Hay Storage Calculator
What is Hay Storage?
Hay storage is a crucial aspect of farming because it ensures that your beloved bovine buddies have plenty of nutritious food during the winter or when grazing isn’t possible.
So, let’s get stacking and calculate how much hay you’ll need for your herd using a proven formula!
How Do You Calculate Hay Storage?
To begin, we need to figure out the average daily intake of hay per cow. Typically, a cow munches on about 2.5% of its body weight in hay each day.
Let’s say you have a hefty Holstein cow that weighs 1,500 pounds (680 kilograms). Multiply that weight by 2.5% (or 0.025) to find out how much hay she’ll need in a day.
1,500 pounds (weight of the cow) x 0.025 (2.5%) = 37.5 pounds (around 17 kilograms) of hay per day.
Now that we know how much hay one cow requires per day, we can calculate the hay storage needed for a specific duration. Let’s say you want to plan for a 90-day period (which covers a typical winter season).
To calculate the total hay storage, multiply the daily hay intake by the number of cows you have and the number of days you want to prepare for. Let’s say you have 20 cows:
37.5 pounds (hay per day per cow) x 20 (number of cows) x 90 (number of days) = 67,500 pounds (around 30,617 kilograms) of hay storage
Wowza! That’s a whole lot of hay!
Keep in mind that this calculation assumes a consistent hay intake for all the cows and doesn’t account for any potential wastage. It’s always a good idea to have some extra hay on hand, just in case.
Now, when it comes to storing all this hay, you’ll want to make sure it stays in tip-top condition. Here are a few pointers:
- Choose a dry, well-ventilated storage area, like a barn or a covered shed. Moisture is hay’s archenemy, so keep it away from rain or snow.
- Stack the bales on pallets or a raised surface to avoid ground moisture seeping in.
- Ensure good airflow between the bales to prevent mold or mildew. Leave space between rows and walls.
- Regularly check for any signs of spoilage, like heat or musty smells. Remove any affected bales to prevent further damage.
- Lastly, label and organize your hay storage, so you can easily keep track of inventory and use the older bales first.