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Old 10-15-2010, 02:54 PM
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how much does one of those big rolls of hay sell for?

I live in Indiana, and often you'll see those big rolls of hay in a field. They're always the same size, so I assume there is some sort of standard.

Sometimes you'll see a truck with those on them. They're big, and not many fit on the truck bed (not a semi, but a pretty decent size truck).

I was curious what the stand roll size/weight is, and how much those sell for, typically?

Thanks!
Old 10-15-2010, 03:38 PM
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Those rolls of hay are called "round bales." The price varies depending on the kind of hay (grass or legume), its quality and on the supply/demand in the region where it's being sold.

A quick search suggests that a round bale typically weighs around 1200 lbs and currently sells for $35 - 50 (grass hay costs less, timothy and other high-quality hay costs more) in Indiana.

Last edited by cwthree; 10-15-2010 at 03:41 PM.
Old 10-15-2010, 04:06 PM
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Thanks!
Old 10-15-2010, 04:54 PM
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According to my daughter, those round hay bales are illegal...because they don't give the cows a square meal. Haw haw haw!



sorry
Old 10-15-2010, 04:57 PM
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Also, in some areas, those suckers area a sort of bartering tool. States like PA will let you harvest hay/straw/whatever in exchange for planting XX quantity of, for example, oats. The oats serve as food for the local fauna, which makes hunting season better.

Tipped over, they also make excellent bench rests for target shooting (ahh, nostalgic memories).
Old 10-16-2010, 05:10 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheChileanBlob View Post
According to my daughter, those round hay bales are illegal...because they don't give the cows a square meal. Haw haw haw!



sorry
For whatever weird reason, that cracked me up. Thanks for starting my day with a good laugh.
Old 10-16-2010, 06:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheChileanBlob View Post
According to my daughter, those round hay bales are illegal...because they don't give the cows a square meal. Haw haw haw!



sorry
Lovin' it
Old 10-16-2010, 07:09 AM
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Originally Posted by cwthree View Post
The price varies depending on the kind of hay (grass or legume), its quality and on the supply/demand in the region where it's being sold.
This is a significant point, since just about everything else is subject to government-set pricing.
Old 10-16-2010, 10:08 AM
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I just help a neighbor load and transport 10 rolls this week. The price he paid was $30 a bale, and that's a little under market. $35 is about right here. It was peanut hay and I am in Georgia.
Old 10-16-2010, 02:54 PM
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Was that for horses or cows? Cows can eat all kind of crappy forage. I've seen cornstalk baled for cows, peanut plants (NOT "peanut hay" the actual greens of peanut plants), kudzu, nasty moldy grass hay that's been sitting out for three years...

Horses can only eat relatively fresh, high quality, mold-free grass or legume hay (such as alfalfa). So the price, obviously, is much higher for horse-quality than cow-quality.
Old 10-16-2010, 04:09 PM
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Quote:
Was that for horses or cows? Cows can eat all kind of crappy forage. I've seen cornstalk baled for cows, peanut plants (NOT "peanut hay" the actual greens of peanut plants), kudzu, nasty moldy grass hay that's been sitting out for three years...
True...depending on the cow. Cattle raised for the beef market can do just fine on low-quality forage. They're usually only fed the high-quality expensive stuff in their final few months when they're being fattened for slaughter. Dairy stock however, with the constant demand for milk production are fed only the best during their productive period. To illustrate... a friend of mine grows hay for export to Japanese dairies. It pays well, about 2-3times the domestic price, but they are absolute nuts about quality. Practically every bale is opened and inspected...the presence of any weeds, the slightest hint of mold or moisture, even a few dead flies in a sealed transport container gives them cause to reject the whole shipment.

And an interesting note on round hay bales...farm country is rife with stories (some of which may be true) of these things being inadvertantly dropped on a steep hillside field, starting to roll, picking up massive momentum, and ripping through fences, cattle herds, even smashing through barns and houses. Sounds like the making of a grade Z horror movie...instead of the BLOB that swallowed NYC, the HAY that ran amok and mangled the farm.....
Old 10-16-2010, 05:49 PM
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Originally Posted by SeldomSeen View Post
Quote:
Was that for horses or cows? Cows can eat all kind of crappy forage. I've seen cornstalk baled for cows, peanut plants (NOT "peanut hay" the actual greens of peanut plants), kudzu, nasty moldy grass hay that's been sitting out for three years...
True...depending on the cow. Cattle raised for the beef market can do just fine on low-quality forage. They're usually only fed the high-quality expensive stuff in their final few months when they're being fattened for slaughter.
Now that I think of it, in the areas where I've kept horses, there is very little dairy cattle business, mostly beef, so that's what I'm more familiar with. I agree with everything you said -- I'm aware that dairy cattle are pretty coddled for farm animals. The only difference is, cows are fed high quality forage because it improves some facet of production. Horses are fed good quality forage because the alternative (bad forage or no forage) will kill them. As a result, the price for desireable horse hay can get much higher in a shortage than the price of good quality forage for cows -- because cows have more options.

Last edited by Hello Again; 10-16-2010 at 05:52 PM.
Old 10-16-2010, 05:51 PM
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Originally Posted by SeldomSeen View Post
And an interesting note on round hay bales...farm country is rife with stories (some of which may be true) of these things being inadvertantly dropped on a steep hillside field, starting to roll, picking up massive momentum, and ripping through fences, cattle herds, even smashing through barns and houses.
A former member of the band ELO was killed by a rolling hay bale.

Quote:
Giant hay bale kills former ELO cellist

LONDON | Tue Sep 7, 2010 1:29pm EDT

(Reuters) - A giant bale of hay has killed a founding member of the Electric Light Orchestra (ELO) band after it tumbled down a hill and crashed into his van.

Cellist Mike Edwards, 62, died after the 600 kg (1,323 lb) bale rolled down a steep field in Devon, southern England, smashed through a hedge and careered on to the road.

He died instantly in the freak accident on Friday afternoon.

Police said they used photographs and YouTube footage to identify Edwards and are investigating whether the bale may have fallen from a tractor working on farmland near the road.

Edwards, who played with the band between 1972 and 1975, is believed to have swerved into another vehicle as the bale crushed his cab.
Old 10-17-2010, 12:40 AM
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There is no "standard" size for these bales. Each farmer would have his own baler (machine to make the bales) and all bales will be the same size....

but another farmer down the road may have a different baler that makes bales of a different size. I've helped move round bales that were easily picked up by hand (about 50 pounds) up to round bales that required two or three guys to roll them around.

It's all farmer preference and what they plan to do with them, how they are going to be handled.

Not all the bales you see are necessarily for sale either. Some farmers end up using all of their own hay (for cattle, horses, whatever).
Old 10-18-2010, 03:57 PM
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Some people believe the big, round, white things in fields are plastic wrapped round bales for silage. They're actually tractor eggs.
Old 10-18-2010, 11:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SeldomSeen View Post
<snip>

And an interesting note on round hay bales...farm country is rife with stories (some of which may be true) of these things being inadvertantly dropped on a steep hillside field, starting to roll, picking up massive momentum, and ripping through fences, cattle herds, even smashing through barns and houses. Sounds like the making of a grade Z horror movie...instead of the BLOB that swallowed NYC, the HAY that ran amok and mangled the farm.....
My aunt and uncle were haying a topographically challenging field this summer- very hilly, can't see the corners from the middle, can't see one corner from another, your basic glaciated lumps. At one point, a runaway round bale ended up halfway up a tree after bouncing down a slope.
Old 10-19-2010, 07:58 AM
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Originally Posted by Aeschines View Post
I live in Indiana, and often you'll see those big rolls of hay in a field. They're always the same size, so I assume there is some sort of standard.
I used to have a ranch, and I baled my alfalfa in round bales most of the time. When I used them to feed cattle and horses on my small place, I'd put the bales in a round-bale feeder. That way, the animals couldn't step on the bales, so the hay wouldn't be ruined if it took the critters days or weeks to finish it off. In wet weather, I'd put some 4x4s in the bottom of the feeder so the hay wouldn't sit in mud. The guys with the larger operations have specially-designed pickup beds with unloader/unroller arms (like this) that let them drive through the field unrolling the bale for the cattle.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Aeschines View Post
I was curious what the stand roll size/weight is, and how much those sell for, typically?
The price varies not only by type of hay but by year as well. Also, hay is typically priced by weight when selling in larger quantities, and the weight of a bale will vary due to how tightly it's baled and the moisture content of the hay.

That said, my bales (alfalfa) varied between 1,300 and 1,600 pounds, and sold for anywhere from $50 to $95.

I've purchased round bales of straw for as little as $25.

Despite comments earlier in the thread, I always had a heck of a time getting the stupid things rolling. They are easy to load/unload/move using a properly equipped tractor (I used a grapple loader on mine, many of my friends used a round bale spike that drove through the center of the bale), but it can be a challenge to get a 3/4-ton round bale out of a pickup truck without a tractor (I'd try to park on a hill and use ropes).

Last edited by Gary Robson; 10-19-2010 at 08:03 AM.
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