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  1. #1
    Platinum Member NHmitch's Avatar
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    Default Barley Fodder for Horses

    Hi,

    We have a small equine breeding farm, and we are currently feeding grain, and hay every day, and we have been looking into switching to a fodder system using barley. Has anyone on here used Fodder to feed their horses, and has it worked? WE have found a supplier for bulk Barley, and they can deliver it in 2000lb deliveries. We do not have a dry grain silo, or storage and I was looking at using 375 gallon IBC containers, however I am not sure how heat will effect the grain in the summer. Any input would be greatly appreciated!
    Mitch

  2. #2
    Elite Member zzvyb6's Avatar
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    Default Re: Barley Fodder for Horses

    You better check with your Vet about this. My education and professional advice lately is that horses need the kind of roughage that chewing hay or grass provides. Otherwise, its colic city. We have a dire hay shortage here in Michigan because of weather and other issues, so a LOT of people are scrambling to find alternative horse feed. Michigan State Vet School advice was to feed straw with nutrient supplements if it came down to no hay available. An older horse can be given 100% feed such as Purina Senior, but still need some course stems to push it through.
    There is no "I" in team, but there is a "Me" if you want to jumble it up a bit...

  3. #3
    Super Member AKfish's Avatar
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    Default Re: Barley Fodder for Horses

    Lot's of interest regarding the use of barley as a green crop fodder utilizing grow lights and a multiple tray incubator/growing system. Rotate a series of tray's from sprouts to green forage 12"-18" in height at feeding.

    Units can be sized from just a few head to several dozen! Great option for small footprint-small acreage operations.

    As zzvyb6 pointed out; still need dry forage component in diet to maintain proper digestion and elimanation. Some of the literature indicates that 25% of daily rations should be dry hay.

    If the barley is dry (5% or <) and stored in a cool, dry location you should not have any problems. It's not heat per se, that will cause the biggest problem - it's moisture AND heat.

    AKfish
    "Most people want to live on top of the mountain, but all the happiness and growth occurs while you're climbing it."

  4. #4
    Elite Member Xfaxman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Barley Fodder for Horses

    Quote Originally Posted by NHmitch View Post
    Hi,

    We have a small equine breeding farm, and we are currently feeding grain, and hay every day, and we have been looking into switching to a fodder system using barley. Has anyone on here used Fodder to feed their horses, and has it worked? WE have found a supplier for bulk Barley, and they can deliver it in 2000lb deliveries. We do not have a dry grain silo, or storage and I was looking at using 375 gallon IBC containers, however I am not sure how heat will effect the grain in the summer. Any input would be greatly appreciated!
    Just saw this on OKC craigslist: Grow Your Own Livestock Feed

    Grow Your Own Livestock Feed - $11000 (Witchita)

    Brand new, never been used Fodder Solutions Livestock Feeder. The model is T18 and it will produce 165 lbs of fresh fodder per day. This is enough to feed 9 horses or cows per day (1000 lb animal at 2% of his body weight). Depending on the price of barley seed in your area, fodder can be grown for about 50.00 per ton. The machines pay off rather quickly and you get much better nutrition to you animals. The picture is the factory picture, but is the same unit. I payed 13,000 for this unit, had to wait 10 weeks and it cost me $1500.00 to ship it from California to Kansas. I added to my herd so I need a bigger unit already. Cows and horses thrive on this stuff.
    In order to deal with the high costs of feed these days, you may want to consider an alternative feed source known as Fodder Feeds. Widely known in other parts of the world, it has now reached the states. Barley seed is sprouted in a controlled environment and grown hydroponically with automated watering, heating/cooling, humidity control, and lighting. 2 lbs of barley seed becomes a 20 lb tray of nutritious feed in six days. The feed is 80% digestible and has more nutrition, minerals, vitamins, and protein than traditional grass hay. All this and it can be grown yourself for about .70 cents per 20lb tray. Call Greg for more details. 541 977-4104 (anytime)
    Location: Witchita


    Phone number is on this website: http://fodderfeeds.com/Contact%20Us.htm

    I was concerned because they misspelled Wichita, but it looks legit.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Barley Fodder for Horses

    I have not used the system, but did a lot of research on it when it was first brought to my attention via Australia quite some time ago. Cannot remember the timeframe, but several years ago. I looked at it closely again maybe a year ago. On both occasions I decided that it could not live up to the sales pitch. As already pointed out too, you will still need dry roughage.

    Is it worth the cost of the set-up and running costs? I reget that only you can answer that question.

  6. #6
    Elite Member blueriver's Avatar
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    Default Re: Barley Fodder for Horses

    Why dry forage? Don't they thrive very well in the summer on lush grass?
    "When selling a lifetime ... don't sell it short"
    auctioneer@southernauctionco.com

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Barley Fodder for Horses

    I'm no nutritionist but I know that some animals won't grow on really lush spring grass because what they are eating has too much water content in it and the animal can't get enough through their gut to grow on. Back to the topic, if you can cut your hay usage in half what would you save? If the price of hay saved is more than the cost of doing this system then doesn't it make sense to do it. Animals need roughage to keep their gut in good health but that needs to be only a small portion of what they eat. I am seriously thinking about building a room to grow this stuff for my sheep flock, I would love to be able to use it as a creep for the lambs that are a few weeks old to get the rumen started to utilise forages to grow on.

  8. #8
    Elite Member blueriver's Avatar
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    Default Re: Barley Fodder for Horses

    Quote Originally Posted by rockinmywaypa View Post
    I'm no nutritionist but I know that some animals won't grow on really lush spring grass because what they are eating has too much water content in it and the animal can't get enough through their gut to grow on.
    I'm not either... just wondering. I know the few horses I have get real fat on summer grass. I would think this Barley Fodder would be good. Just thinking ....
    "When selling a lifetime ... don't sell it short"
    auctioneer@southernauctionco.com

  9. #9
    Elite Member zzvyb6's Avatar
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    Default Re: Barley Fodder for Horses

    Quote Originally Posted by blueriver View Post
    I'm not either... just wondering. I know the few horses I have get real fat on summer grass. I would think this Barley Fodder would be good. Just thinking ....
    The lush grass will give them founder (hoof delamination from circulation failure). No Hoof, No Horse.

    Eat prime rib everyday for breakfast, lunch, and dinner and tell me what happens just before your heart attack.
    There is no "I" in team, but there is a "Me" if you want to jumble it up a bit...

  10. #10
    Super Member AKfish's Avatar
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    Default Re: Barley Fodder for Horses

    Quote Originally Posted by blueriver View Post
    I'm not either... just wondering. I know the few horses I have get real fat on summer grass. I would think this Barley Fodder would be good. Just thinking ....
    The major differences between pasture grazing and fodder is both the relative maturity of the plants i.e; lignin, cellulose and hemicellulose content of pasture grass at turnout versus the immature fodder barley and the difference in the plant species. Barley is NOT the same as western wheatgrass, etc. it does not have the same fiber composition as pasture grasses. That's a significant reason that grain plants will "lay down" in the field and they don't "pop back up" very well..

    AKfish
    "Most people want to live on top of the mountain, but all the happiness and growth occurs while you're climbing it."

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