Category Archives: hay tarp

Moldy Hay – Why Hay Covers Are A Farmer’s Best Friend

hay-tarps-coverLivestock owners know the symptoms of moldy hay. The hay smells musty, throws off dust when broken apart, and may even contain the tell-tale black or gray mold spores in the middle of the bale. But with high hay prices, it is tempting to feed moldy hay. After all, if the animals still eat it, how harmful can it really be?
Moldy hay poses many dangers. First of all, moldy hay is harmful to the humans handling the hay. Mold spores inhaled by a human irritate the lungs, and aggravate existing respiratory issues such as asthma.
The dangers of respiratory issues are also present for the livestock consuming the hay. In addition to breathing in the mold spores, livestock who eat moldy feed experience a decline in appetite, a loss of productivity, and increased reproductive issues. These issues are exacerbated in high production animals such as dairy cattle.
So what to do? First of all, buy from a reputable source. Hay becomes moldy if it is not properly dried before being baled. Next, inspect all hay before feeding. A hungry animal will eat almost anything put in front of it. Do not rely on the livestock to tell you if the hay is good or not. Check for dust, musty smells, or mold spores, especially in the middle of the bale.
Lastly, protect your supply! Hay molds whenever it is exposed to damp conditions or rain. Keep your hay bales stored on a dry surface. If your barn has dirt flooring, invest in a quality tarp. If you must store your hay outdoors, a hay cover is absolutely essential. For more information on products that can keep your hay safe and dry, contact us.

Get Hay Cover Orders in Before Augusts Cutting Period Begins

How are your fields of native grasses doing this summer? If they are progressing along nicely, there is an excellent chance that youll be dusting off thehay coversin the dog days ahead. With that in mind, here is a smattering of dos and donts to keep in mind before you fire up the tractor:

Do remember that moisture plays an important role in how good your August harvest will be once the winter months roll around. Most experts agree that the ideal moisture levels are in between 18 to 22%. So try to plan your harvest days accordingly and use all of the right tools to get the job done (e.g. crimpers and preservatives).

Dont forget that many hay preservatives must be added before the baling process begins. The one exception to the rule tends to beanhydrous ammonia. However, it isnt appropriate for use in every situation. So youll want to choose your preservation chemicals wisely.

Do think to order enough hay covers to allow for proper air circulation around the bales. In most cases, allowing 25-inches between each bale and 4-feet between each row should be sufficient. If you have enough room on your property to allow for more distance between the individual bales and rows, go ahead and take advantage of it.

Dont be haphazard when making your hay cover selection. Be sure to choose ones that will completely protect your bales from the weather, animals, insects and accidental combustion. And always opt to add 4 to 5-inches extra onto your initial measurements to ensure a perfect fit.

Do keep in mind that hay covers are made on demand and UPS Ground shipping during this time of year may be a bit slow. So get your orders in at least two weeks before you plan on rolling through the fields with your trusty John Deere.To learn more about getting hay covers to your farm in time for an August harvest, pleasecontact usonline or by calling (877) 811-3911 today. At Canopies & Tarps, we have all of the hay covers youll ever need.

Have Rodents Been Ardently Chewing on Your Existing Hay Covers?

Hay Tarps

Just because the weather is getting warmer doesn’t mean that the mice and rats will leave your farms supply of hay alone. So now is not the time to get complacent. That said, you may want to take care of the following farming tasks this weekend:

Examine the Hay Covers

Check your farms supply of hay covers for signs of rodent damage and activity first. Then clean and repair or replace the damaged hay covers straightaway. If you decide to clean the hay covers, be sure to use a disinfectant that is capable of killing the Hantavirus. Otherwise, you run the risk of sickening your family, pets and livestock.

Clean and Disinfect the Area

Depending on where your hay is being stored, you may need to disinfect the entire area as well as any farming equipment thats been used nearby too. The Center for Disease Control and U.S. Armed Forces Pest Management Board has a list of specific cleaning instructions that you may find helpful in that regard. Plus, most farm-related disinfectants come with instructions as well.
Trap and Remove Pests

Of course before you go through the disinfection process, youll want to render the area rodent free. Placing a variety of traps, rodenticides, repellents and rodent-eating animals in the area may help in that regard. In some instances, it may also be necessary to call in a professional exterminator.

Put New Safeguards in Place

Once those tasks are complete, youll need to put more safeguards in place than just hay covers. Storing the hay on pallets and keeping the surrounding area free of debris will help. Creating a gravel base for the pallets and sealing up any small openings in the barn may help keep the rodents at bay too.

To learn more about ordering and maintaining hay covers, please contact us by calling (877) 811-3911 toll-free. At Canopies and Tarps, we have a huge collection of rot, mold and mildew resistant hay covers on offer that are perfect for animal husbandry and farming applications.