North America

Making Quality Hay When the Sun Doesn’t Shine

Dry matter losses increase as large alfalfa-grass bales are placed under different storage moisture conditions. Buffered propionic acid is one way to combat mold and heating and to decrease nutritive and DM loss in hay.

[LEXINGTON, Ky.] – This season’s moderate to heavy rainfall from the Midwest and Ohio Valley to the central Appalachians and Carolinas has presented numerous challenges for farmers putting up hay. The added moisture has prevented plant maturity and cutting at proper time. Cut hay has been rained upon and the wet ground has exacerbated the drying time for hay ready to bale. The wet conditions can diminish hay quality through increased dry matter (DM) losses, reduced nutritive value, escalated heat and even increased mold content.

According to Dr. Max Hawkins, a nutritionist with Alltech’s Mycotoxin Management Team, hay will lose 5 to 6 percent DM until the hay reaches 40 percent moisture during the drying process.

“After this point, DM loss is often due to mechanical issues (raking and baling), with an average 15 percent loss mainly to leaves,” Hawkins said. “Crimping can greatly reduce DM waste by decreasing drying time, time in the field and leaf and respiration loss.”

Generally, 18 to 22 percent moisture is the upper limit for hay to be baled. Moisture levels above this window can result in increased DM loss, often from excessive heat and mold. Large round bales can retain heat longer than conventional bales and should be baled at lower percentage moisture (less than 18 percent).

“All forages above 15 percent moisture will undergo some degree of heating,” Hawkins said. “The amount of heating depends on the moisture level and mold development. Storage hay temperature is elevated by microorganisms and plant respiration.”

Temperatures can reach a level that will result in spontaneous combustion; however temperatures below combustion point can still cause mold growth and also significant losses in forage quality and quantity. Carbohydrates and protein can be reduced as carbohydrates are used as a food source by microbes, and protein is often bound in an unavailable form (browning).

Preservatives have been used as one method to cope with high moisture levels. Buffered propionic acid can also combat mold and heating. According to Hawkins, there is less nutritive and DM loss when buffered propionic acid is applied. Application rate is determined by percentage moisture level, and the manufacturers’ recommendations should be followed.

Hawkins also recommends utilizing a management program such as Alltech’s On-farm MIKO program to evaluate the heating and molding issues.

“Probing hay bales for temperature and thermal imaging can identify temperature issues due to heating and locate problem spots in the stored bales. The 37+TM mycotoxin analysis program can investigate samples taken to identify any issues with mycotoxins due to increased mold growth,” Hawkins said. “Together these programs can assist the producer to better manage the issues with hay that has been harvested and baled in less than ideal weather conditions.”

Alltech Demonstrates Primacy in Science at 2014 JAM with Presidential Pick

[LEXINGTON, Ky.] – Global animal health and nutrition leader Alltech will be well represented at the joint annual meeting (JAM) of the American Dairy Science Association (ADSA), the American Society of Animal Science (ASAS), and the Canadian Society of Animal Science (CSAS) in Kansas City, Missouri, July 20–24. In addition to presenting a dozen abstracts of the company’s latest research, Alltech was also invited to showcase a poster presentation in the prestigious Presidential Picks.

Alltech and University of Kentucky Nutrition Research Alliance poster, “Polymers molecularly imprinted with ergotamine: recognition properties to template and related alkaloids,” by M. B. Kudupoje, E. S. Vanzant, A. Yiannikouris, K. A. Dawson, and K. R. McLeod was selected for this year’s Presidential Picks, one of the highest honors for JAM poster presenters. The posters are chosen by the ASAS past president, president and president-elect. Of the more than 1,200 papers submitted this year, only 36 were selected for this esteemed distinction.

“Innovation and entrepreneurship fuel our scientific research and this year was no exception to the quality data we obtained,” said Dr. Karl Dawson, vice president and chief scientific officer at Alltech. “Alltech has successfully partnered with top academic institutions throughout the world to research long-term solutions to the key issues facing our industry and we look forward to sharing this information at JAM.”

Research posters to be presented at this year’s meeting:

  • Nutrient utilization and metabolism by lactating dairy cows fed high-forage diets with protein supplements  K. Neal*1, J.S. Eun1, A.J. Young1, and K. Mjoun1Utah State University, Logan, 2Alltech, Brookings, SD
  • Effects of slow-release urea, rumen-protected methionine, and histidine on performance of dairy cows fed metabolizable protein-deficient diets F. Giallongo*1, J. Oh1, T. Frederick1, H. Weeks1, A.N. Hristov1, H. Lapierre2, R.A. Patton3, A. Gehman4, and C. Parys5 1Department of Animal Science, The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, 2Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Sherbrooke, QC, Canada, 3Nittany Dairy Nutrition Inc., Mifflinburg, PA, 4Alltech Inc., Nicholasville, KY, 5Evonik Industries AG, Hanau, Germany
  • Effects of feeding slow release NPN and microbial fermentation extracts on lactation performance of high-producing dairy cows  F. Díaz-Royón*1, A.D. Garcia1, K.F. Kalscheur2, and K. Mjoun3 1Dairy Science Dep., South Dakota State University, Brookings, 2South Dakota State University, Brookings, 3Alltech, Brookings, SD
  • Evaluation of liver mitochondrial oxygenconsumption of lactating Holstein dairy cows supplemented with Cobalt, Copper, Manganese and Zinc in organic and inorganic forms G. Acetoze*1, J. Champagne2, J.J. Ramsey3, A.M. Gehman4, K.A. Dawson5, and H.A. Rossow6 1University of California–Davis, Tulare, 2VMTRC–UC Davis, Tulare, 3University of California–Davis, Davis, 4Alltech, Inc., Nicholasville, KY, 5Center for Animal Nutrigenomics and Applied Animal Nutrition, Alltech, Nicholasville, KY, 6VMTRC, University of California, Tulare
  • Effect of inorganic or organic selenium supplementation during gestation and lactation on cow and pre-weaning calf performance C.R. Muegge*1, K.M. Brennan2, R.P. Lemenager1, and J.P. Schoonmaker1 1Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN, 2Alltech Inc., Nicholasville, KY
  • A snapshot of multi-toxin contamination in feed— Summary of 37+ Analysis results for 2012–13 Yiannikouris* Center for Animal Nutrigenomics and Applied Animal Nutrition, Alltech, Nicholasville, KY
  • Polymers molecularly imprinted with ergotamine: Recognition properties to template and related alkaloids M.B. Kudupoje*1, E.S. Vanzant2, A. Yiannikouris3, K.A. Dawson3, and K.R. McLeod2 1Alltech-University of Kentucky Nutrition Research Alliance, Lexington, 2University of Kentucky, Lexington, 3Center for Animal Nutrigenomics and Applied Animal Nutrition, Alltech, Nicholasville, KY
  • The effects of feeding an algae supplement on milk yield, milk components, and dry matter intake M.E. Weatherly*1, A.M. Gehman2, A.M. Lisembee2, J.D. Clark1, D.L. Ray1, and J.M. Bewley1 1University of Kentucky, Lexington, 2Alltech, Inc., Nicholasville, KY
  • Effects of a docosahexaenoic acid-rich algae supplement on plasma amino acid levels in healthy, mature horses after prolonged treatment with dexamethasone R.A. Williams1, K.L. Urschel2, R.E. Schaeffer1, and K.M. Brennan*1 1Alltech Inc., Nicholasville, KY, 2University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY
  • Evaluating the expression of microRNA miR-1 and miR-133 in the muscle of horses fed a docosahexaenoic acid-rich algae supplement after prolonged dexamethasone treatment M.L. Spry, A.C. Smith, D.E. Graugnard, R.E. Schaeffer, and K.M. Brennan* Alltech Inc., Nicholasville, KY
  • Evaluation of mineral excretion of lactating Holstein dairy cows supplemented with copper, manganese and zinc in organic and inorganic forms G. Acetoze*1, A.M. Gehman2, K.A. Dawson3 and H.A. Rossow4 1University of California- Davis, Tulare, 2Alltech, Inc., Nicholasville, KY, 3Center for Animal Nutrigenomics and Applied Animal Nutrition, Alltech, Nicholasville, KY, 4VMTRC, University of California, Tulare, CA
  • Gene expression profiles in muscle of black Iberian pigs supplemented with organic selenium compared with sodium selenite in finishing diets D.E. Graugnard*, A.C. Smith, M.L. Spry, L.F. Spangler and K.M. Brennan Alltech Inc., Nicholasville, KY
  • Alltech On-farm Dairy Webinar

    How often do you take time to walk the stalls of your barns and listen to what your cows are telling you? Whether it’s in the freestall barn, at the feed bunk or in the parlor, your herd communicates every day telling you all of the profit busters that they experience on the farm. The question is, are you listening?

  • Pages