Forum rules and no-advertising policy

As a participant on this forum, it is your responsibility to know and follow our rules. Please read this message in its entirety.

Board Rules

1. You're responsible for what you say.
As outlined in Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, The Chronicle of the Horse and its affiliates, as well Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd., the developers of vBulletin, are not legally responsible for statements made in the Forums.

This is a public forum viewed by a wide spectrum of people, so please be mindful of what you say and who might be reading it--details of personal disputes may be better handled privately. While posters are legally responsible for their statements, the moderators may in their discretion remove or edit posts, though are not legally obligated to do so, regardless of content.

Users have the ability to modify or delete their own messages after posting. Moderators generally will not delete posts, threads or accounts unless they have been alerted and have determined that a post, thread or user has violated the Forums' policies. Moderators do not regularly independently monitor the Forums for such violations.

Profanity, outright vulgarity, blatant personal insults or otherwise inappropriate statements will not be tolerated and will be dealt with at the discretion of the moderators.

Users may provide their positive or negative experiences with or opinions of companies, products, individuals, etc.; however, accounts involving allegations of criminal behavior against named individuals or companies MUST be first-hand accounts and may NOT be made anonymously.

If a situation has been reported upon by a reputable news source or addressed by law enforcement or the legal system it is open for discussion, but if an individual wants to make their own claims of criminal behavior against a named party in the course of that discussion, they too must identify themselves by first and last name and the account must be first-person.

Criminal allegations that do not satisfy these requirements, when brought to our attention, may be removed pending satisfaction of these criteria, and we reserve the right to err on the side of caution when making these determinations.

Credible threats of suicide will be reported to the police along with identifying user information at our disposal, in addition to referring the user to suicide helpline resources such as 1-800-SUICIDE or 1-800-273-TALK.

2. Conversations in horse-related forums should be horse-related.
The forums are a wonderful source of information and support for members of the horse community. While it's understandably tempting to share information or search for input on other topics upon which members might have a similar level of knowledge, members must maintain the focus on horses.

3. Keep conversations productive, on topic and civil.
Discussion and disagreement are inevitable and encouraged; personal insults, diatribes and sniping comments are unproductive and unacceptable. Whether a subject is light-hearted or serious, keep posts focused on the current topic and of general interest to other participants of that thread. Utilize the private message feature or personal email where appropriate to address side topics or personal issues not related to the topic at large.

4. No advertising in the discussion forums.
Posts in the discussion forums directly or indirectly advertising horses, jobs, items or services for sale or wanted will be removed at the discretion of the moderators. Use of the private messaging feature or email addresses obtained through users' profiles for unsolicited advertising is not permitted.

Company representatives may participate in discussions and answer questions about their products or services, or suggest their products on recent threads if they fulfill the criteria of a query. False "testimonials" provided by company affiliates posing as general consumers are not appropriate, and self-promotion of sales, ad campaigns, etc. through the discussion forums is not allowed.

Paid advertising is available on our classifieds site and through the purchase of banner ads. The tightly monitored Giveaways forum permits free listings of genuinely free horses and items available or wanted (on a limited basis). Items offered for trade are not allowed.

Advertising Policy Specifics
When in doubt of whether something you want to post constitutes advertising, please contact a moderator privately in advance for further clarification. Refer to the following points for general guidelines:

Horses -- Only general discussion about the buying, leasing, selling and pricing of horses is permitted. If the post contains, or links to, the type of specific information typically found in a sales or wanted ad, and it's related to a horse for sale, regardless of who's selling it, it doesn't belong in the discussion forums.

Stallions -- Board members may ask for suggestions on breeding stallion recommendations. Stallion owners may reply to such queries by suggesting their own stallions, only if their horse fits the specific criteria of the original poster. Excessive promotion of a stallion by its owner or related parties is not permitted and will be addressed at the discretion of the moderators.

Services -- Members may use the forums to ask for general recommendations of trainers, barns, shippers, farriers, etc., and other members may answer those requests by suggesting themselves or their company, if their services fulfill the specific criteria of the original post. Members may not solicit other members for business if it is not in response to a direct, genuine query.

Products -- While members may ask for general opinions and suggestions on equipment, trailers, trucks, etc., they may not list the specific attributes for which they are in the market, as such posts serve as wanted ads.

Event Announcements -- Members may post one notification of an upcoming event that may be of interest to fellow members, if the original poster does not benefit financially from the event. Such threads may not be "bumped" excessively. Premium members may post their own notices in the Event Announcements forum.

Charities/Rescues -- Announcements for charitable or fundraising events can only be made for 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organizations. Special exceptions may be made, at the moderators' discretion and direction, for board-related events or fundraising activities in extraordinary circumstances.

Occasional posts regarding horses available for adoption through IRS-registered horse rescue or placement programs are permitted in the appropriate forums, but these threads may be limited at the discretion of the moderators. Individuals may not advertise or make announcements for horses in need of rescue, placement or adoption unless the horse is available through a recognized rescue or placement agency or government-run entity or the thread fits the criteria for and is located in the Giveaways forum.

5. Do not post copyrighted photographs unless you have purchased that photo and have permission to do so.

6. Respect other members.
As members are often passionate about their beliefs and intentions can easily be misinterpreted in this type of environment, try to explore or resolve the inevitable disagreements that arise in the course of threads calmly and rationally.

If you see a post that you feel violates the rules of the board, please click the �alert� button (exclamation point inside of a triangle) in the bottom left corner of the post, which will alert ONLY the moderators to the post in question. They will then take whatever action, or no action, as deemed appropriate for the situation at their discretion. Do not air grievances regarding other posters or the moderators in the discussion forums.

Please be advised that adding another user to your �Ignore� list via your User Control Panel can be a useful tactic, which blocks posts and private messages by members whose commentary you'd rather avoid reading.

7. We have the right to reproduce statements made in the forums.
The Chronicle of the Horse may copy, quote, link to or otherwise reproduce posts, or portions of posts, in print or online for advertising or editorial purposes, if attributed to their original authors, and by posting in this forum, you hereby grant to The Chronicle of the Horse a perpetual, non-exclusive license under copyright and other rights, to do so.

8. We reserve the right to enforce and amend the rules.
The moderators may delete, edit, move or close any post or thread at any time, or refrain from doing any of the foregoing, in their discretion, and may suspend or revoke a user's membership privileges at any time to maintain adherence to the rules and the general spirit of the forum. These rules may be amended at any time to address the current needs of the board.

Please see our full Terms of Service and Privacy Policy for more information.

Thanks for being a part of the COTH forums!

(Revised 5/9/18)
See more
See less

Old Hay/Fines/Chaf Clean Up - How Often?

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

    Old Hay/Fines/Chaf Clean Up - How Often?

    For those of you storing and feeding hay, how often to you pull out your pallets/sweep your mow and clean out all the accumulated waste? It seems ideally and to avoid mold and dust that you'd want to do it at least annually but does everyone really do that? If not, what is YOUR program?
    Last edited by PaddockWood; Sep. 7, 2020, 08:33 AM.

    Just once each year before filling up the hay sheds in summer/fall.


      In the fall, after our hot humid rainy summer. We mostly use hay in the winter here in Ocala, so hay room is mostly empty , easy to clean under pallets. During the winter, if the hay room gets close to empty, I'll do it then also. I generally do not keep much hay around at any one time - 8 or 10 bales at the most....


        Once a year is probably best. I just had somebody come by and get all my old hay to feed to their cows and I am cleaning out that side of my hay area. That side hasn't been done for a few years and it is pretty musty and damp due to the climate here. So I would say it would be best to clean it all out and put clean plastic down under the pallets yearly. I am trying to transition to plastic pallets so I took those out and hosed them down good to get the old hay out and will leave them sitting in the sun for a day or two.

        If you don't live in such a humid climate you could probably do it less often and use the old hay as a bottom layer. But with all the rain we have had this year the musty stuff I had needed to go. My sinuses are not happy with me tonight!


          Last place I managed, we bought hay in roughly 300 bale loads and stored in a bank barn loft with good ventilation -- no need for pallets. We swept before the next load came, so 4-5x/year. The loose hay was generally perfectly good, so we fed it in the paddocks.


            I miss having a hay loft. I really don't like storing hay on ground level in this climate. Hay never got that musty in the loft where we co-opped and we never used pallets up there. Of course we had to get it up there - Ugh! A bank barn would be the best of both worlds.


              Once a year, before my coming year's supply of 1st cutting arrives, so mid-June usually.
              300 small squares are stored on pallets over crusher-run stone floor in my barn.
              Nothing under the pallets.

              When I'm down to the last couple dozen bales, I lift the empty pallets, rake out the fines, shift the remaining bales & repeat.
              I use the raked stuff as mulch in my vegetable garden.

              In 16yrs I have lost maybe 5 bales to mold.
              If the bottom bales are damp on the side that was on the pallet, turning that up has them dried & usable in a day or two.
              *friend of bar.ka*RIP all my lovely boys, gone too soon:
              Steppin' Out 1988-2004
              Hey Vern! 1982-2009, Cash's Bay Threat 1994-2009
              Sam(Jaybee Altair) 1994-2015


                Every time a new section of floor becomes exposed, it gets cleaned, and when possible, I blast my leaf blower under the entire stack. I live in a very humid climate, bottom bales even lifted on double pallets, get musty quick. Any chaff I can clean up is just that much less potential for mold/must.
                Being terrible at something is the first step to being truly great at it. Struggle is the evidence of progress.


                  We have a pole barn,, store hay at one end and above the feed and tack rooms. As we reach the bottom of the stacks, we sweep up chaff and throw it in the spreader with used bedding, then spread it on the fields. We find the chaff to commonly be very dusty, don't want the horses breathing that in. It is dry chaff above the feed and tack rooms.

                  We have a fake wooden floor over cement floor, on the end of the barn where we stack bales from floor to the roof. Not using pallets anymore. This solid wood floor is raised a little with a plastic layer under. Previously the cement drew moisture, caused molding on the pallets. We sometimes find a moldy bale along the outside wall, despite a plastic barrier layer. The sun shines hard on that wall, which I think draws moisture to create the mold. I start feeding winter hay from that area first, get bales off that wall to minimize any loss. So all those floor sweeping also get spread outside because of possible mold and dust.

                  We did our own baling this year with the mower set very high, 6 inches, so I am hoping we have much less dust in the hay, less on the floors when hay is gone.

                  I just won't take the risk of feeding dusty sweepings. Hay areas are cleaned to the floor yearly. We do have plenty of humidity here unless the weather is frozen! So we can lose bales to mold. Once it has those mold spores, mold dust, hay and chaff goes in the spreader. We never feed that moldy or wall damp stuff from the piled hay, inside or out.

                  We did have some damp bales right after baling it, which we left under cover on the wagon. Some got cut open to dry faster. They got fed immediately or had dried by the time it was fed a couple days later. Each bale was checkled before feeding, for mold, musty smell. Shed has a constant breeve over that wagon, so they had dried instead of cooking or molding. No mold in them and soon gone. We could tell by their weight unloading, that they were damp, did not stack them in the barn..


                    Just did our yearly clean up yesterday!


                      I have a loft with a wooden floor, and I can only fit about one and a half tons maximum. We are in a damp climate, and I tarp the hay very carefully in fall winter spring, or else I get surface mold on exposed surfaces from the air. No pallets. I have never lost a bale, at most a flake off the end smells a bit musty and I discard it.

                      I need 3 to 4 tons over 12 months. So as I work my way down to empty floor, the hay scraps get swept down the drop chute to the stall.

                      The only times I have swept up and discarded hay have been when a pile of scraps sat under a tarp or in a corner too long and got mouse poop or spider webs in it. Even then it was not much, less than a wheelbarrow for sure. Now I am proactive about sweeping scraps down constantly so they don't get rancid.


                        Original Poster

                        Appreciate all the responses. I thought it was annually but do some people NOT clean up in between and just let it accumulate?


                          Originally posted by PaddockWood View Post
                          Appreciate all the responses. I thought it was annually but do some people NOT clean up in between and just let it accumulate?
                          I would not want it piling up under the pallets and possibly touching the new stuff and wicking moisture. I have a GREAT hay farmer but he does not deliver during our "lovely " winters. So I have to store my November through June hay. It would be really bad to find mold in say, February.


                            Originally posted by PaddockWood View Post
                            Appreciate all the responses. I thought it was annually but do some people NOT clean up in between and just let it accumulate?
                            Oh yuck. I would not want mildewed hay near the new hay. I would think any well run place would sweep up whenever the floor is visible, whether that's once a year or every couple of months.


                              I clean it up frequently. We don't use pallets but I like to keep it swept out. I bag up what is on the floor and give to a man who has goats, they love it.


                                I live in a hot and humid environment. Because of that, I generally buy hay every 3 weeks - sometimes I can stretch to 4 weeks in the winter. I generally clean out my hay storage area every time I get new hay.

                                I only clean so often because I have issues with mold and mildew, so I figure that sweeping out old hay and fines and keeping the pallets clear are necessary for air flow.


                                  Originally posted by HPFarmette View Post
                                  Just once each year before filling up the hay sheds in summer/fall.
                                  this. Every fall.
                                  A good man can make you feel sexy, strong, and able to take on the world.... oh, sorry.... that's does that...



                                    I clean up before I receive each load which is 3-4x up north and monthly when we are south.


                                      I clean up around the edges as I go, but the bulk cleaning happens once a year when I've got about 10-15 bales left before I pick up first cutting.

                                      Growing up we did it about every other year.

                                      Plastic, gravel, pallets. I pick up the pallets and rake out all the old scraps. No matter what I do, the darn bottom layer is a total waste. Very humid Missouri summers and very wet Missouri winters.


                                        Originally posted by PaddockWood View Post
                                        Appreciate all the responses. I thought it was annually but do some people NOT clean up in between and just let it accumulate?
                                        Yipes, I could never let chaff accumulate, it would be white with mold if I did. But, everyone is different depending on their climate.

                                        Because of my weather, I have to clean as frequently as I can. My weather is so rotten (clean hay can mold in 12 hours here), I have a daily routine:

                                        Any chaff spilled from daily feeding hay (I frequently peel-n-serve laps off stored round bales, which can be messy), is scooped up with a rake (set aside just for hay) and given immediately. Anything the rake doesn't pick up is blown away with a battery leaf blower (battery op. blower in the hay barn so there isn't gas/spark around the hay, and so I don't have to be bothered starting it given as frequently as I use it). This way, the daily feeding area of the hay barn is clean each day. So when I'm in a rush, and hay is flying everywhere as I peel a lap off a round, I *know* I can safely pick up anything in my path and its clean enough to feed.

                                        Every week or two, the outside area I've been blowing this chaff too gets raked so it doesn't start to pile up -- I don't want a bank of moldy wet chaff hay in front of my nice clean hay barn.

                                        In the dry months, I'll rake up that chaff hay and cover manure piles with it. In the wet months, it gets its own compost heap (so the horses don't mess with it).

                                        When my wood pallets start to get a musty smell to them (aka, weeks and weeks of tropical weather and rain, like we have now), I spray them with chlorhexidine. A dear friend of mine will actually scrub hers, but I don't have that kind of time. A spritz with hex kills the nasties, dries safely for storing hay.

                                        I tell you, everything about hay -- from the making, to the buying, to the storing, and even choosing whats right for your animal -- is complicated and demanding. Suicidal tendencies of equines aside, I don't think there is anything hardly as stressful as choosing, buying and storing hay.
                                        Being terrible at something is the first step to being truly great at it. Struggle is the evidence of progress.