Monday, June 10, 2013

Standlee Hay Company Review

I was recently contacted and invited to try Standlee's hay products in exchange for a review.  This was a no-brainer for me, as I have enjoyed Standlee's products for years and have no difficulty spreading the news about their fine products.  I purchase Standlee products at Tractor Supply Company.

They have a whole variety of products, but I would like to focus on two products that I feel are especially useful to those raising dairy goats - alfalfa hay pellets and beet pulp pellets

Dairy goats have a special need for calcium.  Does need it for producing milk and avoiding milk fever of course, but growing kids also need it to grow to their potential with strong bones.  Bucks and wethers also need calcium in proper proportion to phosphorus to to avoid urinary blockages.  The proper ration of Ca:P is 2:1.  Alfalfa is an excellent source of calcium, and therefore is a recommended backbone to any good dairy goat feed regime.  The alfalfa pellets sold by Standlee are a nice size for goats - not too large, nor to fine.  I recommend the pellets over the cubes, as cubes are rather difficult for goats to manage.  Standlee's pellets are a joy to use because in my experience they are never dusty, and always fresh and brightly green.  I have used other brands, and Standlee is by far one of the best around.  The pellets come in aroud 16% protein which also makes them a reliable source of protein for your goats, making high protein feeds based on alternative legumes (or yikes, animal proteins) uneccesary.

The second product I recommend are their beet pulp pellets.  I do not use beet pulp year round, but I enjoy having this product as an option when quality forage is scarce - such as during the droughts we recently endured first in Texas and next in Indiana.  Soaking beet pulp makes it go alot further as a feed source.  Although we all know to feed by weight, our goats don't know that and expect a certain volume.  Soaked beet pulp is an excellent source of bulk fiber in the diet.  I also enjoy using soaked beet pulp in the winter when the goats are drinking less water due to the cold.  The reason I like the pellets over the shreds is that it is a lot easier to scoop pellets than the shreds.  I'll put a 3 quart measure of beet pulp pellets in a 3 gallon buck and fill it half way with water.  In a few hours I'll have a 3 gallon bucked full of soaked beet pulp.  The extra carbohydrates in the beet pulp sometimes help put weight on goats that are lagging behind, and I have seen an increase in milk production using soaked beet pulp in drought conditions - which I attribute in part to the increased water consumption that would mirror the water content in pasture.

Next time you are looking for a forage product, consider Standlee Hay Company!