Tuesday, March 20, 2012

What is Silage?

While feeding cattle I decided that I wanted to do a few posts on animal food stuffs. To some of you this might be old news, yet to others it might be totally new, either way I hope you learn a little something. This is a basic educational post.
- High-moisture livestock feed

-It is fermented and stored in a process called ensiling or silaging, the lack of oxygen during storage is the key to silage production. Entrance of oxygen can spoil the feed

-Usually made from grass crops, including corn,sorghum/milo or other cereals, using the entire  plant (not just the grain).

-The crops are chopped to a specific size depending on the type. Usually it is 3/4inch

-Special terms may be used depending on type (oatlage for oats, haylage for alfalfa)

-Is made either by placing cut green vegetation in a silo, by piling it in a large heap covered with plastic sheet, or by wrapping large bales in plastic film.

-The optimal internal temperature during fermentation is below 100°F

-A good use of plant parts that might otherwise might go to waste.
 Close Up(the pieces are about 3/4inches each)
More Info can be found at these sites:
North Dakota State University -More in depth, and scientific (what I learned in college)
University of Florida- great info with pictures

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