hay nets for round bales

I have one bale barn with a hay net in it. Best thing since sliced bread.
Have another set of horses I would like to free feed, but as they are on pasture most of the year, I’m not sure if it is worth the expense to get a second one.

Has anyone ever used hay nets on round bales? I can put it under shelter so the hay doesn’t get rained on, but my concern is: do the nets get dangerous as the horses eat the hay down? The photos look great when they are on a new bale, but I can’t find any w/ the bale partially/mostly eaten & I’m worried that there will be alot of netting just laying around on the ground as the bale gets smaller…

I have a hay net on our round bale. It makes for virtually ZERO waste. The nets basically pancake out as the horses eat the bale down and remain plump. There is never just loose netting hanging/laying. Check out Hay Chix website and you can see lots of pics on their facebook page as well. Here’s a discount code in my sig that they give customers…20% off.

I use mine with (inside) a horse round bale feeder as the heel of a horse shoe could get caught in them. If you don’t have any shoes on anyone then I don’t think it would be a problem unless you have split hooved animals in with them. My friend in a neighboring barn uses hers with out a feeder no problems but she has all bare foot horses,

the ones that would use this are all barefoot. Does it keep them from napping & peeing on the hay at all? Last time we tried to just throw a bale there was a huge amount of waste since they peed on it and used it to nap on, as well as tearing it apart as they ate.
That’s part of the reason I love the bale barn so much…

I hated my round bale net.

Yes…it was lovely while the bale was new.
But once it was more than 1/2 eaten and flattened down on the ground, they stepped on it, peed on it and napped on it.
However, I dealt with all of that as it was slowing down the ponies eating.
And then it froze into the ground. Ugh! It was a nightmare to get it unstuck.
Obviously if you live in the sunny south you wouldn’t have this problem.

The only people I know who are happy using these nets are people who have their bales in a raised feeder.

I made a wood crib to hold the round rolls of hay. 4 corner posts with 2 rails all the way around in a rectangular crib. In between the rails i added no climb wire fencing.

You could use actual fence posts in the ground with this setup if you added a gate to one side.
You back the truck up to the crib, roll the hay off, toss the netting on top and clip it on. Done! The crib jumps up when you unload the hay, but it usually doesn’t tip over. If you added a gate, you wouldn’t have this problem, as you could unload farther away.

i made mine small in height so i can move it, but the downside is once the hay is low, the horses can walk through the crib. But usually they don’t bother. Usually by the time the hay is that low, i unclip the netting. Mine is about 2.5 ft tall- you could put it at tailgate height, but it wouldn’t be as easy to move. My mare has walked through it with no injury - it’s low enough she can step over it like a large cavaletti.

I put down stall mats underneath with a small tarp over that. For hay scraps, i just pick up the tarp and muck out any left overs. I added stall mats around the outside as well to prevent mud.

Obviously this would not work with a shod horse.



There is no way for them to “nap” or “pee” on the bale…unless you have it loose without a ring or enclosure, I suppose. It is tight within the net. There is no waste like a loose round bale, even if you do not have the netted bale within a hay ring.

I use a net inside a round bale feeder. The only time I ever have issues with the net freezing into the ground is with my two ponies who take longer to eat the bale then the horses. The horses seem to pull on it and eat it fast enough that it doesn’t freeze.
I used to have one bale with a net and no feeder; never had an issue with the horses peeing or sleeping on it.
I love the nets, there is no waste, I just hate how expensive they are.

I am really frugal as well. They gave me a 20% off link to share with people, if you’re interested. It is in my signature.