How Much Silage to Feed Cows

how much silage to feed cows

Silage is a great source of protein. A typical cow can easily get enough protein from about 2.2 pounds of silage daily. Besides silage, cows can also be fed low-quality forage such as straw and corn stalks. These forages have about 50% TDN, 5% crude protein, and 88% D.M., and they help mix and deliver silage. The added advantage of this low-protein diet is that the cows will have plenty of energy and do not need any additional protein, vitamins, or minerals. In addition, a low-protein diet is suitable for typical weather conditions.

Chewy Online Pet Supplies

35% Off at

+ Free Shipping

Save Now



Silage is a great source of nutrition for cows. The amount that a cow needs will vary according to its nutritional needs, but most cows can get by on less than two pounds of silage a day. This type of feed is high in TDN (total dietary nitrogen) and is rich in protein. Depending on the type, silage may meet about 50 percent of a cow’s daily protein requirements.

To determine how much silage to feed cows, take into account several factors. First of all, the moisture level of the silage is important. It should have a moisture content of 65% or higher. If it has less moisture, it will crumble and lose its shape quickly. High-quality silage has a moisture content of at least seventy-five percent.


In North Dakota, the barley crop is good this year. It can be used as animal feed. The availability and low cost make silage an economical choice for weaning calves or culling cows before the market. It can be harvested and stored for several months. Then, it can be mixed with other feeds.

The DM content of short-chop barley silage was higher than that of long-chop silage. However, DM and CP content were similar. The longer ensile time of long-chop barley silage may have contributed to its higher DM content.

It is important to note that the nutritive value of barley is lower than that of corn. One bushel of barley is equivalent to 85% of a bushel of corn. Barley silage is less energy-dense than corn silage, but has higher protein and fibre content. It is possible to feed up to six pounds of barley silage per day and the cows will have enough protein to grow for the next few months.


The amount of wheat silage you feed cows will depend on several factors. The first is the timing. The best time to harvest wheat for silage is when the crop is at the early head stage. If the harvest is delayed, the dry matter content of the wheat will decrease rapidly. Also, the quality of wheat will be poor and difficult to pack.

Wheat silage at its early head stage is similar in energy content to corn silage and most other hays. Its crude protein content ranges from two to four percentage points higher than corn silage. It produces forage that contains between 60 and 65 percent moisture. It can be supplemented with a grain ration.


The amount of silage you feed your cows is a crucial decision for your dairy operation. It represents a significant investment in your operation. Some farms harvest as much as four cuts of silage each year. Cutting more than that may not benefit your dairy cows, though. This is because managing the dry matter intake of your cows is important, as the nutrients in silage must be kept at a constant level.

The first step is to choose the correct type of silage to feed your cows. Typically, you should purchase silage that is well-fermented and of high quality. You should also make sure to feed the silage in cold weather to prevent spoilage.


A typical cow weighing around 1,200 pounds can be fed up to 10 pounds of corn silage per day. This feed is composed of 35% dry matter and 65% moisture. This means that each day’s feed contains 18.5 pounds of silage and the rest is water. Corn silage is a source of protein and is an excellent alternative to concentrates and other feed ingredients.

The quality of corn silage is determined by its energy, protein, and minerals. A variety of methods is used to measure these qualities, including chemical methods, biological methods, and instrumental methods, such as near-infrared reflectance spectroscopy. Although the fiber content of corn silage can be artificially increased, this should not be done in the absence of other quality parameters.