What do you need?

Use the search below to search the site or find your local unit office.

Return to Skip Menu

Main Content

Charles C. Stallings

Title Summary Date ID Author(s)
Agronomy Handbook, 2000 May 1, 2009 424-100
Distiller's Grains for Dairy Cattle and Potential Environmental Impact

Ethanol is produced when starch in corn grain is fermented. Most other constituents in the grain remain unchanged. The end product of the corn is distiller’s grains or DDGS (distiller’s grains with solubles). The DDGS retain the original fatty acids, protein, and phosphorus. In addition, variability in the grain nutrient content used in the fermentation process and the actual process itself results in a feed with variable nutrient content. Distiller’s grains can be fed either in the wet (less than 25 percent dry matter) or dry (greater than 85 percent dry matter) form. Wet DDGS are difficult to store and must be fed within a few days of production. The wet DDGS can be the most cost-effective, however, if used close to where they are produced.

May 1, 2009 404-135
Feeding Protein to Meet Dairy Cow Nutrient Requirements Can Result in Cheaper, Environmentally Friendly Rations

Animal agriculture is facing the significant issue of managing excreted nutrients, and researchers are designing programs to address the issue. The intense management of animals in the poultry, swine, and dairy industries can contribute to environmental pollution. Although there are more beef than dairy cattle in Virginia, beef cattle are typically maintained on pasture and dispersed over a greater area. Feed management in dairy cows to reduce nutrient consumption has been identified as being very effective in reducing output of potentially polluting nutrients such as nitrogen and phosphorus.

May 1, 2009 404-354
Limit These Feeds in Rations for Dairy Cattle

When feeding lactating dairy cows it is best to limit amounts of certain feeds. Reasons can be problems with palatability, high oil or fat content, and imbalances of certain nutrients. Knowing these restrictions can prevent problems from occurring. Also, combinations of some of these feeds can be a problem if the maximums are used with no regard to type and amount of nutrients that are provided. This is where your nutritionist can be an asset in identifying optimal relationships with consideration for cost of the ration. Here is a list of some feeds used in Virginia and suggested maximums. Remember that these are maximum amounts and not necessarily optimum amounts.

May 1, 2009 404-119
Paying Attention to Dietary Cation-Anion Balance Can Mean More Milk and Fewer Metabolic Problems

Nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) are the two nutrients that cause the most concern with respect to environmental pollution from animal manure. Generally, higher concentrations of N and P in the ration result in their greater excretion in urine (N) and feces (N and P). Overfeeding these nutrients can be a significant problem, particularly if nutrient levels accumulate in the soil and contaminate water sources through leaching or surface runoff. Nitrogen can also volatilize as ammonia and pose a potential environmental problem with air emission standards, which are currently under review. 

May 1, 2009 404-131
Strategies to Reduce Amounts of Nitrogen and Phosphorus in Dairy Rations

Nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) are the two nutrients that cause the most concern with respect to environmental pollution from animal manure. Generally, higher concentrations of N and P in the ration result in their greater excretion in urine (N) and feces (N and P). Overfeeding these nutrients can be a significant problem, particularly if nutrient levels accumulate in the soil and contaminate water sources through leaching or surface runoff. Nitrogen can also volatilize as ammonia and pose a potential environmental problem with air emission standards, which are currently under review. 

May 1, 2009 404-130
Tests Available for Measuring Forage Quality

Forage quality has typically been determined by measuring the dry matter, crude protein, fiber, and estimated energy content. Forage testing labs are now able to estimate the actual digestibility of feeds by using newly available tests.

May 1, 2009 404-124
The Basics of Forage Testing

In order to have an accurate forage test for ration formulation, it is important to have a representative sample. The method of sampling varies with forage type. Silages (corn or hay crop) can be sampled either at harvest or at feed out. There is a slight reduction in dry matter and increase in fi ber during storage, but it is possible to use the analysis of the fresh material to indicate the quality after ensiling. If sampling fresh material at harvest, it is best to take three to four handfuls from every third load or more and place them in a container with all samples from the same field. Keep it covered to prevent drying. After mixing the composite, a sub-sample can be taken for analysis (only a pint or 100 grams is needed).

May 1, 2009 404-300