New Product Information
A new way of extending your Silage with
At this stage of the winter feeding season, the forage crisis in the west of Ireland has been well documented. Forage stocks on a large number of farms are already critically low and many dairy and beef farmers will not have enough home grown forage to see them through to spring.
It is critically important that farmers access their situations now and prepare for what is predicted to be a difficult winter feeding season. Please speak to Paddy or Michael at
McCass Agri who can help with advice on how to conduct a Forage Audit on the farm and discuss the options that are available well before forage stocks run too low.
Options in a fodder crisis
ü Buy more silage
ü Straw + Blend to dry cows
ü Straw + Blend to young stock
ü Wholecrop wheat/maize silage
ü Extra Concentrates: specialist forage extender diet.
ü Straights: citrus, soya hulls, pollard
ü Brewers grains, Distillers grains, Trafford Gold etc.
ü Potatoes, fodder beet
ü Crimped Grain, Alkagrain
ü Bed and Breakfast heifers/young stock
ü Vista Pre-T a unique liquid pre-treatment that adds energy to your forage.
Minimum Roughage Requirements
There is a minimum requirement for roughage in ruminant diets and feeding less than this minimum can lead to digestive upsets and poor subsequent performance. The normal minimum is 1% of bodyweight in dry matter terms e.g. a 250kg animal needs 2.5kgs/day of dry matter from silage or hay etc. This is equal to 12.5kgs of silage at 20% dry matter. Note: High starch feeds are to be avoided if these low roughage diets are used.
If forage levels are low on the farm there are a number of options that can be taken. Please remember, as long as there are 50% of the silage stock requirements on the farm, then at least there is a base to work on.
Fodder Extender Rations
These are normally based on highly digestible fibre with a high cereal content, and are diet formulated specifically as a forage extender. For example, a 13% forage extender ration is designed as a silage replacer. 1kg of this feed will replace approximately 5kg of pit silage. It can be specifically formulated for all classes of store cattle or suckler cows in situations where forage is scarce.
Minerals and Vitamins
It is essential to feed the correct levels of minerals and vitamins to all classes of livestock, especially if they are being fed straw or hay in large quantities. Special attention needs to be given to dry cows – avoid high calcium diets. If dry cows have to be fed concentrates, use a specialist dry cow nut or else a mix of straights e.g. beet-pulp/maize gluten/distillers. If feeding straights, then use bagged pre-calver minerals to supply the necessary minerals and trace elements.
If concentrates are being used to replace silage then it is important to ensure that adequate access is given to all animals to get to the concentrate, so as to avoid specific animals overfeeding - pay special attention to younger and smaller animals, especially heifers.
Speak to a Paddy or Michael to discuss how this unique liquid pre-treatment can be utilized in order to improve the digestibility and energy supply from forage at feeding time this winter. Vista Pre-which is manufactured by AB Vista adds energy to your forage which means you can stretch your silage further in order to meet the energy and protein requirements of your stock indoors.