Original Articles

Effect of wilting on biochemical and microbiological changes in Kikuyu (Pennisetum clandestinum Hochst) silage

DOI: 10.1080/02566702.1989.9648168
Author(s): Maria deFigueiredoDepartment of Agriculture and Water Supply (Natal Region), Republic of South Africa, J.P. MaraisDepartment of Agriculture and Water Supply (Natal Region), Republic of South Africa, N.M. TaintonDepartment of Grassland Science, Republic of South Africa

Abstract

Small‐scale laboratory silos were used to study the fermentation process of Kikuyu (Pennisetum clandestinum Hochst) silage prepared from grass containing 25% and 40% dry matter. Silage made from grass containing 40% dry matter was found to be better preserved and of better quality than silage made from wetter grass. The better preservation and quality of the drier grass was reflected in the lower production of ammonia‐N (0,19 vs 0,26%) and total volatile fatty acids (5,48 vs 16,27%). Better quality was also reflected in the higher content of crude protein (16,3 vs 14,4%), true protein (9,0 vs 7,0%), residual total non‐structural carbohydrates (2,4 vs 2,3%), and in vitro dry matter digestibility (58,7 vs 55,2%). Both low and high dry matter silages had a low lactic‐acid content and high pH throughout fermentation. Both silages were of the acetate type.

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