UK’S first self-propelled Siloking Kverneland feeder goes to work for Somerset herd

The UK’s first self-propelled Siloking Kverneland diet feeder has been put to work by Stephen Potter at Whistley Farm, West Harptree, Somerset.

Supplied by Kverneland dealer Uphill and Son, the Prestige-spec 1612 model replaces a 20-year old self-propelled feeder. It will be used to provide the farm’s 100-head of pedigree blonde cattle, the Whistley Herd, with a high quality ration.

“We feed our blondes every day with specific rations, and the use of a self-propelled feeder has many advantages for us,” explains Stephen Potter. “The milling head lets us keep a tight face at the clamp to avoid secondary fermentation. It also has incredible manoeuvrability, with rear-wheel steering and a compact overall size, which makes it very easy to negotiate our traditional farmyard and its buildings.”

In addition, he says that compared to using a trailed feeder, using a self-propelled machine does save on the cost of buying an additional tractor, telehandler and a silage cutter.
“A self-propelled feeder might appear to be a high initial cost, but if it is kept for 20 years for example, its cost becomes very easy to justify with smaller herds,” he says.

“As a result, it is not significantly more expensive than a trailed set-up, because a trailed feeder needs additional machinery in support. And, our set-up is based around a one-man feeding system, which is easily achieved using a self-propelled feeder.”

Mr Potter and herdsman Pat Hodge believe this latest feeder, with its sophisticated mixing and feeding capability, delivers consistent ration quality for all animals.

“Giving all our cattle the same quality of forage stops bullying at the feeders,” says Mr Hodge. “And with our plans to develop herd numbers and develop a high meat-to-bone ratio to deliver higher quality meat, the Siloking feeder will become an increasingly valuable tool here at Whistley Farm.”

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