The effect of biological and chemical additives on the chemical composition and fermentation process of Dactylis glomerata silage

Jhonny E. Alba-Mejía, Jiří Skládanka, Alois Hilgert-Delgado, Miroslav Klíma, Pavel Knot, Petr Doležal, Pavel Horký

Abstract


This study was carried out to determine the chemical composition, silage quality and ensilability of ten cocksfoot cultivars using biological and chemical silage additives. The plant material was harvested from the first and second cut, cultivated at the Research Station of Fodder Crops in Vatín, Czech Republic. Wilted forage was chopped and ensiled in mini-silos with 3 replicates per treatment. The treatments were: 1) without additives, used as a control; 2) with bacterial inoculants; and 3) with chemical preservatives. The results indicated that the year factor (2012-2013) influenced significantly the chemical composition of the silage in both cuts. The use of biological inoculants reduced the content of crude fibre and acid detergent fibre; but it did not influence the content of neutral detergent fibre, in comparison with the control silage in both cuts. Furthermore, the application of biological inoculants reduced the concentration of lactic acid (LA) and acetic acid (AA) in contrast to the control silage in the first cut. Moreover, in the second cut the same values tended to be the opposite. Interestingly, ‘Amera’ was the unique variety that presented a high concentration of butyric acid (0.2%) in comparison with other varieties in the first cut. In conclusion, the biological inoculants had a favourable effect on silage fermentation. Notably, only ‘Greenly’ and ‘Starly’ varieties from the first cut; and ‘Greenly’, ‘Sw-Luxor’, and ‘Otello’ varieties from the second cut were appropriate for ensiling because their pH-values; LA and AA concentrations were ideal according to the parameters of the fermentation process.


Keywords


cocksfoot; ensiling; feeding value; forage preservation; grass varieties; mini-silo; fermentation quality

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References


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DOI: 10.5424/sjar/2016142-8040