flake size and limiting hay amounts?

Discussion in 'Goat Frenzy' started by cdtrum, Oct 19, 2010.

  1. cdtrum

    cdtrum New Member

    Aug 25, 2008
    Northern Indiana
    Ok....as in Liz's thread talking about fat goats...what is a good flake size (what naturally flakes from bale)? , some say they give x-amounts of flakes a day for x-number of goats.....but what size is the flake? I am thinking maybe I should cut back on the boys hay.......I have always just filled their 4 hay baskets everytime I go out to the barn and see that they are empty or low, which is several times a day. I will admit I have alot of hay waste here. My boys are so smart and braty, they know when I walk into the barn that I am going to give fresh hay.....I have created spoiled brats! Jake bellows if I don't and gets the other boys going!

    So I have 4 wethers and we go through approx. 2 bales a week (small square bales)..... does that sound right?
     
  2. StaceyRosado

    StaceyRosado Administrator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Oct 4, 2007
    NJ
    I have 5 does and I go through 2-3 bales a week depending on the weather.

    I give 2 (what I call laps and you all call flakes) of hay per feeding. So a total of 4 a day. I give more in the winter
     

  3. Mon Reve Farm

    Mon Reve Farm New Member

    612
    Jun 25, 2010
    Southern DE
    At this point we are going through 4 bales per week but mine are the larger bales. We have 4 spring wethers, 4 spring doelings, 2 spring bucklings, 2 wethers and 5 does. There is enough waste for me to rake weekly for bedding.
     
  4. turtlebutte goats

    turtlebutte goats New Member

    99
    Nov 22, 2008
    In my opinion, a "flake" is about a 3"-5" chunk of hay that comes off of a square bale. No one really has said how much a flake is, but I believe it is this much.
     
  5. liz

    liz Well-Known Member

    Oct 5, 2007
    Shelocta PA
    Thats about the size of my flakes and I have plenty waste!
    I'm thinking that the 5 flakes I give my does in the afternoon and the 2 they get in the morning is way too much for the amount they are wasting....I have 6 does.

    The hay bales I have are of varied weights, some bales are packed tighter than others so I'm sure the flake size isn't consistently the same.
     
  6. turtlebutte goats

    turtlebutte goats New Member

    99
    Nov 22, 2008
    One thing I have been doing lately is feeding various groups of either goats or sheep an entire bale, however leaving the strings on. Eventually when the bale comes apart, I spread it out for other animals, and some for bedding. It appears I am having minimal waste.
     
  7. Mon Reve Farm

    Mon Reve Farm New Member

    612
    Jun 25, 2010
    Southern DE
    Do you put the bale in a rack of some sort that way? The ways our home made racks are built I don't think it would fit right if I left the strings on.

    We were talking about adding welded wire to are home made racks so that it would minimize how much falls to the ground as they pull at it. This might limit the waste a little more than how it is now.
     
  8. PznIvyFarm

    PznIvyFarm New Member

    939
    Jul 25, 2010
    I don't feel so bad about feeding my goats too much. What i am feeding sounds about right. I went thru 10 bales (the regular size, not the ultra long ones) in 6 weeks. I have all ND, 3 does, and 7 kids (9 weeks old) They are also getting 10 lbs/grain a day between all of them. I just bought 44 bales to get me thru most of the winter. We are supplementing with grass clippings right now to extend the life of the hay. (the guy i bought it from wants it gone, and he's only got about a dozen bales left after i took most of the rest.) Not sure what i will do once i run out.
     
  9. cdtrum

    cdtrum New Member

    Aug 25, 2008
    Northern Indiana
    I just bought 100 average size square bales and I hope that gets us through until 2nd cut next spring....I'm thinking I'll have to buy more.
     
  10. turtlebutte goats

    turtlebutte goats New Member

    99
    Nov 22, 2008
    I dont have a real feeder that I put the entire bale in, I just set it on the floor on one side if cattle panel and the goats stick their heads in but cannot get in. It does work well, and what minimal waste I have I can still use as feed or bedding, it hasnt been trampled or soiled at all.