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Topic: Building a feeder  (Read 259 times)
Caprine Guru
Posts: 368

« on: March 06, 2018, 10:13:32 PM »

We are going to build a two-sided feeder -- V-shaped heavy duty wire manger for access from both sides, and we want to put a shelf below to catch spilled hay, with some hope that they will eat it before it hits the ground.  Does anyone have suggestions as to how to make a catch-shelf that they won't just put their poopy feet into to better reach that special leaf that's on top of the manger, and then ignore the hay that falls down?  The wasted hay has gotten out of hand this winter (we used our neighbor's haybine to cut last fall, and the pieces of hay are only four or five inches long, and tend to fall through the wires anyway), but no matter what length the hay is cut, my goaties waste a lot.  Any ideas are more than welcome, and any advice will be greeted with thanks!

Hoping to know what you've found that works.


Goat Genius
Posts: 19369


« Reply #1 on: March 07, 2018, 05:15:48 AM »

I don't know that you'll ever stop the "waste".  And goats aren't the only ones that waste terribly bad.  Our cows and horses did the same.  This is the one we had for our goats...one per pasture.  It was really nice to have, but like you said, they would eventually put front hooves into the catch pan and stand up to reach the top.  Babies would lay in the catch pan as well.  All in all, it was the best hay feeder we ever had.


When I just had Tad, Prince, Hanna and Mercy, we used clothes baskets...hung them on the outside of the fence line, one per goat.  I would flip the basket sideways...meaning the opening of the basket would be against the fence.  I used zip ties to tie the bottom edge to the fence.  Tied loosely enough to drop the basket down, and used like a hinge.  I used zip ties to make a loop at the top edge and put hooks through that loop.  Those hooks would hook to the fence when I filled the basket with hay. 

Now that worked really good for us.  Much less waste.  Of course that meant they were outdoor hay feeders, but hey, all our goats ate hay outdoors, for years and years and none ever died from it...lol.  I would clean around the area where the hay mids would drop out once a week and it was so easy to clean up.

But to stop the waste...I don't think it will ever happen.


~ Birdie ~
nancy d
Goat Genius
Posts: 6049


« Reply #2 on: March 07, 2018, 09:14:11 AM »

What's really fun is when they can fit into the catch thing & pack it down. laugh
Julie H
Goat Genius
Posts: 1634


« Reply #3 on: March 07, 2018, 12:10:53 PM »

I use a feeder like you are wanting, except i purchased it.  A goat friend built one and he used cattle or hog panels to hold the hay.

They still waste but it is somewhat contained to around the feeder.  The pan running underneath is plastic and it does catch all the leaves , but it also catches the dirt and dust and packs it

in something awful!!  The kids love to sleep in there and the goats also stand on that to reach up to the top of the feeder.  They have a hard time whenever I dump it out ( isn't often).

I find they waste less if I don't over feed and thankfully my horses eat all the good ( unsoiled) hay that I can rake up every morning when I clean the feeding area.   
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