hay / feed question

Discussion in 'Dairy Goat Info' started by stoneyheightsfarm, Aug 22, 2008.

  1. stoneyheightsfarm

    stoneyheightsfarm New Member

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    I found a hay that my girls (and boys) like and eat most of, rather than wasting most of. Question is, it's an orchard grass 90% and alfalfa 10% mix, with only 14% protein. Of course, I'd prefer a 16% protein hay, but this is not only yummy to my girls (and maybe the less protein would help my boys from getting UC?) but it can be delivered in large quantities (HUGE benefit, since I won't have to go scrambling about trying to organize and burden folks to help me out since I don't have a truck/trailer and couldn't maneuver with a trailer if I did!) What do y'all think? Would getting a higher protein grain ration balance that out? Would I even need to worry about that until my girls are in milk?
     
  2. Sondra

    Sondra New Member

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    don't depend on this hay for your calcium and milkers
     

  3. stoneyheightsfarm

    stoneyheightsfarm New Member

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    Okay, thanks. Hadn't thought about calcium!
     
  4. Sondra

    Sondra New Member

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    In other words in my opinion this hay is just fine but you also need alfalfa pellets for both the boys and the girls.
     
  5. NubianSoaps.com

    NubianSoaps.com New Member

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    Delivered to your barn...shoot I would buy it in a heart beat!

    But yes like sondra said it is likely not enough calcium for your milkers if they are good milkers or normally have litters. Vicki
     
  6. stoneyheightsfarm

    stoneyheightsfarm New Member

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    My "milkers" are February babies! :) So I have yet to see. It is $8.10 a bail, and I paid $4 a bail for the alfalfa I have, but it's better for horses (thicker stems) and much gets wasted. I had bought a couple bails of really nice alfalfa for $8.95 a bail that I'd love to keep getting, so I'll check and see if they deliver. It seems as though if they waste 80% of a $4 bail but eat 90% of an $8 or $9 bail, then it's worth the added cost for the finer stems.
     
  7. NubianSoaps.com

    NubianSoaps.com New Member

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    Or fix the feeder so they can eat what they want off the flake of the thicker stemmed hay, without wasteing it on the ground and then pick up whats left and throw it to the horses? vicki
     
  8. stoneyheightsfarm

    stoneyheightsfarm New Member

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    LOL! That's the problem--I don't have horses, and my feeder is so good at reducing waste (not my design, but I have photos) that I have to pull out the stuff they won't eat and it becomes expensive bedding!
     
  9. shawhee

    shawhee Member

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    I would like to see a picture of your feeder :biggrin
     
  10. VickiLynne

    VickiLynne Member

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    I also would like to see a picture of your feeder.

    Vicki in NC
     
  11. stoneyheightsfarm

    stoneyheightsfarm New Member

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    ooookay. How do I get my pictures on here? I can't seem to figure it out! :help
     
  12. BlissBerry

    BlissBerry Guest

    Upload to Photobucket and copy/paste the link.

    Sara
     
  13. stoneyheightsfarm

    stoneyheightsfarm New Member

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    Thanks, Sara!!! :D

    http://i424.photobucket.com/albums/pp324/stoneyheightsfarm/IMAG0033.jpg

    http://i424.photobucket.com/albums/pp324/stoneyheightsfarm/IMAG0034.jpg

    http://i424.photobucket.com/albums/pp324/stoneyheightsfarm/IMAG0031.jpg

    These are images from the front, side, and rear during our construction phase. If I were to do anything differently, I would make it deeper, and I yet may move the slats closer together because a particular doe likes to worm her way through them to greet me when I'm in the hay room! I also may do something different for feeding grain--right now I put feed bowls in the feeder for them to eat from, but sometimes they knock the bowls over. Come milking time, this won't be an issue but that will be a few months!
     
  14. Haglerfarm

    Haglerfarm New Member

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    I would buy that hay in an instant. Actually I bought 140 bales of orchardgrass hay for my girls. Pretty decent hay. The hay grown locally is not good hay generally speaking. Especially in this drought. This year and last. I am just lucky to have any hay at all. I always add USAlfalfa or alfalfa pellets to their feed, bucks included. My milking girls are also fed a milk enhancer feed from our Co-op which they do well on. Since stones are generally caused by not enough calcium (inbalance of calcium to phosphorus) in the bucks diet, not protein. My bucks eat what my girls do. And since they are fed mostly grass hay which is high in phosphorus I add alfalfa pellets. Don't have problems with stones. I do however try not to feed them much molasses as my vet said there has been some correlation between that and stones.
    As for the protein, if they are not milking, 14% is plenty. When my goats are dry I drop their protein to 12-14%. Then I up it close to kidding and while milking. And actually since I don't have a milk market where I am I do not need a huge amount of milk. Just enough for kids and to show. Which they do handily.
    Leslie Sensing