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March 2005 Silage Tips - sponsored by Mycogen Seeds

Agriculture.com Staff 07/06/2010 @ 5:22pm

If your forage supply is running short, feeding byproducts can help make the supply last longer. John Bernard, Extension dairy scientist, at the University of Georgia, offers these tips for feeding byproducts:

Always provide adequate effective fiber to maintain rumen bulk and function. High-fiber byproducts do not stimulate cud chewing, and they pass through the rumen more quickly than forages.

When feeding byproducts to replace corn silage, lower the amount of starch or nonstructural carbohydrates in the diet.

Be on the lookout for changes in feeding habits, and adjust the ration accordingly. Some byproduct feeds such as wheat middlings may limit intake due to palatability problems. However, other byproduct feeds, such as cottonseed hulls, tend to be consumed in greater quantities due to faster passage rates through the rumen.

When feeding medium-protein feeds, such as brewers grains and corn-gluten feed, pay close attention to the type of protein supplement you use to ensure optimal concentrations of both soluble and degradable protein sources.

Always request a nutrient profile and mineral content of byproduct feeds. If one is not available, have a sample analyzed to determine nutrient content.

Always test byproduct feeds for the presence of mycotoxin and other contaminants.

Work with a nutritionist who has experience using byproduct feeds in the diet, while maintaining milk production and animal health.

If your forage supply is running short, feeding byproducts can help make the supply last longer. John Bernard, Extension dairy scientist, at the University of Georgia, offers these tips for feeding byproducts:

Mycotoxins - toxic substances produced by molds - can contaminate silage during storage and feedout. Alan Gotlieb, University of Vermont, provides the following strategies to help you prevent mycotoxin problems during this time:

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