GutzBusta® Slow Feeder Hay Nets are also suitable for cattle, alpaca’s and other livestock primarily in the hobby farm area.
Stop soiling and wastage and slow the rate of consumption of precious hay with your Livestock!!
In addition to the information below, you will also find more photos and stories on feeding Livestock with a GutzBusta Round Bale Net on our Blog page.
We have a huge range of hay net hole sizes available and in order to help you with your decision on what hole size/s will best suit your livestock, we have more information here.
Cattle - The slow demise of a round bale.
John and Alison from Newbridge tried a GutzBusta® Round Bale Net with their cattle and sheep.
Although there are other variables such as weather, time of year etc, they were happy to report that putting a GutzBusta® Slow Feeder Hay Net on their round bale made the bale last twice as long. There were 6 cows and 15 sheep with access and the bale still lasted until day 10. It was unknown if the sheep got a chance though as the cows were primarily around the bale.
Although there were no problems with the cattle being caught in the net, it would be advisable to put a steel feeding ring around the outer perimeter and then the round bale with the net on the inside of this ring. This will keep the cattle and their hooves from actually walking on the bale as it gets eaten down.
The following sequence of photos shows the slow demise of the round bale using a 4cm 48ply GutzBusta Hay Net.
Ear tags may be a problem for some cattle as they may rub them out, so you will need to access if this will be a problem for your individual situation. Hobby farmers will find using our GutzBusta Hay Nets a godsend, however Stud Show Cattle owners may not wish to risk their cows ears being torn.
These photos clearly show how easy the Alpaca’s navigate using a GutzBusta Slow Feed Hay net. The owners of Lualto Alpaca’s kindly let us trial our nets with their livestock at the 2013 Murrumbateman Field Days. They were impressed by many factors, namely that the Alpaca’s were kept amused for a long time and also that they were not able to kick up and carry the hay around and then sit on it and use it as a toilet. Great to save on hay wastage. Pictured here using a 4cm Small (old style) GutzBusta Hay Net.
These nets would be ideal for Alpaca’s, sheep and cattle in situations such as Field Days to keep the animals pens tidy, allow them access to hay all the time and also just keep the stock amused.
A recent conversation with a very happy customer reported that after using a 3cm Round Bale Hay Net with her sheep, goats and alpacas, she has gone from going through 1 round bale ever week to the round bale lasting to between 5 and 6 weeks. The net therefore pays for itself very quickly.
Please note that if your livestock have horns that netting could get hooked on, then we don't recommend using any type of netting slow feeders for these animals. Similarly, if your cattle have ear tags, then there is the possibility of them rubbing their heads and getting their ear tags caught and possibly ripping an ear, or losing the tag. It is therefore up to the owners discretion whether this product would be suitable or not. For hobby farmers, these nets are a god send.
What size hole suits your livestock the best?
This comes down to many factors, but similar to the horses. Despite having no top teeth, we have had cattle eat from 3cm nets. We recommend 4cm however and if the hay is course and stalky and not as palatable, then 6cm would be better.
Donkeys fall under the same rules as horses:
* If this is their first time use of a slow feed hay net, then we recommend 4cm. If your Donkey has reached 'expert' level status at eating through a 4cm, then come down to a 3cm.
* More palatable hays require smaller holes, such as lucerne or rich pastures.
If your hay is stalky and not so palatable, then 6cm would be great, but watch hoof size V's netting size and always ensure the net hole size is smaller than the actual Donkeys feet.
Alpacas and Goats cope well with both 3cm and 4cm nets, so it's really a matter of palatability of the hay and stalkiness.
You may have to experiment with different sized holes. We have found with our own horses that hay they may eat in summer in a 4cm hole, they won't eat unless in a 6cm holed net in winter.
Be aware too that they will eat through the hay quicker in winter than summer due to needing more fibre in their bellies to keep them warm.