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close this book Animal husbandry: Feeding and care of animals
close this folder Pasture
close this folder Storing grass
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View the document Hay

Hay

You can also dry grass. Cut the grass when it is green and let it dry. The dried grass is called hay.

Many farmers keep the dried stalks and leaves of groundnuts in order to feed them to animals. This is groundnut hay.

Hay is nearly as good a food as green grass.

For hay to be good food, you must cut the grass when it is still green, before it starts going to seed, and before it becomes too hard. Cut the grass when it is young, and you'll get good hay. If you wait too long before cutting the grass, you will get not hay, but straw.

Animals do eat straw, but it is not easy to digest. Straw is used for making manure.

• How to make hay

You can cut grass with a machete. But you will get the work done more quickly if you cut the grass with a scythe.


Cutting grass with a machete

When the grass is cut, let it dry in the sun.

Then turn it over and leave in the sun the parts that are not yet dry.

This work is done with a fork. When all the grass is quite dry, make it into a big heap next to the animal shed.

Then you can give the animals food during the dry season.


When the grass is dry on one side, turn it over to dry on the other side

Sun is needed to dry grass.

So you must wait for the end of the rainy season before you make hay.

In addition to grass and hay, give a feed supplement (see page 14).

For example:

Give oil cake to oxen when they are working, to cows when they are pregnant and are feeding the calves with their milk.