When to put out hay

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Jdc

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Might sound like a bad question but what do you look for to put out hay or when do you put it out in NE Texas
 

Lee VanRoss

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Most herdsmen (and I will assume you are one) can tell if a cow is hungry or dissatisfied with what she has to eat.
Don't wait until they are bawling and trying to reach through the fence or test the corral. Most cows cannot read
a map so I doubt if being in NE Texas will have a bearing. Give them hay if and when they need it.
 

bird dog

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If you have cows with calves makes a lot of difference. They will need to be supplemented if on pasture. I put out a couple protein tubs to try and get a a couple extra weeks off my grass.
I start slowly rolling out a roll every 3 days or so and see how they clean it up. I did one last week and could tell that they are getting close but could wait.
 

TCRanch

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Getting to be easy to pen cows now…grass isn’t up to par and they are looking for something better. Time to watch cow patties for a guide. You can supplement with a sack or good quality hay. Problem with supplementing with hay is they get lazy and stop hustling for a living.
Bingo! We did put out bales earlier this week because the temp dropped drastically, including rain. But it's back to "normal" temps for at least the next 5 days, so not putting any more out. They're pissed! Well, there's still some decent grass - go find it.
 

greybeard

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There's no magic date or circumstances for everyone in Texas/southern Oklahoma.
Depends on your stocking rate and what kind of cattle you have too. Some eared cattle will fight for every last sprig or leaf of green then eat drier stuff before needing hay and the fewer AU/ac you have the better they do it.
Some years I can wait till after the 1st frost if there was sunshine and moisture, some years I would have already been haying by now. I don't own cows now but there are plenty on my place and neither the guy that owns them or I have even considered haying yet. (Been a wet fall with lots of sun in between)
Rain tho don't always mean good grazing. Sometimes it's (the grass) mostly water.

Like others, I want the grass gone (eaten) for the most part before i start with the hay.
 
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Rydero

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Bingo! We did put out bales earlier this week because the temp dropped drastically, including rain. But it's back to "normal" temps for at least the next 5 days, so not putting any more out. They're pissed! Well, there's still some decent grass - go find it.
Bawling and being pissed definitely don't necessarily mean they need hay. Mine bawl when they eat 2 foot high grass down to 1, they bawl when fall comes because the grass isn't as good anymore, they even bawl when it rains now because I tend to move them around rain events.
I refer to myself as the complaint department.

I judge my pastures by the reaction I get when I drive into the pasture. Pasture Good - they don't look up. Getting close to moving time - they look and maybe bawl a little. Time to move - They bawl and follow the truck. Overdue move - They're either standing at the gate to the next paddock bawling or running after the truck.
 

Warren Allison

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Might sound like a bad question but what do you look for to put out hay or when do you put it out in NE Texas
Here in Ga, we feed hay when there is no grass,. or insufficient grass. Up here in north Ga, it looks like those who didn't over stock or over graze, will have to start feeding hay before too long. Probably 1st of December or so.
 

coachg

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I usually wait till close to the first frost ,if I still have grass . I have one group that are short on grass so I’ve been feeding every other day for about the last 2 weeks, as long as they clean it up .
 

Cattlelow

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That's unusual for that latitude.
Are you that short on grass or too many head for the acres you

Too many head per acre I think. The grass can't keep up in the heat we have. Didn't get to fertilize this spring as well. I have 11 head on 10 acres. The hay roll supplements for 2 weeks before I add another. I just started feeding a roll a week this past week.
 

greybeard

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Cattlelow said:
Too many head per acre I think. The grass can't keep up in the heat we have. Didn't get to fertilize this spring as well. I have 11 head on 10 acres.
That is about x2 the stocking rate I have here in hot and humid East Texas if it's 11 mommas with calves.
40 acres, 16 mommas here right now, 1 bull and 7 calves and the calves are going bye bye within 2 weeks.
 

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