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Modern Livestock Feeding

livestockJust a century ago most of the cattle in the United States simply grazed to get fed, but the growing population of the world has made demand for beef skyrocket. Now customers are no longer satisfied with very lean meat, and farmers need to make sure that their cattle are very healthy and well fed. Most farmers have the tools that they need readily available, because they are used to dealing with them on a regular basis, but a smaller livestock owner may not know what tools are necessary. As a modern livestock owner there are all kinds of tools that you need to do your job well, and there are three in particular that you need to feed your stock.

The Feed

Obviously the most important thing in feeding livestock is the feed itself. There are all kinds of hays and grains that are available for cattle, and knowing which one is right for you is key to maximizing your feed dollars. Round hay bales are excellent bargains for livestock owners with large herds. The size of the bale means that it can feed a lot of stock, and a small herd will not be able to eat through the entire bale before the hay goes bad. For smaller herds the best choice is a square bale. These are small enough that they can be maneuvered by hand, and your stock will be able to eat all of it before the hay gets ruined.

The Feeder

The second thing that you will need is something to hold the feed for your stock to eat. If your herd is far away from the barn or your house, and it is hard to get them close to feed them, a portable cattle feeder is the most practical solution. These feeders attach to the back of the truck, like a trailer, and can be moved quickly from one spot to another. Not every livestock owner faces such a challenge, and if your herd is small or they stay close to the barn or house, a stationary feeder is just fine. Some of the best stationary feeders use pins in the side so that you can open the feeder and fit it around the bale, rather than trying to get a very large bale inside the feeder. No matter where your herd is located, make sure that your feeder can handle the bales that you have on hand. A narrow interior is not going to hold a round bale and a lot of feed will be wasted if your try to fit a round bale inside a narrow feeder.

Hay Transport

So you have the feed, and you have the feeder, but how do you get the two together? In some cases you may be able to back the feeder up right next to where the hay is stored, but other times you will need a tool to move hay around. These hay wagons or hay carts are mobile units that make loading a moving bales a breeze. With a hay cart you will be able to put a bale of hay into the cart and move it without worrying about damaging the bale or causing the hay to come undone. A hay transport is a necessity if you are storing your hay in a place where your feeder does not have easy access.

There are a lot of tools available to help farmers and livestock owners feed their animals. With the right tools for the right job you will be able to take care of your animals at a lower cost and more efficiently than ever before.

Published on behalf of Mr. John Schmidt. This article was written to inform owners of small herds of livestock about the tools they will need to take care of their animals. Examples of the livestock feeders can be found at www.farmcomanufacturing.com.

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