Hoop Barn Added to Large Bale Feeder
If you watched the video from our Fall Virtual Open House this year, you may have noticed an addition to our large bale feeder. During the summer, we added a hoop barn structure over the large bale feeder.
The number one question we received from producers was "why didn't you cover the large bale feeder?" Originally, we used a large bale tarp and would roll the tarp back as the feeder moved. The tarp worked, but not as well as we would have liked. It was a hassle to deal with after it rained, but it wasn't too big of a problem. However, when the rain would freeze and create puddles of ice frozen on top of it, it was aggravating to deal with. We would only put 4-8 bales in the feeder, so once the cows ate it, we'd replace it with more so that there wouldn't be too much rain or snow on the hay. We weren't fully utilizing the structure for what it was intended to do.
In the summer, we baled the hay and took it straight from the field and loaded it into the feeder. We took the strings off the bales and haven't touched it since. With the hoop structure added, we can keep 32 roll bales in the feeder. This structure now functions as both a storage facility and a feeding facility.
We're now able to use this facility more efficiently and don't have to worry about hay waste. Are the cattle going to loaf in it more? We expect yes. They might create more mess on the concrete but the waste and mess they created before was almost non-existent, so we don't think it will be significant enough that it'll cause a problem.
We're excited to put cows here this winter and to see how big of a part it'll play in our winter feeding operation.
Jacqueline Smith Watson
10/22/2020 10:23:53 am
Could you stack bales two deep and then move the top bales down as they finish the lower bales in the row in front of the stacked bales? You would have a row bales not stacked and as they finish those move the bales stacked on the top row down - when they finish those they would go to the second row that wouldn't be stacked - then you would move the third row stack down etc. I'm trying to figure out how to keep 200 bales out of the weather - so I'm trying to see if we could put one of these at each feeding location and put about half the bales in out of weather. Thanks
Eden Shale Farm
10/28/2020 03:24:46 pm
This feeder is not designed to feed bales that are stacked. I would be cautious of the cattle eating faster than you anticipate and the bales falling, thus possibly crushing animals and/or destroying the feeder. This feeder is designed to feed at a maximum height of 6 feet.
10/22/2020 03:42:14 pm
I would like to have details on the rolling gate. I want to make one for my cows. Thanks
Eden Shale Farm
10/26/2020 09:38:18 am
The designs and materials for the large bale feeder are located under the "Producer Resources" tab, then click the "Large Bale Feeder" page. Thanks!
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