My barn owners are on vacation, and have been since right after Christmas. I was doing morning feeding last week, doing stalls, working the arenas, some night feedings, and will be doing mornings again next week. I don't really mind the extra work (and really like working off most of my board); in fact I really like going out first thing and feeding in the morning. When I was feeding last week, I noticed a few bales open in the stacks, in places I wouldn't open a bale. I always climb up and push down from the top, not open in the middle of the stack. Didn't think much of it at the time.
One of the other boarders, L, has been doing most of the pm feedings and did the am feedings this week. Tonight she noticed two open bales in the middle of a full stack, with flakes missing. No one who knows anything about stacking hay would open a bale there. L and I talked, and couldn't think of anyone in our barn who would do that. We feed mostly high quality timothy. We have a few horses that get alfalfa and some get just a plain grass mix.
|The two open bales with missing flakes. That's about half way up the stack.|
There's a barn next door that not nearly as nice as ours, that does mostly self care. They have a high turn over rate of boarders. We think that one of their boarders might be stealing our hay. I called our barn owners, and they are going to talk to the owners of the other barn. The wife is home all day and can easily watch the hay barn as it's directly across from their house. I'm also going to park Rick's truck as close to the hay barn doors as I can so no one can access it. You can still access it from inside the barn, but it would a lot less convenient for someone to steal from. Hopefully this stops our hay thief.