Welcome to Fern Valley

Here in central Alberta prime farm country,my husband Martin and I work together raising beef cattle and Appaloosa horses. Fern valley appaloosas have long been known for their quality of temperament conformation and color.I have recently rediscovered a love of writing and have published 2 collections of poetry. "Telling Tails" and Tails Trails and Campfire stories" . I look forward to a future spreading my wings as an author and as a horse woman .

Thursday, 24 November 2011

Don't be a lazy forker !

(Gratuitous Johnnie shot)

Yep, you read it right,I said lazy forker!
What the heck am I talking about? Let me explain .
We have  mostly round bales here, I feed a few squares to Phoenix and the "kids " bot overall I use feeder and round bales. Early in the winter though ,before it gets too cold , and when the horses are in good condition I just fork feed to them off a round bale a couple times a day . They don't all need to be on free choice just yet .
When you fork off a round bale especially ours ,as they are a soft core type , you need to make sure you take the whole wrap top to bottom  each time . Otherwise it tends to ball up at the bottom , and eventually you wind up in trouble , grabbing a fork full of hay when the bottom 6 inches or so is all wound up , tends to yield ,well about enough to fill a cereal bowl. not a horses belly!
It takes a little longer each feeding to do it right and clean up , but in the long run it saves time .

Apparently when we had the cold snap ,I got to be a bit of a lazy forker and just grabbed  what I could and rushed off to the next chore. Then when Martin was home , he kinda did the same thing . So after a week of lazy forking ... You can imagine the mess right?
Well I started it , so today I finished it , spent about 45 min digging in and unravelling the mess, to feed Cactus , still a lot of cleanup to do , but I had a headache and it was getting dark so will finish tomorrow. So essentially I saved a few seconds a day in the cold weather to add nearly and hour of hard labour to today !
That math doesn't work for me !
The moral of the story??? well I think it is clear

Stay safe and warm everyone!


GoLightly said...

I'm afraid my sheltered english weenie arse never experienced rounds. I have a rough idea of what you're talking about, of course;) Most of my experience with hay was unloading it into the mow. Thank dog for hay bales I could lift:)

Thanks for the free Johnnie pic! Love lookin' through those ears!

GoLightly said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Crystal said...

I hear you, I hate it when it all gets stuck at the bottom, except usually for me its the coldest day of the year (or when I am in a hurry) that I need to get that all cleaned up.

Janice said...

Been there done that...now we use the big squares you can get into a world of mess with those too.Sometimes I can barely fork the stuff into the wheelbarrow.How do I go about getting a calender?How do I pay and how much are they.Love Johnnie's ears and the boys of January are a handsome bunch.

Shirley said...

Laborious but worth it. I sure like the large square bales that the farmers make here, it's what I feed now, three times a day. Coyote Belle is terrible for wrecking round bales, even in a feeder; I've never had such a mare for digging and flipping hay out of even a new bale. Bad Belle!

Reddunappy said...

LOL I have never fed a round bale. We do square bales around here.

sally said...

Oh boy I totally hear you ....Just a month ago I had a silage round bale. I did the same thing then suddenly it was impossible to get anything off it.Pays to get it right from the start for sure.
Normally I use small rectangle bales and go through about 120

Leah Fry said...

I was never a forker at all, which is why my horses were always fluffy and (prior to moving to the farm) would need to visit the fat farm periodically.

Ami said...

I can't comment. All I can do is think of jokes about forking.

As in, "Fern's up there in Canada just forking around."

Love the photo perspective.

Nicole said...

isn't it nice how it sometimes comes back to bite you in the butt.... NOT! :(

gowestferalwoman said...

well i think the moral is - get a better pair of snowbibs so you can literally live outside when that cold snaps - i got a pair that would sweat the hair off of a Northern Wisconsin Norwegian bachelor farmer's legs...and thats before I leave the house...