Bale Feeder Demonstration
Winter stored feeding and associated waste in hay feeding is a major expense to cow calf operations. SPA summaries from Iowa and Illinois beef herds in 2000 to 2004 determined that 60% of total herd costs were associated with feed. Michigan State University research found that bale rings with solid bottoms and bale rings with cone inserts reduced waste compared with other feeders, with 6.1% and 3.5% waste, respectively. These results were found when feeding medium to high quality hays. With help from local sponsors, research and extension staff evaluated bale feeder waste with lower quality hays.