A frosty morning’s hay bale rollout


Cold morning.



Patient cows.



Fresh lucerne hay.



Well-rested grass.



Watching the rollout.



Nom nom nom.

4 thoughts on “A frosty morning’s hay bale rollout

  1. Susan Lea says:

    Nice! I like your system of rolling out hay bales. I’ve never seen that here. Farmers just put them out, and the animals crowd around. Your system makes sure no one gets left out!

    I sure wish our animals would eat the hay instead of the grass! We have to feed them in the barnyard because if we do it in a pasture, they eat the grass down to the ground and ignore the hay. If only I could explain that they’re just ruining summer’s meals!

  2. wobbly says:

    There’s a hay feeder that used to get dominated by the three big Mirandaise girls, so I switched to rolling the hay out. Now those three Mirandaise have been sold and the feeder is much more egalitarian when I use it. I still roll out the hay because then you can run the tractor once every few days and lay out a bunch of bales in a section of paddock on a dry afternoon.The cows are still moving to a new grass slice every day and each day or so they get a new bale in that slice. ALso we have plenty of hay and I’d rather have it add fertility to the soil than spend another year aging in the barn.

    There’s been a big discussion about hay feeding recently on the grass fed beef email alias. In the case of cows dominating the feeder they suggested running two feeders which drives the dominant cow nuts!

    Having the cows in the barnyard is fun! Although you have to get the manure back to the pasture at some point and that’s work.

  3. Sarah says:

    I love the way the bales roll out 🙂 and it’s great to see photos of your place in winter – very pretty!

    Lots of the horse people here put nets with small holes around their large bales in the paddock, to stop the horses treading on the bale and stomping the hay into the ground/mud.

  4. wobbly says:

    Hey Sarah! I have a steel hay feeder that I sometimes use, but right now I have more hay than cows and I’d rather return the nutrients to the soil than optimize my hay usage. I like the hay being stomped in.

    The feeder leads to circles of mud whereas rolling out the bales leads to lines of color across the fields – green, yellow or black depending on how long ago the hay was rolled out. I should take a photo, it looks rather odd.

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