Details matter when it comes to feedout management. Following a few key steps can prevent silage spoilage and keep everyone working in and around a bunker silo safe.
The key steps are to:
- Remove all spoiled silage.
- Keep the silage face vertical and tight.
- Remove enough silage to avoid any heating, and do not pile silage ahead of feeding, as this can result in composting.
- Premix the silage that has been obtained from the entire face with the loader bucket or mixer wagon prior to feeding.
- Strive to have as little loose silage at the end of the feeding as possible.
- Keep the leading edge of plastic sufficiently weighted down to prevent air infiltration beneath the plastic.
- Remove plastic at least twice weekly, or as often as necessary, so that top spoilage does not occur prior to feeding.
Spoilage from along the top and sides of the silo, and balls or chunks in the main body of the silo, should be discarded.
Silage should be removed at the rate of at least 6 inches during the summer and 3 inches during the winter to stay ahead of spoilage.