Silage is fermented, high-moisture fodder that stays long and can be fed to sheep and goats Silage 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 crops suitable for ensilage are the ordinary grasses, clovers, alfalfa, vetches, oats, rye and maize; various weeds may also be stored in silos. Silage must be made from plant material with a suitable moisture content, about 50% to 60% depending on the means of storage, the degree of compression, and the amount of water that will be lost in storage, but not exceeding 75 %. Weather during harvest need not be as fair and dry as when harvesting for drying.
After harvesting, crops are shredded to pieces about 0.5 in (1.3 cm) long. The material is spread in uniform layers over the floor of the silo, and closely packed. If possible, not more than a foot or two should be added daily, so as to allow the mass to settle down closely, and to heat uniformly throughout. When the silo is filled or the stack built, a layer of straw or some other dry porous substance may be spread over the surface. In the silo the pressure of the material, when chaffed, excludes air from all but the top layer; in the case of the stack extra pressure is applied by weights in order to prevent excessive heating.
Benefits Of Silage
- Dry fodder which can be stored for years
- Labor cost for cultivation, harvesting, chaffing and feeding.
- Most nutrient fodder available 365 days
- Very High animals stocking rate carrying capacity per acre/annum
- Animals will not become anaemic, remain disease resistant.
- 0% Wastage percentage,since its always chaffed