Hay! How do you feed it? And an Easy Peasy Hay Feeder for Dummies tutorial.

Over the winter we feed a lot of hay…A. LOT. OF. HAY. (at least for us) I decided to switch over to round bales for the alpacas to save time and money. They go through their hay fast enough that I am not overly concerned with the hay and the weather. The girls can go through a round bale in just over a week. (They are pigs!)

Girls Feeder

I finally put chicken wire around the bottom as most of the hay ended up outside the feeder, and they thought they had the most AMAZING hay bed. Not only that, they also would climb IN the feeder and sleep 😡 I stopped closing it all the way because they would get “stuck” and I spent a lot of time rescuing fare maidens from the hay fortress…where you can apparently check in any time you like, but you can never leave. (You’re welcome in advance for getting that song stuck in your head)

I have been spending a lot of the spring cleaning up hay and I am not even close to being done.

Cleaning up the hayI do get to play on the tractor and spend time outside (and have a valid excuse for not doing housework) and the spent hay is used to mulch our hop yard and garden, so there IS a silver lining.

I scored the boys a hay feeder a few weeks ago at Tractor Supply Co. The best part is it was 70% off the online retail AND it is a John Deere hay feeder =) Now, you should know that just like people have strong feelings about Chevy and Ford, the same goes for tractors. When we were shopping for tractors I reminded my husband that they don’t write songs about “other” tractors =) so, we are a John Deere family. (Okay, maybe ONE song)

I have digressed.

How the boys used to eat hay

This is how the boys USED to eat their hay…this is the end of a round bale.

John Deere Hay feeder

Now they eat in John Deere style, see the lack of hay on the ground? Hercules doesn’t approve of my desire to photograph something besides him!

Then the time came to find the best way to provide nice, clean, and dry hay to the goats…that was a challenge. We have 3 pastures of goats, and I didn’t want to pay a lot of money or spend a lot of time to build something. I started looking around and saw a cool and simple idea on Pinterest.

Pinterest is hit or miss around here, I either come out the hero or crash and burn! I once tried to make this really awesome lemon cake to take to my in-laws for some occasion…

Pinterest failAgain, I digress.

Back to the goats and the hay dilemma, I found this amazingly SIMPLE idea that I thought even couldn’t mess up. Here is a video demonstration from our YouTube channel: *The demonstration of the buck apron is purely a video perk.

There is a video from another farm that uses a half barrel, which is a really cool idea, but my plate is rather full of “to-do’s” at the moment…I imagine I will get tired of refilling the boxes and opt for the larger plastic barrel before too long.

I hope if hay is a pain in the butt for you, this idea will be the hero moment for you that it was for me!


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