not found a place yet. Taking some time in September and October and going for a drive to have a look around.
Cheers
 

Bigfoot

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Personally, I’d sell cows before I gave those prices for hay. I realize a seed stock producer doesn’t have that flexibility.
People here run backwards at $30 for a 4 x 5 roll. One of my rolls would work out to $75 a ton at that price. You just can’t sell it that cheap.
To answer the question, in droughts I’ve seen 4 x 5 hay bring $80. That’s roughly $200 a ton. I couldn’t sleep at night if I sold hay for that price. Not to a cow man that needed it.
 

chevytaHOE5674

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I've been having lots of calls looking for hay. I usually sell 180-200 tons of hay yearly (about half of what I make per year). This year covering the same acreage ill be lucky to make enough to feed my own critters. Needless to sell I'm not selling a thing.
 

2raedwards

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We had a wet year and missed a mowing chance in May. Local round bales usually go for $40-45 a solid 6ft dry stored hay great for horses and cows. Last 2 weeks have been drier ...waiting for our 2nd cutting but all those who baled in May are lucky enough to already have the second cutting.
 
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Stocker Steve

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Been there and selling cows, not hay. Currently down 50% by head count and down 60% by total pounds to be over wintered. Its a bad year to be a plus sized girl.

Grass cow hay at "market" price projects that a producer here will lose about $700 per cow with a 6 month hay feeding season. Issue is when does "winter" feeding start ? Could be soon...
 

greybeard

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Drought in the west and Midwest with extreme rain in much of Texas and the south = the same thing. Hay shortage. I've seen $100 4x5 bales before. It wasn't fun and what little you could find was often junk hay. Lots was imported in 2011 from non-drought areas like Va/Tenn,Ky Ga. Saw multiple ads on craigslist in Texas, people in those states offering to transport & sell semi truckloads of hay to Texas/Oklahoma for $80/bale plus transport costs.
 

angus9259

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I just paid $175/ton delivered for nice second cut and know I'll lose money paying it. I need to sell cattle at that price but it seemed like a "deal" so I had to jump on it - not much of a deal though if you still lose money. Buyers remorse here - should have culled harder - but it is what it is. Maybe I still will cull and just sell the hay. Seems like fellas putting up hay for their own cattle are out just as much even though they didn't "buy" the hay. Slaughter prices on cows aren't too bad here.
 

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