How can I stop our cows wasting silage?

Tim G

Member
Livestock Farmer
Our few Jerseys are loose housed through the winter and fed baled silage in a ring feeder which is on an area we scrape clean daily. Previous years we'd noticed how much silage they dragged out of the feeder when eating so when we changed our baler last year we went for one with a chopper in the hope we'd stop this. Unfortunately it hasn't helped as much as I hoped, they are still pulling silage onto the floor and it seems like every day we are scraping half of what we've put in, back out. Any ideas how we can reduce this?
 

C.J

Member
Location
South Devon
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Round bales contain double what they did 30/40 years ago - but some ring feeders are still only 7 foot wide.
 

Tim G

Member
Livestock Farmer
In a ring feeder or feed trailer the bale sits too high and too close to the bars and its basically begging to be pulled out
Split the bale with a shear grab should help.
I think that's the trouble, it can't help but fall out. I clean the feeder out every week but it builds up a little each time so the bale doesn't sit down enough. Next summer I'm hoping to rearrange the shed to make a feed passage and have some barriers to feed from. Just don't want to have the same problem when I do that.
 

Tim G

Member
Livestock Farmer

Homesy

Member
Location
North West Devon
I think that's the trouble, it can't help but fall out. I clean the feeder out every week but it builds up a little each time so the bale doesn't sit down enough. Next summer I'm hoping to rearrange the shed to make a feed passage and have some barriers to feed from. Just don't want to have the same problem when I do that.
I have a feeder barrier with just a straight rail and have the same problem when feeding round bales. The heifers have a diagonal feed barrier and waste a lot less.
 

Tim G

Member
Livestock Farmer
I have a feeder barrier with just a straight rail and have the same problem when feeding round bales. The heifers have a diagonal feed barrier and waste a lot less.
The barriers I have to go in are diagonal ones, hopefully I can spread a bale over a length of barriers so there's not a big pile that can fall through. Eventually we are thinking to feed out by machine but we're a way from that yet.
 

Hesstondriver

Member
Livestock Farmer
Location
Huntingdon
a few things i can think of

ring feeder with diagonal bars - best of both worlds

put the bales in ring feeders with a tanco bale cutter or shear grab - this will chop the bales the opposite way to the baler and from experience makes a difference

and possibly put half a bale in twice as often to limit whats in the feeder

the other option may be a jourdain ring feeder with self locking yokes.


( this is very much do as i say not as i do , but this is what im planning on doing for similar numbers) !!
 
I think that's the trouble, it can't help but fall out. I clean the feeder out every week but it builds up a little each time so the bale doesn't sit down enough. Next summer I'm hoping to rearrange the shed to make a feed passage and have some barriers to feed from. Just don't want to have the same problem when I do that.
Locking yokes seem to help, but there are obviously other limiting factors with them.
 

Fendt516profi

Member
Livestock Farmer
Location
Yorkshire
The barriers I have to go in are diagonal ones, hopefully I can spread a bale over a length of barriers so there's not a big pile that can fall through. Eventually we are thinking to feed out by machine but we're a way from that yet.
Keep your eye out for a bale unroller fairly simple and do the job quick and can put as much as you want in front out them and leave rest on the unroller. Maybe get one and another ring feeder and split bale between two feeders
 

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Five nature-recovery projects spanning 100,000ha launched

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Written by Michelle Martin from Agriland

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Five nature-recovery projects spanning nearly 100,000ha across the West Midlands, Cambridgeshire, the Peak District, Norfolk and Somerset have been announced by the government and Natural England today (Thursday, May 26).

This is the equivalent in size to all 219 current National Reserves.

The aim of the projects is to deliver nature recovery at a landscape scale, helping to tackle biodiversity loss, climate change and improve public health and well-being.

All five projects will make a significant contribution towards the national delivery of the international commitment to protect at least 30% of land and...
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