quality needs to be rejuvenated and protected. Planting corn to feed animals is
no longer the only choice; it has been found that feeding triticale silage is both
safe and a nutritionally comparable feed to use in dairy cattle production.
Triticale is described as a hybrid crop
of rye and wheat (Stalcup, 2009). When feeding this crop it is important to
note that the maturity at harvest effects the nutrient quality such as protein
levels in feed but with more maturity comes issues with corporeality of the
feed (Castells et al., 2012). A feed
analysis performed on triticale harvested during the soft dough stage contained
levels of protein around 11.6% in the silage (McCartney and Vaage, 1993).
When Triticale is in a high maturity state
when fed as a silage it has resulted in decreased dry matter intake and a lower
average daily gain during a trial done with heifers (McCartney and Vaage,
1993). When higher maturity feed
particle size is chopped to be 8mm in length such as it was in a calf feeding
study, the overall amount of triticale silage feed that was consumed was the
greatest out of all feedstuffs offered due to its increased palatability (Castells
et al., 2012). Lactating animals fed triticale silage had decreased milk yields
which was a correlation with the old maturity of the feedstuff. (Harper et al.,
2017). Milk yields in a study done presented overall lower yield in feeding
triticale silage then feeding corn silage (Cosentino et al., 2015).
Feeding triticale to lactating dairy cows
is a safe practice but this product is high in fiber and therefore shouldn’t be
fed in high quantity’s like in the study where they used only 10% in diet (Harper
et al.,2017). Based on the readings, feeding lower maturity silage will make the
feed higher in protein, palatability and increase dry matter consumption. Depending
on other ingredients in the diet and the maturity of the silage chosen will
impact amount fed in the ration.