JAIME DEVILAT B.1
A winter trial was conducted in 1965 to evaluate the nutritive value of alfalfa and red clover silages harvested with and without wilting in rations for fattening cattle. Twenty-four Holstein steers weighing 380 Kg. were randomized to four treatments. The rations were alfalfa and red clover silages with two different moisture levels.
The trial was Londucted on dry-lot using a field of 0.5 ha, per treatment and feeding animals twice a day ad libitum. Two kilos of alfalfa hay per head per day were fed in all treatments plus a mineral supplement of salt and bone meal.
The silages were harvested from three years old pastures and ensiled into bunker silos.
Wilting did not improve (P > 0.01) animal daily gains. However the low moisture of alfalfa silage improved total dry matter intake. Wilting of red claver did not improve dry matter intake due to the high digestibility of direct red clover silage.
Steers fed with red claver silage had higher weight gains than those fed with alfalfa silage and they were more efficient transforming dry matter and energy into weight gains.
1 Ingeniero Agrónomo, Proyecto Producción Animal, Estación Experimental La Platina, Instituto de Investigaciones Agropecuarias