Too many soybeans

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Logan52

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I wrote earlier about buying some weedy soybean rolls of hay from my neighbor. I have fed square baled soybeans in the past with no problem. This was so full of fescue and other grassy stuff I did not think it would be a problem. Nice tight rolls that are net wrapped. I thought it was a good deal with hay short.

Well, I have five 650 lb. replacement heifers in a small field by the house. Been feeding them grain and good clover grass hay by hand twice a day. They still seemed hungry and I thought I would set out one of these soybean rolls to supplement and keep them full.
First problem, I cut the net wrap in the sheep field I passed through to get to the heifers. The soft hay sort of fell apart and the sheep gathered round to pig out on what fell off the roll. Took the roll to the heifer field and set it down. Put the tractor back in the barn and sheep and heifers still pigging out on the soybean hay. Looked at it and found way more soybeans than I suspected from looking at the outside.
Do not think there is enough to bother the sheep but I put the heifers up in a small lot and gave them regular grass hay. Think I will put gates around the soybean roll tomorrow and fork it out to them in smaller doses.

What do some of you all think about this?
 
My opinion only. I have fed soybean and pearl millet hay where every bean was still on the stalk. Not sure how that compares to what you have but i wouldnt be concerned.
How had you planned on feeding it?
 
Heifers bred or open ? I've fed soybean hay with lots of soybeans in it with no problem except they didn't want any other kind of hay ! If they were in their last trimester before calving I'd limit . But think you are ok .
 
I had planned to put in out in rings for the mature cows, they would clean it up quicker.
When I fed it years before, limited fed in square bales, it put a shine on the cows coat.
I just got worried watching the heifers stand there eating it with such an appetite.
Old and retired, I have more time to worry than I once did.
Thanks for your response.
 
I had planned to put in out in rings for the mature cows, they would clean it up quicker.
When I fed it years before, limited fed in square bales, it put a shine on the cows coat.
I just got worried watching the heifers stand there eating it with such an appetite.
Old and retired, I have more time to worry than I once did.
Thanks for your response.
Watch them tomorrow and see how they look. If its heavy to dry grass i doubt it would be a problem.
 
I wrote earlier about buying some weedy soybean rolls of hay from my neighbor. I have fed square baled soybeans in the past with no problem. This was so full of fescue and other grassy stuff I did not think it would be a problem. Nice tight rolls that are net wrapped. I thought it was a good deal with hay short.

Well, I have five 650 lb. replacement heifers in a small field by the house. Been feeding them grain and good clover grass hay by hand twice a day. They still seemed hungry and I thought I would set out one of these soybean rolls to supplement and keep them full.
First problem, I cut the net wrap in the sheep field I passed through to get to the heifers. The soft hay sort of fell apart and the sheep gathered round to pig out on what fell off the roll. Took the roll to the heifer field and set it down. Put the tractor back in the barn and sheep and heifers still pigging out on the soybean hay. Looked at it and found way more soybeans than I suspected from looking at the outside.
Do not think there is enough to bother the sheep but I put the heifers up in a small lot and gave them regular grass hay. Think I will put gates around the soybean roll tomorrow and fork it out to them in smaller doses.

What do some of you all think about this?
Quality of soybean hay is quite variable but typically contains 16 to 19% crude protein and 50 to 55% TDN if harvested when 50% of the pods have immature beans. This is still lower content than good alfalfa hay or kudzu forage. Since about 1970, when farmers quit cotton and went to beans down here, people have fed it to cows of all ages, and they thrive on it.
 
Warren,
This was mature soybeans the combine operator refused to combine as it was too weedy. (Mostly fescue and what we call foxtail)
What worried me was the amount of mature beans pooling around in the roll of hay, worried about founder or bloat in heifers unaccustomed to rich feed.
If it was soybean hay as you describe I would not have worried.
 
That will also be a lot of fat that can effect rumen function! If they can get the beans by picking around the forage I would limit there intake.
 
I am no expert, but will echo the fact that soybean "hay" and baled unharvested mature soybean crop with a lot of grass included are two different things. There is plenty of data on the issues of feeding raw soybeans and the required % limits on a dry matter basis (I read 15% max raw soybeans). I would be hesitant to feed it free choice at first. But that is not based on any personal experience. Are there any feeding restrictions based on the herbicide used?
 
Heifers were fine this morning. I sometimes have a little too much time to worry these days.
I made a square with four corral panels to limit their access today. Hoping this allows the roll to last them longer.
Nice heifers from a line of cows I have had since 1986. I enjoy feeding them and watching how they develop.
 

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