Quick Tips to Better Manage Silage

April 1, 2013 07:00 AM
Quick Tips to Better Manage Silage

No. 1 on the list is what all quality silage should have.

Source: Alltech

1. Remember Moisture - Quality silage should have an average of 65% moisture, no run off and proper fermentation.

2. Pack, Pack, Pack - Packing density correlates with dry matter loss; pack should be a minimum of 15 lbs. DM/ft?. Use additional tractors and add weight to existing tractors to increase pack.

3. Try Other Packing Tools - Sheeps foot and silage impact packers can help dramatically increase packing density.

4. Consider Pile Direction - Piles that face north receive little to no direct sunlight, resulting in fewer hot spots on the face.

5. Use a Silage Inoculant - Faster fermentation, more retention of nutrients and less shrink.

6. Use Oxygen Barrier Film/Vacuum Film - Provide less air penetration and air pockets resulting in less top spoilage.

7. Seal Edges of Plastic - Use dirt or gravel bags along the edge to avoid airflow underneath plastic, keeping spoilage to a minimum.

8. Treat with Mold Inhibitors - Treat silage surface prior to covering to reduce spoilage.

9. Feed Out - Remove at least six to 12 inches from the entire face daily.

10. Take Advantage of Silage Rakes/De-Facers - Help keep a smooth and tight face.

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