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Assessing Your Silage Clamp

Assessing Your Silage Clamp

Studying your silage clamp and looking at key indicators can benefit the quality of your silage at feed-out. This short video from Ecosyl highlights some of the top tips for assessing your clamp to help maximise the nutritional value of your silage.

Maximise Silage Quality

Wynnstay works closely with silage additive suppliers; Volac, to ensure that customers are receiving the best products and specialist advice in order to maximise their silage quality. In line with this, Volac has recently launched a new initiative; 'Cut to Clamp' which is intended to raise the profile of good silage as a vital part of modern farming, showing how it can really make a difference to overall farm efficiency and profitability.

Six stages to good silage production:

1. Cutting

Timing is key. Aim for the yield you need at the highest quality possible. Tip: Consider type/stage of the crop, weather conditions, contractor availability and farm pressures.

2. Wilting

Rapidly wilted silage contains less water and nitrogen, and more dry matter (DM) and sugar. It has been proven to increase animal performance.

Tip: Leaving grass to wilt also reduces haulage.

3. Harvesting

Too short a chop length can lead to scouring animals, too long and it won't consolidate effectively.

Tip: Ensure knives are kept sharp and adjusted

4. Treating

Applying a proven silage inoculant is quick and easy to do and will pay dividends later with lower DM losses.

Tip: Choose a silage inoculant that reduces dry matter losses and enhances milk production, that has good digestibility and palatability and is easy to use, liquid or dry.

5. Clamping

The denser the silage, the lower the DM losses, so consolidation is key during packing of the clamp.

Tip: To prevent air spoiling the silage, seal the clamp with high quality, overlapping sheets, weighed down well especially at edges.

6. Feeding

Good clamp management now is vital to reduce aerobic spoilage and DM losses.

Tip: Work across the clamp face to keep it tidy and tight and stop air getting into the clamp.

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