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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/11019/646

Title: Conservation characteristics of baled grass silages differing in duration of wilting, bale density and number of layers of plastic stretch-film
Authors: Keles, G.
O'Kiely, Padraig
Lenehan, J.J.
Forristal, P.D.
Keywords: Bale density
Baled silage
Conservation characteristics
Stretch-film
Wilting
Issue Date: 2009
Publisher: Teagasc, Oak Park, Carlow, Ireland
Citation: G. Keles, P. O’Kiely, J.J. Lenehan and P.D. Forristal. Conservation characteristics of baled grass silages differing in duration of wilting, bale density and number of layers of plastic stretch-film. Irish Journal of Agricultural and Food Research 48: 21–34, 2009
Series/Report no.: Irish Journal of Agricultural and Food Research;vol 48
Abstract: The effects of duration of wilting, bale density and number of layers of plastic stretchfilm used to wrap bales on the conservation characteristics of baled grass silage was investigated. Grass from the primary growth of a Lolium perenne dominant sward was wilted for 24, 48 or 72 h. For each duration of wilting, 54 cylindrical bales (1.2 m nominal diameter) were made with the baler at a high or low density setting for alternate bales. Bales were wrapped with 2, 4 or 6 layers of plastic stretch-film and stored outdoors for 295 days. Two layers of plastic stretch-film resulted in inferior preservation, lower digestibility and extensive mould growth and deteriorated silage. Substantial improvement occurred to each of these characteristics from applying four layers of stretch-film (P<0.05), while six layers of stretch-film brought little further improvement. When four or six layers of stretch-film were used, extensive wilting restricted fermentation and improved the standard of preservation with the apparently difficult-to-preserve herbage used in this experiment. However, under the anaerobic conditions provided by four or six layers of stretch-film neither progressive wilting nor bale density had a major effect on digestibility, or the extent of surface mould growth or deteriorated silage. It can be concluded that a minimum of four layers of conventional black plastic stretch-film were required to achieve suitably anaerobic conditions, and that the additional benefits from six layers were small. Once anaerobic conditions were achieved, extensive wilting improved the conservation characteristics of baled grass silage made from a difficult-to-preserve crop, whereas bale density had little impact.
Description: peer-reviewed
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/11019/646
ISSN: 0791-6833
Appears in Collections:Crop Science
Grassland Science
IJAFR, volume 48, 2009

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