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How do you define 'good' or 'dusty' hay?

Discussion in 'Metabolic' started by Jessey, Nov 14, 2017.

  1. Jessey

    Jessey Well-Known Member

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    I know the normal good hay should be leafy, sweet smelling etc. but in reality where is your line between good and bad hay?

    The hay mans response to my saying the hay is dusty and smells of mould (but none visible) was 'it didn't look any more dusty than any other hay to me', I can't really argue with the man because there isn't an industry standard for what is good/bad, perhaps my expectation is too high o_O
     
  2. Trewsers

    Trewsers Well-Known Member

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    Hmm.
    Good hay = nice smelling, no lumps of mud inside, no prickly thorny stalky bits and when I pull a slice off and spread it our or net it up, it doesn't make me sneeze, hold my breath or blow black (sorry to be graphic there:cool:) and of course no obvious mould spores
    Bad hay = all the above in reverse and also can feel incredibly heavy to lift. Whenever OH and I go to collect any we avoid super-heavy bales because generally they are pretty bad on the inside.
     
    #2 Trewsers, Nov 14, 2017
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2017
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  3. joellie

    joellie Well-Known Member

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    I would say good hay is as @Trewsers said, I would also agree with the heavy bales vs the lighter weight bales. I got 400 bales last year and some are heavy and some lighter in weight. The heavy ones aren't so bad as to be dusty but they don't fall apart as easily or fluff out as easily. They would be a lot coarser compared to the soft hay in the lighter bales. I tend to give mostly the coarser hay to my horses as the sheep don't like it, they like the softer hay.
    Funny enough I had bales of shavings delivered today and the man asked me if I knew where he could get big round bales of haylage as the weather was so bad this year he wasn't able to make as many as usual and his costumers where finding it hard to get any elsewhere. He also said it was nearly impossible to get the small bales of hay and they were going for a high price and that I was lucky to have bought in the 400 bales last year. He saw sitting in my field next door large round bales of haylage but I had to explain to him that someone paid us to come and cut and bale it for their own use. He said the large round bales were going for £45 a bale. What price would a large round bale of haylage go for on the mainland?
     
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  5. Star the Fell

    Star the Fell Well-Known Member

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    I pay £35 for round bale haylage from a local farmer - lovely stuff.
    In Summer I have to buy small bales of hay as the big bales go off before we get through it all. No-one produces small bales near me so I have to buy it through the feed shop. It varies enormously as to how dusty it is, but I ALWAYS have to soak it for my firl as it makes her cough. The colour of the water after 20 minutes soaking is enough to put you off!
     
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  6. joellie

    joellie Well-Known Member

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    Yes i think thats how much they usually are here so they have went up by £10 a bale:eek: I prefer the small bales as I find them less dusty than the large round bales. Yes the water is a horrible brown colour, I only soak my hay in the summer time, I no longer soak it during the winter , thank goodness I can get away without soaking it during the winter months.
     
  7. orbvalley

    orbvalley Well-Known Member

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    Good hay - If the smell makes me want to make an infusion of "tea" then I call it good!
    Bad hay - heavy, dusty, full of soil clumps or stones, causes horses to cough, causes weight loss, wouldn't even dream of making an infusion with it:p!

    IMO - if your hay supplier has said its no dustier than any of the others then I'd change supplier. Bl**dy cheek:mad:!!!
     
  8. newforest

    newforest Opinion, a view not always based on knowledge.

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    Good they eat it.
    Bad they don't.

    I am allergic to hay so I cough and sneeze with good or bad stuff.
     
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  9. Kite_Rider

    Kite_Rider Cantering cabbage!

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    Good smells like hay, sweet fresh and isn't dusty.
    Bad smells mouldy, or just off, is so dusty it makes my eyes itch.
    I don't mind a bit dusty as I soak it anyway and always wear a mask when I make hay nets up, but no if it makes my eyes itch it's just too bad.
     
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  10. Jessey

    Jessey Well-Known Member

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    Unfortunately this is supplier number 4 for this year (I always like to keep a few on board in case 1 has a bad year), 1 was the last of last years hay, 1 was straight off the field (good non dusty hay but the stuff the horses have now decided they won't eat although they happily ate it before) , 1 set my allergies off (constant sinus bleeds kind of bad) although the horses loved it and this lot.

    This hay is a good mix of leafy and stalky and a good range of grasses, when the dust isn't flying and avoiding the mouldy bit it smells nice and is clear of weeds. I looked at my neighbours half of the load last night, her's is much better than mine, no hint of mould and only a little bit of dust, so I really am hoping this is just 1 bad bale.
     
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