Advice for wet hay

December 07, 2017

Large rectangular bales need to be about two per cent drier (12 – 14 per cent moisture) than large rounds (14 – 16 per cent) which themselves need to be about two per cent drier than the small squares (16 – 18 per cent).

To increase curing time, leave wide windrows behind a mower-conditioner, ted immediately after mowing, and use a form of hay preservative.

Some of the signs to look for to prevent haystack fires include:

■Heating of bales.

■Dampness on the tops of bales.

■Steam rising from the stack.

■Unusual odours (e.g. pipe tobacco, caramel, burning, musty smells).

■Moisture build-up on roofing iron or under a tarped outside stack.

■Corrosion on underside of tin roof.

■Sometimes the stack may slump in places.

- Agriculture Victoria’s senior dairy extension officer Frank Mickan

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