Evening photo: Pemberton Valley, BC, Canada

Pemberton Valley. It is about 90 miles north of Vancouver. Source.

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  • Xavier

    Round bales! The easy hay – usually the first cut of the season and handled by tractors because of the weight. The small square bales are much more labor intensive. We square bale the second cut because it’s richer and is hand fed to pregnant cows and young calves.

    You cannot believe the glory of being in the fields at night with dew on cut hay mirroring the full harvest moon. The heat of summer has passed, nights are cool and comfortable, and everything you see has a silver tint. Winter’s coming, but you know it’s going to be alright, because the haying is almost finished.

    • Frau Katze

      I always wondered why some bales were round. Now I know. Learn something new every day.

      • Xavier

        Round bales are carried by forks or spears on a tractor, and placed in a feeder that looks like a small metal circular fence. Typically they weigh between 900 and 1200 lbs, and the size can be controlled as the hay is picked up by the baler in the field. That will last 12-15 cows about a week, maybe a bit less, during the winter. It beats the hell out of going out every day in the cold and tossing them a pile of square bales!

        It’s somewhat amusing to see the pile of Queen Anne’s Lace (or, as the uneducated hillbillies around here call it, “Whitetop”) when they’re done; it’s bitter and they won’t eat it. They can use their tongues the way you and I use fingers.

        Our hay is a mix of Orchard Grass, Timothy, and Red Clover, and some stray Crown Vetch that’s migrated from the roadsides. There’s no such thing as pure hay – it’s all a blend.

        There will be a test after this drops off the page.