Round bales seem to be a hit or miss on horse farms. Some barn owners love them, while others claim they’re not worth the work. Whether you decide to give them a try or not, it’s important to always check the quality of your horse’s hay. It should be stored correctly, and a good supply should always be on hand.
Pros of Round Bales
- Horses have access to hay throughout the day.
- Round bales can be cheaper for the amount of hay you’re getting.
- They only require replacing every few days or weeks, depending on how many horses you have. This makes them less labor intensive.
- Sometimes, they can be easier to find and buy.
Cons of Round Bales
- They are heavy and require the use of a tractor to move.
- Round bales can produce a lot more waste. Horses tend to step on fallen hay and trample it with mud.
- Mud spots can develop since you can’t feed in a different place each day.
- There can be a risk of mold because they are exposed to the elements.
- They require a big storage area for keeping many at a time.
- You can’t divide them, so lower ranked horses may not get close enough to eat.
- A feeder or slow feeder net can be expensive.
If you have the proper storage space, a reputable hay farmer, and keep your horses turned out a lot, round bales may be the perfect alternative to square bales. Consider your unique situation and give them a try!