Here at Lilac Hedge Farm we raise a registered herd of black angus cattle. Our cattle spend their spring, summer and fall rotationally grazing on over 100 acres of pasture in West Boylston and Lancaster MA. During the winter the cattle are fed a mixture of dry hay and a “wet” hay (baleage) which is grown on our cousins dairy farm in Rutland.
What is baleage?
Baleage is a hay that is baled at a 40-60% moisture content and is then wrapped in plastic. This is a common practice in the northeast as it allows us to have an early hay harvest in the spring where drying hay for dry bales can be difficult with weather, as well as promoting new growth for a healthy second cut of dry hay.
Using a mixed ration of dry and “wet” hay is beneficial to the growth of the cattle through the winter months as the dry hay is nutritious and adds roughage in the diet, and the baleage retaines a higher protien level to ensure steady growth through the cold winters.
On our farm, our practices are simple. We raise our beef on pasture with plenty of acreage to roam, if a cow happens to get sick, that cow is separated from the herd and treated as necessary. The goal is to get this animal to 100% good health as soon as possible.
We do not routinely treat our cattle with antibiotics or steroids, but on the same hand we will not deny a sick animal treatment, this is our responsability to assure the comfort and well being of our animals