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Select well-drained feeding areas

It is important that feeding sites be placed in well-drained areas to reduce water, mud and manure buildup. A buildup of water could not only waste portions of hay bales, but could also decrease the nutritional value of the hay, creating a need for alternative nutrient sources to maintain herd health and performance, according to Kansas State's Joel DeRouchey. Excessive mud and manure around feeding sites also means that cattle will have to exert more energy to reach their feed. "Well-drained areas make the best feeding sites because mud accumulation is less likely to occur," he suggests.