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Maize silage for milk production: The influence of concentrate supplementation and the effect of adding urea or ammonia before feeding

  • K. Aston (a1), S. R. Daley (a1) and J. C. Tayler (a1)

Abstract

1. Thirty lactating British Friesian heifers and cows were individually given maize silage ad libitum containing 331 g dry matter/kg, 13 g nitrogen and 11·2 MJ of metabolizable energy per kg dry matter. Urea or aqueous ammonia was mixed in at the time of feeding to give 7·0 g nitrogen per kg silage dry matter. Urea-treated silage was given with concentrates at a high (mean 6·6 kg dry matter/day: treatment HU) or a low (mean 3·3 kg:treatment LU) level of feeding; the lower level only was given with ammonia-treated silage (treatment LA).

2. The addition of ammonia raised silage pH values from 3·9 to 4·4. Silage dry-matter intakes in lactation weeks 7 to 22 for treatments HU, LU and LA were 8·8, 11·1 and 10·7 kg/day.

3. Digestible organic matter content in the dry matter of the diets measured in vivo was not significantly affected by treatment. However, digestible organic matter intakes were significantly greater for treatment HU than for LU in weeks 7 to 10, and for LU than for LA in weeks 11 to 22.

4. The yields of milk and the contents of protein, lactose and energy did not differ between treatments. The milk yields for treatments HU, LU and LA in weeks 7 to 22 were 20·2,19·2, 18·8 kg/day respectively. Fat content of milk was significantly depressed with the HU treatment for heifers in weeks 7 to 10. The live-weight changes of the cows in weeks 7 to 22 for treatments HU, LU and LA were +0·10, −0·07 and −0·37 kg/day; the live-weight loss by cows given treatment LA was significantly greater than for LU. The live-weight change of the heifers was not affected by treatment.

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References

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Maize silage for milk production: The influence of concentrate supplementation and the effect of adding urea or ammonia before feeding

  • K. Aston (a1), S. R. Daley (a1) and J. C. Tayler (a1)

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