Once again, we've got a shed full of moldy hay. This time, I believe, it was moldy when we got it. You have to break into the middle of the bales to see the heaviest damage. The outer flakes have mold but it's very difficult to see in the low lighting of the storage shed. My poor goats and rabbits! I didn't realize there was a problem until they had refused to eat the hay for a few days in a row. Because goats, as we know, are very picky and I assumed they were just protesting the new hay. And the rabbits were just spreading it all over the cage floors instead of eating it! I'm so glad they were smart enough to skip the moldy buffet and stick to their pellets for food!
While DH is out of town it won't do me any good to even look for another hay source. I can't load or unload it. So my only option is to grab a bale at the local farm store (where a nice store employee will load it for me.) Ugh. I do not like store bought hay. It's from the same company that produces the lovely alfalfa and timothy pellets we get -and love. But the hay? Not so much. This hay claims to be alfalfa but who knows? It's an eerie-almost imitation looking- green color, compressed into crumbly, dusty bits.
The goats want (and I prefer to feed them) grass hay and the rabbits don't need the alfalfa either. So while I will give the goats this as a last resort for long fiber, I will also be trimming trees to toss into their pen. Hopefully that will reduce the amount of alfalfa they will be eating. The rabbits won't be getting any hay. Instead they will get extra yard goodies- plantain, dandelion, clover, violets, etc....
So, while none of us are going to be happy for a while, everyone will be fed. And even though I don't like to use store bought hay, I'm glad that it's there for times like these!