3 November 1999
Whole-crop oat silage for deer
I AM considering growing oats, undersown with ryegrass clover, for arable silage on tired land. Can anyone help me with regard to yield, DM content, digestability etc? The silage is to be fed to deer, and I assume requirements are similar to those of sheep.
Dr Angela Moss, Principal research scientist, ADAS Nutritional Sciences Research Unit
NOT a lot of research has been carried out on whole-crop oat silage, so these are estimates, based on whole crop wheat:
|DM content:||40-50% depending on time of cut|
Yield and nutritional value may be slightly lower, bearing in mind
this is “tired” land.
Dave Deakin, Senior scientific officer, ADAS Rosemaund
IN terms of quantities, you will need about 50-60kg/day of silage for every 10 adults. However, from the end of October through to February
deer go through a natural winter inappetance period, where the food
theyll need will drop by about four-fifths.
Quality-wise, they have roughly the same requirements as sheep, except
that they can easily digest whole grains and they are very adaptable.
This whole-crop silage sounds fine.
Dr John Howie, Cereal Product Manager, PBI Cambridge
A GOOD variety to try in this situation would be Jalna. Its got the
combination youll require of good disease resistance, straw length
for bulk and good tillering.