Why Is It Important to Maintain Your Paddock or Farm?
In order for animals to remain in the best physical and mental health, it is vital that the area around them caters to their needs. Maintaining a paddock or any farm is an important aspect of animal care, as it is where your animal will exercises, socialise, rest and eat. Without constant attention, a paddock or farm can quickly become unsafe and even unwelcoming to animals. If you’re a hobbyist, enthusiast, farmer or rancher, then read this article to determine the best ways to maintain your area and in turn your animal.
What Kind of Environment Do Your Animals Need?
The primary goal is to keep your livestock safe from adverse weather conditions, disease, predators or injury. Caring for an animal goes hand in hand with the maintenance of the grounds that they live on. For example, the wellbeing of the horse is largely dependent on the quality of the paddock he grazes on.
A horse requires clean, edible, nutritious grass to graze from in order to stay healthy. This means that it’s important to keep the soil from getting swampy or waterlogged, as this encourages mould, bogs and disease. Moreover, horses are very sensitive to muddy or boggy grounds, as this can elicit infections in their hooves that can cause abscesses and even fever.
Farmers and ranchers need to ensure that the soil is aerated and that other dangerous risks – such as weeds, harmful insects or poisonous plants – are mitigated. Some choose to treat their land during the Spring in order to prepare it for the cooler temperatures in Winter. Others choose to implement field rotation in order to allow the soil to regenerate before it becomes patchy or eroded.
Many farmers, ranchers and horse handlers even take environmental upkeep one step further by sampling the soil, testing it, and recording the PH levels. Comparing the results with the optimal levels suggested is a great way to determine whether you need to change your fertiliser, adjust your pest control or treat your paddock. This is a particularly effective means of monitoring the nutrient intake for the grazing animals.
Preserving the grass in your paddock or farm is a vital means of protecting your horse from sickness. For example, it is of the utmost importance that the field is regularly weeded and that any faecal matter from the animals is disposed of. Leaving animal excrements around can be a serious threat to your livestock, as it is often a vehicle for parasites to be passed on.
With this being said, it’s clear that an animal requires a well-curated environment that can suit their needs. If a paddock runs into disrepair, then a horse’s health and physical performance will follow suit. The horse relies on the paddock as his main source of food and his best opportunity to interact with potential mates.
What Kind of Equipment Do You Need to Maintain A Farm or Paddock?
This is why it is so vital to remain attentive with the groundskeeping – because, if your animal falls sick then you’re likely to become buried in expensive veterinary bills and emotional distress. Ensuring that our paddock is preserved well is the best form of prevention. That being said, with so much work comes so much equipment. Farmers and ranchers have the need for many instruments, including but not limited to the tools listed below:
- Ride-On Mowers
- Paddock Vacuums
- Wheel Barrows
- Pressure washers
Other Useful Terminologies
Paddocks generally refer to the areas used for horse grazing, but there are many other kinds of areas that are used for horse training and handling. If you’re new to farming, ranching or hose handling, then it might be useful to consider some other terminologies that will not only be relevant to horses, but other livestock too. Below is a list of terminologies that will likely come up when you’re caring for a horse, and that will also be useful to know when considering the land maintenance for other livestock like cows and sheep.
A ranch is a popular term amongst Westerners, but they simply refer to enclosed properties where multiple horses are raised. Ranch owners typically use ranches as a location to breed, train and ride racehorses. Alternatively, ranches are also spaces for riding enthusiasts to come and enjoy horseback riding. Horse ranchers are tasked with handling and caring for horses while maintaining and cultivating a property on which the animals can thrive.
For those who do not have access to spacious fields, arenas or ranches, round pens serve as a great alternative. Round pens are smaller, circular enclosures of about 50 square feet where horse riders train younger horses. Round pens are used in the early stages of a horse’s development because they elicit more interaction between the horse and the handlers. This forces the horse to engage with the handler, thereby giving the handler an opportunity to gain the horse’s trust and begin training.
Westerners tend to use the terms ‘corral’ or ‘pen’ to refer to areas that are similar to paddocks. However, corrals and pens are more associated with enclosures for livestock like cattle, sheep or even goats. Corrals are not generally used for complex training or movements, and they are found on farms or ranches.
Competitive riders and their racehorses attend equestrian events where they will ride and navigate through obstacle courses. These courses involve a series of obstacles and jumps that are aimed at challenging a horse’s agility and the jockey’s control. Depending on the size of the competition, courses can be extensive or small in nature. Farmers and ranchers can recreate obstacle courses for practice purposes by setting up equipment and jumps on their own properties at home (if there is sufficient space).
A pasture is also known as a field. The terms are often used interchangeably as they both refer vaguely to a wide-open space for a variety of uses. This is a space where animals can graze, vegetables can be grown and farmers can raise livestock such as sheep, cows and horses.
An arena is a rectangular enclosure where horse riders can roam freely. The interior doesn’t have any posts or beams, but the perimeter is surrounded by shrubbery, walls, fencing, or chains. There are both indoor and outdoor arenas, and generally speaking a standard arena for dressage is around 12, 900 feet. Arenas used for jumping are slightly smaller, around 20 000 square feet.
Stables are building where animals live. Stables provide safety and shelter from the elements, and they act as a home where livestock can be separated and kept safe. Stables are used as home bases where animals are fed and tended to.
What Are The Different Ways to Care For Grazing Soil?
If you want to keep your animals healthy, then you need to preserve the ground beneath it. In some cases, this means combatting soil erosion, which is a common problem that affects how much nutritious, fertile land and soil is available for animals to graze. Soil erosion can often happen as a result of farm mismanagement, overuse, extreme weather or even the contamination of soil by harmful acids or chemicals. Eroded soil decreases land productivity, and it makes the ground more susceptible to waterlogging, stagnation or ruin.
Soil Conservation Methods
- PH Level Maintenance
- Salinity Management
- Organic Farming
- Perimeter Runoff Control
- Streambank Protections
What Kind of Mowers Will Be Useful for Farm and Paddock Maintenance?
A ride on mower with a cutting deck width of 100cm – such as the HUSQVARNA TS138L RIDE ON MOWER – should be sufficient for a grass area that is approximately one acre in size. These ride on mowers are ergonomic, pedal-operated machines that are ideal for small to medium lawns and paddocks. Anything larger than 3 acres will likely require a ride on mower with a cutting deck that is about 120cm wide – such as the HUSQVARNA TS148 RIDE ON MOWER. The TS148 is very useful in larger lawns and fields, as it was designed with performance, comfort and durability in mind.
Why Should I Buy A Ride On Mower From BS Power?
As part of maintaining your paddock, pasture or farm, you can purchase a ride on mower to assist you with lawn maintenance. Ride on mowers can be used for lawn mowing and even topping, depending on the length and depth of the grass. If the grass of your paddock is not too long, and you regularly maintain the area, then you can use a ride on mower to top the grass. However, you should be careful not to overuse your mower in rough conditions with a lot of broken debris or very long grass, as this can wear down the belt of the machine.
It’s worth noting that these machines are not only useful for paddock maintenance, but they are also great helps in many other spheres of farm life. Groundskeeping is a huge aspect of any ranch or farm, so BS Power’s mowers come in handy in many different ways. Automating the jobs that would normally require a lot of heavy, strenuous manual labour is a great way of conserving energy and streamlining your operations.
Alternative Uses For Ride On Mowers
Aerating your lawn
You can attach a lawn aerator to the back of your mower and pull it over areas that require aeration. Soil aeration improves the overall drainage in an area by increasing the amount of oxygen and nutrients available. Large aerators can easily be attached to mowers for a simple hack that works well.
Tilling and Cultivating Soil
Mowers are powerful machines that can just as easily tow cultivators and tillers. A tiller is used to loosen and break up compact soil, while a cultivator is meant to mix soil that has already been loosened and broken up. This is a particularly useful trick for hobbyists and enthusiasts who have small plots to tend for.
Hauling, Loading and Dumping
Larger, more advanced mowers can sometimes support the instalment of front-end loaders. This is a very useful feature that makes it possible to load and dump waste materials like compost,dirt and manure. Similarly, if you attach a cart or wagon to your mower then you can use it to haul troughs, animal bedding, debris, compost, hay and more.
Equip Yourself With BS Power’s Robust Equipment
BS Power offers a wide variety of machines that are useful for anyone in the industry of construction, forestry and agriculture. The machines and equipment available at BS Power are high-performance tools that range from well-known brands like Honda, Briggs and Stratton, Baumaux, Husqvarna and Stihl. Below are some examples of the ride on mower machines available currently.
- HUSQVARNA TS138L (R40, 960)
- HUSQVARNA TS142 (R47, 690)
- HUSQVARNA TS148 (R52, 150)
- HUSQVARNA TS242D (R56, 730)
Other Products Available at BS Power
- Zero Turn Mowers
- Water Pumps
- High-Pressure Washers
- Sod Cutters
Whether you’re a hobbyist, a professional or an enthusiast, it’s important to know how to care for your land and your animals. Equipping yourself with the right equipment is the best way to ensure that you’re prepared for the worst. With tools such as the ride on mower available to you, it will be easy to care for your land and keep your animals healthy.