OPTIMISE RUMEN TO REALISE FULL POTENTIAL OF THIS YEAR’S SILAGES
15 October 2015
This year’s higher quality first cut silages might be worth another 2 litres/cow/day compared to 2014 according to Trouw Nutrition data, but that potential will only be realised by avoiding acidosis and optimising breakdown of forage fibre in the rumen.
That’s the message from Dr Nicola Walker, AB Vista’s Ruminant Product Development Manager, who’s advising milk producers to push fibre digestion in the rumen to its absolute limit this winter to maximise forage feed value, milk-from-forage and margin over feed costs.
“Aim for a consistent supply of nutrients to the rumen that minimises the time spent at low pH, when fibre digestion is compromised and populations of fibre-digesting microbes can be reduced,” she states.
“For rations containing high levels of starch and high D-value silages, add a metabolically active yeast or a slow-release rumen conditioner to further stabilise the rumen environment.”
Control over daily variations in nutrient supply due to differences in silage quality throughout the clamp is also critical to avoid upsetting the rumen microbes, lowering fermentation efficiency and reducing milk output.
“Fortunately, it’s now possible to use a hand-held NIR unit to analyse silage feed quality weekly, or even daily, and adjust silage volumes to compensate,” Dr Walker adds.
For more information, contact AB Vista on +44 (0)1672 517 650 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Notes to editor:
AB Vista is a leading global supplier of micro-ingredients for the animal feed industry.
For further press information please contact Nic Daley or Mike Keeler on +44 (0)20 8647 4467.