Date of this Version
Row, Cassandra, "Corn Plant Maturity Effect on Yield and Nutritional Quality; Corn Silage Inoculation on Performance of Cattle Fed Silage with or without Live Yeast Added" (2015). Theses and Dissertations in Animal Science.
Corn plots were serially harvested over two years to evaluate nutrient, digestibility, and yield change as plants matured from half-milk line through black layer. In yr 1 (2013), two corn plots were used, one short season (102 d), and one normal season (111 d). Year two used two Pioneer hybrids (111 d; 112 d). Silage yield and silage DM increased quadratically as maturity increased (P ≤ 0.01). Percent NDF increased quadratically (P = 0.01), and NDF-digestibility decreased linearly (P < 0.01) as maturity increased. This study suggests there is a delicate balance between plant maturity, nutrient content, and silage yield. A finishing study using 320 yearling steers (initial BW = 417 ± 22.7 kg) evaluated the effect of using a silage inoculant or not on performance and carcass characteristics. Treatments were designed as a 2×2×2 factorial arrangement with factors being no inoculant (CON) or use of inoculant (Buchnerii spp.; B500) at silage harvest, silage fed at 15 or 40% of diet DM, and presence (LEV) or absence (noLEV) of Levucell SC yeast product fed at 14.2 g/hd/d. Performance data were analyzed with pen as the experimental unit, with 5 pens/treatment. There was a three-way interaction for final live BW, HCW, ADG, and G:F (P < 0.05). Feeding corn silage at 40% inclusion instead of 15% inclusion increased DMI and decreased G:F. At 15% silage inclusion, the B500 LEV treatment had the lowest ADG. At 40% silage inclusion all treatments were similar for ADG (P ≥ 0.06). When including silage at 15%, using B500 inoculant, the addition of LEV did not improve finishing steer performance. When not using an inoculant the addition of LEV did improve finishing steer performance. When including silage at 40%, using B500 inoculant, the addition of LEV did improve finishing steer performance. When not using an inoculant, the addition of LEV did not improve finishing steer performance.
Advisors: Galen E. Erickson and James C. MacDonald