Verified FBN Member (OK)
Livestock

How many pounds of corn silage do you feed per cow?

Looking for any real world examples of silage feeding to cows... looking at feasibility and sustainability of a cow/calf operation.

Verified FBN Member (OH)
(edited)

We feed 17-22 pounds a day to our cow/operation plus dry free choice dry hay.

Verified FBN Member (IA)
(edited)

Google "cowculator" its a free spreadsheet Put out by ***. We have found it very useful in figuring out possible rations for our cow/calf herd. It takes all the dry matter intakes, digestible nutrients, protein% etc into consideration with what you are trying to achieve in body conditions.

For us 35-40 lbs of good corn silage that's on the drier moisture side seems to be a really good cheap base to balance other feed we have into. Corn stalks, corn, dry hay, baleage, etc. we are very low tech, though.

We use $.021/lb of silage or about 80 cents per cow/day.

Assuming 8 bushel of corn in a ton of silage, we want $4. $42/ ton to cover chipping /bagging. which some may say is way too expensive to figure corn silage, but that's what we use. Feed a little quality Hay, free choice cornstalk bales. Figure we are around $1.50-$1.75 per cow/day, but we calve in the fall and they are on the cows til spring.

Verified FBN Member (OH)

Do you background your feeders with corn silage?

Verified FBN Member (IA)
(edited)

In a more feed lot setting, Probably would with extra hay. That's basically what did with the calves we put on feed after weaning last spring. We finish most of them out, but What's your experience with it? If you had good pasture, (which is hard to come by around here) Would they need the extra silage? I was wondering how the weaned calves would do on pastured cereal rye growing in spring for maybe 45-60 days.

We got our herd grown to the size we felt we could justify the chopping cost and keeping a bag open in the last couple years. Been keeping back the good heifers for building herd and been finishing out everything else. We ran out of silage about 45 days after weaning this year. Fed good quality hay when working them up on shelled corn. The yearlings now are on free choice grassy hay and lots of corn w/ protein. Try to get them at 2# corn /100# body weight. We have found too good of hay when on that much corn is hard to get them to eat that much, and makes them loose. Hoping to hit feb live cattle market with 'em.

Verified FBN Member (OH)

We usually just take them up to about 750 pounds and get rid of them usually in April. We keep a few replacement heifers. For our fall calves we let them run in a little lot probably 3 acres but will keep them on silage as well.

Verified FBN Member (OH)
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That 17-22 is for spring calving cows. will feed our fall calves 25-30 pounds a day plus better hay especially since we r breeding them back.

Verified FBN Member (IA)

Letting a neighbor dairy operation chop 50 acres of earlage for their cows. How do we price it ? SE **

Verified FBN Member (IA)

I don't have much experience with earlage, so you get what you pay for with me. Dad used to fill silo with it for finishing cattle.

I have heard 20bushel corn/ton earlage used.

If a fair price per bushel was established, Could take some yield and moisture checks, subtract your combining, drying, handling, storage costs.

Verified FBN Member (IL)

I know ********** has calculators for selling silage out of the field. They might have something for earlage.

At the end of the day it's whatever both people feel is fair that is best.

Verified FBN Member
(edited)
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