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Transitioning from coastal to T/A/orchard grass - proportions?

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  • Transitioning from coastal to T/A/orchard grass - proportions?

    So, we're finding that a local dealer that carries GORGEOUS timothy/alfalfa/orchard grass mix has year-round availability, and no minimum order. I'm feeding two warmbloods one ISH and one easy-keeping TB. I want to transition from feeding straight coastal to this ultra-rich new hay, and manage not to founder/colic any of my boys. I'm thinking of doing 1 flake of the new stuff, to two flakes of the coastal, and gradually increase to half and half, or 2 flakes new stuff to one of coastal.

    Suggestions? Ideas? Please help - this is all new to me!
    In loving memory of Laura Jahnke.
    A life lived by example, done too soon.
    www.caringbridge.org/page/laurajahnke/

  • #2
    Originally posted by ESG View Post
    I'm thinking of doing 1 flake of the new stuff, to two flakes of the coastal, and gradually increase to half and half, or 2 flakes new stuff to one of coastal.

    Suggestions? Ideas? Please help - this is all new to me!
    that would seem a fine proportion to me....horses transition out of bermuda into something else better than the other way around...

    best
    Production Acres,Pro A Welsh Cobs
    I am one of the last 210,000 remaining full time farmers in America.We feed the others.

    Comment

    • Original Poster

      #3
      We're even thinking of cutting out one grain feeding per day, and switching them totally to the T/A/O. What do you t hink? These are horses that aren't getting any kind of regular work, and are all easy keepers. I'm thinking of feeding them 1-2 flakes of the T/A/O in the morning plus a couple of handsful of grain, just to get their supplements in them. Then out on grass all day, than three flakes of T/A/O at night, and no grain.

      Ideas? Suggestions?
      In loving memory of Laura Jahnke.
      A life lived by example, done too soon.
      www.caringbridge.org/page/laurajahnke/

      Comment


      • #4
        Agree that the plan sounds good.

        Just be careful with the easy keeping one - he may not be able to eat enough forage with this new hay if it's that rich.
        ______________________________
        The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET

        Comment

        • Original Poster

          #5
          Ahh, see, that's the problem - they're ALL easy keeping! One Oldenburg, one ISH, one Gelderlander/TB cross, and the pudgy TB. They all only got a half scoop of grain twice a day, plus out on grass, plus a lot of coastal hay (nutritional value unknown), before we switched. I'm worried about them not getting enough roughage, but I'm more worried about founder and colic.

          More thoughts, please?
          In loving memory of Laura Jahnke.
          A life lived by example, done too soon.
          www.caringbridge.org/page/laurajahnke/

          Comment


          • #6
            It would be great to know the nutritional value of both types of hay, as even among the bermuda grasses it varies greatly! You might be feeding a bermuda high in protein, anyway.

            My bermuda is Tifton 85 and it tests out at 17% protein. Pretty high for a grass hay and my horses love it. They also get peanut hay (20%), but not much grass right now as FL is in a drought.
            Beth Davidson
            Black Dog Farm Connemaras & Sport Horses
            http://blackdogconnemara.com
            visit my blog: http://ponyeventer.blogspot.com

            Comment

            • Original Poster

              #7
              I will have an opportunity to buy Jiggs bermuda at a VERY reasonable price, but that's not going to happen for at least another month or so, when my supplier does his first cutting. If I supplemented with that, I'm thinking that they can do with only one grain feeding a day, plus Jiggs/coastal and several flakes of T/A/O at night.

              Ideas?
              In loving memory of Laura Jahnke.
              A life lived by example, done too soon.
              www.caringbridge.org/page/laurajahnke/

              Comment


              • #8
                Just make sure you get it nicely mixed up with a pitchfork, so they can't select one kind or the other.
                ... _. ._ .._. .._

                Comment

                • Original Poster

                  #9
                  You're quite right - they'll eat the "good stuff" before turning to the coastal/Jiggs. But I figure that if they're hungry, they'll eat whatever's there. If they don't? They don't get more "good stuff". LOL Heck, it worked for my mom when I was a kid; no vegetables at dinner? no dessert!
                  In loving memory of Laura Jahnke.
                  A life lived by example, done too soon.
                  www.caringbridge.org/page/laurajahnke/

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by ESG View Post
                    I'm thinking that they can do with only one grain feeding a day, plus Jiggs/coastal and several flakes of T/A/O at night.

                    Ideas?
                    What is this "grain" and how much are you currently feeding? If they really are easy keepers, they don't need ANY grain. But if your "grain" is a ration balancer, or handful of beet pulp or alfalfa pellets, that's another story. But even a lot of easy keepers cannot handle the oomph of a ration balancer.
                    ______________________________
                    The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      If you don't mind me asking, what part of TX are you in and how much does this hay run/bale?

                      I grew up in the northwest and sure do miss orchard grass mix hay... It's hard to find good quality hay in TX.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by ESG View Post
                        We're even thinking of cutting out one grain feeding per day, and switching them totally to the T/A/O. What do you t hink? These are horses that aren't getting any kind of regular work, and are all easy keepers. I'm thinking of feeding them 1-2 flakes of the T/A/O in the morning plus a couple of handsful of grain, just to get their supplements in them. Then out on grass all day, than three flakes of T/A/O at night, and no grain.

                        Ideas? Suggestions?

                        sorry not to have replied sooner....we are in N FL now to see some friends...if the A in TAO is fancy enough I'd think that dropping grain for idle fat horses would be no biggie...but remember that the proportions of the hay breeds to one another in the mix is never set and each bale will be different from the one next to it...something that bagged mixes can offer over hays..

                        best from the beach!
                        Production Acres,Pro A Welsh Cobs
                        I am one of the last 210,000 remaining full time farmers in America.We feed the others.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by ESG View Post
                          You're quite right - they'll eat the "good stuff" before turning to the coastal/Jiggs. But I figure that if they're hungry, they'll eat whatever's there. If they don't? They don't get more "good stuff". LOL Heck, it worked for my mom when I was a kid; no vegetables at dinner? no dessert!

                          What I actually meant was (when you are mixing) that you don't want a "wad" of coastal and then a "wad" of something else going down the tubes. That will surely cause you a problem! They need to be eating a consistent mix of everything.
                          ... _. ._ .._. .._

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            It's not necessary to mix different varieties of hay. It's perfectly fine to feed Coastal at one feed, Timothy at another, and Alfalfa at yet another. Obviously the horse should be acclimated properly to each type, but you don't have to mix all 3 types together at each meal.
                            ______________________________
                            The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET

                            Comment

                            • Original Poster

                              #15
                              Originally posted by JB View Post
                              What is this "grain" and how much are you currently feeding? If they really are easy keepers, they don't need ANY grain. But if your "grain" is a ration balancer, or handful of beet pulp or alfalfa pellets, that's another story. But even a lot of easy keepers cannot handle the oomph of a ration balancer.
                              All three get 1/2 of a 3 pound scoop twice daily, so three pounds daily, total. I have three on Equine Senior, and one on Ultium because he tends toward EPSM if I don't watch his sugars. They all also get a scoop of powdered electrolytes and a scoop of MSM powder in their morning feed, which is the feeding I propose keeping.

                              This hay is expensive, but if it cuts my grain bill in half, it will be well worth it. And the horses LOVE IT!
                              In loving memory of Laura Jahnke.
                              A life lived by example, done too soon.
                              www.caringbridge.org/page/laurajahnke/

                              Comment

                              • Original Poster

                                #16
                                Originally posted by mlranchtx View Post
                                If you don't mind me asking, what part of TX are you in and how much does this hay run/bale?

                                I grew up in the northwest and sure do miss orchard grass mix hay... It's hard to find good quality hay in TX.
                                I'm northwest of Houston, and the dealer is right around the corner. He's part of a co-op group that grows everything in Indiana, and then trucks it down here.

                                The bales of T/A/O I'm buying are about 60-65 pounds, with 12-14 flakes per bale, and run $11/bale. He also carries straight alfalfa and coastal, but I don't know the prices.
                                In loving memory of Laura Jahnke.
                                A life lived by example, done too soon.
                                www.caringbridge.org/page/laurajahnke/

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by ESG View Post
                                  All three get 1/2 of a 3 pound scoop twice daily, so three pounds daily, total. I have three on Equine Senior, and one on Ultium because he tends toward EPSM if I don't watch his sugars. They all also get a scoop of powdered electrolytes and a scoop of MSM powder in their morning feed, which is the feeding I propose keeping.

                                  This hay is expensive, but if it cuts my grain bill in half, it will be well worth it. And the horses LOVE IT!
                                  If they really are easy keepers, that's too much grain for them. You'd be better off - cheaper, 1 feeding - if you went to, say, a good ration balancer. If that really wasn't enough calories from someone, you could add 1-2lb of alfalfa pellets, still keep it one meal, have it low in sugars, and come out ahead still
                                  ______________________________
                                  The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by JB View Post
                                    It's not necessary to mix different varieties of hay. It's perfectly fine to feed Coastal at one feed, Timothy at another, and Alfalfa at yet another. Obviously the horse should be acclimated properly to each type, but you don't have to mix all 3 types together at each meal.
                                    It is necessary when you are changing hay - and that is what the OP is doing.

                                    " I want to transition from feeding straight coastal to this ultra-rich new hay, and manage not to founder/colic any of my boys."
                                    ... _. ._ .._. .._

                                    Comment

                                    • Original Poster

                                      #19
                                      Originally posted by JB View Post
                                      If they really are easy keepers, that's too much grain for them. You'd be better off - cheaper, 1 feeding - if you went to, say, a good ration balancer. If that really wasn't enough calories from someone, you could add 1-2lb of alfalfa pellets, still keep it one meal, have it low in sugars, and come out ahead still
                                      Well, I should mention that the pudgy Thoroughbred, at 16h, is the smallest of the three. The next size up is the Oldenburg, at 16.2h and ~1600 lbs. The next is a 17.2h ISH gelding who goes around 1650-1700 lbs. And the biggest is the 18h, 1800lb Gelderlander/TB. I really don't think I can feed them any less than 1 1/2 lbs of good quality grain per day, even with this hay, and have them maintain weight.
                                      In loving memory of Laura Jahnke.
                                      A life lived by example, done too soon.
                                      www.caringbridge.org/page/laurajahnke/

                                      Comment

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