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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Alright, we have a micro-hobby farm and the goat hay feeder is two pallets thatve been configured into a hay feeder. It seems extremely messy. I know goats are notorious wasters, but this almost seems … more? They don’t eat from the side like I thought they would, reaching up to grab the hay. Rather they jump in it and poop all over it then knock down most of it (and won’t eat most of what’s fallen on the ground). There has to be a more efficient feeder?

we only have the two ND’s and won’t have more than them + eventual babies (who will be sold) so a large feeder isn’t necessarily necessary (or is it?)

or maybe I just need to get over it 😆
 

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Feeders. The biggest pain in the behind!
Well you defiantly don’t want them to be jumping in it! So maybe just a sheet of ply board on top will stop that? You could always post pictures and some handy dandy thinkers can come up with some ideas.
With the waste usually if they have to work to get the hay out they don’t seem to toss it on the ground as much. So if you get the top on that MIGHT get them to stop wasting so much. But you might have to make some kind of catch tray to catch what falls out.
Now I’ve been talking about this for years lol but what I want to do with mine goats is make like a fence line feeder. That’s where they have to put their head out of a fence (or a feeder that looks like a board fence). That way they can pick threw all they want but it’s not dirty and they can’t pull it out as easily so no excuse but to eat it.
But of course I always find things to spend my money on before this idea lol
 

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LOL, I suppose I shouldn't have put a laffy face on your post but welcome to goat world - silly wasteful goats. We had the same problem - we had a hay feeder in their shelter - it wasn't much of a problem until we had babies, they loved to sleep there, pee there, poop there - ruining the hay for everyone else. Ended up putting a fence panel over it to keep them out.

One thing we might have done if we had planned ahead is put some kind of wire enclosure up against the wall. Even just wire fencing up against the wall with a board across where you would have access to refill it.

If I had to buy hay, (we bale our own) I would definitely be putting something on the wall. You could somehow fashion something to put your pallets on the wall where they could pull the hay through as they eat. There would still be waste, that's unavoidable but at least they wouldn't be peeing and pooping in it and I would think there would be less waste. Of course you've learned that any hay that touches the ground immediately becomes inedible in the goats minds. :rolleyes:
 

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This is my favorite feeder so far. The bunk catches a lot of the hay that falls out of the top. I think a fence line feeder would be even more efficient, but I think my aggressive goats would take advantage of that to make potshots at the others when they had their heads in the feeder. You could maybe add a feed bunk or catch tray to the bottom of your existing feeder to catch the hay that falls out, and a covering like mentioned above.
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Feeders. The biggest pain in the behind!
Well you defiantly don’t want them to be jumping in it! So maybe just a sheet of ply board on top will stop that? You could always post pictures and some handy dandy thinkers can come up with some ideas.
With the waste usually if they have to work to get the hay out they don’t seem to toss it on the ground as much. So if you get the top on that MIGHT get them to stop wasting so much. But you might have to make some kind of catch tray to catch what falls out.
Now I’ve been talking about this for years lol but what I want to do with mine goats is make like a fence line feeder. That’s where they have to put their head out of a fence (or a feeder that looks like a board fence). That way they can pick threw all they want but it’s not dirty and they can’t pull it out as easily so no excuse but to eat it.
But of course I always find things to spend my money on before this idea lol

Haha! We have such a small area in comparison to what many of you do that I didn't consider a fence line type of feeder. From what I've seen that may be too big/much for our needs, but I think I may make something that could do that. We have chicken wire up for our fencing and for now at least they can stick their snouts through to get some hay. I threw some hay on the other side of the fence this morning and propped it up with some wood I had, and so far they're able to eat it that way. Thanks for this idea!
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
LOL, I suppose I shouldn't have put a laffy face on your post but welcome to goat world - silly wasteful goats. We had the same problem - we had a hay feeder in their shelter - it wasn't much of a problem until we had babies, they loved to sleep there, pee there, poop there - ruining the hay for everyone else. Ended up putting a fence panel over it to keep them out.

One thing we might have done if we had planned ahead is put some kind of wire enclosure up against the wall. Even just wire fencing up against the wall with a board across where you would have access to refill it.

If I had to buy hay, (we bale our own) I would definitely be putting something on the wall. You could somehow fashion something to put your pallets on the wall where they could pull the hay through as they eat. There would still be waste, that's unavoidable but at least they wouldn't be peeing and pooping in it and I would think there would be less waste. Of course you've learned that any hay that touches the ground immediately becomes inedible in the goats minds. :rolleyes:
LOL No offense taken. It's laughable! Getting a lot of good ideas here to utilize wire fence of sorts to prevent them from getting INTO the hay. They're quite small enough right now that poking their head through our fence with hay pressed against it is working. I only tried that this morning as a temporary solution. But now I'm considering something in their pen made of wire. But need to figure out how I'd prop the hay up off the ground too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
This is my favorite feeder so far. The bunk catches a lot of the hay that falls out of the top. I think a fence line feeder would be even more efficient, but I think my aggressive goats would take advantage of that to make potshots at the others when they had their heads in the feeder. You could maybe add a feed bunk or catch tray to the bottom of your existing feeder to catch the hay that falls out, and a covering like mentioned above.
View attachment 219846
View attachment 219847

My gosh, they're cute!

I love that feeder. Does that have a certain name I could search for in stores?

Stupid newb question here: what do you do with the hay that falls into the catch?
 

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Tractor supply carries bunk feeders like the red one. Goats are horrible when it comes to wasting hay, it’s my biggest headache. There are also wall feeders with trays under them that work for small herds.
The most important thing is for them to eat up, off the ground to lessen worm problems.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Ahh, thank you! Bunk feeder is what I'm looking for then. Silly question, what does one do with the hay that falls into the tray?
 

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Ahh, thank you! Bunk feeder is what I'm looking for then. Silly question, what does one do with the hay that falls into the tray?
I generally pop it back into the top if it’s clean if it’s dirty, I’ll throw it in compost pile or let the chickens use it as bedding or flooring. If it’s wet then compost or sometimes I’ll use it as mulch around plants
 

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I couldn't find a link to share for my red feeder. I am wondering if it's not being made anymore. But this one is quite similar Sheep/Goat Feeder w/Hay Rack . In my area, it's pretty easy to find that style of feeder at the local farm stores, or used on Craigslist, FB, etc.
You can also buy the bottom feed bunk component separately, and you might be able to put a feed bunk onto a feeder you make yourself. Or I've seen feeders made out of IBC totes and some out of wooden slats and blue plastic barrels.
 

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We use HayChix hay nets. Currently they're just hung in the barn, but in the summer we will use the net & throw the whole thing in the hay feeder. The big one is the small square bale nets, but we also have 1/2 bale nets (pictured with goats) in the smaller hole. They dramatically reduce hay loss! They are super easy to use, they come with the heavy duty carabiner, we just but a whole bale in the small square net & cut the twine once it's in there, the 1/2 bale nets we put on each side of the bale then cut the twine & zip it up. We can fill all 8 bags in about 10 minutes. Obviously we have to be aware of the goats with horns not getting stuck, but we haven't had any issue at all yet (knock on wood). Once we get settled in to the new place & get a permanent pasture figured out, we will use the large round bale net & goat feeder. I can't wait!


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I splurged on the red one from tractor supply. I thought I was going to love it...but it hasn't been as great as I thought it would be. I have little NDs. They just sleep in the tray and poop and pee in the fallen hay, and I have to clean out a wet sloppy mess every day. I had to put chicken wire over the top to keep them from jumping in the top. Also I wish there was a roof; I'd have paid extra for one. When I have hay in it, I put a tarp over the top. Right now, I'm not using it. But I'll try again when my goats are full grown. If they continue to sleep in the tray when they are full size, I will probably try to sell the feeder.

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Some people on FB use these cheap linen baskets from walmart (just take out the liner), so I bought a couple. So far, they've been working fine. I've also heard of people using wire dog crates.

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A Rubbermaid tote with holes cut in the sides is my homemade one! They've almost ruined it though but works for a while... we had one laying around the garage though!
 

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We made this wall feeder from scrap wood, so it certainly doesn't have to be expensive. We're adding a board to the bottom to catch more of the spent hay.
I agree to post a picture of what you have going there and see if you get some creative responses!
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