Question: Is It OK To Cut Hay In The Rain?

Does rain hurt fresh cut hay?

Research at Iowa State University found that fresh-cut hay with less than 1 inch of rain took a few more hours to dry, but didn’t suffer much, if any, quality or quantity loss.

A light rain on nearly dry hay, though, caused significant losses..

Can you cut hay right after it rains?

When plants are cut for hay, they do not immediately die. As long as moisture is above 40 percent, they will continue to respire – exchange oxygen and carbon dioxide – a process that burns energy. … Sometimes, rain will not reduce hay quality significantly if the hay has adequate time to dry and cure prior to baling.

Can horse hay get rained on?

Truth: Rained-on hay can be acceptable quality. While rain usually negatively affects hay, to what degree depends on several factors, including what type of hay is being harvested, how much rain fell and how intensely, stage of curing when it rained, and what the producer does to counteract these negative effects.

How long after cutting hay can you bale it?

Proper dry matter content for chopping haylage can often be achieved within 24 hours as compared to three to four days for dry hay.

Can you bale hay by hand?

Is it necessary to bale this hand-cut hay? No, of course not. You can store loose hay in a dry place; it won’t lose any nutritional value if it isn’t baled.

How do I know if my hay is dry enough to bale?

Hay will not have completely cured in that time. He said many producers are using moisture probes to decide if hay is dry enough to bale, but probes measure the moisture only on the outside of the stem. Hay that measures 13 percent moisture can jump to 25 or 30 percent a few days after it’s put up.

What happens if it rains on cut hay?

Rain losses basically happen in two ways. One is physical damage, where the force of the rain drops can knock leaves off the stems. The other is leaching of soluble nutrients from the plant, reducing its energy value. Anderson says the only way to know if soggy hay can be used is to test it.

Is Hay still good if it gets wet?

Unfortunately, rain can damage hay in several ways. Rain leaches soluble nutrients and keeps the moisture level high, thus increasing the likelihood of decay and mold. Hay rained on during field drying of course damages legume hay more than grass hay and the drier the hay when rain occurs, the greater the damage.

Will wet hay catch fire?

“Excessive moisture is the most common cause of hay fires,” Schroeder says.” Odd as it might seem, wet hay is more likely to lead to a spontaneous-combustion fire than dry hay.” High-moisture haystacks and bales can catch on fire because they have chemical reactions that build heat.

How long should hay dry before raking?

about three daysIt basically takes about three days of good weather to cure hay. This can be a challenge in late May or early June. A good strategy is to mow just before or right after a rain, because of the likelihood of good weather for the next few days.

How many acres of hay can you cut in an hour?

25-30 acresWe can cut 25-30 acres per hour together so on a typical day it is easy to cut around 200 acres. We usually lay the hay in swaths 84” wide. By doing so, the hay dries quickly and evenly.

What happens to hay when it gets wet before baling?

If hard pounding rains occur, leaves can be broken off, which will also lead to dry matter losses and a drop in quality. Sometimes, rain will not reduce hay quality significantly if the hay has adequate time to dry and cure prior to baling. The only way to know for sure, though, is to test the hay.

Can you bale wet hay?

The first thing to keep in mind when dealing with wet hay is that moisture can easily lead to combustion. … Moving hot bales can also open them up and increase oxygen flow, once again increasing the risk of combustion. Even in bales that are not at risk for fire, wet bales will continue to decrease in quality.

Can horses eat hay that has been rained on?

Hay that has gotten wet and is fed immediately is perfectly fine to feed to horses, and a bale of hay that has been rained on and then dried thoroughly, and fed within a week or so is also not going to cause any problem whatsoever.