Published on Monday, 10 September 2012 05:29
Written by sandy
The net wrap is using plastic twine and bale net wrap
is used through practical exprience.
When bale grazing occurs on the same field where the bales are made, some producers have experimented with making bales without twine.
This may be an option as long as the bales remain intact and are able to shed water. However, experience suggests a minimum of twine is needed to hold the bales intact from the wind.
Some producers are wrapping bales with sisal twine because it's biodegradable. It can be left on the bales to save the time and cost of twine removal. During grazing, the twine helps to hold the bale together, which reduces feed waste. It appears from observation that sisal twine is less likely to catch and pull out ear tags compared to plastic twine.
There are two disadvantages to sisal twine. First, bales made with sisal twine may need to be moved before the twine on the bottom of the bale decomposes. Second, the cost of sisal twine is currently about 50 to 75 cents higher per bale compared to plastic twine.
The use of plastic twine is common for wrapping bales. To minimize the time and effort of removing plastic twine, it can be done prior to freezing rain and/or wet snow. An effective method of removing twine is to cut on one side of the bale, tie the loose ends in a knot, and throw the knot over the bale. The knots can be hooked to a quad or truck and the twines pulled as you drive along the bale rows. If bales are tipped on their sides, twine can be cut and removed by walking around the bale.
Potential disadvantages of early season twine removal are: wind will likely open the top layer of the bale; wildlife damage to the bales may be greater; and bales left over in spring cannot be kept over to the following year as successfully because of the reduced ability to shed water. Some producers are experimenting with leaving either plastic twine or bale net wrap on the bales during grazing, and collecting it after grazing or the following spring.
With Bale Net Wrap, generally livestock prefer to feed on the bales that they have started to consume, and feed on them until done rather than start new bales. This allows producers to distribute or allocate three to four weeks of bales at a time, and eliminates the time and expense of three to four day allotments with electric fence.
Leaving plastic twine and net wrap on the bales creates issues such as: potential ear tag losses, potential hazards to the livestock, and difficulty in gathering the twine from the field.