Spoiled silage at the shoulders of bunker silos is common due to lower density and higher aeration than in the core of the silo. New research over two years with eight farm silos reported by Professor Thiago Bernades and colleagues of the University of Lavras, Brazil , has shown that Silostop orange oxygen barrier film (45 microns thickness) on the walls and top surfaces prevents spoilage at the shoulders compared to no wall film and a single layer of standard polyethylene film top cover (180 microns thickness).
Maize silage composition across the upper layers, 40 cm below the top surface, was similar to that in the central cores of the silos for the Silostop covering system and was superior to silage under standard polyethylene. Predicted milk per tonne of top layer silage dry matter was 80 kg higher for the Silostop system than for standard polyethylene.
At the shoulders, 0 to 50 cm from the walls, silage composition under Silostop was similar to that in the core and substantially better than under standard polyethylene, with fewer spoilage microorganisms, lower loss of dry matter, higher digestibility and 103 kg more predicted milk per tonne of silage dry matter.
Lima et al. (2016) Lining bunker wall with oxygen barrier film reduces nutrient losses of corn silage. Journal of Animal Science, 94, E-Suppl.5/Journal of Dairy Science, 99, E-Suppl.1, page 312.
No shoulder waste under Silostop
Shoulder waste under standard polyethylene
Poster presented at the Joint Annual Meeting of the American Society of Animal Science and American Dairy Science Association, Salt Lake City, USA, July 2016.