Give silages a sugar boost to maintain intakes this winter

With large volumes of lower quality silage filling many clamps this year, ration palatability and energy levels are likely to need a significant boost if feed intakes are to be maintained through the winter, warns KW nutritionist Sean Roddy.

“On analysis, many of this year’s silages have lower than expected values for energy (MJ ME/kg DM) and feed intake factor. Both will need to be addressed if last winter’s production levels are to be matched or exceeded, but without over-loading the diet with low-cost cereals and risking sub-acute ruminal acidosis (SARA).

“One of the best options is to increase ration sugar levels, supplying the additional energy needed to drive rumen microbial activity and maintain intakes in a form that doesn’t increase the risk of SARA,” he continues. “Rapidly available sugars from liquid feeds like Rouxminate and Molale will also help kick-start fibre degradation, boost palatability and reduce ration sorting.”

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