Immature Corn Silage

September 20, 2013

Dr. Larry Chase from The Department of Animal Science offers the following tips for dealing with immature corn silage:

  • Immature corn silage will vary both in nutrient composition and dry matter content. Typically, it will be higher in crude protein, NDF and sugar but lower in starch than “normal” corn silage.
  • Dry matter content will usually be low (< 30% DM) in immature plants. Ensiling wet corn silage can result in unusual fermentations and the resulting silage may cause decreased dry matter intake when fed to cows.
  • Try to hold off on harvest until whole plant dry matter is > 32-34%.
  • Forage analysis is essential to characterize the immature corn silage on your farm and determine how it can best be used in dairy rations.
  • The energy value will probably range from 80-95% of normal corn silage.
  • The economic value will be about 85% of normal corn silage before adjusting for dry matter content.



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