Round Bale Feeder

Discussion in 'Goat Management' started by BareCreekFarm, Jan 27, 2012.

  1. BareCreekFarm

    BareCreekFarm New Member

    Nov 20, 2011
    Central Kentucky
    We have been trying to figure out a way to feed our goats round bale hay through the winter. I have seen a few feeder designs, but none of them look like they would work for horned goats. Do any of you have any ideas or designs for a feeder?
  2. KW Farms

    KW Farms Moderator Supporting Member

    Jun 21, 2008
    Wapato, WA
    Cattle panels in a circle. Cut larger holes around in places so they can get in there without getting the horns caught. Might need to tarp around it and cut out the places where they can stick their heads that discourages them from trying to stick their heads through the other spaces.

  3. HoosierShadow

    HoosierShadow Senior Member

    Apr 19, 2010
    Central Kentucky
    We didn't put round bales in the pen this time since it's been so wet/muddy.

    This is what we did last year and it worked great!


    If I weren't using this part of the barn as the front of the barn this year <we had this side closed off last year>, then I would possibly have put another round roll here for them.
    You have to make sure the pallets don't have missing boards so they don't get their heads in there and get stuck. If they are spaced like that, the kids can reach between the boards if they want or they can all try to reach the top. It can also help keep them from knocking the roll over since they typically like to eat from the bottom, but as you can see the girls liked to put their feet on the pallets and eat from the top.
    Next year a permanent place for a hay roll WILL be in the works.

    And wow I am on a pallet kick tonight since I was talking about using them in another post LOL
  4. Bit of Everything

    Bit of Everything New Member

    Jan 28, 2011
  5. Guest

    Guest Guest

    I tried every think I think, the panel around the bale with every other cut out, worked till the kids got in it. Still wasted the bottom seemed like but worked better than most things I tried though. The thing I found while feeding hay from a bale is don't fluff it up, or pull the hay around to where they ate all the hay. If given a chance they will eat all the leaves off the stems and leave them. I did find too and you cant use the panel for this is that they waste way less of that bale if its on its side and you make them eat from one end. They have to eat the stem and all when its fed that way and leave the strings on or the wrap and only pull it off as needed. I thought about taking one of my silo's and putting it on its side then putting several bales in it and making a giant chap stick tube pushing the bales forward as they ate it. The other advantage to laying it on its side is it takes longer for the goats to eat their daily rations, so the boredom thing is minimized, what else they got to do.
    After having 10 goats die from falling bales, after I bought a different type baler. I quit putting them on the ground and bought a grinder and bunks.
    I thought about suspending bales from chains too but figured they would waste a lot that way too. No if you can master the bale on its side it makes the hay go further it is hard for the goats to reach the top of the bale though and they wind up eating the the bottom and the top falls over. Unless you could rotate it .........I don't know, there is no good way to feed a bale of hay to a goat.
  6. HoosierShadow

    HoosierShadow Senior Member

    Apr 19, 2010
    Central Kentucky
    BTW, I forgot to ad in my post, the bale we had in that pic wasn't a very good bale, so we didn't care if it was wasted - it was mostly weed with alfalfa, so they picked through the weed <which helped with mud control when it fell we spread it around>, and ate the alfalfa - one of those things where we were ripped off on hay more or less...
    If you used the round bales of grass mix, it wouldn't be like that. I don't think I have any pics of the regular grass hay rolls with the pallets, just this lousy one LOL
  7. LoneStarChic

    LoneStarChic New Member

    Jan 19, 2012
  8. jaycee

    jaycee Senior Member

    Aug 3, 2011
    Alton, IL
    I just drop the rolls in the barn and then fork off pieces each day and put in their square bale feeders I made. This seems like the least wasteful way, but also more labor intensive of course.
  9. BareCreekFarm

    BareCreekFarm New Member

    Nov 20, 2011
    Central Kentucky
    These are great ideas! I have never heard of using pallets, but it looks like it would work great (I don't have any pallets right now) but I will be trying it.
    With the panels, how big do you think I should make the openings. I want them to be big enough so that they can reach in, but I do have the little goats that will get their heads stuck.
  10. goathideaway

    goathideaway New Member

    Feb 4, 2012
    I had a feeder specially designed for round bales and goats. It is amazing! Is steel and is in 2 foot sections. They attach at top and bottom and are very easy to move. Just set bale down and then put into place. I cant attach a pic bc its too large. How can i downsize?
  11. AlaskaBoers

    AlaskaBoers New Member

    May 6, 2008
    Wasilla Alaska
    I do the same as LoneStar and it works really good, when the bale is down to almost nothing but the last bit, I remove the panel entirely and they have a lot of fun finishing it and clean it up real fast