hay bale covers?

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Anonymous

I'm looking for info about round hay bale covers. Seems like I read somewhere that you can buy individual covers to put on the round bales to keep them from rotting when you leave them outside. I can't find any place that sells them or knows what they're called. Do they help and are they cost effective? Thanks for any help.
 
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A

Anonymous

We use "Hayguard" tarps. They are a breathable double layer heavy eight vinyl with attachment points fastened on/in them. There are a couple of different sizes, we use the 33 bale size. They are pricey, but when you figure how much of a bale is wasted from weather damage/spoilage they are well worth it. We've used the same ones for several years, except where the critters have gnawed a couple of small holes they're as good as when we first got them.

dunmovin farms

> I'm looking for info about round
> hay bale covers. Seems like I read
> somewhere that you can buy
> individual covers to put on the
> round bales to keep them from
> rotting when you leave them
> outside. I can't find any place
> that sells them or knows what
> they're called. Do they help and
> are they cost effective? Thanks
> for any help.
 
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A

Anonymous

There are machines which are used to individually wrap bales. They are ususally put up with more moisture than regular hay, and in fact ensile in the bags to become haylage...around here they're called bailage.... Or there are long plastic bags you can put several bales, all in a row. Or wrap just the outer rim, leaving the ends open....lots of possibilities. Check out hay handling equiptment at the various manufacturers or check out a search engine like google.com.

But frankly, we just tarp our hay...
 
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Anonymous

Once again, this might be a regional thing…

Nobody around here covers round bales. We just haul them to the hay lot and feed them without any problems. Even on a two year old roll the hay loss is minimal. You will see shrinkage in the roll the first year but that’s due to loss of moisture. If you pull the hay back you will see that the weather damage only goes a couple inches deep – assuming the bales were rolled good and tight.

Craig
 
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Anonymous

> Once again, this might be a
> regional thing…

> Nobody around here covers round
> bales. We just haul them to the
> hay lot and feed them without any
> problems. Even on a two year old
> roll the hay loss is minimal. You
> will see shrinkage in the roll the
> first year but that’s due to loss
> of moisture. If you pull the hay
> back you will see that the weather
> damage only goes a couple inches
> deep – assuming the bales were
> rolled good and tight.

> Craig

Craig, I have been debateing on wheather to start covering my hay to, and after talking to farmers around my area and cheeking the research here is what I have found out.

First of all the tarps don't come cheep at all, second I have read where studies have been done and some manufactors of these tarps are changing colors of the tarps from silver and black to white to get temps. down because what they are finding out is that they increase the temps. to over 100 degrees under the tarps and alot of the nutrtional value is getting baked out by the time it is fed, They say the weight of the roll decreases alot after being under that much heat. My hay is left out side and my cows eat 90% to 95% of it most of the time. My only concern was the first 3inches of it is moldy and them eating it. A old farmer near me says he has been feeding his uncovered that way for 20 yrs are more and says it want hurt a cow but it will a horse. So based on the nutritional facts of loss due to the extra heat,if that is true, I think your pretty much where you started off with the very little loss from not covering.

I know one thing, with the price of them, somebody sure does have a $ mark up with them just being heavy plastic.

[email protected]
 
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Anonymous

If you loose 4 inches of a 5X5 bale you have lost 20% of the bale. In other words, you have to feed 5 bales to have the quivilent of 4. Even at 16 bucks a bale it doesn't take many bales to make up the difference in the cost of a good tarp system.

dunmovin farms

> Craig, I have been debateing on
> wheather to start covering my hay
> to, and after talking to farmers
> around my area and cheeking the
> research here is what I have found
> out.

> First of all the tarps don't come
> cheep at all, second I have read
> where studies have been done and
> some manufactors of these tarps
> are changing colors of the tarps
> from silver and black to white to
> get temps. down because what they
> are finding out is that they
> increase the temps. to over 100
> degrees under the tarps and alot
> of the nutrtional value is getting
> baked out by the time it is fed,
> They say the weight of the roll
> decreases alot after being under
> that much heat. My hay is left out
> side and my cows eat 90% to 95% of
> it most of the time. My only
> concern was the first 3inches of
> it is moldy and them eating it. A
> old farmer near me says he has
> been feeding his uncovered that
> way for 20 yrs are more and says
> it want hurt a cow but it will a
> horse. So based on the nutritional
> facts of loss due to the extra
> heat,if that is true, I think your
> pretty much where you started off
> with the very little loss from not
> covering.

> I know one thing, with the price
> of them, somebody sure does have a
> $ mark up with them just being
> heavy plastic.
 
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A

Anonymous

Obviously, much depends on the cost of hay in your area, your weather and the length of time you have to store hay before it's completely fed out.

I'd suggest getting some wooden pallets (in my area they can usually be obtained for free if you are a good "scrounger") and arrange them in long rows. Putting your good, tightly baled hay on top of the pallets will take care of most of the damage done by ground moisture.

I try to buy recently baled hay pretty late in the season so that I don't expose it to the elements for too many months. And of course, being in South Texas I don't have a very long feeding time, but it can get awfully rainy around here in fall and winter.

The best alternative is probably to get a pole barn built as cheaply as possible to store your hay. Again, being a good scavenger or scrounger really helps -- for instance try getting used utility poles, used and/or scrap tin, etc.

And with so many parts of the country having experienced drought in recent years its a good idea to try to lay in a supply of emergency hay. I don't consider my place to be overstocked, yet I have had the need to feed hay for a couple of months in several of the most recent summers due to periods of 2 or 3 months without meaningful rainfall. It's good to be able to carry your herd through those rough times with stockpiled hay, rather than being forced to dump good animals that you would't otherwise be culling at the sale barn, along with all your neighbors, for lousy prices.
 
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Anonymous

Where would one find these tarps? I didn't seem this name in a web search. Maybe it's a local variety? Thank you! Gale

> We use "Hayguard" tarps.
> They are a breathable double layer
> heavy eight vinyl with attachment
> points fastened on/in them. There
> are a couple of different sizes,
> we use the 33 bale size. They are
> pricey, but when you figure how
> much of a bale is wasted from
> weather damage/spoilage they are
> well worth it. We've used the same
> ones for several years, except
> where the critters have gnawed a
> couple of small holes they're as
> good as when we first got them.

> dunmovin farms

[email protected]
 
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A

Anonymous

They use a cutsey name and leave out the "u" in guard but here is a link to the manufacturer "http://www.haygard.com/"

dunmovin farms

> Where would one find these tarps?
> I didn't seem this name in a web
> search. Maybe it's a local
> variety? Thank you! Gale
 
OP
A

Anonymous

Many thanks...will check it out! Gale

> They use a cutsey name and leave
> out the "u" in guard but
> here is a link to the manufacturer
> "http://www.haygard.com/"

> dunmovin farms

[email protected]
 
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A

Anonymous

One other thing to consider. These tarps are made with "D" rings spaced down the sides. They make a back-bone type rope system to secure the tarp. It looks kind of like a fish skeleton. Either get one from the folks that make the tarps or make one yourself. It makes securing the tarp soooooo much easier. We didn't get one at first, we've learned.

dunmovin farms

> Many thanks...will check it out!
> Gale
 
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A

Anonymous

Checked out the website and showed it to my husband; when he looked at the prices, he said "still cheaper than a storage barn!" Thanks for the heads-up on the rope part. No matter what tarp we've used, the tie-down part is crucial...especially when you live in a wind-tunnel! Up until now, we've used those spiral metal things, about a foot long; they work okay but I find them in the strangest places sometimes...they either migrate or breed. Thanks again, Gale

> One other thing to consider. These
> tarps are made with "D"
> rings spaced down the sides. They
> make a back-bone type rope system
> to secure the tarp. It looks kind
> of like a fish skeleton. Either
> get one from the folks that make
> the tarps or make one yourself. It
> makes securing the tarp soooooo
> much easier. We didn't get one at
> first, we've learned.

> dunmovin farms

[email protected]
 

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