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Harvest & Storage

Forage quality doesn’t increase after harvest, so it’s critical to achieve optimal harvest and store it right to reduce loss. Let our experts tell you how.

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Fluctuations in milk prices, feed costs and government programs are forcing dairy farmers to become more efficient with their farm operation.

Since feed accounts for approximately one-half of the total cost of producing milk, and high-quality forage optimizes the productivity of the animals, increasing the quality of forage available is one of the best methods of improving overall feeding efficiency.

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Year after year, the cost of unsealed or incorrectly sealed silage exceeds a quarter billion dollars.

That’s no small change when it comes to a livestock operation’s bottom line.

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The middle of winter may seem like a strange time to talk about bale silage, but now and into the spring, as they are being fed out, we will see the success of the methods used to preserve the feed.

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When harvest time brings an everyday shower, cutting forage is ever more challenging. The biggest limit on is weather where it mists or rains nearly every day.

When coupled with cool temperatures, shorter day length and less intense sunshine, it makes a perfect storm for not drying to 35 percent.

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It’s bound to happen … corn silage harvest is in full swing, harvesters are rolling, trucks are busy hauling and the pack tractors are moving back and forth when the nutritionist pulls in the driveway.

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The raking step is sometimes taken for granted in the production of quality hay, but how a rake handles the hay can materially impact efficiency and forage quality.

For two veteran custom hay harvesters, forage quality is all about the angle of the rake and its ability to create a fluffed-up windrow.

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