Stardew Valley: Everything You Need To Know About Barns And Barn Animals
Stardew Valley is a farming simulator where earning income from crops and farm animals is essential to progress through the game. Barns are one of the buildings that you can place on your farm in order to raise cattle, and they can be upgraded. As you invest more and more resources into a barn you can raise more kinds of animals.
Buildings are especially important on the new beach map, where crops aren’t as easy to grow. The barn animals’ products can also be turned into even more valuable goods, with a little extra time. This guide details everything you need to know about your shiny new barn, and how to earn the most money from your investment.
Every barn takes up a 7×4 space on the farm, so there’s no need to worry about extra space as it gets upgraded. To move your barn, speak to Robin at her home outside of town, ask to build new buildings, and then select the ‘Move Buildings’ option in the bottom right. These are the different barn levels available.
The barn allows you to house four animals, either cows or ostriches. It takes three days for Robin to build.
- 350 Wood
- 150 Stone
The initial barn comes with a hay hopper, which allows you to access hay from their silos inside the barn, as well as a feeding bench to lay out hay for the animals to eat.
A big barn has to be upgraded from a normal barn, and can’t be built separately. Robin will have upgraded it after two in-game days. This barn can hold eight animals, whether they’re cows, goats, or ostriches.
- 450 Wood
- 200 Stone
On top of the hay hopper and feeding bench, the big barn allows your animals to get pregnant and have babies. Pregnancy is an option that can be switched on and off for each individual animal. It then applies to all barn animals except ostriches. The player will know that an animal got pregnant because, when entering a barn for the first time that day, a message will pop up to say that they gave birth and asking you to enter a name for the new baby.
A Deluxe Barn upgrades and replaces an existing big barn on your farm. Deluxe Barns house the maximum number of animals in one building (12) of any barn animal type: cows, goats, ostriches, pigs, or sheep. It takes two days for Robin to upgrade the Big Barn into the Deluxe Barn.
- 550 Wood
- 300 Stone
The Deluxe Barn comes with the hay hopper, feeding bench, and pregnancy options from the previous models, but it also adds an “auto-feed system” that distributes hay along the feeding bench so long as you have enough stored in your silo.
While it’s a huge relief not to have to feed your animals every day by hand, it also means that you need to be extra careful to keep your silo stocked. If you happen to not check on a particular barn or coop one day, you may not notice that you’ve run out of hay.
Animals need to be fed one portion (one hay or a bit of fresh grass) every day, except under special conditions:
- They don’t need to be fed the first day they arrive on the farm (whether born, hatched, or purchased)
- They don’t need to be fed on any festival day; the game will consider them fed but will consume no hay or grass (the exception to this rule is the Night Market in winter, which the player can leave or enter freely)
If an animal isn’t fed they will not die, but they will stop producing their products.
Cows can be purchased from Marnie for 1500g once the player has built their first barn. There are two varieties of cows (white and brown) and the game chooses a color at random (50/50 chance) when you purchase one. The type of cow does not make a difference to the milk they produce.
Cows produce milk once a day for you to sell, but they take five days to mature before they produce anything. Collect milk using a pail, which can be bought from Marnie. Improving the cow’s friendship level will result in better quality milk, and eventually in a larger jug of milk.
Milk sells for:
- Regular: 125g
- Silver Quality: 156g
- Gold Quality: 187g
- Iridium Quality: 250g
Large Milk sells for:
- Regular: 190g
- Silver Quality: 237g
- Gold Quality: 285g
- Iridium Quality: 380g
Milk can be turned into cheese by a Cheese Press. No matter the quality, a regular jug of milk turns into regular-quality cheese. A large jug of milk turns into gold quality cheese.
You can also sell your cows by interacting with them. The sale price increases depending on how many hearts the cow has. At five stars, they sell for 1950g.
Ostriches can’t be purchased. They can only be acquired by hatching an Ostrich Egg in an Ostrich Incubator. They hatch after nine and a half days of incubating and take seven days to mature after that. Every seven days, ostriches produce ostrich eggs. Improving an Ostrich’s friendship level will mean that they produce better quality eggs for you.
Ostrich Eggs sell for:
- Regular: 600g
- Silver Quality: 750g
- Gold Quality: 900g
- Iridium Quality: 1200g
Like regular eggs, Ostrich Eggs can also be turned into mayonnaise by a Mayonnaise Machine. However, unlike a regular egg, these huge eggs will produce ten mayonnaises! They will be the same quality as the ostrich egg was.
You can also sell your ostriches like the other barn animals, and they’re one of the most valuable animals to raise. As always, the better your ostrich loves you, the more money it will sell for. At five stars, ostriches will sell for 20800g.
Goats produce goat milk, much like cows, but only every other day. Collect their milk just like for your cows, using a pail. However, you do need to wait five days after buying a goat for it to fully mature and start producing milk. Improving the goat’s friendship level means that your goats are living their best life, and they subsequently produce better quality, and larger quantities of, goat milk.
Acquiring goats is easy – you buy them from Marnie after you have built your first Big Barn on the farm. However, if you have more than one barn, the goat can live in a barn of any size. Goats cost 4000g each, which is a pretty penny and much more than a cow, but their milk also sells for exponentially more money, so it all works out.
Goat Milk sells for:
- Regular: 225g
- Silver Quality: 281g
- Gold Quality: 337g
- Iridium Quality: 450g
Large Goat Milk sells for:
- Regular: 345g
- Silver Quality: 431g
- Gold Quality: 517g
- Iridium Quality: 690g
To earn even more money on every jug of milk, players can use a Cheese Press to turn Goat Milk into Goat Cheese. The rules around this process should be familiar to any farmer who has been raising cows: a regular jug of goat milk (no matter its quality level) turns into regular-quality goat cheese, whereas the large jug of goat milk will become the superb gold-quality goat cheese.
You can also sell your goats by interacting with them, and the sell price increases depending on how many hearts the goat has. At five stars, they sell for 5200g.
Having sheep on your farm is a marker of how far you’ve come in Stardew Valley since they don’t provide enough money daily to be useful for a beginner. Sheep produce wool for you, assuming they’ve had a chance to mature for four days. Wool sells for a lot more money than other barn animal products but it can only be harvested every third day.
You need to put a significant investment into your sheep. You need to have gathered all the resources to craft at least one Deluxe Barn on your farm before you can buy a sheep. Then you have to buy shears in order to gather the wool, and the sheep itself costs 8000g when buying them from Marnie.
Wool sells for:
- Regular: 340g
- Silver Quality: 425g
- Gold Quality: 510g
- Iridium Quality: 680g
Wool can be turned into cloth by a Loom. If the wool is high quality, there’s a chance that it’ll produce two cloths. Silver quality has a 10% chance, gold quality has a 25% chance, and iridium quality has a 50% chance.
If you can say goodbye to their adorable little faces, you do have the option to sell their sheep. To make matters worse, sheep only sell for a significant price if the sheep really loves the farmer. If you can stomach the thought of your pet sheep wondering where you’ve gone all of a sudden, they sell for 10400g at the maximum friendship of five stars.
Unlike other animals, you don’t interact with the pig to get their product, and the pig won’t produce anything if they’re trapped inside the barn. The reason to buy pigs is so that they will snuff out truffles for you.
Pigs will find one truffle every day, assuming these conditions are met:
- they have been fed
- they are outside the barn (so it is not raining, snowing, storming, or winter)
- there are available spaces to place a truffle (spaces with no paths, flooring, grass, etc.)
The more the pig likes you, the harder it will work to find high-quality truffles.
To get a pig, you need to have at least one Deluxe Barn on your farm. When you do, Marnie will sell you a pig for 16000g. That’s already a huge expense, and it’s only made worse when you consider that the pig takes ten days to mature. However, the truffles and truffle oil they produce will quickly ensure the pigs pay for themselves.
Truffles sell for:
- Regular: 625g
- Silver Quality: 781g
- Gold Quality: 937g
- Iridium Quality: 1250g
Truffles can be turned into the artisan good Truffle Oil if you put them into an Oil Maker. The truffle oil is only ever regular quality, and also happens to be a beloved gift of Mayor Lewis’.
If you decide to sell your pig, it can go for 20800g. This is the highest amount it’s possible to sell an animal for, and the only other animals to sell for so much are Ostriches. Of course, you will need to befriend the pig first, since the 20800g is dependent on the pig having a five-star friendship rating.
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During The Day
If you allow your barn animals to be outside, it will help to improve their mood – animals are like plants, they need sunlight too!
While outside, barn animals will eat fresh grass growing on the farm, assuming they can reach it. This will count as their daily portion, so they won’t eat hay from your stash. Just because the grass is technically in a place they could reach does not mean that the animal is guaranteed to find and eat it – if they don’t, they will eat hay.
Eating fresh grass gives animals the very best mood possible (being “very happy today!”) automatically. Animals who wander outside and have access to crops growing on the farm will not eat your crops.
Animals don’t leave the barn, even if the door is open, under certain conditions…
- if it’s after 6 pm
- if it’s winter
- if it’s rainy, stormy, or snowy
Animals will return to their assigned building around 6 pm in the evening and go to sleep. If you aren’t using an Auto-Grabber, you can close the doors at this time so the animals will not escape in the morning before you can interact with them.
If you close a barn door before all the animals have returned for the night, the ones that are still outside will be trapped. If it rains the next day, the animals will even stay out in the rain. No matter the conditions, if they were trapped outside overnight, their mood will be grumpy the next day.
Barn animals left out may also be attacked by wild animals during the night. There’s a 50% chance for a wild animal attack to occur, so long as some animal was left outside and no other events (such as a Bundle event) are set to occur. The attacked barn animal is removed from the farm, and the other animals from its home barn will have a negative mood, with a message reading that the animals “look stressed and paranoid today. It seems like something bad happened last night.”
NEXT: Stardew Valley: The Best Fruits For Wine (And How To Get Them)
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Gabrielle “Belle” Huston is a writer and long-time gamer based in Ottawa, Canada. She’s played video games for at least as long as she could write, and vice versa, which has led her to work for nerddom sites like The Gamer and the International Geek Girl Pen Pal Club. As a current undergraduate student of journalism, she’s seldom away from her computer. Belle uses what little free time she has to play Battlefront 2 with her partner, work toward that 5-star rating in Animal Crossing, and wonder when the new Dragon Age installment is coming out.
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