Hustler SL700X in Henley-on-Thames
The villages and farms around Henley-on Thames in Berkshire nestle into the Chiltern hillsides and in some areas is quite rough terrain. White Pond Farm, which has been in the Stracey family for over 75 years and five generations, is one such farm spanning six hundred acres of arable and the rearing of Angus Beef. The terrain is a challenge for any farmer needing to get feed to the cattle, especially in the harsher winter months when there are fair distances to travel over the hills in inhospitable weather.
Visiting the UK Livestock Dairy Show in 2012 Simon Stracey and his son Ed came across the Hustler SL700X two-bale feeder on the Broadwood International stand.
Here’s what Ed had to say “With the distances we have to travel from the farm to the feed site we required a machine capable of carrying more feed. Travelling over the hills we also thought a trailed bale feeder would be more applicable and it frees up our loader as well. Whilst we’re primarily feeding round bales of haylage, having the option of carrying both round and square bales is also a real positive, we are feeding at approximately 6kph, at 18.5 RPM running speed. It has very much met our expectations, lots of other farms want to borrow it. Without a doubt, we are very happy.”
What made the Hustler the ideal choice is that it allows two bales to be taken to the stock at the same time. One bale is lifted on the spikes and placed onto the cradle ready for feeding, while a second bale can be carried on the rear so two bales can be fed before returning to reload. What other factors drew them to buy a Hustler? Ed cited the chain drive as very robust, and the fact there is a substantial saving – as much as 20%, on feed costs using the towed bale feeder. Maintenance is low and control is easy with a single lever, and there is good manoeuvrability and increased stability – important when you’re trailing over hills.