Alfalfa pellet question

Discussion in 'Dairy Goat Info' started by Qvrfullmidwife, Aug 25, 2011.

  1. Qvrfullmidwife

    Qvrfullmidwife New Member

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    Does anyone know what the equivalent is, hay to pellets? Does a pound of alfalfa hay equal a pound of pellets? (I know that quality is relative, I am just looking for general ratios)
     
  2. KJFarm

    KJFarm Senior Member

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    This information is on the Standlee Hay Company website:

    What are the recommended feeding instructions for a horse when feeding alfalfa pellets instead of alfalfa hay?
    Alfalfa pellets is just another form of alfalfa hay, nothing has changed except the shape or the size of the hay forage. If you are feeding 10 lbs of alfalfa hay, then you should feed 10 lbs of alfalfa pellets. “A pound of hay is still a pound of hay”. You should also feed pellets or cubes at ground level.
     

  3. nightskyfarm

    nightskyfarm New Member

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    A pound for pound world around. :)
     
  4. Necie@Lunamojo

    [email protected] Active Member

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    From what I've read here... Seems that most feed 3# of pellets per day per goat or 5# of hay per day per goat. ???
     
  5. NubianSoaps.com

    NubianSoaps.com New Member

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    The difference is that 3 pounds of alfalfa pellets is actually eaten, 3 pounds of hay, at least what...1 pound is on the ground? Add labor and storage and feeding alfalfa hay simply isn't economical. Also your alfalfa pellets are guaranteed 17% protein minimum, have you tested the hay in Conroe? How do you base what to feed in the milkroom if you don't know what the protein of your hay is? It's unnerving!!! V
     
  6. fmg

    fmg New Member

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    Where I live the Standlee alfalfa pellets are less than $7 for a 40 lb bag, but that is still more expensive than all but the best hay here, even considering the waste. If you have a cow or horse to feed the wasted stuff to, then that saves you even more. But it is true that you don't know for sure what the quality of hay is without testing it, and storage and just dealing with the hay is a pain. But don't you still have to feed some grass hay for roughage in the winter, if the ground is covered? I'm assuming even with the dead grasses, they can still get some roughage out of a pasture that doesn't have snow covering it.
     
  7. Qvrfullmidwife

    Qvrfullmidwife New Member

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    Most of the hay here that isnt eaten falls into a trough below the hay feeder and the goats eat that as well by sticking their heads through and any leftover hay goes to other critters. We are just always looking to compare and cut costs where we can and we always will have hay out, the only question is will it be alfalfa and coastal/grass hay or alfalfa pellets and coastal/grass hay.

    Nancy, no doubt about it if I lived where you do it would be hay all the way! I will never forget getting "last years grass hay" from Tracy when we picked up our starter Alpines in 2008--it looked better than ANY hay we can get out here, alfalfa or grass! I swear I am always trying to figure out how much I'd have to haul down, how much would it cost to go up there, etc. Driving by those fields of alfalfa was a beautiful sight! (Though I gladly exchange not getting the best hay down here for having snow in MAY like Tracy talked about this year--that is INSANE!)
     
  8. fmg

    fmg New Member

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    May? I've seen the snow fly in July! LOL. But, that was just a weird thing that happened once and it didn't stick or anything...then it went back to being hot again. Where Tracy lives is a little colder than where I do. Actually I live in about the hottest part of this area, plus there is geothermal stuff all around me. This is definitely one of the best hay areas I know of. That's probably why there are so many dairies here. There is something here that they call "dairy alfalfa" and what I've been told is that they cut it when it's very short, so it is very young and full of nutrients, and almost all leaf. The person that was explaining it to me said that they usually cut it 5 times a year....which normal hay around here is cut 3-4 times. I guess the upside of being so dry all the time here, is that we have pretty elaborate irrigation systems and "drought" is just all the time, so it doesn't really effect us much. Plus, we can water when we want, and take that water off of a crop if we want and it almost never gets rained on.
     
  9. Qvrfullmidwife

    Qvrfullmidwife New Member

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    I was waxing poetic to Tim again today about the hay up there, and how much I wish I had the means to just go up and get a yrs worth at a time...I suggested a vacation to Idaho for just he and I but it didnt go far, LOL!
     
  10. tendermeadowsnigerians

    tendermeadowsnigerians Senior Member

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    Wow $7 for a bag of alfalfa, it was $9 and in the last month has slowly gone up it was 11.49/bag last week who knows what it will be this week. The only place around me that will carry it is tractor supply, not my favotire place to shop but the alfalfa pellets that the local feed stores carry are sooooo dusty and none of them will order Standlee pellets
     
  11. Anita Martin

    Anita Martin Senior Member

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    I have fed alfalfa hay here and the waste is incredible! They do not eat any of the stalk, only the leaf, and half the leaf gets lost as shatter. Last time I got alfalfa in a bale it was $8 for about 50 pounds. In the bag it is 11.50-13.50. If our alfalfa was better here I'm sure the economics would weigh in favor of bales, but it tends to be stalky and the leaf falls off so much that even if it were tested, which never, ever, can we find tested hay here (we have to do it ourselves), then the test would be moot because of the wastage. I would much rather feed a longer-stemmed product than pellets but so far it has not worked out for us.
     
  12. Qvrfullmidwife

    Qvrfullmidwife New Member

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    Well something long-stemmed is a given, the only question is alfalfa hay and coastal hay or alfalfa pellets and coastal hay. Waste is worse (though minimized as much as possible) with hay but the goats have NOT liked it the few times we have tried to go back from alfalfa hay to pellets.

    $8 a 50lb bale would be half of what one commonly pays around here for alfalfa hay. The pellets were over $10 a bag at the co-op today. Either way aint cheap, that's for sure.

    Vicki--we feed the same thing on the milkstand regardless of the hay or pellets.
     
  13. doublebowgoats

    doublebowgoats Active Member

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    I have been feeding free choice pellets and browse this summer. (my goats are all dry and open right now) They started the summer eating an average of 4 or 5 lbs per goat and now that there is not much browse at all, they are eating around 6-7lbs of pellets/per goat. I got some nice coastal hay but they eat less than a flake a week between seven goats. I definitely don't think here in Texas, you can figure pound for pound. There is no waste at all, for my goats, anyway, with pellets and with hay they waste as much as half sometimes.
     
  14. dragonlair

    dragonlair Active Member

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    The Standlee Alfalfa pellets have gone up 3.00 in the past month around here. I am paying 13.00 for 40 pounds now. When i couldn't get to TSC, I bought a 50 pound bag of alfalfa pellets from Canada (sold by our local Agway store that is about 2 miles from my house). It was 19.99 a bag! The protein was 15% and it was dusty. I can only get mixed grass hay and the goats waste more than 1/2 of it. I can feed my 3 horses an entire meal on what the 6 goats waste each day.
     
  15. nightskyfarm

    nightskyfarm New Member

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    I would be working on my feeders, Sully. Box them in with keyholes and you will find that they eat the leaf drop and even some stems if there is a box to trap it all. Helen Staver in VT had beautiful keyhole feeders in her barn (I rented it after she sold all her Nubians) anyway they worked. A diamond shape at the top and then the long slot. The box was 14" deep and went up in the back almost three feet so you could fill the thing with hay. They put their head in and can not pull it out abruptly without dropping what is in their mouths. So it stays in the box, not on the floor never to be looked at again.
     
  16. fmg

    fmg New Member

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    But aren't the keyhole feeders dangerous with goats because when another comes up and rams them, they cannot pull their heads out quick enough?
     
  17. Qvrfullmidwife

    Qvrfullmidwife New Member

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    We have troughs of a sort under the feeders that catch dropped hay and they eat from that when they are done at the feeders. Ours are not eating through a keyhole feeder but one made of stock panels.
     
  18. MF-Alpines

    MF-Alpines New Member

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    LeeAnne, could you post a picture?
     
  19. MF-Alpines

    MF-Alpines New Member

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    Nicole, do you have a Rural King near you? They carry a brand, I forget the name, begins with an "M". It's out of Colorado. Great pellets, no dust, although the pellets are fairly large. Also, I forget the price as hubby has been the one picking them up.