Pig Feeders and Hog Feeders: create an efficient feeding operation

Hog Feeder Supreme

Pig feeders and hog feeders

Whether you’re raising pigs in your backyard or have a large hog operation, dispensing feed to your animals is essential for keeping them healthy and growing. To make this job a whole lot easier and more efficient, the use of a fill-and-forget feeder is a necessity and a great convenience.  The use of top-of-the-line Sioux Steel pig feeders and hog feeders will provide the most convenient and efficient feed delivery system for you and your swine.

Pig Feeders

Pigs are defined as weighing 120 pounds or less and technically anything over 120 pounds is considered a hog. That’s not to say that they wouldn’t eat out of each others feeders, but the difference in appetite between pigs and hogs will require different feeder holding capacities to allow for an efficient feeding system. Pig feeders are designed for smaller animals and are typically kept indoors while they grow in size.

Hog Feeder Nursery

Nursery Pig Feeders

The smallest pig feeders are called nursery feeders and are designed for pigs that are weaning size up to 90 pounds. These feeders are made from polyethylene and have a metal frame that connect the hopper section to the feeding trough below.  The polyethylene hopper prevents any kind of rust or corrosion from eating away at the feeder and promotes longevity in the life of the feeder. The feeder is available in 2 bushels or 3 bushels and both sizes have a 20 inch feed pan and six feeding stations.

Grower Pig Feeder

The next size up is the six bushel grower feeder that feeds pigs from 40 pounds all the way up to market weight. It has a slightly larger 28 inch feed pan and allows for eight pigs to feed at separate feeding stations at once. Typically used to feed 50 to 55 pigs, this durable feeder has smooth inside walls to keep a constant feed flow coming freely and un-obstructed. It can dispense high moisture grains without bridging, clumping or building up inside the hopper.

Finishing Pig Feeder

The finishing feeder also has a six bushel capacity but has a larger 34 inch trough.  It feeds pigs from 40 pounds up to market weight and is also designed to feed 50 to 55 pigs in eight separate feeding stations.  There is an optional fence-line adapter so you may feed two separated pens with one feeder.

Like the other feeders, it has an animal activated feeding system that keeps an even distribution of feed around the trough. No clumping or piling up of feed on one side of the trough while the other side goes hungry.

Hog Feeders

As the pigs (technically 120 pounds or less) grow larger, they will consume more and more feed which will require a feeder with larger capacities.  To accommodate their growing appetite and size, a larger hog feeder is necessary to maintain the efficiency of your feed distribution system.  The larger volume hog feeders are available in both poly hopper and metal hopper designs.

Hog feeders with metal hoppers – Sioux Supreme Hog Feeders

Hog Feeder Supreme

The traditional outdoor large capacity hog feeder is made with heavy galvanized 12 gauge steel. It sits on polyethylene skids that never rust and are designed to hold the feeder off the ground. The Sioux Steel Supreme hog feeder has 12 large openings that create feeding zones so hogs can easily consume the feed undisturbed and without bickering.  The trough has very strong plastic doors to protect the feed from the elements and allow individual feeding.

The Supreme feeder has a convenient feed flow adjustment control that regulates the rate of feed being dispensed to the trough. The seamless top cover is made even stronger with reinforcement beads and has a ‘wide hinge’ for convenient filling.

These reliable and durable hog feeders are available in 40, 60, and 80 bushel capacities and can ship anywhere in the US.

Hog feeders with poly hoppers – Big O Feeders

Hog Feeder Big O

Just like the Supreme hog feeders, the Big O outdoor hog feeder is designed to hold large quantities and is available in 40, 65, and 90 bushels capacities.  They all have 12 feeding stations in the trough and a side feed adjustment to regulate the feed flow. This set and forget feeder will allow your hogs to eat to their hearts content.

Designed for outdoor use, the Big O feeder is made with a plastic top and trough to eliminate rust and corrosion. Even hog lot acids have no effect on the feeder.  The large 56 inch polyethylene lid not only protects your precious feed from the fiercest winds and rains, but also provides easy access for quick filling.  The entire feeder rests on polyethylene skids so it can be moved around the yard If necessary.

When looking for the most efficient and convenient way to distribute feed to your animals, consider the top-of-the-line Sioux Steel pig feeders and hog feeders from Barn World a top distributor of livestock supplies and cattle guards!

Cattle Guards and Horses – a warning from Barn World

Cattle Guards and Horses

Lately we’ve been receiving a lot of calls for cattle guard quotes from horse owners looking to contain their equine. I wanted to give a quick review of why they’re not recommended for use with horses and why a traditional livestock gate is your safest alternative.

Cattle Guards vs. Gates

livestock gate  

 

Dangers of cattle guards

Although cattle guards are very popular and provide the ultimate ease of access to all your pastures, they can also be very dangerous when used with horses. Horses typically have a more slender hoof and leg than cattle and this physical difference can allow a horse’s hoof to slip between the cattle guard rails and slide all the way down to the bottom of the vaulted area. It’s slender hoof can also easily slip off the rail and damage its ‘ankle’.

This exposes one of the weakest parts of their leg directly to the cattle guard rail itself and once in this position, the scared animal’s flight instincts kick in and it will struggle to free itself. During the attempt to flee its precarious position, it can easily break its leg and put its own life in jeopardy. It is an extremely difficult thing to see and and its extremely difficult to even assist the horse in freeing itself.  A horse with its leg stuck in a cattle guard is not something that you ever want to have happen to your equine.

The safest and only viable alternative to a cattle guard for horses is a standard gate. It may be less convenient than driving over a cattle guard, but it is certainly safer than exposing your horse to a possible broken leg.

As a quick side note: There are other hoofed animals they can easily cross the barrier. Goats, sheep and other sure-footed livestock that are very nimble can quickly learn how to get across the curved rails. Of course animals with pads, such as cats and dogs can also learn to tip-toe across the rails and escape to freedom!

Help with cattle guards

If you’re considering using a cattle guard where horses are present, we would suggest that you use a traditional farm gate or livestock gate and realize the inconvenience of operating the gate is well worth offsetting the risk of injury to your horse.

Livestock Gate review:

 

If you have any questions or if we at Barn World Livestock Supplies can help with your cattle guard decisions, please let us know and we’ll be more than happy to help.

 

Hay feeders from Barn World Livestock Supplies

Although the grass is starting to grow and hay becomes more plentiful, it’s still important to contain your feed costs with a hay feeder from Barn World Livestock Supplies.  Wasted hay is a common problem that can increase feed expense as wasted hay is money down the drain.  Selecting the proper equine or livestock hay feeder for your animals is not only a simple and effective way to keep costs low and profits up, but it will also save you time refilling and cleaning up the blown-around trampled hay.  Make sure you get one before the price of feeding sneaks up on you in the summer months.

Selecting the right hay feeder

There are many different styles of hay feeders for every budget and all will produce large savings that will allow them to pay for themselves in short order.  Designed for everything from large round hay bales, square bales and even as small as feeding individual flakes, there’s a feeder that will minimize waste and provide years of higher profits.  Selecting the right one for your animals is quick and easy.

Hay feeders Styles

Rack and Trough Feeders

Combo, or rack and trough feeders are very popular as they serve a double duty:  They suspend the hay for consumption over a trough which can be used to feed supplements and also catch loose hay before it hits the ground.  Your animals will easily pull the scraps out of the feed trough and not waste fallen hay.

Combo hay feeders are designed for goats, sheep, horses and cattle by varying the height of the trough.  The most common heights are:

  • Sheep – trough height 20″
  • Horse – trough height 30″ and 36″
  • Cattle – trough height 23-1/2″

Their versatility allows them to feed both hay and/or grain & minerals when necessary, which is a very convenient feature when supplementing diets and they are available for both round bales and square.

Hay feeder for cattle  Horse Hay Feeder

One of the most popular and indestructible of the cattle hay / grain feeders is this large 600 pound, skid-mounted bale feeder:

Made from a very heavy 2″ x 2″ square 16 gauge tubing, this almost eight foot square feeder stands 72″ tall and is one of the toughest out there.  It can accommodate both square and round bales and has an 18 gauge steel pan with rolled edges to avoid any cuts on your cattle.  The center is composed of outward angling tubing to keep the hay on the outside where your cattle can reach it.  To ensure longevity and make it the toughest around, it is an entirely welded design that contains not nuts and bolts, eliminating wobble and torquing.  It’s one solid piece designed to last a lifetime!

Below is a quick video tour of this indestructible hay feeder from Sioux Steel:

Hay hopper round bale feeders

Along the same design as the combo feeders, the Hay Hopper Round Bale Feeders suspend the hay with chains and come with or without a skirt at the bottom.

suspended hay feeder

The skirted hay hopper feeder does will with buffalo and cattle too.  It has a large 7′ 6″ inside diameter and is made with 14 gauge, 1-1/4″  square tubing. Built for round bales, it stands 68 inches tall and has 16 feeding stations – a lot of cattle can eat at once!  It’s unique chain design allows a large bale to be dropped in from the top for livestock to access below. The steel skirt keeps the wind from blowing around the straw and presents it for easy consumption.  This particular feeder is powder coated and all tubes are either capped sealed to keep water out.  Its bolt together, two-piece design allows this feeder to be easily ship economically throughout the United States.

Round bale feeders

The traditional round bale feeder is made from a steel skirt with a large diameter to accommodate field bales and will have stanchions to separate animals during feeding time.  Built to be extremely tough and left out in the elements, these heavy-duty feeders coming in all types of shapes and sizes.  The most popular design is of course is round, and usually in an 8 to 9 foot diameter for your largest bales.

Below is an example of a round bale feeder with a closed bottom and mud legs to keep the skirt from resting directly on the ground.

round bale feeder  horse hay feeder

These feeders are powder coated to protect them from rust and are designed to give years of feed savings.

Another very tough round bale feeder is the Bull Tuff feeder.
The bull tuff round bale feeder is very large and extremely robust with twelve openings and nine mud legs to keep it entirely off the ground. The three-piece design allows it to be shipped very economically.

livestock hay feeder

Plastic Horse Hay Feeder

Our most popular for horses is poly round horse hay feeder from Sioux Steel.  Designed from the beginning specifically for horses, all of the joints are overlapping to eliminate any kind of sharp edge and all bolts our countersunk into the walls to prevent any cuts or scrapes to equine legs.

horse hay feeder  

Extremely easy to maneuver at only 80 pounds, it can be rolled into position and dropped over the round bale quite easily.  Once in place, the legs also have the ability to be staked down in high wind areas if necessary.  The thoughtful 4-piece design allows it to be shipping in four pieces, keeping shipping costs low and economical to send to send to any of the lower 48 states.

To keep profits up, you’ll need to keep expenses down and a simple and efficient hay feeder is the best way to make sure you realize both goals.  Don’t wait until prices skyrocket this summer to invest inequality hay feeder from BarnWorld.com

Cattle Guards from Barn World Livestock Supplies

Cattle Guards – an effective invisible livestock gate!

A properly installed cattle guard is an effective and popular livestock control devise that saves valuable time and effort.  Available with the highly effective round top-pipe for the maximum hoofed animal deterrent and the flat top-pipe which provides a smoother ride for your vehicles while creating a barrier for livestock, it is easy to establish a safe perimeter to your pastures while granting the best ease of access possible.  It won’t matter who’s crossing your land, they will never leave a gate open and cattle won’t be wandering off on their own.  Keep your livestock safely contained with a simple and very effective cattle guard.

Types of cattle guards

There are many different types available, but the most common and effective are the flat and boxed options.

Flat cattle guards

are the traditional style in use all over the country.  Typically they’re made by welding round pipe to the top of heavy duty c-channels or I-beams.  The design calls for them to be mounted over a vaulted or open area with concrete footings to hold back the dirt and provide a foundation to transfer the weight of crossing vehicles to the ground.  The vault area underneath the rails creates a void and the important visual perception of depth needed to deter an animal attempting to cross.  Proper installation of the foundation is critical and a contractor familiar with the local soil conditions, including soil freezing levels and drainage issues should be consulted to ensure a long lasting crossing.

Boxed cattle guards

are identical to flat cattle guards but are designed to lay directly on the ground. They have a steel skirt welded around the perimeter to keep dirt from creeping in underneath and are very popular in low traffic, low-speed areas. These include construction sites where cleaning dirt from equipment is necessary before entering public roadways.  They are very popular as washout sites, used when hosing off trailers and other vehicles and allow for the water and dirt to drain away, and also as rumble strips that shake the dirt off before leaving a site.  These ‘semi-portable’ guards can be relocated from site to site as needed.

Boxed cattle guards are also popular for residential use and other low traffic areas such as cellular antenna towers, oil rigs, and any unattended maintenance area that require roaming livestock be kept at bay.

Boxed-Cattle-Guard

Cattle guard load ratings

The AASHTO (American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials) provide axle load ratings for cattle guards to be used in public installations.  Rated cattle guards are certified to meet the requirements of state and federal entities such as the Department of Transportation.

AASHTO Design Specifications
H-15 (12 tons per axle)
H-20 (16 tons per axle)
U-54 (25 tons per axle)
U-80 (30 tons per axle)

Private use cattle guards When used on private property, certified load rating certificates are not required. This fact alone can save hundreds of dollars on a single cattle guard even though they’re built to the same specifications.  Private use guards will handle fully-loaded semi truck trailers as well as farm and ranch equipment.  Very popular on private driveways, these cattle guards can be more economical.

If you need any help with your cattle guard project, would like a quote with shipping or have any questions at all about cattle guards, please contact BarnWorld.com.  They have all the livestock supplies you need for your farm and ranch!

Hog Feeders | Pig Feeders from Barn World Livestock Supplies

Big Wheel Hog Feeders from Barn World

Barn World is proud to offer the Big Wheel hog feeders from Osborne.  Keeping your feed fresh for your pigs is essential in getting them ready for market.  The big wheel pig feeders are designed to eliminate waste from spoiled or spilled feed. They are much more efficient than the best gravity feeders as the feed is only dispensed when the paddle wheel is turned by the pigs. It does not sit in the truck waiting to be consumed. This ensures the fresh feed in the hopper is delivered to the trough clean and ready to eat. Eliminating the square corners of a rectangular feeder keeps the feed from accumulating in corners, turning stale, rotting and going to waste. The round trough and sweeping action of the feeder arm keeps the food supply fresh and will be consumed in its entirety by your animals.

How it works – a patented feed flow system
All the pig feeders come with an adjustable rate gauge to control the amount of food dispensed when the wheel is turned. Inside the feeder, the flow system is controlled by an adjustable cone they can be raised and lowered in the bottom of the hopper. It is the cone that regulates the rate of feed flow, not gravity. As the pigs eat, they move the large feed wheel sweeper arm in the bottom of the trough. They don’t know it, but the sweeping action literally cleans the bottom of the trough and dispenses fresh feed at the preset rate. As the feed wheel is agitated feed falls through the center hole of the cone and into the trough where it is dispensed to the pigs. When they stop eating, the lack of movement on the sweeper arm stops the flow of feed. As such, these big wheel feeders are self-cleaning and self-regulating which reduces feed waste to none!

Build for longevity and efficiency
The Osborne feeders are designed and built to last for generations. In fact the very first big wheel feeders were built 20 years ago and are still in use today. The frame is made with heavy-duty steel construction and the fiberglass troughs and hoppers are easy to clean, maintain and can be used indoors or out. The feeders can be anchored to almost any service and maybe placed in a fence-line to handle every type of feeding situation. Their large trough openings and round shape give pigs much better access and provide more trough openings than rectangular feeders can. Easier access and adjustable flow rates create a less stressful eating environment and will allow your pigs to eat in less time with less stress.

Types of pig feeders

1. Nursery Feeders

Fresh feed is critical for young pigs as they are very sensitive to stale feeds. The patented mechanical flow delivery system of the Osborne nursery feeder guarantees fresh feed every time. The agitation on the sweeper arm keeps the trough clean and dispenses feed only on demand. All types of feed including crumbles and pellets can flow through the system without damaging it’s texture or appearance. These conditions allow the pigs to eat at will while maintaining the fresh, unneeded green in the hopper. This produces a better quality of gain for consumption and will better the overall health of your pigs. The careful design of the head space openings and trough reduces eating stress and promote consumption, producing better gains.

Available in the one bushel, 3 bushel and 4.5 bushel sizes, these nursery feeders are the best in the industry.

    

2. Finishing Feeders

As your pigs grow in size, the main sources of food waste are more pronounced but are still eliminated with the patented delivery system of the big wheel feeders. The self dispensing feeders required no human activity and eliminate waste on their own by stopping the feed from entering the trough when the pigs are not eating. The self-regulated and self-cleaning finishing feeders will completely eliminate spoilage.

Available in three sizes from 4.5, 7.5 and the 15 bushel capacity these finishing feeders will reduce your management time and minimize feed waste to guarantee maximum efficiency.

    

3. Bulk Hog Feeders

Just like the smaller models the big wheel feeders, the bulk hog feeder is designed for maximum efficiency and the elimination of spoilage. The feeders are engineered to last for decades while minimizing your time, waste and need for adjustment. The reinforced fiberglass and hot-dipped galvanized steel supports all add up to a feeder that will produce healthy weight gains in your pigs for generations to come.

Hopper lids are not needed as plugging is never a problem even in heavy rains. The self-cleaning movement of the patented sweeper arms keep the feed flowing regardless of conditions. Set your feed rate once with the easily accessible outside mounted controller arm and it will remain constant for years to come.

Designed to be used with 90 head and possibly more, the big wheel bulk feeders are available in five different capacities: 24, 45, 65, 85 and 105 bushels. Using the same self-cleaning and regulating feed delivery system inside the hopper, the capacities are adjusted by adding rings to the height of the feeder. Available with an optional galvanize steel skid to be mounted underneath for easy moving, these pig feeders are some of the most versatile on the market today.

      

Be sure to contact Barn World for all your cattle guard and livestock supply needs today.

Creep Feeders: Livestock Supplies

Barn World

Creep feeders

It’s springtime; time to make sure your little guys have the nutrition and feed they need for a healthy start.  The proper use of a Creep Feeder allows them to get the supplemental feed necessary for healthy weight gains while increasing their pre-weaning weight.  Creep feeding will get your calves into market ready shape and high-quality condition more quickly than relying on just common community hay and assures less strain in their developmental years.  An early healthy start wards off disease and physical stress to create the best genetic lines going forward for your future generations.

Creep feeders provide a safe feeding area for smaller animals, away from larger animals such as their mothers.  The small entryway allows the physically babies access to grain, hay and nutritional supplements while keeping larger animals from entering the feeding area.  Adult livestock are just as interested in the feed supplements and would eat it before the baby could, so a creep feeder is necessary to separate the two without causing anxiety for either.

Types of Creep Feeders

Creep Feeders For Calves

 

Creep feeders relieve separation anxiety

It can be difficult and extremely stressful to try and manually separate a calf from its mother in order to provide supplemental feed. It’s much easier to allow the natural curiosity of the calf to take it into the Creep Feeder and be rewarded with the sweet tasting grain and supplements it needs.  This eliminates the stress the animals feel when a calf is removed from it’s mother for feeding and is the most un-intrusive method of assuring the calf gets it’s required supplements.

Barn World carries a selection of creeps feeders to ensure your young ones get the nutrition necessary to grow up fast and healthy.   Calves aren’t the only animals that benefit from supplemental feeds; sheep, goats, deer and even horses can all benefit from advanced nutrition throughout their lives.

Creep Feeders for horses– a great stall creep feeder:

Barn World has a horse Creep Feeder designed to be mounted directly on a stall wall for easy access for both you and your horse.  The adjustable top allows you to create a customize size opening on the top of the feeder and forms an overhang on the interior so the feed cannot be slung out of the sides when your horse is eating.  This unique and simple design prevents spillage and the waste of expensive supplements and allows you to adjust the size of the theater as your equine gross.

Made with stainless steel hardware and extremely durable 3/8 inch high density plastic, this feeder is designed to last a lifetime.  It also has a removable bottom for easy cleaning to guarantee sanitary feeding conditions in your stall. No more unnecessary and crusty leftover feed for flys!

Creep feeders for Deer:

These feeders are designed specifically for deer and wildlife. Providing protein to keep an entire herd healthy and growing will also head off disease and give the best opportunity for trophy wildlife.  Deer need protein year-round and it is especially important during the growth of their antlers. In conjunction with natural forage, a protein supplement will ensure the best growing gains and herd lines for generations to come.

Providing the necessary nutrition for your livestock, equine or wildlife, is a must and a traditional Creep Feeder is the best feed management system to ensure the young animals get the healthy beginning and continuing nutrition needed.

Visit Barn World today for all your livestock and cattle guard needs and get a great start on a new season!

Calf Warmer – livestock supplies from Barn World

Calf Warmers

It’s officially spring and that means calving season and it’s time to make sure you have the livestock supplies and calf warmers needed to protect your newborn calves from ol’ mother nature.  Make sure you’re ready to provide the excellent care required after birth when your new livestock enter the great big world.

Calf warmer: construction

The best protection for newborns is offered by a polyurethane calf warmer with an enclosed heater that will create a comfortable enclosure to protect and give privacy to newborns. Constructed from medium density polyethylene, these durable warmers come complete with a heater to keep your calves cozy, dry and comfortable during the first critical hours after birth.

The interior provides enough room to feel secure, stand up and dry off while getting used to their new environment.  With a hinged top section that is removable for easy entry and cleaning, this warmer provides the ultimate in accessibility. The slotted floor is raised so heat easily circulates throughout the entire unit before exiting the vent in the top of the lid.  The top section vent also serves as an easy way to view the calf without having to open the lid.   The floor is very sturdy and is designed to handle the weight with stainless steel supports.

The exterior bottom is ribbed so it may be moved or dragged around the pasture with ease and the rounded front bottom end allows it to slide over obstacles on the ground. There is also an optional steel hitch that can be used for towing with the vehicle if needed.

Calf Warmer Heater

The warmer comes complete with a high performance 110 V heater, three heat settings and two settings for the fan for an accurate temperature control in almost any environment.

It’s large size of 45 inches tall, 24 inches wide and 50 inches long allow for plenty of room and movement in a secure environment.

PolyDome Calf Warmer

Make sure your calf has the best available environment provided to it so it may have a quick and healthy recovery from birth.  These warmers are essential to giving your animals the best chance of a healthy beginning and prevent it from experiencing the shock of leaving the warmth of the mother to the cold and sometimes frozen ground.

Contact BarnWorld.com today and we’ll be happy to help with all your livestock needs – from cattle guards to saddle pads, Barn World has the equipment for your farm and ranch.

Hay Feeder Review – control your costs – Barn World Livestock Supplies

 

Hay feeders

Hay feeders can make or break your livestock profit margins in a hurry. Wasted hay is one of the most expensive, yet easily containable costs associated with raising animals.  With such an impact on your bottom line, it’s extremely important to minimize your feed expenses and Barn World has the hay feeders to do just that.

The most effective means of keeping your livestock from wasting hay and driving up your feeding costs is to contain the hay in a clean environment that gives them the opportunity to eat it rather than walk on it.  We’ve all experienced hay blowing around a feeder only to be trampled into the mud by the animals that should be eating it, creating a needless waste of money. The simple solution is a hay feeder that not only allows them to eat from the bale, but also keeps the hay clean and together for consumption.

Here’s a look at three different styles of hay feeders that offer long lasting economic benefits for feeding your livestock:

Bull Tuff Round Bale Feeder

 This feeder is a large, traditional round bale feeder with a 9 foot diameter and 12 feed openings. It has heavy-duty mud legs, and its 1-1/2″ x 2.5″ 16 gauge high tensile tubing makes this feeder extremely sturdy to take years of abuse from your livestock.  Weighing in at 440 pounds, this large feeder will handle up to 20 head of cattle.

Hay/Grain Feeder

This is an extremely large and heavy cattle feeder weighing 600 pounds.  It rests on skids so that it may be moved about your pastures with ease. At 7 feet wide, 8 feet long and 72 inches tall, this indestructible feeder offers the ability to suspend your hay bale above the mud, dirt and water and can also be used to feed grain in the pan below.  The entirely welded design of 2″ square tubing and angle iron give it incredible strength to withstand any abuse.

Hay Hopper Feeder

A unique design in that it suspends the hay bale off the ground and allows your livestock to get out it from all angles. Suspending the hay bale helps prevent water damage, rotting and mold.  It also keeps the bale fresh and free from dirt so the hay remains a clean source of food for your livestock.  It’s a simple and effective means of keeping hay costs to a minimum.

Keeping your costs low and your animals healthy and growing are the primary objective of any rancher.  These hay feeders are designed to last and provide economic benefits to you and your livestock for years.

Cattle guards: A livestock management time saver from Barn World Livestock Supplies

Cattle guards

A simple Texas Gate provides security and peace of mind for your farm and ranch and is one of the most valued assets of livestock equipment available to the modern rancher today. Gone are the days were you would have to stop and get out of your vehicle only to drive forward, stop again, get out and close the gate behind you.  With a cattle guard, you won’t worry that someone may have left a gate open releasing your animals to the great unknown!  A simple cattle guard, when properly installed, will provide years of worry free livestock control.

Types of cattle guards

Round pipe cattle guards

Traditional cattle guards are made from c-channels or I-beam load supports with either round or flat top piping.  Round top-pipe provides a greater deterrent for livestock by creating not only a rounded surface that’s more challenging to balance on, but also a greater visual deterrent. The curved edges create greater shadow contrast making it look even more imposing to animals.  The combination provides an effective deterrent for livestock and other flat hoofed creature.

Flat pipe cattle guards

provide a physical barrier while also creating a smoother ride for passing traffic than the round pipe. They’re most popular on heavily traveled roadways and provide a smoother crossing for high-speed vehicles.  Although better for crossing trucks and cars, the flat surface will allow for a more stable foothold for animals and thus have a slightly less physical deterrent than round piped guards.

Temporary or boxed cattle guards

Boxed guards are quite common in the construction industry. They are traditional round top-pipe cattle guards with a steel skirt welded around the outside to prevent dirt from creeping into the open vault area underneath. They’re designed to lay directly on a flat surface and can be used as a construction site washout or a dirt rumbler to clean debris from equipment before leaving a job site.  They are also convenient in that they can be transferred from one site to the next as work requires.

Cattle Guards for ATVs

Barn World Livestock Supplies offers a custom guard built for ATVs and designed to be inserted directly into a fence line. It’s a simple and effective means of quickly adding access to other pastures without creating the need for a permanent guard that requires concrete footings or vaults to be dug. Just cut your fence and drop it into place for foot or atv access.

 

Warning:  Cattle guards do not work with all animals

Balancing a flat hoof on a round pipe is a difficult proposition for most animals. There are some exceptions: goats, sheep and other surefooted livestock can cross cattle guards fairly easily and your soft-footed barnyard friends such as dogs & cats will be able to walk right across.

Please note that cattle guards are not recommended for use with horses. Their smaller and slender legs can slide down between the rails and be expose to breakage at their weakest point.  Being a flight animal means that they will struggle more fiercely out if panic to get out and unintentionally increase the risk of injury.   The best barrier for these animals is a swing gate.

Simple and effective, cattle guards provide a swift and maintenance free method of ensuring your livestock stay on your ranch. You will never need to open and close gate again and you’ll have peace of mind knowing that a gate somewhere has been left open.

If you have any questions about installation or need and long-lasting heavy-duty cattle guard for your farm and ranch, contact Barn World (720.238.2190) as they have a large selection and a knowledgeable staff to help.

Cattle Guards offer effective and convenient livestock control

 

Barn World

 

Cattle guards:   the most efficient means of containing livestock without a gate.

If you have traffic through your pasture or across your fence-line,  you know how inconvenient a gate is especially if there are others that need to use it.  Not only that, but if someone were to leave the gate open or not latch it closed, you could be looking for and trying to track down your animals days later!

The cattle guard was created to allow vehicles to cross through a pasture fence-line without having to rely on opening and successfully closing a gate, however, they do not work with all animals.  As we have pointed out in other blog posts, (Cattle Guards can be dangerous to some animals) they are not effective with dogs, goats and sheep and can be especially dangerous to horses.  The best and safest means for effectively containing these type of sure-footing animals is a simple gate.

The rounded pipe cattle guard creates two deterrents for cows and other livestock

Cattle Guard

1.   Physical Discomfort:  Hoofed animals have a flat surface at the end of their legs to place their weight.  This creates discomfort and a problem with balance when attempting to walk on an uneven surface.  When placed on a rounded pipe, the hoof will rock forward or backward and create an unstable condition for the animal making it almost impossible for them to balance.  If your livestock are brave enough to even attempt venturing a leg on, it will quickly discover how difficult it is to balance.  This physical barrier is an extremely successful DETERRENT for many hoofed animals.

 

2.  Optical Barrier:  The seconded barrier element that a round-finsh cattle guard creates is mental; an optical barrier.  Being color blind and having very poor depth perception,  the shadows that are projected by the pipe between the rails, amplify the distance and depth between the pipes and will dissuade even the most stubborn or determined animals from thinking about crossing.  There have been studies on ‘virtual’ barriers that are no more than lines painted on a road to create the same optical illusion as a cattle guard, but they have been shown to have limited success in keeping cows home.

 

Picture of a ‘Virtual Cattle Guard’ from Wikipedia:

Virtual Cattle Guard

From Wikipedia

 

Deer: Deer are another common animal that can be effectively deterred by guards.  They are such athletic creatures and are able to jump large distances with little effort that it requires a larger impassable distance be created.  To effectively discourage these extreme jumpers, you need to provide at least a 12′ barrier and more commonly a 16′ barrier to prevent them from attempting a jump across.  This requires two 8′ guards be bolted together to provide a sixteen foot dimension in the direction of vehicle travel and an effective obstruction.  It goes without saying I hope that a fence, tall enough to prevent jumping, be attached to the cattle guard as well.

 

 Cattle Guards are not effective for all animals

Some animals will not be deterred or have a problem crossing a guard.  These are usually the non-hoofed variety with paws.  Dogs, cats, coyotes and others will have no trouble getting over the rounded pipes.  Even small hoofed animals such as sheep and goats will usually be able to trot right across without much effort.  Here, a gate has been shown to be the most effective.

Not for Horses or bison

The second most requested use we see for these animal deterrents is for the control of horses.  We do not recommend that they be used with horses as the horse anatomy has such a slender leg, that it’s hoof can slide down between the pipe until it reaches the bottom of the vault.  This traps the leg and exposes it to breaking easily when struggling to get out and can prove to be a devastating.  Please use a gate when keeping your horses in a pasture as a cattle guard and a horse leg do not mix well at all.

Bison or buffalo, offer a challenge at the other end of the hoof size spectrum.  Their hooves are so large, that if the surface pipes are not placed far enough apart, they can get them across the empty space span and create a stable bridge to balance on.  It is not an easy task for them, but here too, a gate is recommended for these large animals.

Crossing Cattle Guards –  A concern for human traffic

Although designed to prevent livestock from crossing,  these devises can also pose a dangerous predicament for humans, especially children.  The average gap in the piping is usually 3-1/2″ to 4-1/2″ and can be difficult for the human foot to handle when not being especially careful.  Because their feet are much smaller then an adults’ and that they may not be as well-suited for balancing on a curved surface, it can be particularly hazardous for a child to cross.  While it may be tempting to weld a small strip of metal or attach a board for people to cross, we would again recommend the use of a gate.  Even the smallest strip can allow the more sure-footed hoofed animals an escape route out of your pasture.

Flat Top Cattle Guards – a smoother alternative

When used in high traffic, or high speed areas, a flat-topped alternative can be used to provide a smoother ride for vehicles.  Although not quite as effective a barrier as the round pipe finish, the flat tops allow for an effective livestock control while providing a smoother ride for vehicles.

Cattle Guards

The individual crossing pipes that create the top of the guard are actually a flat topped hexagon that provides a smoother finish for cars and tractors to ride on.  They allow easier traversing for human feet while still creating a deterrent for animals.  Livestock are not as intimidated by this type of finish, but it can still be effective when properly installed.

Cattle guards are an efficient means of protecting and containing your livestock without the use of a gate.  They can save considerable inconvenience and provide a reliable way of keeping your animals from harm while providing effortless crossings for vehicles.

See Barn World for all your livestock supplies and help with your cattle guard projects.

 

Related articles