Ask the expert: Large round bales

By Krishona Martinson
University of Minnesota

Question: We are having a hard time finding small-square bales and as a results, are going to start feeding round-bales. How many small square-bales are in a round-bale?

Response: It depends on the weight of both the large and small-square bales. For example, if the round-bale weighs 1,000 pounds, then 20 50-pound small-square bales would be equivalent to one round-bale. If the large round-bale weighs 1,200 pounds and the small-square bales weigh 40 pounds, then 30 small-square bales would be equivalent to one round-bale. It important to know the weight of hay bales both for feeding and economic purposes.

Also keep in mind storage and feeding losses associated with round-bales are usually higher compared to small-square bales. Especially if the round-bales are stored outside and fed without a hay feeder.